Your potable water system is an important aspect of your home’s design that ensures you have adequate water pressure to all your fixtures while maintaining an emergency supply of water in case of any shortages.
Having adequate water pressure at all your fixtures is important and most will agree that taking a shower with little or no water pressure coming from the fixture is frustrating. To have proper pressure to all your fixtures your water system needs 40 to 60 pounds per square inch or PSI. The water supply from the city is typically 2-3 PSI, so this is not enough to sufficiently pressurize your home, especially if you live in a two-story home.
To ensure your home has adequate water pressure it is necessary to install a water pressure boosting system that consists of a pump, a bladder-type pressure tank and a cistern. The way the system works is the pump pressurizes the pressure tank containing the air bladder, once pressure reaches the desired PSI., the pump shuts off and the air-filled bladder inside the tank will maintain the pressure to the home. When somebody turns on a tap and the pressure falls, the pump will kick on only to bring the PSI back up to the desired level once again. This system is energy efficient because the bladder tank will maintain pressure to the home during times of low-flow demand allowing your pump to remain idle, therefore saving energy. When purchasing a pump, a ½ HP pump is sufficient to pressurize a single-story home and for a two story home purchase a 1 HP pump.
Another important aspect of this design is incorporating a cistern tank or well. The use of a cistern is an important element of this design because it protects the home from any unwanted water outages. We live in the Sonoran Desert and in any desert, water is in short supply. That is why it is wise to have a cistern of water that serves as a back-up supply giving the homeowner a two to three week supply of water during any water shortages in the city. The sizes of cisterns installed are typically 2500 to 5000 gallons depending on the client. The cistern is installed underground with the city supply piped in and then piped out from the cistern to your pump. Inside the cistern there is a float switch that will turn on and turn off the city water supply according to demand and water level. Having an emergency supply of water is an important thing to consider, and not expensive to implement.
If you are considering building a new home, this type of pressurized water system should be a mandatory feature included in your home design. For those with an existing home, this type of pressurized water system can be easily installed giving you the adequate water pressure you desire, while maintaining an emergency supply of water. For questions about pressurized water systems or any other renovation questions feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the author: Joseph Sanchez is president of Rocky Point Home Builders a design/build contractor specializing in custom home design, construction and renovations. He resides here in Puerto Peñasco with his wife and two children and is originally from Chicago.
Pump Photo – To ensure your home has adequate water pressure it is necessary to install a water pressure boosting system that consists of a pump, a bladder-type pressure tank and a cistern.
Cistern Photo – Pictured is a newly installed cistern that serves as a back-up supply of water during any water outages in the city.
Worker Photo – Workers excavate the soil in preparation for the installation of a large cistern for a new home in Las Conchas.