It’s a positive thing that your plumbing is reliable. When your plumbing is making sounds or is loud, you might begin to worry. While some sounds are normal, others aren’t. We’ll walk you through five common noises and how to solve them.
These noises involve:
- Plumbing is whistling
- Plumbing is gurgling
- Plumbing is humming
- Plumbing is vibrating
- Plumbing is bubbling
1. Plumbing is Whistling
If your plumbing is whistling, you could be facing several issues.
Cause: Mineral Buildup
More than 90% of U.S. homes have hard water, which means it contains too much calcium and magnesium. These minerals can accumulate in your pipes and appliances, creating clogs and less efficient operation.
If you have issues with soap scum, clogged pipes or appliances deteriorating quickly, you might have hard water. Having a plumber install a water softener is the best way to solve this issue.
Cause: Old Pipes
Plumbing doesn’t work forever. If you have an older home, you should know what pipe material you have and how long it lasts.
- Brass: up to 100 years
- Copper: up to 80 years
- PVC: up to 45 years
If your pipes are close to the end of their life span and you’re dealing with leaks, discolored water or insufficient water pressure, it may be time to have them replaced.
Cause: Water Pressure Is Too High
This can be caused by your utility provider or problems with your water heater. A telltale sign of high water pressure is hearing knocking in your pipes, especially after turning off a faucet.
If this is what’s creating the issue, a plumber can inspect and replace your home’s pressure-reducing valve as necessary.
2. Plumbing is Gurgling
Gurgling isn’t a good sound. It’s usually a sign that you’re experiencing some sort of blockage or clog. Here are three of the most common kinds.
Cause: Clogged Drain
Your drain can either be partially or fully blocked. Here’s the difference:
- Partial clog—water drains more slowly than usual.
- Full clog—water rises instead of draining, particularly in multiple drains.
It can be tempting to use a liquid drain opener to fix the issue, but this can create more problems. These products are harsh and can erode your pipes. It’s always recommended to have a plumber unclog your pipes, either through a snake or jetting.
Cause: Blocked Sewer Line
Your home has a sewer pipe that transports waste to the main sewer line, usually located in your yard or in the street. If this pipe gets plugged, you will likely be dealing with backup in your basement.
Things that can obstruct or clog this pipe includes tree roots seeking water or by flushing bathroom products other than toilet paper. Whether you’re dealing with tree roots or a plugged toilet, you’re going to need help from a professional plumber.
Cause: Blocked Sewer Vent or P-Trap
The sewer vent system and P-traps on your drains keep stinky plumbing smells out of your home. If they get clogged, you’ll likely hear gurgling, encounter slow draining or smell sewage. A plumber can help you get to the root of and resolve this smelly problem.
3. Plumbing is Humming
If your plumbing is humming, you’re not just dealing with an annoying noise.
Cause: High Water Pressure
Humming means your home’s water pressure is probably too high. This can create problems such as water leaks and damage to faucets and other fixtures. A plumber can help you regulate water pressure, which should be around 60–70 PSI.
4. Plumbing is Vibrating
If your plumbing is vibrating, three problems could be causing this noise.
Cause: Loose Pipe Clamp
The most common cause of vibrating plumbing is an unsecured pipe clamp. This hardware keeps pipes secure when water is running through them. If the loose pipe is under a sink, you might be able to fix this issue yourself. If it’s behind a wall, it’s best to call a plumber.
Cause: High Water Pressure or Water Hammer
Less frequently, pipes can vibrate due to high water pressure or a water hammer, which occurs when water that’s flowing fast hits a closed valve. A plumber can diagnose and correct these issues.
5. Plumbing is Bubbling
If your plumbing is bubbling, you’re likely dealing with problems related to gurgling plumbing.
Cause: Clogged or Incorrectly Vented Drain
Whether you’re dealing with a blocked or incorrectly vented drain, a plumber can fix it.
Morgner Inc. Air Conditioning & Heating Can Solve Your Strange Plumbing Sounds
Nobody wants to hear a loud or odd noise coming from their plumbing. There are many different noises that can be heard from your pipes and what they mean may differs. If you have any questions about the sounds you’re hearing in your home, contact at 314-262-4541 today. We’re here to help when you need a plumber in Saint Louis or surrounding areas.