Radiator Pipes Making Noise? Learn How To Fix Your Water Hammer Problem

Posted on: 3 December 2014

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If your home has a hot water radiator heating system, from time to time it can start making loud noises that sound as if someone is hitting your pipes with a hammer. This problem is known as water hammer, and it can be fixed with the help of a boiler repair service.

Why Is This Noise Happening?

Water hammer occurs where there is excess water pressure stuck in the pipes. Water pressure above 60 PSI will cause the water to travel faster in your pipes than it was ever intended to. As the water makes its way around the sharp turns of the pipes, it will create the familiar banging sound that is driving you crazy.

The sound can also be caused by air pockets in the pipe that cause the water to shake the pipe when flowing at high speeds.

How Can I Diagnose The Problem?

The easiest way to diagnose the problem is to use a pressure gauge to check your pipe's water pressure level. If the pressure is higher than 60 PSI, that banging sound you hear is definitely water hammer.

Having excess water pressure is not good for your hot water pipes, as it will put additional stress on the pipe fittings for your boiler and radiators. This is because water pressure is trying to escape, and can cause these fittings to leak as extra pressure is put on them.

How Can I Fix The Problem?

There are several ways that a boiler repair service will try to fix the problem. The first step is to drain the hot water pipes in your radiator system. If the problem is due to air pockets, it will get rid of them and relieve the excess air pressure.

If the problem occurs frequently, they can install a few strategically placed air release valves so that you can manually release the air in your water lines. This will prevent the need to drain all the pipes to remove those air pockets.

When these two solutions do not fix the problem, it could be because the boiler is not working properly. If the boiler is creating too much water pressure, it will require a more in depth repair to make sure it is functioning correctly.

Thankfully, water hammer is not a problem you need to live with forever. With a little bit of professional help from a boiler repair service like StateWide Mechanical II Inc., you can make that noise go away for good.