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What is that Noise Coming from the Pipes?

If you look at the some of the popular cable TV series out there, you might think there was a collective hankering for a back-to-nature, living-off-the-land approach. A quick channel surf finds everything from families living in the wilds of Alaska to Preppers who are taking steps to live off of the grid. While it may be interesting to watch, it’s probably fair to say that most of us enjoy having the convenience of indoor plumbing and the luxury of flowing hot and cold water available with the twist.

Like many conveniences, it’s rare to give much thought to these modern accommodations until they stop working. This is especially true when it’s something as automatic as turning on a faucet. As simple as it may appear to twist for a flow of water, there’s actually a fair amount of science behind the magic of running water. In order to get things flowing there has to be some kind of a force to get the water moving. The weight provides the needed force above the pipe to exert the necessary downward pressure.

Water: the Rough and Smooth of it

As with many modern conveniences we expect things to happen fast. How many of us become irritated at slow internet access, a lag in traffic, or a shower or tub providing too little water pressure? When it comes to water, the easy-does-it approach is preferred but as we all know, it rarely happens that way. Instead we expect the first turn of the faucet to supply a blast of water at just the right temperature.

The problem with this is that pressure differences in the water can cause a roughing that causes the water particles to move at random speeds and directions. If the water is near a bend in the pipe, this can even cause a separation in the water flow, creating noise and vibration. This can also be more prevalent when the heating and plumbing systems are working at the same time during the colder months.

Top Culprits for Creaking and Groaning Pipes

1. Broken Valve or Faucet – If a twist of the faucet results in a clunk and a restricted flow of water, a broken faucet or valve may be to blame. The fix is easy with a clean out and rebuild from your Olathe plumber.

2. Steam Heat – When it comes to steam, too much water can flood the system and create a calamity of banging within the pipes. To remedy this, a plumber will regulate the flow of the water into the pipes.

3. Forced Hot Water – Hot water temperatures cause expansion, and pipes filled with warm water can become air bound as a result. This can be remedied by a technician adjusting the temperature to accommodate for the necessary expansion.

4. Loose Pipes – Scary basement noises can often be attributed to pipes that are dangling from the walls or ceiling. Insulated pipe clips can anchor the pipes safely to the joists and studs without stressing the lines.

5. High Water Pressure – Similar to a ball or a tire, the right pressure can make the difference between quality performance and something less desirable. If water pressure is 80 psi or above, it can be reduced with the installation of a pressure reducer valve on the water main.

Founded in 1980, Davenport Service Company has provided “Customer First” service in Johnson County, Kansas for more than three decades. We provide 24/7 emergency service, preventive maintenance service, and seasonal tune-ups for commercial and residential heating and air conditioning systems. If you’re looking for a furnace tune-up in Olathe, call 913-441-2222 for hassle-free scheduling today!

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