Have you ever heard a “thunk” when you turn off the faucet or when the water suddenly stops flowing into your washing machine? This is an occurrence known as “water hammer”, and it’s more than just a distracting noise — it’s the sound of major plumbing damage.
In the first part of this two-part blog series, Oak Plumbing, one of the leading local plumbing experts, explains what water hammer is, what causes it and why it’s bad for your pipes.
Water Hammer Defined
Also known as hydraulic shock, water hammer is probably the most common plumbing issue experienced by homeowners. It occurs when a faucet or object instantly shuts off the flow of water into a fixture, causing a form of shock wave that makes the pipes bang against each other. That loud sound you hear is the shock wave. While it may seem harmless, water hammer can sometimes be so forceful that it can snap pipes or loosen plumbing joints.
Top Causes of Water Hammer
Before hiring the best plumber to fix this problem, it’s essential to know what causes it in the first place. This way, you’ll know how you can prevent it in the future.
Some of the common causes of water hammer as follows:
Water in the air chamber – Air chambers are vertical pipes that help control pressure and stop water from forming waves in the pipes. Having too much water in them causes waves, which can eventually lead to loud water hammers.
Shaking pipes – Old water pipes sometimes aren’t secured tightly enough to the home’s structural features. As a result, they swing and shake when there’s a pressure change.
High residential water pressure – Whether it’s from faucet and appliance use or the actual water pressure average in your home, high water pressure often causes disruptive water hammers.
Now that you know what water hammer is, what causes it and why it’s bad for your plumbing, you’re now ready to learn how you can fix it. Watch out for the second part of this blog series for more information.
In the meantime, contact Oak Plumbing at (707) 200-7594 if you need quality leaking kitchen faucet repair or any other plumbing services. We serve customers in Vacaville, Benicia, and surrounding CA communities.