What your noisy plumbing means
If your home’s plumbing isn’t well maintained, it can start to experience problems that result in a cacophony of strange noises like clanging, whistling, banging, and glug-glug-glugging. But where are all these noises coming from? And what do they mean to you, as a homeowner? Read on to learn about how Duane Blanton’s plumbing inspection can help you locate and remedy plumbing problems of all kinds!
Valves That Whistle
If you hear a high-pitch whistling sound from your pipes, it’s likely a sound that one or more of your valves need replacing. To find out which valve that is, you can go one by one to each faucet in your home. You’ll know which valve is causing the problem when you turn it and the whistling begins.
If you can find your bad valve this way, it’s a simple matter of replacing it. If, however, all your valves seem to be in good condition, give a check to the main water valve.
Another possible cause of the whistling is that there is a blockage somewhere in the main line, and the water is struggling to pass through the pipe. In this case, turning the water pressure valve all the way off, and then a bit higher than usual can help break up the blockage. Even if the problem is seemingly solved, you should still give a call to a local plumbing inspector like Duane Blanton, to ensure that the whistling won’t return.
Pipes That Bang
A few different things can cause the knocking or banging sounds you hear from your plumbing. The first is what some plumbers refer to as “water hammer.” Water hammer occurs when a water valve closes suddenly, causing the water that was rushing through it to crash over on itself suddenly.
When this happens, the movement of the water in the now closed off pipe makes the pipe shift, vibrate, or even swing, hitting walls or other pipes around it.
Another potential cause of the banging is water pressure that is too high. High water pressure isn’t much of a problem while the water is flowing straight through a pipe, but the second that water flow meets a pipe elbow or a blockage, you have the same problem as with water hammer.
Drains That Gurgle
Are your bathroom fixtures making gurgling sounds? What about dripping or running water sounds? Both of these indicate issues with your drains. If gurgling sounds are your problem, you likely have a blockage in your main sewer line or waste pipe.
The gurgling comes from the waste that is seeping slowly past the obstruction, forcing air to escape through your drains. This issue is exacerbated by inadequate drain vents, as clean vents would allow the air to escape normally.
Now, if you’re hearing dripping or running water sounds, you have a leak in one of your bathroom fixtures. If the leak is occurring outside of the fixture and its drain, you’ll know it by the water stains that appear in your walls or floors.
However, if the leak is inside the fixture, as a leak within your toilet, it can be harder to spot. Look out for things like your toilet bowl seemingly refilling on its own without being flushed, sounds of running water coming from the drain, and (if you have a private septic system) your septic tank overflowing or backing up.
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