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02 - water hammer

What Does It Mean to Have a Water Hammer?

It’s common to hear loud banging sounds coming from the metal pipes in your home’s plumbing whenever an appliance pulls water or a faucet is turned off. Unfortunately, this noise, often known as “water hammer,” isn’t only bothersome; it may also harm your plumbing system. A water hammer, often known as a hydraulic shock in technical circles, is the effect of water halting or abruptly changing direction. Your pipes move, shake, and slam against one another as a result of the shock wave that is sent through them when this occurs.

Since the first century B.C., when Roman architect Marcus Vitruvius Pollio first observed them in the public water system, water hammers in pipes have been a problem. Thankfully, we’ve subsequently evolved strategies for handling them. You can find all the information you need regarding hammering pipes, the issues they could create, and how to put a stop to them in your home, below.

Describe the water hammer.

A pressure spike known as a “water hammer” happens when a fluid is abruptly forced to stop or change direction. A shockwave is produced by the quick change in momentum, which causes pipes to shake and water to bang. The sound of water “hammering” through valves and pipes gave rise to the term “water hammer.” 

We should point out that common causes like excessive water pressure can lead to the occurrence of water hammers occasionally. Checking your water pressure gauge and making any necessary adjustments may help you figure out if the problem is related to your water pressure. A certified plumber from BJC Plumbers Jersey City can assist you in testing and regulating your water pressure if you’re unsure about it.

Does water hammer pose a threat?

Over time, pipe joints and valves may become damaged by water pounding. Worn-out pipes could rupture, begin leaking, or separate from their connections. There may be a risk to your health if your surge is caused by high water pressure. People who are unprepared for a hot or powerful shower may suffer physical injury from high water pressure.

How to resolve water hammer.

You may remedy the water hammer in a variety of ways, preventing your faucet from banging constantly. We’ll cover the most popular and successful solutions.

  • securing unsecured pipes. Even modest water pounding might cause your pipes to tremble and bang if they aren’t secured. The simplest and most affordable solution is to secure any loose pipes. Install additional straps or hangers to further secure your pipes at the stud or joist, tighten any loose pipe straps or hangers, or wrap sections of exposed pipe with pipe insulation to serve as shock absorbers. Extreme cases won’t be fixed by this method, but it will aid in reducing harm from mild cases.
  • Place an air chamber in place. When the water inside a pipe suddenly stops flowing, it causes a water hammer. The water rushes up against the recently closed pipe valves, sending a shockwave back into the pipe. The water won’t slam into the valve wall if you install a different path for it to rebound when the valve closes. An air chamber is a small vertical pipe segment put in close proximity to possibly problematic valves. When you close your valves, it provides water and extra force somewhere to go. Plumbing with pipe air chambers can be retrofitted fast and easily by a qualified plumber.
  • Install mechanical water shock abatement devices. When you can’t install an air chamber, mechanical shock arrestors are your best option for handling serious hydraulic shock issues. Installing them around harmed plumbing junctions entails installing a device made up of an air bladder and a spring. Mechanical water shock arrestors carry out what they claim to achieve. They neutralize the shockwave that is produced when water slams against closed valve walls by absorbing it and stopping it before it can propagate through your pipes. 

Quiet Your Home’s Water Hammer Noise

Leaving minor plumbing issues unattended only to bigger plumbing issues later on. Give BJC Plumbers Jersey City a call if you want to know how to get the banging in your water pipes to stop. You will both benefit from treating the water hammer noise and any potential damage it may be doing to your home’s plumbing. We’ll dispatch one of our professionals to assess the situation and make the necessary repairs as soon as possible.