What size water meter and main line to house

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Gman7, Aug 4, 2021.

  1. Gman7

    Gman7 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2021
    Location:
    NC
    Hi,
    We are looking to build a house at the end of a dead end street in a rural part of our county. There is county water down the street as follows:

    16" main water line at the intersection with the main road

    The first 1700' down our road is 4" line, it does not feed any houses.
    The next 1400' down our road is 3" line, which feeds 10 houses.
    The last 770' down our road is 2" line, and feeds 4 houses.
    Our house would be located an additional 633' from the end of the county supplied water line. The house is also located 15-20 feet above the end of the water line.

    House would be 6 bedroom, 5 bath, with a shop and additional garage, each plumbed with a half bath. Currently would only be 3 of us in the house, but planning for additional people later.

    In talking to the Assistant Utilities Director, he mentioned there is a minimum of 20psi of water at the end of the line (give or take), and it could be more but that is a lower pressure area. He did not have an exact number, and recommended installing a 3/4" meter and a pump to help increase water pressure.

    Cost difference between a 5/8 x 3/4" meter and 1" meter is $2,300 plus the difference in cost of the meter and supplies.

    We're trying to get the best bang for the buck, don't want to scrimp and be sorry later, but also don't want to overspend if not needed.

    My questions are:

    1. What size meter would you recommend
    2. Is there a benefit of installing a 3/4" to 1 or 1 1/4" meter vs a 1" meter
    3. What size line would you recommend running to the house.
    4. Is there a need for a pump at the meter to help with water pressure
    5. Would a water pressure booster pump and tank at the house fix this potential issue?
    6. Anything else I am missing here or not considering

    My other option would be to drill a well, but in talking with a neighbor, he tried twice and was not successful, and ultimately had to go with county water service.

    Trying to learn as much as I can to make the right decision here. Thank you all for the help and advice.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2021
  2. Jeff H Young

    Jeff H Young In the Trades

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2020
    Location:
    92346
    Ive done pretty much all work in citys where a 200 foot run is crazy long. never heard of a place with 20 psi .
    Sounds pretty bad to me what you got going on . hopefully no yard or irrigation . no matter what size pipe you run 20 psi isnt much.
    , bigger is better but it could be marginal help. We would have minimum sizing to follow and a 5 bath house wont calc out to a 3/4 line or even 1 inch at 20 psi. 1 1/2 " would be my minimum concideration. But Id have to study up myself because I think there is a chance the system will be inadequate for habitation without equiptment to boost pressure.
     
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  4. wwhitney

    wwhitney Well-Known Member

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    Mar 17, 2019
    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    Jeff H Young likes this.
  5. Jeff H Young

    Jeff H Young In the Trades

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2020
    Location:
    92346
    btw if you have 20 psi at meter then climb 15 to 20 foot to first floor of house . what will you have ? 10 psi ? not good
     
  6. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    Usually there is a monthly fee for bigger meter. It would not be foolish to have a 3/4 meter feeding 1.5 or 2 inch pipe. Pressure drops add.

    In running the pipe, there are thermal expansion considerations. I would tend toward SIDR polyethylene pipe, and for that the main consideration is to not pull the pipe tight, but to snake the pipe in the trench. https://www.charlottepipe.com/Documents/PL_Tech_Man/ExpansionandContraction.pdf is mainly for PVC pipe. On page 57 they show snaking, and I think they are even suggesting snaking for PVC.

    If you need a pump house, you will want to insulate it well. You may need a heater if you are in the part of NC that freezes for real. You will want to lay the wiring in the trench for a subpanel in the pump house. That subpanel will power the 230 volt pump, run the electric heater, provide light, and have some convenience outlets.

    It is possible that a booster could go in the basement. I would tend toward a multi-stage centrifugal rather than a jet pump. I am not a pro.
     
    Gman7 likes this.
  7. Gman7

    Gman7 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2021
    Location:
    NC
    Hi Jeff,
    So I was told it has to be a minimum of 20psi, but he was not sure exactly what it was. He did caution it was a lower pressure area. I feel like you do about this, and trying to plan for worst case scenario.
     
  8. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    If you don't put power wire in the trench, at least put tracer wire in. Plus document the pipe path.
     
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  9. Jeff H Young

    Jeff H Young In the Trades

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2020
    Location:
    92346
    A lot of research 2300plus all the other costs for a horrible system might be better off having a tank near house and a pump. because I don't see what you describe working good even with a 2 inch meter and 2 inch main. if the water trickles out then it trickles out period. so a tank and pump seems like what you need but I'm just kinda guessing , this is outside of my experience , but a little common sense says it's going to not be good . another factor as you say "worst case scenario" is the system receiving higher demands in the area or greater improvement IE what if it gets even worse
     
  10. Michael Young

    Michael Young In the Trades

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2016
    Location:
    North Carolina
    You won't see much benefit from spending that $2,300. Install an in-line pump to increase your pressure up to 80psi. Otherwise you'll be taking pathetic trickle-style showers.
     
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