It's a good thing that your plumbing is reliable. When your plumbing is making sounds or is loud, you might start 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 include:
- 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 excessive calcium and magnesium. These minerals can build up in your pipes and appliances, causing clogs and less efficient operation.
If you have issues with soap scum, clogged pipes or appliances wearing out quickly, you might have hard water. Having a plumber install a water softener is the best way to solve this issue.
Cause: Aging Pipes
Plumbing doesn’t last 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 lifetime and you’re faced with leaks, rusty water or low water pressure, it may be time to have new ones installed.
Cause: High Water Pressure
This can be caused by your utility provider or issues with your water heater. A telltale sign of high water pressure is hearing slamming in your pipes, particularly after shutting off a faucet.
If this is what’s causing the issue, a plumber can check and replace your home’s pressure-reducing valve as necessary.
2. Plumbing is Gurgling
Gurgling isn’t a good sound. It’s usually a symptom that you’re dealing with some sort of blockage or clog. Here are three of the most common types.
Cause: Plugged Drain
Your drain can either be partially or fully clogged. Here's the difference:
- Partial clog—water drains more slowly than normal.
- Full clog—water goes up instead of draining, particularly in multiple drains.
It can be tempting to use a liquid drain opener to correct the issue, but this can create more problems. These products are corrosive and can erode your pipes. It’s always best to have a plumber unclog your pipes, either via a snake or jetting.
Cause: Blocked Sewer Line
Your home has a sewer pipe that carries waste to the main sewer line, usually situated in your yard or in the street. If this pipe gets clogged, you will likely be taking care of backup in your basement.
Things that can block or plug this pipe includes tree roots searching for water or by flushing bathroom products besides 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 icky plumbing smells out of your home. If they get blocked, you’ll likely notice gurgling, experience slow draining or smell sewage. A plumber can help you get to the bottom of and resolve this smelly problem.
3. Plumbing is Humming
If your plumbing is humming, you’re not just dealing with an irritating sound.
Cause: High Water Pressure
Humming means your home’s water pressure is likely too high. This can create problems such as water leaks and damage to faucets and other fixtures. A plumber can help you control water pressure, which should be about 60–70 PSI.
4. Plumbing is Vibrating
If your plumbing is vibrating, three problems could be creating this sound.
Cause: Unsecured Pipe Clamp
The most common cause of vibrating plumbing is an unsecured pipe clamp. This hardware keeps pipes in place when water is flowing 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 commonly, pipes can vibrate because of high water pressure or a water hammer, which happens when water that’s moving fast hits a closed valve. A plumber can identify and fix these issues.
5. Plumbing is Bubbling
If your plumbing is bubbling, you’re probably dealing with problems associated with gurgling plumbing.
Cause: Blocked or Incorrectly Vented Drain
Whether you’re dealing with a clogged or incorrectly vented drain, a plumber can take care of it.
Halverson Brothers Inc Can Solve Your Strange Plumbing Noises
No one wants to hear a loud or strange noise coming from their plumbing. There are lots of 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 715-352-4052 today. We’re here to assist you when you need a plumber in Menomonie and western Wisconsin or surrounding areas.