The water within the pipes is always under immense pressure. Whenever the faucets are on with less water pressure, and you shut off the taps suddenly, a hydraulic shock called a water hammer is created. This could puncture the pipes or even rupture them. Besides being irritating, a water hammer also can result in serious, inconvenient, disastrous, and expensive damage to various components of the plumbing system and appliances in your Spring Hill, FL home. Hence, it is critical to eliminate the phenomena as soon as possible. A worn stop valve or a loose pipe might cost you a fortune.
But how can a homeowner safeguard their plumbing systems against a water hammer? Well, the solution is simple. It begins by hiring a professional plumber or a plumbing service. Below are some measures that a licensed and professional plumber can take to prevent an occurrence of a water hammer at your home.
Wrapping Your Pipes in a Foam Insulation
By wrapping the pipes at your home in foam insulation, the plumbing service provider prevents them from banging. The foam insulation absorbs the shock waves of the sudden shutting off of the faucet or valve. Further, this also can prevent the piping from freezing in winter.
Hence, since the foam insulation absorbs the shockwaves, the pipes will not vibrate, protecting them from the damages caused by the water hammer. However, you should always hire an experienced plumbing professional for all the plumbing works, including water hammer prevention. The professional will also leave a small space around the pipe for expansion.
Installation of Air Chambers
In most modern homes, the air chambers address the water hammer issue with an inbuilt solution. An air chamber is a vertical, short pipe installed near the valve but slightly higher. The pipe fills with air and acts as a cushion whenever a water hammer arises. However, this isn’t a 100% solution for preventing water hammers. Water hammers might still arise even in valves having air chambers installed.
Whenever this arises, the cause is normally because the water has bubbled up into the air chamber for some time, nullifying the unit’s protective effect. Although this can be fixed easily, it will only work when you know how to approach the issue and what to do whenever a water hammer arises. Hence, you are advised to let a licensed, experienced, professional plumber handle the problem.
The plumbing service provider will shut off the main water valve at your home and later open the faucets at the lowest and highest points. When the remaining water starts draining off from the plumbing system, the air chambers automatically will refill with air. When this is done, the professional fixes the issues in the air chamber and turns on the main water valve to ensure that the water hammer effect is resolved.
Fixing the Dishwasher and Washing Machine
Does the banging sound from the plumbing system only arise when you turn on the dishwasher or washing machine? Then the water hammer effect is likely caused by the solenoid valves. These are electronically controlled fast-acting valves that instantaneously close the water flow into the dishwasher or washing machine. Hence, if the solenoid valve has a quick response time, the water flow within the pipes is instantaneously stopped.
Consequently, the fluid reflects akin to a wave, resulting in a shock wave that backs up into the pipe. This is when you hear the banging sound. To resolve the problem, the plumber will install a solenoid or another kind of valve having a slower response time. The plumbing service provider might also install a flexible hose between the solenoid valve and the water supply line.
Tightening Loose Pipes
Even a slight hydraulic shock might result in a loud banging sound if the plumbing piping isn’t secured or fastened. A serious water hammer might have expensive, disastrous, and devastating damage to your home, property, or even the plumbing system. Water hammer might lead to pipe bursts and leaks, meaning that you also will have to spend a fortune on high water utility bills come the end of the month.
So, how can a plumbing expert help in case of such an issue at your Spring Hill, FL home? The plumbing service provider can prevent water hammers by fastening or securely fitting loose pipes. They can also wrap the affected segments with foam insulation to prevent banging. Further, the professionals can include more straps or pipe hangers at those points where the pipes cross the studs or joints. The plumbers might also insulate the pipes that run through bored holes or even install pipe sleeves to cushion the piping.
Water Shock Arrestors
A professional and experienced plumber can also install water shock arrestors at your home to protect the pipes from damage by absorbing the shock of a water hammer. The arrestors are a great solution if the air chambers are not a viable option. The water shock arrestors are a combination of air bladders and springs that can handle the effects of high water pressure. They do this by absorbing the water movement and reducing the shock waves.
Although this solution is often used in commercial construction, it can also be used in mansions and other residential constructions.
However, the arrestors need a replacement when the springs are worn out. Although the water shock arrestors are costlier than the air chamber, you will not have to worry about draining water from them every several months. The arrestors are also normally easy to install and may be used in utility sink faucets and washing machine valves.
Water Pressure Regulator
A water hammer effect can also arise whenever the main water line delivering water into your home is distributing it under high pressure. Hence, you should retain a plumber for routing water pressure inspection and control. You can also check the water pressure gauge to know the water pressure. At normal rates, the water pressure in most residential properties should be between 30PSI and 60PSI. However, if the water pressure is above the above range, you might hear loud banging sounds. The high-water pressure might also result in pipe bursts, appliance damage, and water loss.
The plumber can install a water pressure regulator to ensure that the water hammer issue caused by high water pressure is effectively alleviated. The water pressure regulator should be installed where the water line enters your home. Besides lowering the monthly water bills, installing the water pressure regulator will also ensure the service life of the pipes and appliances is extended.
Your Reliable Plumbing Service Providers
Have you experienced a water hammer at your Spring Hill, FL home? Call us today at Holistic Homes for a water hammer prevention solution. Our plumbers are well equipped, licensed, and professionally trained to handle any plumbing issue at your home.