Omnia Mechanical Group

571 Timpson Place Bronx, NY 10455

Phone: 212-534-2500

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Booster Pumps for Water Pressure: Building Manager’s Guide

New York City uses a gravity-fed water supply, a typical water distribution system many communities use. The system can become problematic in NYC because of the number of high-rise properties; a taller building can lose water pressure on the upper floors. To compensate for the loss, building owners can install secondary pumps called booster pumps for water pressure.

The pumps are also beneficial in multi-family or multi-unit properties, where the number of people using faucets or other plumbing fixtures and appliances is unpredictable. Booster pumps can increase water pressure by up to 70 psi, helping eliminate flow and pressure variability during demand fluctuations. Discover more about booster pumps and how to maintain them.

Everything You Need To Know About Booster Pumps for Water Pressure

Water Pressure Demands and Requirements

According to the New York State Department of Health, water pressure in the distribution system cannot be less than 35 psi. The standard requirement for water pressure is approximately 60 to 80 psi. NYC permits water pressure up to 85 psi in high-rise buildings to ensure water reaches upper floors without issue. That said, pressure can vary depending on the location of the building and the time of day, meaning fluctuations from 30 to 90 psi are typical.

Finding the right water pressure balance is tricky, especially in taller residential properties. A property’s existing water pressure without booster pumps results from several variables: property elevation, number of tenants, consumption rates, and number of fixtures. The pressure may fluctuate from floor to floor and during different times of the day.

Booster pumps for water pressure can resolve the balance issue because they maintain consistent pressure throughout the property. Depending on the height of your property, a single booster pump may not be enough, but with a suitable booster system, you can equalize the pressure throughout your building.

Pre-Installation Requirements and Inspections

Before you install booster pumps, you must determine the cause of low pressure in the property. Anything from leaks to corrosion to faulty fixtures can cause pressure fluctuations or consistently low pressure in your building. Installing a booster pump before addressing potential problems can cause more property damage. For example, if there is corrosion or leaks in the plumbing system, adding pressure to the main output can cause more severe cracks and leaks and possibly cause a burst.

Also, the building flow rate should match a booster pump’s power, or you risk overspending. In this situation, the pump may also be ineffective. Water flow refers to the amount of water that comes out of a pipe, typically measured in gallons per minute. Water pressure uses psi and refers to the force of the flow coming out of the pipe.

To determine the size and power of booster pumps for water pressure, you must specify the flow and head requirements of the system. The arithmetic is not especially daunting, but the taller a building is and the more fixtures it has or tenants it serves, the more complex the math gets. While you can calculate reasonable maximum flow rates and pressure requirements using the American Society of Plumbing Engineers Design Handbook for estimated fixture unit values, it is best to work with a professional.

A routine inspection can determine the cause of pressure issues and the need for booster systems. Antler Pumps can assess your plumbing, make any necessary repairs, and calculate the flow rate and pressure requirements for your building, allowing for the correct selection and installation of a booster pump.

Variable and Fixed Speed Pumps

Building owners have two choices for booster pumps for water pressure: variable and fixed speed pumps. Variable speed pumps are more versatile and offer more control over water pressure and flow rates. Fixed pumps run constantly and don’t offer as many options. Most building owners will choose a variable-speed booster pump over a fixed-speed pump.

A variable speed pump adjusts the motor speed based on water flow demand, which has many benefits over the fixed speed option. Because variable-speed pumps change motor speed based on demand, they usually last longer than fixed-speed options. Also, variable-speed pumps conserve more power and reduce energy consumption. They can also eliminate energy losses from high-head or high-resistance conditions and pressure-reducing valves.

Other benefits of variable-speed booster pumps include lower operational costs, reduced noise, and increased reliability. The pumps experience less system wear because they are not on constantly, meaning the lifespan is longer and more dependable.

Despite the many advantages of variable-speed booster pumps for water pressure, they are not the best for all systems. They are more expensive than fixed-speed options, and for systems with constant loads, the variability of the design is unnecessary. Still, in residential properties and apartment complexes where varying load scenarios are common, the variable speed booster pump is ideal.

Maintenance and Upkeep

Like all mechanical equipment, booster pumps need regular maintenance. At the very least, the pumps require an annual inspection by a professional pump engineer. However, to keep the pump operating at peak performance, regular maintenance and system checks are necessary.

Typical maintenance should include visual inspections, lubrication, and assessments of electrical components, gaskets, seals, and suction and discharge lines. Also, the pumps need regular cleaning to ensure optimum performance. Professionals can also assess the alignment and mounting of the system and rebalance it since components can shift.

Antler Pumps offers annual service contracts to ensure your pumps never miss routine maintenance, cleaning, or inspections. By signing the contract, your system becomes a priority. All scheduled maintenance and assessments occur based on a predetermined schedule. You don’t have to remember a thing. The service team will call and remind you of any upcoming appointments.

Antler Pumps Can Take Care of Your Booster Pumps for Water Pressure

Licensed Technicians for Your Pump Needs

Booster pumps for water pressure are often necessary in NYC. The high-rise structures make it challenging to maintain adequate water pressure from the gravity-fed system alone. If your building needs booster pumps or other pump solutions, look no further than Antler Pumps. Call our team at 212-534-2500 to learn more about booster pumps and discuss annual service contracts.


Our Privacy Policy

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1. Purpose.

This Privacy Policy (“the Policy”) provides information on how the Company uses your personal information. By agreeing to the Policy, you agree to our collection and use of your personal information as described in the Policy. This Privacy Policy is effective for all new users of Sanitaryplumbing.com.

2. Personal Information.

You can browse some areas of omniagroup.nyc (“the Website”) without being a registered user. However, certain activities do require registration. (You consent to the transfer and storage of your information by registering with omniagroup.nyc).

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Our primary purpose in collecting personal information is to provide you with a safe and user-friendly experience. For example, the Company may use your personal information to:

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The Company does not guarantee the accuracy of information for any and all of its properties on the Website, and is not responsible for any errors or misrepresentations (made by Renters, the Client, or otherwise).

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Should your personal information change, please immediately update your information on the Website. This will ensure the accuracy of our records. The Company does retain personal information from closed accounts in order to comply with law and collect and disburse any fees owed.

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This Privacy Policy addresses only the use of information we collect from you. Since omniagroup.nyc does not control the privacy policies of third parties, you are subject to the privacy policies of those third parties. It is advisable that you consult with the management of third parties before you disclose your personal information to others.

12. General

We may amend this Privacy Policy at any time by posting the amended terms on the Website. All amended terms are immediately effective after they are initially posted on the Website.

13. Privacy Policy Questions & Concerns

Questions and/or concerns regarding the Policy should be emailed to the following email address: info@omniagroup.nyc.