Advice BlogDon’t Ignore Banging Pipe

November 21, 2019by Ed Gabrish0
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A banging pipe noise coming from your water sources can be alarming, especially the first time you hear it. The noise can be a minor issue or it can be a huge problem that is literally about to explode. In order to keep your homes and businesses safe, we are going to share why you shouldn’t ignore a banging pipe below.

What is a Water Hammer?

It can be common for plumbing pipes to bang loudly when a faucet is shut off suddenly. This may also happen when an appliance that uses water such as a dish or clothes washer shuts off the water intake abruptly. This condition is known among plumbers as water hammer or hydraulic shock. The banging noise can be heard is due to the shock wave that causes pipes to strike against one another and occasionally against your property’s framing.

In addition to the loud noise, a water hammer can be strong enough to loosen pipes or break them open entirely. Water hammer can also be an issue with plastic pipes made from PEX, PVC, or CPCV. However, the noise will be significantly different than water hammer in metal pipes. The danger for breakage and loosening still exists here.

Common Occurrences of Water Hammer

You may hear a banging pipe during the following scenarios:

  • When hot water is running in the shower, dishwasher, clothes washer, water heater, etc.
  • When cold water is running from any interior or exterior source.
  • After a cold or hot water supply is turned off.
  • In random scenarios during the day or night, hot or cold.

Click here for more information on water hammer.

Common Causes of a Banging Pipe

Banging pipes can be caused by a number of factors including but not limited to:

  • Poor construction of water lines, such as running a line through a hole that is too small.
  • Water lines that are too short, too narrow, or wrong sized in general.
  • High water pressure that causes water to bang off of pipes.
  • Water heater issues such as sediment build up.

We highly recommend you address banging pipes as soon as possible. If they do end up resulting in a leak or disconnection, you may suffer thousands of dollars in damage to your property. This includes drywall damage, damage to floors, mold spores, and much more.

Banging pipes caused by a faulty water heater can generally be repaired with a water heater service. Your expert can flush and fill your water heater to see if it addresses the issue.

How to Fix Banging Pipes

Unfortunately, there is no easy fix for your banging pipes. You must first properly diagnose the cause of the banging pipes in order to come up with the correct repair. A few of the most common solutions to repair a banging pipe include:

Fix the piping
Piping that is too small, narrow, or wrong in size must be replaced with the proper piping. This often includes tearing down drywall, floors, or anywhere the faulty pipes may be housed. Your plumber should also help you select the best materials for your pipe needs whether it is metal, plastic, or other.
Install an Air Chamber Homes built before the 1960’s usually do not contain an air chamber. They are special components designed exclusively to stop water hammer under normal operating conditions. However, these air chambers are known to fail as well and may need to be replaced.
Adjust Water Pressure
You may check the water pressure coming into your home using a common water pressure gauge that can be found at your local hardware store. Residential water pressure should normally range between 40 PSI and 80 PSI, although there are exceptions. Water pressure that is not within the acceptable range for your property must be adjusted by a professional.
Water Heater Repair
Banging pipes caused by a faulty water heater can generally be repaired with a water heater service. Your expert can flush and fill your water heater to see if it addresses the issue. They can also diagnose other issues and maintenance tasks associated with your water heater.

Banging Pipe Repair in New Jersey & Northern Pennsylvania

Address your banging pipes before it’s too late. Give us a call at 908-537-6770 or submit a quote request online. We are happy to help diagnose and repair your banging pipes and other related items. Our team is happy to come to your property and evaluate all of your options. Schaible’s is always there for you.

Our residential and commercial plumbing repair area covers all of northern & central New Jersey and Eastern PA – including Hunterdon County, Warren County, Somerset County, and Morris County. Our location is convenient to Clinton, Flemington, Readington, Tewksbury, Whitehouse, Washington, Hackettstown, Phillipsburg, Bridgewater, Somerville, Branchburg, Long Valley, and Chester.

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