How To

Signs and Causes of Water Hammer

Water hammer pipes

Water hammer can be a symptom of plumbing problems, and they can be a nuisance for homeowners. It is characterized by a loud banging or thumping sound that can be heard when a valve or faucet is shut off suddenly. It can also be a symptom of noisy pipes when flushing toilet fixtures. In this article, we’ll discuss the signs and causes of water hammer and what you can do to prevent it. Keep reading to learn more.

What is water hammer?

Water hammer is a phenomenon that occurs in plumbing and other piping systems due to the sudden increase in pressure that occurs when a valve or other obstruction is suddenly shut off. You might also experience this with toilet flushes. This shockwave effect occurs after a sudden change in water pressure, causing the pressurized water to bang against the valve opening. The shockwave can also cause damage to the pipes, valves, and other components of the system.

The most common signs of water hammer are a loud banging or thumping sound whenever a faucet or valve is turned off, or a toilet is flushed. A vibration in the pipes and walls usually accompanies this issue, and the vibrations can be strong enough to cause damage to the pipes or nearby structures. Water hammer can also cause pipes to burst, leading to a flood.

What are the causes of water hammering?

img

Water hammer, also known as hydraulic shock, is a common plumbing issue with potentially serious consequences. The primary cause of water hammer is a sudden change in water pressure. This can occur when valves close too quickly, such as when a faucet is shut off or a washing machine completes its cycle. The sudden change in pressure creates a shockwave, and the resulting noise can damage pipes, fittings, and other plumbing components.

Other common causes of water hammer include air bubbles in pipes, worn-out or misaligned pipe fittings, and water pressure that is too high. Air bubbles in pipes can be caused by poor installation, so it is important to ensure that pipes are properly installed and sealed. Worn-out or misaligned pipe fittings can lead to a sudden change in water pressure, so these should be inspected and replaced when necessary. Finally, water pressure that is too high can put additional strain on pipes and pipe fixtures, leading to water hammer.

How can you prevent water hammer?

There are several ways to prevent water hammer from occurring, including using air chambers, installing shock absorbers, and using non-slam check valves. Air chambers are chambers that are filled with compressed air and are connected to the water supply pipes. This compressed air acts as a cushion for any sudden changes in water pressure, reducing the chances of water hammer occurring.

Shock absorbers are devices that are connected to the water supply pipes and absorb any sudden changes in pressure. Non-slam check valves are valves that are installed in the water supply pipes and prevent the water from flowing back when it is shut off quickly.

Additionally, it is important to ensure that water pressure is maintained at a safe level. If the water pressure is too high, it can increase the chances of water hammer occurring. It is also important to ensure that pipes and fittings are properly secured and not loose, as this can also cause water hammer.

Overall, there are several measures that can be taken to prevent water hammer from occurring. By using air chambers, shock absorbers, and non-slam check valves, as well as maintaining water pressure at a safe level and ensuring that pipes and fittings are secure, it is possible to reduce the chances of water hammer occurring.

Water hammer is a serious issue that should be addressed as soon as possible. Understanding the signs and causes is key to preventing this issue from occurring. If left untreated, water hammer can cause structural damage to pipes and fixtures, as well as present a safety hazard. A professional plumber can be consulted to help diagnose the issue and offer solutions to remedy the problem.


More on this topic:

5 Qualities To Look For When Hiring A Plumbing Company

5 Qualities To Look For When Hiring A Plumbing Company

Previous ArticleNext Article
THE USE OF ANY COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL IS USED UNDER THE GUIDELINES OF "FAIR USE" IN TITLE 17 § 107 OF THE UNITED STATES CODE. SUCH MATERIAL REMAINS THE COPYRIGHT OF THE ORIGINAL HOLDER AND IS USED HERE FOR THE PURPOSES OF EDUCATION, COMPARISON, AND CRITICISM ONLY. NO INFRINGEMENT OF COPYRIGHT IS INTENDEDX