When your home's plumbing talks, you should listen to what it has to say. Noisy plumbing signals the beginning of serious issues that not only impact how reliability it functions, but it also proves expensive to fix if ignored for too long. If your pipes are starting to make a racket, you can use the following list to narrow down the potential culprits and hopefully restore peace and quiet to your pipes, faucets, and drains.
Gurgling is a common issue encountered by homeowners dealing with clogged or poorly functioning drains. The culprit involves trapped air in the form of air bubbles inside the drain. Drain vents are meant to prevent this problem by providing equal air pressure in the plumbing and a way for excess air to escape. If the drain vent's blocked, malfunctioning, or simply missing due to a design oversight, you'll hear gurgling noises throughout the entire system.
Installing new drain vents or simply checking and repairing the ones you already have can help put an end to gurgling noises. You should also have a professional plumbing services company check your entire plumbing system for water leaks that could also allow excess air to enter.
Hydrostatic shock, more commonly known as "water hammer," can easily do a number on your home's pipes. The sudden shutoff of a water valve can induce hydrostatic shock, leading to loud and sudden knocking noises as the resulting pressure wave reverberates throughout the plumbing system. The shock can also produce vibrations strong enough to loosen pipe joints.
Prevention is the best policy when dealing with hydrostatic shock. Installing water hammer arrestors and other devices that suppress or even eliminate hydrostatic shock can prove helpful. You should also make sure your pipes don't have any trapped air inside.
Imagine turning on your bathroom faucet or flushing your toilet only to hear a high-pitched squeal or whistle. In the case of faucets, high-pitched whistling can occur if the washer inside the offending fixture deteriorates or comes loose. To fix this, you'll need to take the faucet apart and tighten the screw holding the washer in place or simply replace the entire fixture.
If you hear whistling sounds as your toilet tank refills, then the culprit is likely a worn fill valve gasket or a worn-out ballcock valve. In most cases, replacing the entire valve will eliminate the unwanted noise. You can also save money by replacing only the fill valve gasket or disassembling, cleaning, and reinstalling the original valve.