Kitchen Taps & Water Pressure

In this informative guide, we’re going to be looking at how the water pressure in your house affects your kitchen taps. They don’t teach you this stuff in school, and you’d be forgiven for not knowing how your water pressure informs what kitchen taps you can get. 

It’s nothing too complicated, but it’s helpful to know. You don’t want to buy a kitchen tap and then find it won’t even work in your home. 

Why Does Water Pressure Matter?

Your water pressure is essentially the force at which your water runs in your home’s pipes. It is measured in ‘bars’. For perspective, 1 bar means that the pressure is high enough to raise water by ten metres. 

Some houses will have ‘low-pressure’ water systems and ‘high-pressure’ systems. If your taps don’t accommodate the kind of water system you have in your home, then your taps will be sub-optimal, or just won’t work.

What are the Types of Water Pressure Systems?

So what kind of water pressure systems are out there? These are the most popular:

Gravity System

This is a low pressure system that usually has a cold water tank stored in the loft, and a hot water cylinder in an airing cupboard. The pressure is informed by the height that the cold water tank is kept at in relation to the taps in your home. 

For every metre it travels, that’s 0.1 bars. So if your cold water tank is 3 metres above your kitchen taps, the pressure will be 0.3 bars and your tap needs to accommodate that.

Combination Boiler

A combi boiler is typically found in the kitchen, located at where your water mains enter the house. As the name suggests, it manages both hot and cold water within the same unit. When you run a hot tap it heats the water as and when it’s called upon. 

These are, generally speaking, high pressure systems. They are most likely to be between 1 and 2 bar, and you will usually find that the water pressure is signified on the front of the unit. 

Unvented System

An unvented system will not have any bearing on the taps you buy. This consists of a main cylinder that’s filled with cold water. This cold water tank is constantly pressurised. An external source then heats the water indirectly. This can be a solar panel, electricity, oil,a boiler and so on.

Your showers, taps and fixtures aren’t affected by water pressure. You can buy your shower heads, taps, accessories and more freely.

How do You Determine Your Water Pressure?

Your exact water pressure won’t really matter when buying a kitchen tap. You just need to know if your water system is ‘high’ or ‘low’ pressure.

  • A low pressure water system is 0-0.3 bar
  • A high pressure water system is 1.0+ bar

The ‘middle’ range of 0.4-0.9 bar is largely ignored by manufacturers. It is very unlikely your water system will register in that range. If they do, speak to a plumber about your options. You may be able to find a bespoke solution, or you’ll find that a high pressure system works fine etc.  

In our range of Kitchen Taps, make sure you find out the minimum and maximum water pressure for that tap. Either get in touch or check out the product description for that information.

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