Frequently Asked Questions

How can I improve my water pressure?

Firstly you must install a break tank which will give your pump a reservoir of water to draw from. For a flat we recommend around a 125 litre tank and for an average family house around a 200 litre tank. The tank does not have to be anything special and anything you can buy from a plumber’s merchant is likely to be suitable as long as it has a sealed lid and you can install a ball valve onto the incoming main. 

This tank should ideally be located as low down and as close to your incoming water supply as possible as the less gravity your incoming water has to overcome, the faster your tank will refill. You may wish to consider installing a slightly larger tank to reduce the risk of you running out of water. Please note however; that we do not recommend installing your pump in the attic.

The pumps we use for domestic water pressure boosting are stainless steel centrifugal pumps and they are purpose built for this job. In most cases we recommend the 3 Bar pump and there is usually only a need for a larger pump if the house has more than 2 storeys or a particularly large number of bathrooms which may be used simultaneously. In these cases we would recommend the 4 Bar pump.

Can I attach a pump directly to my incoming mains?

NO! Fitting a pump directly to the main is not possible for two reasons:

* Water bye-laws specifically exempt you from installing any pump to your incoming main. There is an exemption for pumps ‘up to’ 12 l/min but this is not guaranteed and still relies on your mains being capable of delivering this volume. To put this into context, a single shower typically requires between 9-15 l/min.

* More importantly pumps are not designed to ‘suck’ water only to push it and thus if the existing supply is inadequate then the pump will be starved of water and provide very little benefit. The pump will also not be operating efficiently and will be liable to fail prematurely.

    My tank was just installed and the water has a funny taste – what should I do?

    Flush the new tank by allowing water to flow through three or four pump cycles. If the taste continues, you should probably have the source water tested. 

    How does a pressure switch control the pump and tank?

    The pressure switch communicates with the tank and the pump. The pressure switch monitors the pressure inside the tank and activates and de-activates the pump when cut-in and cut-out pressures are reached inside the tank.

    There is chlorine in my water. Is chlorine bad for me?

    Chlorine in itself does not appear to be a problem other than the aesthetic concerns of undesirable taste and odour it creates. There has been a lot of research on the effects of chlorine with evidence showing that the biggest concern being its reaction with natural organic materials like leaves and humus forming disinfection by-products, which are considered carcinogens. Installing a point of use water treatment system that incorporates the use of carbon filtration can be very effective in correcting this problem.

    What is an ultraviolet system? How does it work?

    An ultraviolet (UV) system uses UV to inactivate certain bacteria, viruses and cysts that may be present in the water source that flows through the systems UV chamber. The effectiveness of UV depends upon the dose of disinfectant received by the organism, which is the combination of UV intensity times the contact time involved. It is advisable to always pre-treat the water entering the UV system.

    What is a reverse osmosis system?

    Reverse osmosis systems produce pure water by forcing untreated water or tap water through a semi permeable membrane. The membrane lets only water molecules pass through directing it to the units storage tank, the impurities that are separated from the water molecules are forced down the drain. The system consists of both pre and post filters which add additional contaminant removal. Click here for more information on Reverse Osmosis systems or Reverse Osmosis Installation.

    My well water tested positive for coliform bacteria. What does this mean and what can I do about it?

    Coliform bacteria can be an indicator that the well may be susceptible to bacteria contamination. The most common system for treating water borne bacteria is Ultraviolet (UV) water disinfection.

    My water tastes bad. What may be the cause and can it be corrected?

    If you want to treat the drinking and cooking water at your sink with a POU (point of use) system, a reverse osmosis system is a great option. Reverse Osmosis can remove lead, iron, fluoride, nitrates and dozens of other contaminants. In addition, an RO system can greatly improve the taste and the quality of your water by removing chlorine and other offensive tastes.

    If you elect to treat the whole house, a system that is installed at the point where the water enters the home POE (point of entry) system, then your first step is to identify what is causing the problem (have a water analysis done). Once you have identified what is causing the taste problem you can then research what type of water treatment equipment is designed to address your specific needs.

    Once installed does water treatment equipment require any service or parts?

    Yes, all water treatment equipment needs occasional attention and many require replacement filters & membranes. Follow the manufacturer's recommended service and maintenance instructions.

    Which type of water treatment product should I purchase?

    Once you know what is in your water, then you can better determine what you want to remove. This is accomplished through a water analysis, EPS can read your water analysis and recommend a suitable water treatment system.

    How do I know what's in my water?

    If you receive water from a municipal water supplier they can supply you with a water analysis. If you are on a private well, you can send off for a water analysis from a certified laboratory.

    How to boost domestic water pressure

    Why would I want to boost my water pressure?

    Mains water has had its pressure reduced to combat leaks, or new buildings are going up and sharing the same mains pipe which can’t cope with the increased demand. This is generally only a problem at peak times but is increasingly becoming a frustration for many homeowners. With promises of a ‘power shower’ with new bathroom suites, the disappointment that follows with household water pressure unable to keep up is becoming more and more common. So why wouldn’t you want to boost your water pressure? The next question on the tip of your tongue is “how do I boost my water pressure?”

