Water heating is not always a silent heating system. Sometimes you can hear strange sounds coming from the pipelines. Some of them are completely harmless and can be ignored, while others are a signal of serious problems. Let’s try to figure out why the water in the heating pipes is noisy, and what can be done about it.
What types of noise can pipes emit?
There are legends about the sounds emanating from the elements of heating systems. Under certain circumstances, not only heating pipes, but also other pipelines make noise in the house. At the same time, the sound range of all sanitary systems is approximately the same. The most “musical” are metal pipes, but plastic ones can also “please” with unusual melodies. The water heating system can make a wide variety of sounds:
Specific sounds signal the presence of problems in the heating system, therefore it is necessary to identify and eliminate the source of noise in a short time, since its systematic impact on a person leads to disorders of the nervous system, interferes with sleep and reduces performance.
Why is water noisy in heating pipes
Noise in heating pipes is caused by the following reasons:
- air jams;
- high speed of movement of the coolant, due to an incorrectly selected diameter of the pipeline or a decrease in the internal lumen of the pipe due to overgrowth of its walls;
- coolant leakage in emergency areas or through poorly closed valves;
- scale peeled off from the walls of pipes or debris that got into the circuit during installation;
- faulty or incorrectly installed valves;
- excessive pump power or improper installation;
- wear of control valves or thermostatic heads;
- cavitation — the formation of steam bubbles in the coolant at the site of a sharp increase in the diameter of the pipeline (the appearance of a low pressure area) with their subsequent collapse, destroying the equipment;
- violations of the installation technology (use of polypropylene pipes with a diameter less than the calculated one, failure to observe the minimum distance between parallel sections of a metal pipeline during installation, installation of a filter or valve not in the direction of flow indicated on it, etc.).
Important! The central heating is always noisy. When the system is filled, the murmur of the coolant is heard, the heating of the circuit is accompanied by clicks, and the exit of air from it is accompanied by a whistle. Maintenance of heating equipment before start-up can also be carried out using impact. These noises usually disappear when the system is brought online and are not a cause for concern.
If extraneous sounds appeared at the height of the heating season or did not disappear after the start-up, then this is a signal of the presence of malfunctions, and problems should be looked for not only in oneself or neighbors in the riser, but also in a heating point or an elevator unit — the source of trouble may be far away outside of housing, as sound waves propagate well through pipes.
Noise elimination methods
The source of noise often turns out to be in the locations of common house communications. The coolant pressure at the heating main input node is the highest, so the slightest malfunctions in it can immediately declare themselves in the form of strange sounds throughout the entire entrance. In a private house, the noisiest place is the furnace or heat generator, where the boiler and its entire piping system are located.
On a note: Aluminum and bimetallic radiators are especially sensitive to pressure drops. Thin metal transmits any vibrations through itself, like a mouthpiece. In such heaters, the slightest technological noise acquires an enhanced sound.
If the problem turned out to be a malfunction of the collective property equipment, then it is not worth fixing it yourself. Worn nodes can literally crumble at the slightest attempt to unwind them, and all the blame will be placed on the one who unauthorizedly intervened in the work of a “perfectly tuned” system. It is better to file a complaint with a service organization and wait patiently for their representative to repair faulty components.
If you managed to diagnose problems within your own or neighboring housing, then you should deal with their elimination as soon as possible. In this case, any delay is fraught with aggravation of the situation and complication of repair work.
How to get rid of noise in the heating system
Each malfunction in the heating system creates a type of noise characteristic only for it, which is a clue in the diagnosis. The list of measures taken depends on what sounds the heating pipes emit.
The loudest and most annoying kind of noise. Trumpets can blare out of the blue and give rise to poltergeist stories. Nevertheless, mysticism has nothing to do with it, and communication with spirits will not save you from the noise in the pipes.
When a hum appears, you need to look for a coolant leak. First of all, a thorough inspection of your home is carried out, then all neighboring apartments. If everything is dry, then the search continues in the basement. A cloud of steam, a puddle or a whistle will help you easily determine the place where the water flows. In apartment buildings, repairs will be carried out by the management company, in a private house — by the owner of the housing. After inspecting the problem area, a decision is made on how to eliminate the malfunction — by repairing or replacing the assembly, sometimes it is enough just to tighten a poorly closed valve.
Another reason for the hum may be the use of pipes with a diameter smaller than the calculated one in the heating system. In this case, the problem area is determined by ear, and the necessary section of the pipeline is replaced by a material with greater permeability. With the right selection of pipes and high-quality performance, you no longer have to listen to the pipes buzzing.
Bubbling, crackling and clicking
Particles of debris, sludge or exfoliated scale, when moving through pipes, beat against the walls and rub against them, creating noise in the form of crackling or seething. A characteristic sound during clogging is also a click. To eliminate this kind of noise, it is necessary to flush the system.
