How To Fix Noisy Water Pipes (5 Common Causes)

fix noisy water pipes

Noisy water pipes? Now you can finally keep them silent!

Everyone looks forward to a silent nights rest. But imagine waking up in the midnight to get a glass of water, and on getting to the tap, turning it on led to loud noises – like an orchestra is in your home – waking up everyone in the house. Noisy pipes when running water is not just a loud inconvenience, it sounds horrible. What is it doing to your pipes!

You obviously cannot keep up with this annoying situation, and you want to shut up these noisy pipes at all cost? Now you can! These noises are usually caused by different issues, including the weather, blockages, and loose fittings.

Below are the most common causes of noisy water pipes in the home:

  • Water hammering
  • Loose piping
  • Worn out ballcock assembly
  • A faulty main shut off valve
  • Worn-out washers

Now, let’s take a look at each of these issues.

Water Hammering

You know water emerges from the tap immediately when you turn it on. There is usually energy that leads to the force and speed with which the water comes out. However, when you shut off the tap, the flow also stops abruptly, and the unused energy must go somewhere.

There is always an air chamber within the pipe situated in the wall behind each cold and hot tap. When you shut off the tap, the rushing ceases, and the water moves to the vertical pipe where it would hit a cushion of air. This neutralises the force of the water. Hence, the pipes hardly rattle or hammer.

We now have commercial air cushions or water hammer arrestors, usually affixed to the pipe in the same spot and which offer similar effects. However, due to continuous use, the air in the little vertical riser is lost, and subsequently, the cushioning effect. This results in water hammering.

The simplest fix is to shut off your main water valve while turning on all the draining and taps you have in the house. Refill them with water again after some time, and this will push air into the risers created to stop water hammering.

Loose Piping

Loose piping in your home can lead to noisy water pipes. A pipe can sway as a result of the larger volumes in which water moves. This causes a rattling of the pipe and most times, the pipe hit against objects and walls. Thus, you hear loud banging sounds, which over time, can damage pipes and cause leaks.

The first step to fixing this is to identify the source of the problem. If possible, crawl under your house with a flashlight or open the ceiling boards while someone else turns on the tap or flushes the toilet. While at it, you will need to be very attentive and observant so that you can identify the location. Once detected, secure the pipe to minimise movement.

If the drain pipes are the source of the noise, you will find them suspended from the floor joists under the house. Most times, you will only need to stabilise them to fix the issue slightly.

Worn Out Washers

A whistling or squeaking water pipe is a direct result of a worn-out washer in a tap or valve. The culprit here is usually the valves connected to the taps or washing machine. In the case where you only hear the squealing sound when using the washer, then the fix is simple. Simply shut off the valve and inspect the washers in the house. Replace all worn out and cracked washers.

If the squealing continues after this, it means the washer is not the problem. In this case, shut off the house water and contact a local plumber for tap repair or replacement. Chances are the washers of the tap, or the valve, are worn. They are thus forcing the water to pass through a smaller opening. This leads to the pipes becoming noisy.

Faulty Main Shut Off Valve

You will experience squealing water pipes if your home’s main shut off valve or the water pressure regulator is faulty. In most cases, the resulting noise is felt at every corner of the house.

The culprit here is most likely the main shut off valve. Replace or repair the valve after shutting off the water mains supplying your street. In rare cases where it is not the main shut off valve, you will experience a pressure reducer on your incoming cold water line. All you need to do here is to fix the reducer’s manifold.

Worn out Ballcock Assembly

A rattling or banging sound at the end of the filling cycle after every flush indicates a probable problem with your ballcock assembly. Designed to control the filling process of your toilet, a worn-out ballcock assembly will cause annoying noises. The fix here is to either repair or replace the faulty ballcock assembly.

Noisy Water Pipes: Final Words

This article has touched five reasons you can have noisy water pipes. While this list is not exhaustive, we are confident that the points raised thus far will help you in applicable situations. Note that there might be situations too complicated for you to handle or troubleshoot on your own. In such cases, you can always call in the best plumber near you to have your noisy pipes fixed and peace restored to your house.

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