Clogged aerators and clogged cartridges are two of the most common causes of low water pressure in a sink. The aerator is the tip of the faucet that the water comes out of, while the cartridge is found underneath the sink handle and enables you to stop and start the flow of water.
Open your main water valve.
Your house has a main water valve, usually located near the meter; the valve controls the flow of water into your home's pipes. Find the valve and check to see if it's completely open. Opening a half-shut valve is one of the quickest ways for increasing home water pressure.
If the low water pressure seems restricted to a single faucet or showerhead, the problem isn't with your pipes or water supply, but with the fixture itself. If it's a sink, the most common causes are a clogged aerator or clogged cartridge.
Remove and clean the faucet aerator thoroughly, or replace it with a new one. Remove and clean the flow restrictor, increase the size of the flow restrictor hole, or remove it entirely and replace the aerator without replacing the flow restrictor.
A quick and easy way to increase water pressure is to adjust the pressure-reducing valve, which can be found in your home, usually close to your water meter. If your pressure gauge reading was low, make slight adjustments to your regulator.
Clogged aerator screen
The aerator is the first to check when a faucet has low water pressure. Most faucets have aerators at the base or inserted inside the spout. Sediments, mineral deposits, or small debris can clog the aerator over time, which results in low water pressure.
The low pressure in the kitchen faucet is usually caused by one of two reasons - a clogged inflator or a clogged cartridge.
The most common causes of low water pressure in a kitchen sink are a clogged aerator or a clogged cartridge.
Since the EPA limits water flow at 2.2 gpm, most modern faucets now come with a pre-installed aerator that limits the flow to 2.2 gpm while also infusing the water stream with air to reduce splashing.
A fast drop in only one faucet means there's a problem with the faucet. Rapid low pressure affecting one area of the house may mean a corroded pipe issue. An abrupt water pressure drop affecting the whole house may mean a water main break (municipal water) or a well pump problem (well water).
Fill a plastic bag with half water and half vinegar, ensuring there is enough liquid to submerge the faucet head. Put the liquid-filled bag over the faucet head and secure it with a rubber band. Let stand for 30 minutes to one hour. For more sensitive fixture finishes, do not surpass 30 minutes.
Check for Deposits and Debris
Use your little finger or a small screwdriver to check inside the faucet spout for any parts that may be stuck inside. If they are stuck in place with mineral deposits, you may need to pry out the parts with a screwdriver. Also, clear out any deposits or debris from inside the spout.
If there's an accumulation of sediments in your hot water tank, it can lower your water pressure. The presence of kinks in the flexible water pipes used in water heaters can result in low water pressure. If the shut-off valve isn't fully open, water pressure can drop.
While several factors can cause weak water pressure, common culprits include a broken pressure regulator, faulty water heater, clogged fixtures, or a hidden leak.
A low-flow fixture is a water saving plumbing fixture designed to achieve water savings by having a lower flow rate of water or a smaller quantity per flush. Some of these low-flow fixtures are faucets, showerheads, and toilets.
Unscrew the nozzle and check for a broken or misaligned washer. Next you'll likely see mineral crumbles and debris collected at the screen. Rinse it all off. If it's hardened on, soak in vinegar for a bit or buy a replacement assembly.
A manual drain snake, also known as a plumber's snake or a drain auger, is a small boring tool that rotates slowly as it's physically pushed through a stubborn clog. The terminal end of the device is a corkscrew-shaped hook that is fed into a clogged drain or toilet.
The most likely culprit is debris that has become trapped, either in the supply lines or inside the faucet itself. You can clear it with a simple procedure called “flushing the lines.”