Foreign objects in the pipes will click until they come out. Therefore, all liquid is drained from the system through the drain cock. With the help of a hose, the old coolant with garbage is sent to the sewer, the system is additionally washed with water (steel pipes are tapped on the outside with a wooden mallet to peel the scale from the inside from the walls), after which the heating circuit is refilled.
Important! Before draining dirty water, it is better to dismantle the drain valve in order to allow large fragments of debris to come out and not clog the shut-off device with them.
Quite often, pipes crack and click due to a malfunction of the valve or its installation in the wrong direction of flow. The curved through hole is easily clogged, and over time a plug may form in it, completely blocking the movement of the coolant. Partial overlapping of the pipe clearance with debris creates noise during the passage of water. If the valve is located the other way around, then the liquid enters it not from the bottom side of the locking disc, but from above, which leads to the destruction of the stem and the separation of the valve. In this case, the movement of the coolant will also be accompanied by noise.
The most rational way out of the situation is to replace the valve, since it is already partially worn out in the wrong position and therefore unpredictable after reinstallation. In the absence of a new assembly, you can temporarily install the old one by replacing the threaded joint seal material.
Advice: When choosing a new shut-off and control valve, you need to keep in mind that ball (plug) valves are much more practical to use, can be installed in any direction and are not as sensitive to blockages as screw valves.
If the ball valve is closed tightly, it can also become a source of noise. This is not a malfunction and is eliminated by slightly opening it or completely closing it. Valves with thermostatic heads can also make noise if the temperature set on them is close to the actual room temperature. In this case, the entrance to the radiator is not completely blocked, and the coolant passes through a small hole with a characteristic sound. To get rid of the noise, just turn the head towards the sprocket.
With the accumulation of air, it becomes audible how the water murmurs in the heating pipes — a very common phenomenon. Air can enter the system during repair work, sucked in through loose connections — an air lock, regardless of its origin, prevents the normal circulation of the coolant. Not only does the water murmur annoyingly, but also the heaters do not heat up properly. In the event of the formation of an air lock that completely blocks the lumen of the pipe, the radiators after the problematic section of the pipeline will remain cold.
Air always accumulates at the highest points of the system, as it is lighter than water. It is there that special valves or automatic air collectors are usually installed. Radiators located at the end of a horizontal branch must be equipped with a Mayevsky crane. In some types of systems, each heater has a so-called “air vent”. The nodes of modern designs are easily rotated by hand, older ones will have to be controlled using an adjustable wrench or a screwdriver.
First of all, you need to try to bleed the air from the radiators of your apartment. The operation starts with the coldest fixture, if any. Often it is local air pockets that interfere with heating. If this does not work, then you need to ask the neighbors from the top floor to find the appropriate faucet and open it. In difficult situations, it is better to call a qualified plumber. A characteristic whistle serves as an indicator of success — the release of air.
Advice: To avoid getting burned, open the Mayevsky tap smoothly, being careful — the hot water in the system is under pressure. In addition, to collect the water that will flow from the radiator, you must first prepare a container of sufficient volume with a wide neck.
Knocking is usually caused by a loose pipe or radiator bracket. The slightest vibration during the passage of the coolant through such a unit causes rattling, and if the supports are very loose, the radiator beats against the fasteners. The system will stop making noise if the brackets are firmly fixed. To dampen vibrations, a heat-resistant rubber gasket can be installed between the instrument and the support.
Sometimes knocking can be caused by too close parallel or crossing pipes. With temperature deformations, one pipeline begins to touch another, beat against it and becomes a source of noise. Soundproofing can save the situation if the existing gap is enough to accommodate it. Otherwise, to eliminate the knock, you will have to shift the problem area.
In some cases, knocking on heating pipes in apartment buildings is caused by the discontent of the neighbors. This type of noise is usually distinguished by the absence of periodicity and occurs in the form of a reaction to certain provoking actions. That’s just “enjoy” the specific sounds have all the inhabitants of the riser. Here, technical measures will not help, soundproofing can only partially save. Conflicts with neighbors are resolved only through dialogue and diplomacy.
Expert advice on preventing unwanted sounds in the heating circuit
The likelihood of noise in heating pipes can be reduced by adhering to the following recommendations from professionals:
Important! In search of the source of noise, a dry stick (shovel handle) can help, one end of which is pressed tightly against the ear, and the other — in turn to the elements of the heating system. In a problem area, the noise will manifest itself louder and clearer.
In this article, at the household level, the question is considered: what to do if the heating pipes are noisy? The first and most important step is to locate the source. Then you need to objectively assess your strengths and the possible consequences of trying to eliminate the malfunction in order to decide whether to do troubleshooting immediately or postpone repairs until the end of the heating season.
Some of the problems in the operation of heating can be eliminated with your own hands, but in difficult cases you cannot do without specialists. In apartment buildings, it is better to entrust the solution of the issue to public utilities, while not forgetting to control their actions. Responding to the noise in the pipes in a timely manner, you will save your health and nerves, as well as protect the heating system from more serious damage.