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Noisy pipe in wall

In my steam heating system, when system is beginning cycling or after cycling, I will periodically get a loud, sharp bam! bam! Rapid fire sound from inside one particular wall, that does not sound like water hammer (sounds like handgun shots; very loud and sharp).

Could this sound be water hammer? If not water hammer, what might cause this? How can I realistically diagnose? Fix?


A. Spruce
Re: Noisy pipe in wall

It is likely expansion of the pipe rubbing on framing or drywall. As for a fix, not much you can do, really. If you wanted to open up the wall, you can install plastic grommets around the pipe where it penetrates framing, but that's a big, messy job that won't likely cure much.

Re: Noisy pipe in wall

As Spruce pointed out, the noise comes from the pipes expanding and contracting. Pinpoint the spot as best you can and start removing drywall. let us know what you find.

Re: Noisy pipe in wall

Yeah, that's what I figured..,I just replaced the main vents to get steam moving unhindered, this may be the price I pay!

Re: Noisy pipe in wall

You have a one pipe steam system. With this type system all lines must pitch back to the boiler. If they don't and condensate becomes trap in the line when the steam hits it it will sound like someone is hitting the pipe with a hammer. Also check the radiators I have seen them pitching away from the side the pipe is connected to, do to settlement of the home. This will trap water in the radiator causing your problem. If this is the case just shim the radiator up on the opposite side of the steam pipe.


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