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How to fix noisy pipes

Why Your Water Pipes Are Noisy and How To Shut Them Up!

Does this sound familiar? (Click below to listen)

So imagine this scenario, you’ve just spent the last hour trying to put your restless toddler to bed and now that your little pumpkin is fast asleep, you feel you can now have that glass of water that you so desperately need but WAIT…

You know the moment you turn on those taps, your entire house is going to erupt into a chorus of rattle, sounds and din like a symphony orchestra gone wrong…and wake your little one up from slumber.

via GIPHY

The mere thought of that happening stops you in your tracks and you go to bed thirsty, thinking to yourself, “I need to get that fixed!”

Water pipes are not meant to be loud and noisy when used but unfortunately, some do rattle and make noises due to weather, clogs, loose fittings and a host of other factors.

In general, the unwelcomed din from your pipes is usually caused by:

  • Water Hammering
  • Loose Piping
  • Worn Out Washers
  • Faulty Main Shut Off Valve
  • Worn Out Ballcock Assembly

Let’s first address the most common culprit, water hammering.

Water Hammering

When you turn on the tap, water rushes through the pipe and comes out with much speed and force. Once shut off, the water flow is suddenly brought to an abrupt halt, but all that energy has to go somewhere.

Usually in the wall behind each hot and cold tap is an air chamber within the pipe. When the rushing water is stopped, it would go up that vertical pipe where it would hit a cushion of air. This would prevent the force of the water from causing the pipes to rattle or hammer.

There are now commercial air cushions (water hammer arrestors) that are attached to the pipe in the same place that provides the same function.

Water hammering can develop because over years, the air in that little vertical riser is lost, and thus the cushioning effect is lost.

You can fix the water hammering problem by shutting off the main water valve, turning on all taps and draining the entire house. When you fill up water again later, air will again be pushed into the risers designed to prevent water hammering. Watch the video below to see what water hammering is and what you can do to stop it.


Loose Piping

Noisy water pipes can also be caused by loose piping in the house.

Water moves rapidly in large volumes can cause a pipe to sway, setting up a rattling effect, it might hit against walls or objects causing loud banging sounds which may damage your pipes in the long run, resulting in leaks.

Depending on your home setup, crawling under the house with a flashlight or opening the ceiling boards while someone flushes the toilet or turns on the tap, might help you locate the source of the problem.

Just by listening and looking, you might be able to spot the issue, thereafter securing the pipe to ensure there’s little to no movement.

If the sounds are coming from drain pipes, they are usually suspended from the floor joists under the house and a little stabilization may be all that is needed to rectify the problem.

Worn Out Washers

A worn out washer in a tap or valve often causes whistling in water pipes or squeaky pipes.

The direct source of this squealing is in the valves that connect to the washing machine or taps.

If you notice the squealing sound comes when the washer is on, you have an easy solution.

First, shut off the valve and check the washers in the hose. Replace them if they look worn out or cracked.

If that isn’t it, shut off the house water and repair the faucet. One of the tap’s washers is likely worn or the valve seat is worn, causing water to be forced through a smaller opening which causes the pipes to be noisy.

Faulty Main Shut Off Valve

Another source of the dreaded squealing water pipe might be either the main shut off valve or the water pressure regulator for your house, particularly when it the noise seems to be resonating throughout your entire house.

To fix this, if it’s the main shut off valve, turn off the water mains at the street first and then replace or repair the main house valve.

If it isn’t that and you have a pressure reducer on your incoming cold water line, then the fault may lie in the reducer’s manifold.

Warn out Ballcock Assembly

If after flushing, you can hear a banging or rattling at the end of the fill cycle, then it is quite likely that the problem could be coming from a worn out ballcock assembly, which controls the fill process of your toilet.

Depending on the style and how new the ballcock assembly is, you might be able to repair it. Otherwise, just simply replace it with a better one.

Conclusion

We’ve covered 5 reasons why your water pipes might be noisy, there obviously could be more. We get that this might be a little too daunting for a homeowner to troubleshoot and fix. If this is something that keeps you awake at night, we’re more than happy to assess and fix it for you.


Call us at 9387 2339 or email us, if you require any help or advice with noisy pipes or water hammering