Have you got strange sounds coming from your pipes? Water hammer sounds can be annoying and, if not fixed immediately, cause severe damage to your pipes.
A type of hydraulic shock, usually this noise occurs when there’s a rapid change in water velocity in the pipes, resulting from a sudden closing or opening of a faucet. It can also cause severe problems like an increased flow of water and banging noises coming from the pipes. And if the water pressure surge is significant, it can even burst pipes.
In this article, we will be looking at some practical ways to stop water hammers in your pipes. So, if you are ready, let’s learn how to fix a water hammer!
How to Stop Pipes Hammering (Noisy Pipes)
These are the eight effective ways to get rid of the water hammer in your pipes:
1. Air Pockets In Your Pipes
One of the main culprits of water hammers is the air pockets in your pipes. If you hear the noise as soon as you open a tap, it’s a tell-tale sign that air chambers are causing the water hammer issues Perth. We suggest turning on the tap nearest to your water meter.
Then, turn on all the taps one by one until all the taps are flowing. After that, turn them all in reverse order. Hopefully, that will release the air chamber, fixing your water hammer issue in your plumbing system.
2. Don’t Open The Valves All The Way
Although it’s not a long-term solution, it’s still worth trying before you get a permanent fix for the issue. As you might know, water hammer is mainly caused by dishwashers and washing machines when the shut-off valves close rapidly. Therefore, we suggest you try partially opening the inlet valves but not all the way.
3. Make Sure You Secure The Pipe
If you can identify the noisy pipe that is causing the water hammer, make sure you secure it as soon as possible
4. Water Pressure Limiting Valve
Since high water pressure is among the leading causes of water hammers, ensure you get a water pressure limiting valve installed at the meter to fix the issue. If required, don’t hesitate to contact a local plumber.
5. Water Hammer Arresters
These highly functional devices are available in our local hardware store. They can be installed at the cold and hot water outlets to stop water hammers or noisy pipes, especially when several appliances connect to the same tap.
6. Intake Connections
You can consider replacing the intake connections of devices such as washing machines and dishwashers that tend to cause water hammers. Replacing the intake hoses with wider ones is advisable for the best results. Even though there’s no guarantee that doing this will stop water hammer sounds, it’s certainly worth trying.
7. Consider Installing Soft-Close Faucets
Do you have modern mixer taps installed at your home? If so, it’s about time you replaced those with conventional taps. The former tends to shut off the water supply instantly with just a flick of a finger, which often changes the water flow rate, causing a water hammer.
8. Call The Plumber
If the ways mentioned above don’t solve your problem, you have no choice but to contact the local plumber. They’ll thoroughly check your pipelines to find the root cause of the water hammer and then fix it accordingly.
How To Install Water Hammer Arrestors
We’ve already talked about water hammer arresters; now, we shall look at how you can install them to fix water hammers.
1. Identify Which Valve Is Causing The Problem
More often than not, a water hammer happens when a tap turns off instantly. So, when you turn on your tap, be sure to listen and identify the origin of the noise. Doing this will help you determine which supply line is causing the issue, and that will be where you will have to install the water hammer arrester.
As mentioned, dishwashers and washing machines tend to cause water hammers since they feature automatic valves that close instantly.
2. Be Sure To Turn Off The Main Water Supply
Before installing, turn off the main water supply to your house by turning the valve clockwise. Then, allow the pipes to drain by turning on a faucet on the lowest floor of your home. Lastly, you must drain the pipes before installing a water hammer arrester.
3. Install The Arresters On Both The Cold And The Hot Water Supply Lines
Installing the arresters on both supply lines will protect both pipes from damage caused by this issue. If you are unsure how to go about it, call a professional.
4. Install The Washing Machine Arrester
An arrester specifically devised for washing machines is called a “hose attachment” and is constructed to fit the point where the supply line attaches easily.
Therefore, to install a washing machine arrester, you first must detach the water supply from the machine and then screw the product onto the device. After that, screw the water supply line onto the other end of the water hammer arrester.
On an important note, make sure to measure the diameter of the supply line of the washing machine so that it’s the same size as the attachment of the arrester. Also, don’t forget which supply pipe is cold and hot while reattaching them back.
5. Mark The Area Of Installation
You must cut the supply line when installing arresters on the other taps. Make sure you measure the diameter of the supply line and buy a t-fitting that matches the size. You’ll also need to purchase an arrester that conveniently screws into the T-fitting.
Next, place it on the pipe and use a pencil to mark where it will connect. Ideally, you would want to choose a place that’s easily accessible yet out of sight, such as in the basement or behind an access panel.
6. Cut The Pipe Using A Pipe Cutter
Next, you need to use a pipe cutter to cut the pipe. If the pipe is too thick, you might have to tighten the cutter and use it again. You can use a hacksaw instead of a pipe cutter if you have a hacksaw. However, a piper will provide a cleaner cut.
7. Prepare For Soldering
The next step is to prepare to solder the t-fitting to the water supply pipe by applying flux. Make sure you apply it where you will be attaching the t-fitting. After that, insert the t-fitting into the pipe. Clean the joint using an emery cloth to make the soldering process more manageable.
This part is going to be a bit tricky, so read carefully. Also, we strongly recommend using safety goggles for this step.
First, you need to light the propane torch. Make sure you use the tip to heat the flux till it starts bubbling for the best results. Then, it would help if you kept moving the torch around to avoid overheating a particular area.
After that, apply the solder; you will see it melting immediately after attaching the t-fitting to the supply pipe. Put the flame and the solder all around the pipe to seal it correctly. Lastly, screw the arrester onto the t-fitting.
9. Turn On The Water Supply
Now that you have finished installing arresters on both the hot water supply line and the cold water supply line, turning on the water supply is time.
Stopping Your Noisy Pipes: Water Hammer Solutions
That was almost everything you needed to know about stopping water hammer.
Believe it or not, it is a common issue that many Australian residents deal with yearly, so you are not alone. And if all the ways mentioned above don’t solve your plumbing problems, make sure you call a plumber before it gets too late. If you are in Perth, the team at Woolf Plumbing is happy to assist you with your water hammer repairs. Get in touch with us to help resolve your noisy pipes!
On that note, it’s time for us to sign off. Until next time, take care!