How to Quiet Water Hammer
LESLIE: Going out to California to chat with Ed about water hammer. What’s going on?
ED: We have a problem with copper pipes.
ED: We installed copper pipes to replace the galvanized about 40 years ago. No problems until about five years ago. Now, when we flush the toilet or turn off the tap there’s a sound like water hammer.
TOM: It’s probably happening because the brackets have loosened up. You know, water is very heavy as it flies through the pipes on its way to your fixture and then you turn the faucet off and that centrifugal force keeps moving forward and shakes the pipes and the more they shake the looser they get and that’s what can cause this water hammer and the rattling sound. So, a couple of things.
First of all, I would examine all of the accessible areas where you can check the brackets that attach the pipes to the framing area. And the second thing you can do is have what’s called a water hammer arrestor, which is kind of like a shock absorber for your plumbing system, installed by a plumber near the fixture and that will solve this problem and quiet it down. The good news is that water hammer rarely causes any type of a leak. It’s more of an annoyance, but that’s the way to solve it.
ED: Great, thank you very much.
TOM: You’re welcome, Ed. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.