Pressure reducer installation location ?

Discussion in 'Pumps and Tanks Well Forum & Blog' started by oldjessee, Feb 11, 2012.

  1. oldjessee

    oldjessee New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    SW VA
    Newbie here, so pardon my vocabulary...

    I would like to add a PRV to my home plumbing set up, but am unsure where. I am running off spring water for most of the year with a secondary well pump with corresponding expansion tank, etc... The spring water ties into my water line between the pump and expansion tank. (I know!! I know!!!) The spring water also provides water for livestock (a separate pump, holding tanks, etc..) When livestock are grazing parts of the farm, we pump to a higher elevation reservoir which in turn increases the pressure at the house way too high. My reason for wanting a PRV.

    Questions: Is a PRV what I want? Where is the best place to put one?

    I am thinking in the spring line before it ties into my well line, but would love to hear other ideas as it means digging down two feet in the dirt/mud and maintenance would be a major inconvenience. Could I put it in after the expansion tank and add another expansion tank for the water heater, if I needed one? Thoughts welcome!
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,783
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    I normally install a PRV (pressure reducing valve) where I can access it later for repair or replacement.
    I don't like them buried and forgotten. I run into a few homes that were very puzzling as to why they no longer had decent pressure.
  3. ballvalve

    ballvalve General Engineering Contractor

    Messages:
    3,261
    Location:
    northfork, california
    With incoming high pressure, seems it should be just before the "well" expansion tank-storage tank.

    What exactly is the 'high' pressure you are getting?

    Lower pressure in the diaphragm tank gives more storage of water.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2012
  4. oldjessee

    oldjessee New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    SW VA
    Thanks for the replies...Been busy all week with contractors..

    ballvalve: "high" pressure means that when I turn on the kitchen faucet it makes a loud high pitch humming noise, the toilet fill valve seems ready to go through the tank top...common sense tells you it is way too high!! The pressure is only too high when we have water in our highest reservoir.

    So, if I put a PRV in the line before the well expansion tank, would it have a negative effect on the well pump pressure sensor cycling on and off too much? Most of the time the breaker to the well is off, and is manually turned on when we need it, but I would like to make it as idiot proof/automatic as possible.
  5. valveman

    valveman Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    4,381
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    We do this all the time when using a pump to boost city water pressure or when tying two or more well pumps to the same system. The best place to put the PRV is on the spring water side of a tee that ties into the main line either before or after the well pump pressure tank.

    To make everything work automatically you just need to stagger the pressure settings. Set the PRV at 50 PSI, and set the pump pressure switch at 40/60. In that way you will have 50 PSI from the spring all the time. But if the spring can’t keep up for some reason, the pressure will drop to 40 and the pump will automatically be started.

    BTW I would also put a check valve on the same line as the PRV, but nowhere else above ground.
  6. oldjessee

    oldjessee New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    SW VA
    I totally agree that that is the most logical place to put the PRV, it is just that the tee into the main line is underground with a 6 inch access hole for the shut off, etc... Not a good place to put a part that will likely require maintenance in the future and, as Terry mentioned, be forgotten. I am looking for good location options inside the house/basement where I won't have pump cycling issues or hot water heater expansion issues and to make things work as automatically as possible. Maybe these issues are made up!
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