How To Fix Water Hammer And Air In Pipes
It is important that you locate the problem before you start trying to fix the noise. Noises in pipes can be from many different things, not just water hammer. Air in pipes is often confused with water hammer. Several other contributors to noises are water meters that are undersized for your system, pipes that are changing temperature when water flows through them, and water pressure higher than 60 PSI.
Is It Water Hammer Or Air In The Pipes?
If the noise occurs when you open a valve or faucet, it is probably air in the pipes. If it occurs when a valve closes it is probably a water hammer. If it happens when a pump starts, it could be air in the pipes and/or water hammer.
Water Hammer Diagram
The Following Are Signs Of Water Hammer:
- If the noise occurs when a valve closes
- Noise when the pump starts
- If you hear quick repeated bumps or a loud thump followed by silence
The Following Are Signs Of Air In The Pipes:
- Noise unrelated to a valve opening or closing
- Noise when a pump starts
- Vibrating or prolonged noises
Fixing Water Hammer:
- The easiest method to fix water hammer is to lower the water pressure for your entire irrigation system. It will not get rid of all of the water hammer, but it will sometimes reduce it to a level you can live with.
- If you have an automatic system, you may be able to rid water hammer by simply changing the order in which the valves operate. Simply find out which valve uses the least water. This will probably be the one with the least amount of sprinklers, but not always. Once you figure it out, rewire the controller so that the valve that uses the least water is the last valve to run.
- Water Hammer ArrestorTry a water hammer arrestor. This mostly only works with just water hammer caused from washing machines and dishwashers. But it is worth a try with sprinkler related water hammer. Install it per the instructions on the package and try putting it on a hose bib to the point where the irrigation system connects to the house water. If you have a hose bib on the irrigation system mainline, that is an even better place. Or you can tap into the irrigation mainline to install it. If it does not work, remove it and return it to the store where you purchased it.
- The valve may be too small. Therefore, try reducing the water velocity by:
- If the valve is one size smaller than the pipe then there is a chance that the valve is the problem. Cheaper valves often snap closed faster than more costly ones. It might be a good idea to replac