Internal Plumbing FAQ’s

Water Softeners

Water Heater

Pressure Reducer Valve

Freezing Temperatures

 

 

 

Water Softeners

A water softener is a mechanical unit designed to remove hardness from water. Softened water allows soap to form suds easily. It reduces the buildup of scale in boilers or water heaters and does not leave large mineral deposits on plumbing fixtures, glass shower/tub doors, and cooking utensils. A water softener requires maintenance to ensure the unit is performing properly. We recommend the unit be serviced regularly.

Water Softener causing low pressure

If you are experiencing low pressure only inside your home, you will need to check your water softener. Put the softener on bypass and see if the pressure increases. If this increases your pressure, the problem is probably in the water softener. In this instance, the softener will need to be serviced.

Water Softener causing water quality concern
  • Brown particles that are uniform in size is a potential result of resin from the water softener. Bypass your water softener until repaired and flush all lines in your home to clear particles.
  • If the unit is not in use it should be taken out of service, unplugged and by- passed to prevent taste and odor problems.
  • Salt used during the softening exchange can be corrosive to the home plumbing system; this includes water heater anodes.
  • Due to the increase of sodium in softened water, individuals with sodium-restricted diets should check with their physician to determine what levels of sodium are acceptable in softened drinking/cooking water. 
Water Softener causing high usage

A water softener timer stuck in the regeneration cycle will dump water down the drain, increasing water usage and operational costs.

 

 

 

Water Heater

Most water heaters sold in the United States are tank-type, using either gas or electric heating elements. They are available in various sizes, with most residential water heaters being made in 30, 40 or 50 gallon capacities. Proper maintenance of your water heater will not only extend the life of the appliance but provide an efficient and problem-free supply of hot water.

Water Heater Maintenance Tips
  • Keeping the thermostat at the medium setting will save energy and reduce sediment build-up. Sediment that builds up at bottom of the tank makes it more difficult for the burner to heat water.
  • Flushing the water heater every 6 months will extend the life of the heater and help reduce the number of sediment particles that reach plumbing fixtures, particularly faucet aerators and showerheads.
  • Check plumbing pipes and fittings for leaks. Even a small leak (drip) will eventually rust the outside of the tank wall and cause the heater to fail.
  • Refer to the water heater manual provided by the manufacturer. This will provide many troubleshooting tips for your particular model.
Water Heater causing low pressure

If you are experiencing low pressure only on your hot water, you will need to check your water heater or have it serviced. Check the shut-off valve near the water heater to make sure it is not closed or partially closed.

Water Heater causing water quality concern

Sand and/or light colored sediment may occur from calcium buildup in the water heater. Flushing the water heater will relieve the sediment.

White floating particles can be caused by a deteriorating water heater dip tube, in which instance you will need to have your water heater serviced.

 

 

 

Pressure Reducer Valve (PRV)

A Pressure Reducer Valve (PRV) is a relief valve that controls and maintains a preset, reduced downstream (outlet) pressure by causing the main valve to throttle and sustain the desired reduced pressure regardless of variations in demand and upstream (inlet) water pressure.

When CLWSC installs a new tap for a new customer, CLWSC may install a PRV (and a customer valve) on the customer side of the meter. The PRV has a one-year manufacturer warranty from the date of installation. Should the PRV fail within this time, CLWSC will replace it at no cost. Any tampering or relocation of the PRV during the one year warranty time period will void the warranty. There are no expressed or implied warranties for the following: the Customer Valve, any pipe, connection, or attachment on the customer side of the water meter. As stated in our Customer Service Agreement, CLWSC is not responsible for any damage to customer property due to water pressure.

Do I need a Pressure Reducer Valve?

Due to circumstances beyond CLWSC control, water pressure may fluctuate. Therefore it is recommended that all properties have a PRV installed to prevent any damage to pipes and/or appliances. The customer can attach their own PRV or have their own plumber do so. Typically the PRV is factory set to 55 psi, but it is controllable by the customer. It is not recommended that the pressure exceeds 80 psi.

Is my Pressure Reducer Valve causing low or high pressure?

If you have a PRV and are experiencing low pressure or high pressure, it may need to be adjusted or serviced.

A PRV has an internal diaphragm that can fail over time. When a PRV fails, this diaphragm often closes restricting the flow or volume of water passing through the device. When this occurs, customers may experience normal pressure when they first turn on their faucets because of the water built up in their lines and then the pressure decreases quickly. In this instance, the PRV will likely need to be replaced.

Most PRVs have a screen on the inlet side of the device. Check the screens for particles that may be restricting flow, and clean as necessary.

Adjusting your Pressure Reducer Valve

To adjust your PRV outlet pressure pull the orange adjustment knob upward, then turn counterclockwise (-) to decrease pressure or clockwise (+) to increase pressure. Snap the knob back down to lock its position after adjusting. The pressure indicator on the side of the device will display the approximate outlet pressure.  

 

 

Freezing Temperatures

frozen pipe frozen pipe burst insulated pipe insulated pipe

To help prevent water pipes from cracking or bursting during freezing temperatures Customers can take the following actions:

INSIDE:

  1. Allow a slow drip from a faucet to reduce pipes from freezing.
  2. Open cabinet doors under sinks to allow the homes heat in.
  3. If your pipes have burst inside your home, turn your water valve off to prevent further damage. The shut-off valve is usually located in the box adjacent to the meter box. The valve turns clockwise to close.

OUTSIDE:

  1. Insulate pipes exposed to the elements or cold drafts with foam insulation. Newspapers, towels or blankets can also provide insulation, however; these items are subject to become wet if it rains causing the insulation itself to freeze. Cover them with a plastic bag or tape to keep it as dry as possible.
  2. Place an insulating dome or foam cover on outdoor faucets, spigots and backflow preventers to reduce the likelihood of water pipes freezing and expanding.
  3. You can also purchase insulated bags and/or insulated/decorative rocks to protect and conceal above-ground backflow preventers.
  4. We do not recommend using blowtorches, kerosene, propane heaters, charcoal stove or other open flame devices to thaw frozen pipes. We recommend insulating your pipes to prevent this from happening.
  5. Canyon Lake Water Service Company can shut your water off in the event of an emergency however, we do not make repairs beyond the meter connection on the customer's side of the water meter.