DC Water completes water pressure increase in parts of Ward 8

September 26, 2018

This week, DC Water completed the long-planned increase in water pressure for 6,000 residential and commercial customers in parts of Ward 8.   The project will improve the quality of life for many customers who have lived with low pressure for years. For instance, now they will have adequate water pressure to take showers and do laundry at the same time, something they couldn’t do before.

The controlled pressure increase began in late August and crews have been gradually increasing the pressure over the past month until a total increase of 22 pounds per square inch (psi) was reached.

DC Water invested more than $100 million in system improvements in preparation for the pressure increase. That includes a new water tower, the first added in the District in 70 years, a new pumping station and new water mains in the area to support a new pressure zone to provide better service and improve fire protection. In addition, DC Water has installed more than 1,000 pressure reducing valves, free of charge, for customers who were expected to see their pressure increase above 80 psi.

As anticipated, the pressure increase has revealed some weaker water mains in the area. There have been 20 pipe breaks in the new pressure zone since DC Water began raising the pressure. All of the breaks have occurred on older cast iron pipes installed between 1907 and 1960. Engineers expect more fluctuations in pressure over the next few weeks as they continue to commission the new water tower, which could cause additional pipe breaks.

For more information, please contact the project hotline at 202-787-4065 or visit dcwater.com/pzip2ndhigh.