    First of all – what heating system do you have? If you have a combi/megaflow boiler system your only real choice is to boost your whole house, even if it’s just a kitchen tap that needs boosting. If you have a gravity fed system then you can choose to boost just a single shower or tap but if you have more than one outlet to boost, it is more efficient boosting the whole house. We would always suggest boosting your whole house anyway to safeguard against future problems. Do it once and do it right!

    Why not take a look at our Water Boosting Sections on our website – specifically targeted towards domestic homes.

     

    Can I attach a pump directly to my incoming mains?

    NO! Fitting a pump directly to the main is not possible for two reasons:

    * Water Bye-laws specifically exempt you from installing any pump to your incoming main. There is an exemption for pumps ‘up to’ 12 l/min but this is not guaranteed and still relies on your mains being capable of delivering this volume. To put this into context, a single shower typically requires between 9-15 l/min.

    * More importantly pumps are not designed to ‘suck’ water only to push it and thus if the existing supply is inadequate then the pump will be starved of water and provide very little benefit. The pump will also not be operating efficiently and will be liable to fail prematurely.

    How can I improve my water pressure then?

    • Firstly you must install a break tank which will give your pump a reservoir of water to draw from. For a flat we recommend around a 125 litre tank and for an average family house around a 200 litre tank. The tank does not have to be anything special and anything you can buy from a plumber’s merchant is likely to be suitable as long as it has a sealed lid and you can install a ball valve onto the incoming main. (Whole House Boosting solution).
    • This tank should ideally be located as low down and as close to your incoming water supply as possible as the less gravity your incoming water has to overcome, the faster your tank will refill. You may wish to consider installing a slightly larger tank to reduce the risk of you running out of water. Please note however; that we do not recommend installing your pump in the loft. (Whole House Boosting solution).
    • The pumps we use for domestic water pressure boosting are stainless steel centrifugal pumps and they are purpose built for this job. In most cases we recommend the 3 Bar pump and there is usually only a need for a larger pump if the house has more than 2 storeys or a particularly large number of bathrooms which may be used simultaneously. In these cases we would recommend the 4 Bar pump.
    sentinel

    How is my pump controlled?

    • If all of your outlets are at least a metre below your storage tank then a simple flow-switch such as the FS150 can be used, if as is more common some or all of your outlets are not at least a metre below your storage tank then a BRIO pressure sensing controller should be used, this will turn the pump on when it detects a drop in pressure in your pipe work and stop when the flow stops. Both of these controllers will also protect your pump against dry-running. If you have a particularly large amount of bathrooms which may or may not be used simultaneously then you may wish to consider using the Variable Speed Controller along with the 4 bar pump. This allows you to set a pressure which you would like to maintain throughout the property and will slow down and speed up the pump as more or less outlets are opened to maintain a constant pressure at all of your outlets.
    powertank

    I like the idea but I am looking for something easier and neater to install.

    If you are looking for an out of the box solution to your problem which will involve the least amount of additional plumbing and time spent on installation then you may wish to consider one of our all in one pump and tank solutions - Multiboost. They are a packaged water pressure boosting solution and incorporate a submersible water pump with either a Fixed or Variable speed controller. All they require is for you to plumb your incoming water main into the float valve entering the tank and from the outlet of the controller to the plumbing in your house.

     

    Why do I have low water pressure?

    Are you experiencing low water pressure? If you are experiencing low water pressure in your home or office it can be very frustrating. Before you go running for your credit card and opting for the first offered solution it might be worth reading through our reasons why you might be experiencing low water pressure and our Troubleshooter to determine where the problem lies. This can save you money in the long run by making sure you don’t buy a solution that won’t work. We spend a lot of time replacing boosting systems that were miss-sold or where people bought the cheapest option without reading into whether it will actually work for their system. By understanding why you have low water pressure you should be armed with your specific situation requirements.

    Your water authority collects, treats and supplies water from the reservoir to your home. It sets and maintains a guaranteed water pressure, though pressure levels do vary across the day.

    Low Water Pressure Troubleshooter:

    1. Do you have low water pressure at all your water outlets?
      Check all the outlets in your home. Are all your outlets suffering from low pressure, or just one? If it is an isolated outlet then you need to check your faucet or shower head. A simple clean or de-scale might solve the problem.
    1. Is it hot water, cold water or both that are affected by low pressure?
      The main water supply normally enters your home in the cold kitchen or utility room tap. If water comes out of this tap but not elsewhere (such as your shower or bathroom tap) the problem is with your internal plumbing.
    1. If only your hot water has low pressure then inspect your water heater.
      Verify the shut-off valve is not shut off. For safety each water heater includes a shut-off valve to use in case of emergencies. If the valve becomes turned slightly it can reduce your water pressure. Blockages can also occur and plumbers have efficient ways of checking if this is the case.
    1. Look at the Pressure Reducing Valve (PRV).
      The PRV (shaped like a bell) is usually located on the pipe where it enters your home or office. Adjust this to see if it affects your overall water pressure. Replacement may be necessary if the valve has failed or broken.
    1. Check the shut-off valve (stopcock stop valve)
      This valve can influence water pressure, especially if it has been turned slightly. Your inside stop valve needs to be fully open. It’s usually located under the kitchen sink, in the airing cupboard or under the floorboards by the front door. If the valve is closed, turn it anti-clockwise to ensure that it is fully open. Your outside stop valve also needs to be fully open. Some properties share their water supply with their neighbours so check with your neighbours to see if they have recently used the outside stop valve.

