Put water hammer to rest – once and for all

Put water hammer to rest – once and for all

It's not uncommon for Atlanta homeowners to deal with rattling pipes. That doesn't mean, however, that it's a pleasant experience. While the noise is a nuisance, the effect that rattling pipes have on your plumbing system can be very damaging. Learn the causes and effects of water hammer, or rattling pipes, and what you can do to resolve the problem.

What is water hammer?

What's happening behind the scenes when you hear the pipes rattling? Basically, the pressure in the pipes increases due to an adjustment in either the velocity of the water or the direction it's going. For instance, when you turn off the faucet, the force of the water quickly changes, creating what is similar to shock waves in the water. That is the sound you hear coming from the pipes, which plumbers refer to as "hammering."

What causes rattling pipes?

Most home plumbing systems employ air chambers designed to buffer the shock waves, in effect softening the noise created. When these chambers fail, or if the plumbing system wasn't designed with air chambers, a hammering noise starts up. Another common cause of rattling pipes is the pressure-reducing valve, which contains a gasket that can fail.

What are the effects of rattling pipes?

While the noise of rattling pipes alone may not be enough to move you to hire a plumber to resolve the problem, leaving the issue unchecked can cause serious issues like:

  • Damage to appliances
  • Damage to the pipes
  • Higher water bills

How can you resolve the problem?

Unless you're a savvy DIYer, in most cases you'll need the help of a plumber to put a stop to the rattling. Experienced plumbers can listen to the noise the pipes are making and know exactly what is causing the problem. Some of the solutions include:

  • Replacing the gasket in the pressure-reducing valve
  • Flushing out the pipes to remove the air
  • Clearing out debris from the section of pipe where the air chamber is located
  • Reducing the pressure of the water
  • Installing air chambers if the system doesn't currently have them

Get expert advice when you're plagued by water hammer. The plumbers at RooterPLUS! are happy to help.

Image source: Wikimedia Commons

4.7 out of 5 stars - 5020 votes

4.7 Stars (5020 Reviews)

Robert came out quickly and did a fantastic job. He found the leak quickly and did a quality repair to a poorly joined pipe by the builder. I am very pleased with the work provided. He went the extra mile and also replaced the pine straw that was removed for the repair. Work was NOT cheap but... Robert came out quickly and did a fantastic job. He found the leak quickly and did a quality repair to a poorly joined pipe by the builder. I am very pleased with the work provided. He went the extra mile and also replaced the pine straw that was removed for the repair. Work was NOT cheap but I got what I needed - immediate response and repair. I recommend if you are in a pinch.
Great service and work done really good. Steven E. hands down the best. The way he works with the machine, makes it look easy. He explained every detail about the job we was going to do. And all his knowledge is awesome. I will recommend him and the company to anyone needing service at their... Great service and work done really good. Steven E. hands down the best. The way he works with the machine, makes it look easy. He explained every detail about the job we was going to do. And all his knowledge is awesome. I will recommend him and the company to anyone needing service at their homes. Thank You Steven!
Steven was very knowledgeable and educated us on septic tanks. We luckily had gravel drainage so he recommended cleaning out our septic tank completely and putting biodegratible in the drainage field. He was here from 4:00-6:30 and explained everything to my husband. In the past when we had our... Steven was very knowledgeable and educated us on septic tanks. We luckily had gravel drainage so he recommended cleaning out our septic tank completely and putting biodegratible in the drainage field. He was here from 4:00-6:30 and explained everything to my husband. In the past when we had our septic tank pumped they did it incorrectly. I feel confident in Steven’s work and we have a 12 month guarantee. It was costly but for what he did worth every penny. Thank you Steven for your expertise job.
Steven was so awesome and very knowledgeable of the system that he taught me a lot. He did a good job alone and I would recommend and already did to someone else. I like the fact he drove a long way and there was no charge for him to come out! I will use him again in another 4-5 years if he... Steven was so awesome and very knowledgeable of the system that he taught me a lot. He did a good job alone and I would recommend and already did to someone else. I like the fact he drove a long way and there was no charge for him to come out! I will use him again in another 4-5 years if he still with the company! Thanks Steven again!
David O. Showed up on time and prepared. Very professional at his craft. Explained everything in detail, and got the job done! I will definitely be giving Rooter Plus my business going forward! Thank you David O.!!!
Ken H was excellent! He was professional and efficient in diagnosing my problem with my water heater. He offered various options for replacement and went out of his way to get the job done the same day. I would highly recommend him and Rooter Plus!
Great customer experience, with experienced staff. I called the office for water leakage on Sunday morning and they schedule me with Technician arrival in 30 mins. Jason reached on time, investigate the problem and able to find the source of leak in few minutes, which was definitely tricky and I... Great customer experience, with experienced staff. I called the office for water leakage on Sunday morning and they schedule me with Technician arrival in 30 mins. Jason reached on time, investigate the problem and able to find the source of leak in few minutes, which was definitely tricky and I believe only an expert eye like Jason can capture it. He walked me over the issue, fixed it and saved my Sunday morning. RooterPLUS is on my speed dial now for any plumbing issues.
It is usually unlikely that you see someone young working hard and have a good attitude along with it. Robert definitely displayed that while he was at work today and I had the pleasure to meet him and tell you about it. Keep up the good work Robert it will pay off!

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