If you can hear strange sounds, such as hissing, gurgling or burping, from your plumbing, it is probably due to a pressure imbalance caused by the water flowing through the pipes.
As water flows through the pipes, pushing the air in front of it, it creates a vacuum effect. The plumbing vents on the roof are meant to prevent this. However, if you’re still hearing unusual sounds, it may indicate a vent issue.
Each house has a vent on the roof to allow sewer gases and air to escape and to equalize pressure.
Toilets have a tee, connected to the main vent to equalize the pressure and keep the drains noise-free.
When a toilet is flushed or a tub drained, a large amount of water is released. This creates an airtight seal in the pipes, causing a pressure difference between the pressure in front of the wastewater and the vacuum created behind it.
If the plumbing vents are not functioning properly, the air will not be able to fill the vacuum. This can make air can enter the toilet P-traps, the shower or bathtub. The strange sounds are coming from the affected traps, and a strong vacuum can suck the water right out of them.
Other common reasons for noisy plumbing
If you hear the pipes making a hammering sound, it is probably due to air trapped inside the plumbing.
An air hammer causes noises when a faucet is opened suddenly. This is because of the trapped air in the pipes that are highly compressed due to water pressure.
When it isn’t trapped air, the noise could be caused due to a water hammer. When you quickly turn off a faucet and hear a loud banging noise, followed by fading banging noises, it could be due to a water hammer.
When the faucet is shut off suddenly, it causes a small vacuum that pulls the water back and releases it against the valve.
Air and water in the pipes
The presence of both air and water are in old pipes can cause them to rattle. Expanding and contracting pipes because of heating up or cooling down can lead to strange noises.
If your plumbing has been rather noisy, ask a plumber to take a look at the vents, pipes and fixtures. If you are looking for pipe repair or septic tank systems maintenance in Clarkston or Oakland County, MI, call Shorty’s Sanitary Service at 248-332-6476.