    Hopefully after going through the checks you have managed to sort out your problem. If you have gone through the checks and are still experiencing low water pressure problems, at least now you should now be armed with a wealth of knowledge about the pressure problems in your home which should enable you to make an informed decision about the right solution. Here are a few other things you will need to know before making your decision. It might be worth making a list of all the problems you are experiencing, and the information about your property.

    What can cause low water pressure?

    1. Poor Mains Pressure:
      Generally due to water companies reducing the supply pressure.
    2. Height of the Property:
      The taller the height of the building, the greater the pressure required to fill header/break tanks.
    3. Multiple Water Outlets:
      The more pressure outlets (taps/showers/utility feeds) there are in your property then more pressure is required to get water to all of them.
    4. Daily Timing:
      During peak times of the day the demand for water is high, putting a strain on your water system and reducing pressure, for example in the morning when everyone gets up.
    5. Living in a High Area:
      If you live in a hilly area (above the reservoir or pumping station) there is a greater pressure needed to get the water up the hill to your property. High pressure is common in low lying areas and low pressure is common in higher lying areas.
    6. Inadequate Pumps:
      If you already have pumps installed, it may be they are not up to the job.
    7. Over Use:
      During dry spells when hosepipes and sprinklers are being used is just one example of extraordinary use.

    Before looking at pressure boosting solutions you will need to know:

    1. What type of heating system do you have?
      Is it Gravity Fed System or Combi Boiler or Pressurised Hot Water Tank
    2. What type of property is it?
      Is it a House, Flat, Bungalow, Hotel, Warehouse, Village Hall etc. Also how many stories does it have?
    3. How many showers at the property?
      Also baths, toilets, & kitchens does it have?
    4. The number of people living at the property?
      And do you intend adding any bathrooms or extensions in the future?
    5. What is your mains incoming flow rate?
      You can simply fill a 1 litre jug & time how long it takes. ie. 5 seconds would equal 12 litres a minute flow rate.

    Water supply from a well, borehole or rainwater tank

    With the advent of water meters and the increasing cost of water, many people are looking at the possibilities of how to use water from a well on their property, as a way of saving money.

    Borehole users can extract up to 20,000 litres of water per day. Another great reason to start obtaining water from a borehole or well as opposed to mains water supply is that, in fact, it uses far less energy to extract water from a well or borehole than it does to obtain fresh, clean drinking water from other sources. Therefore, using a borehole not only costs you less but is also a lot healthier for our environment.

    For those who may live a long way from the nearest water main, extracting water from a borehole or filling a tank from a stream or well is the only way to supply water for their house or farm. For all of these applications, a pump is required.

    Boreholes can provide water for all kinds of applications including drinking water, washing and irrigation… and best of all, it’s free!
    In order to correctly size a pump for you, you will need to gather some information for us – it is important that your measurements are accurate (please don’t guess!)

    Please tell us the following:

    • Are you replacing an existing worn out pump ?
      – If yes please provide make, model, voltage, flow-rate & head (these are all usually found on the nameplate on the top or side of the motor.)
    • If you have a borehole or a well, what is its diameter and depth ?
    • Is there any existing pipe-work ?
      – If so, what size is the internal diameter of the pipe ?
    • How far is it from the well/tank/borehole to the house ?
    • Is the ground flat or does it rise between the water source and the house ?
      – If the ground rises, what is the difference in height between the water source and the house ?
    • What do you want the pump to do ?
      – e.g fill a tank, irrigate a garden, pressurise a whole house etc
    • Do you have an electrical supply near to where the pump will be ?
    • Do you know anything about the water quality ?

    With increasing water costs and concerns about groundwater shortages, it makes great sense to consider the use of wells or boreholes to supply clean, naturally filtered water to your domestic or commercial property.

    How to remove standing water

    If you live in an area with a high water table, or near a river, or you simply just have a lot of rain in a short space of time, you might find your lawn waterlogged or your patio under 6″ of water and in danger of flooding your house. When this happens you obviously need to remove the water quickly, and this is where a pump is the best solution.

    Contact your nearest EPS branch and we will be happy to help you identify the best solution.

    Do you provide after sales service?

    Yes! Our expert team are contactable directly at our trade counters in Mallow, Co. Cork; Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo; Mountrath, Co. Laois; Naas, Co. Kildare; Newtownards, Co. Down or over the phone to answer your queries.

    Our Service & Repair team are dedicated to providing 24/7 service for our customers. If you require after sales service, please get in touch!

     

     

    Get in Touch