Have you ever experienced suddenly hearing a very loud sound or bang when you are shutting your faucet off? Don’t worry, you aren’t hearing things.
This is a common problem often heard by plumbers in Australia. It happens in every household from time to time. This problem is actually called the ‘water hammer’ or technically called as the ‘hydraulic shock’.
What is Water Hammer?
Water hammer is a condition that happens if the water suddenly stop or shifts to a different direction– that loud bang or sharp sound you hear is actually the shock that causes the pipes to move and bump against each other or it ends up hitting the frames surrounding it.
How to Stop Water Hammer Noise
If you are experiencing water hammer or noise in your water pipes, solving it is pretty simple without calling a plumber; figure out which way will solve your problem.
Water Hammer Arrestors
Reduce water pressure will help reduce water hammer
These arrestors are composed of a sliding piston and an air chamber. They are cheap and easy to install. You can just insert them between the valve or facet and the incoming water supply. Since water hammering is caused by strong water pressure flowing through the pipes, water arrestors can solve water hammering by creating a cushion of air that absorbs the water pressure. But before you install a water shock arrestor, you have to identify which faucets or valves are causing the noise.
Typically, washing machines and dishwashers are the source of water hammering since they have valves which close quickly. Also, your water shock arrestor may vary depending on the faucet or valve. Arrestors for washing machines and sink faucets are easy to attach since they typically have screw on connections. If you’re installing them under sinks, you may have to cut open pipes and tees to install them.
As mentioned earlier water hammer occurs because of the sudden strong shock of water, if you have loose pipes, this will most likely create a louder or stronger sound, even if the shock itself was only mild. Loose pipes can easily move around and hit its surroundings. To secure those pipes, you need to tighten them.
When it comes to tightening pipes, various methods exist such as: foam pipe insulation; pipe straps; or pipe sleeves. These methods will help the pipes to absorb the shocks, tighten the pipes to prevent excessive movement, and providing cushion just in case of shocks.
Sometimes the cause of the water hammer in your house is actually not even related to your pipes but actually the excessive water pressure causes the pipes to go into shock when it changes directions. Make sure that the pressure is regulated, you can do so by adjusting the pressure-reducing valve– many homes in Australia already have this. But, it just depends on the manufacturer on how it can be physically manipulated when it needs adjustment.
Just a few reminders that when you are adjusting the pressure-reducing valve, you have to set it below 50 PSI to get the proper adjustment technique. Did you know that adjusting the water pressure in your house can save energy and it enables you to lessen water expenditure?