Water pressure

Number of properties with pressure below the minimum standard

You should expect the water to arrive at your home under a certain pressure so it then flows well from the tap. There is a minimum standard on pressure that water companies have to reach but this is not always possible.

3,252 Properties below minimum standard of pressure in England and Wales at March 2017.

Source: Water UK

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The minimum standard pressure is equivalent to being able to fill a 4.5 litre (one gallon) container in 30 seconds from a ground floor tap.

Why does water pressure vary?

The amount of pressure at your tap can depend on several factors.

Where you house is relative to your local service reservoir (where treated drinking water is stored) may make a difference. If your house is at a similar height to the service reservoir, then you may receive lower pressure than houses which are well below the level of the reservoir.

How much water customers are using at the same time can also affect pressure. For example, pressure could be lower in the mornings or early evenings or during dry spells when people use hosepipes or sprinklers to water their gardens. 

Number of properties below minimum standard of pressure (per 10,000 connections)

The graph shows the number of properties experiencing pressure below the minimum standard in each company’s area, for the latest year. So that companies with different numbers of properties affected can be compared, the graphs show the number of properties below minimum standard of pressure per 10,000 connections.

      Number of properties below minimum standard of pressure (per 10,000 connections​)

      Source: Water UK

      • The minimum standard is equivalent to being able to fill a 15 litre bucket in 100 seconds. Technically, this is 10 metres head of pressure at a boundary stop tap with a flow of 9 litres per minute.

      • Low pressure can reduce water flow to a trickle and some modern heating appliances and showers will not work below certain pressure levels. 

      • There are a number of causes for low pressure, for example, when demand for water is high (such as in morning or early evenings) pressure can be lower than during the rest of the day. There can also be problems during dry spells when people use hosepipes or sprinklers to water their gardens. 

        If water pressure is too low, customers should check that there is no problem with the plumbing in their property, such as a partially closed internal stop tap (if fitted) or a leak.

      Worried about your water pressure?

      Please contact your water company or a WaterSafe plumber for more advice. Don’t know who your supplier is? Find out here

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