Home>Discussions>PLUMBING>Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?
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Gfarra
Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Hi All,

Recently I have been hearing a low pitched rumbling/humming sound inside my house, everywhere in my house. I hear it on all floors and even the basement, with no change in volume as I migrate through the house.

We have ruled out electrical issues as I have had an electrician check all grounding and connections at the meter and in my service panel. Also, If I throw the main breaker off and kill power to everything, I still hear the rumbling. Electrical service is underground and my main panel has a grounding bond to the water supply line coming into the house.

My wife claims she doesn't hear anything, but I swear the sounds feels like its in my head. Before heading off to the doctor, I am wondering if plumbing can cause a resonant sound as I have described. I don't hear the sound outside, in my car, or at work.....but that maybe because my house is way quieter than the rest especially at night when I seem to notice it the most. I am not sure if that is simply because I'm trying to fall asleep and I am fixated in it.

I am on municipal water and sewer with your typical hot water heater and hot water baseboard heating systems.

Thoughts??

Thank you,

George

Gfarra
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Also, I should add.....I hear this sound when the water is NOT running at any faucet, toilet, or appliance. I cant tell if the sound is there when water is running because the sound of water or airflow from a vent muffles the rumbling sound. Yet Ironically I can hear it over the TV.

Thanks again

George

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Do you only hear the sound when the heat is on - in the winter ? Not actually running I mean but when its a big temp difference between inside and outside.

Has this been a long term problem? or something new?

My first thought is the circulator pump

brewster
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

George,

I don't know if this is relative, but I hear a constant rumbling & grumbling each day when my mother in law gets up about 8 AM each morning------it dies down completely when she leaves for her daily bridge club meeting at about 2 PM!

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

I'm guessing your wife doesn't hear that noise either :confused:

dj1
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Quote: "My wife claims she doesn't hear anything"

That sums it all, listen to her.

Gfarra
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

LOL....I got a good chuckle out of some of these responses :)

I am in NJ and its been unseasonably warm so the heat hasn't been running frequently. I hear the sound in the house even when the heat is not running, even the circulator pump isn't running.

I started noticing it within the last 2 weeks and we haven't done anything new to the house.

George

dj1
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Do you hear that sound outside?
Do you hear that sound in every part of the house?

ed21
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Any chance you have a pole mounted transformer near your house. I could be making a vibration that is causing the house to vibrate that you're hearing.
Refrigerator and freezer compressors often hum, but not all the time.
Are you sure it's not water running and pipes vibrating. A similar plumbing issue with water running is a toilet valve that leaks, sometimes they make a moaning or vibration.
Any motors that always run like a radon ventilator. The motor could be going up.
I was in my basement not long ago and kept hearing a hum. Turned out the sump pump had locked up and was trying to run. I found it before it caught fire or the sump overflowed.
Also once had a whole house fan turned on, but the fan was winterized and the blade couldn't turn. It took me a few days to figure it out.
BTW- I've also heard of a low frequency hum heard by people in some places. I don't believe the source has been discovered.
That's all I got. :)

Gfarra
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

Thanks Guys,

I don't hear it outside, but its possible that wind noise is cancelling it out.

I do hear it all throughout my house. It changes in pitch/tone but not in volume...meaning it never gets louder or quieter as I walk around the house. It is louder at night but I am assuming, at this point, its only due to everything else being quieter at night.

There aren't any pole mounted transformers but my street has 3 transformers sitting on concrete pads. The one for my house is directly across the street from me.

I "think" I can rule out electric inside my house because the noise didn't stop when I flipped the master breaker in my service panel. I also had an electrician check all connections at my meter and service panel. If its from the transformer outside wouldn't I hear it outside as well??

I guess my next step would be to pick up a stethoscope and see if I can find a source inside the house.....or check myself into the looney bin :(

Happy new year all. I appreciate the help

George

Gfarra
Re: Can plumbing cause a low pitch rumble throughout my home?

ed21,

Regarding your comment on the toilet.....if that was the source, would the sound be louder at the toilet that is causing it...or is it sending the sound through my pipes thus making it appear as if the sound is in the air around me??

Thank you,

George

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