Pipes have started vibrating when cold water is used

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  #1  
Old 07-21-19, 07:05 PM
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Pipes have started vibrating when cold water is used

I have been in my home for 3 years and the home was built in 2002.
Yesterday, when using the water on the refrigerator, we noticed that the was a high pitched vibrating sound that stopped right water the water use stopped. During the day, we noticed that the the vibration occurred with many water uses (dish water, toilet, sink etc).
I have a water pressure tester on the way. It seem like a likely candidate for the source of the problem might be the PRV.
Some comments have mentioned that expansion tank diaphram might be the cause as well.

Just wanted to confrim if I am looking in the right place? It is interesting since I have never had any noise before yesterday.
Take Care
Ian
 
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  #2  
Old 07-21-19, 07:13 PM
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Yes could be the PRV. Check static and dynamic pressures. You can buy a gauge at the homestor if you don't want to what.



Somtimes the prv's get stuck a bit. Making an adjustment in pressure with the adjusting nut may often fix the issue. Dont go over 80 psi.

60-70 psi with often suffice.

exp tank often will not cause the issue, but the charge in them should be checked, or just replace the tank. often they are found at the water heaters.

remember to adjust the air charge to what the homes psi is set for. As these tanks are often only precharged to 40 or 50 psi
 
  #3  
Old 07-22-19, 04:51 AM
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I ordered a pressure gauge so I can test the PRV. It should be here tomorrow.

I haven't paid that much attention to the expansion tank in the past. I have how does one adjust the charged pressure? Is there a nipple for a air compressor?
 
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Old 07-22-19, 09:53 AM
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Yes, the pressure tank has a bicycle style Schrader valve so you can use a compressor or even a bike pump. You will also need a tire pressure gauge to see how much air is in the tank.
 
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Old 07-23-19, 04:11 PM
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Got my pressure guage today. The pressure was at 60psi. I arbitrarily changed it to 65psi to see in the high pitched vibration disappeared. It didn't do it in a couple of tests I ran but It didn't happen everytime I openned the taps before so more testing to be done.
 
  #6  
Old 07-23-19, 04:34 PM
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Look for a valve that is a washer type - I had one do that a few years ago - loose/damaged washer.
 
  #7  
Old 07-23-19, 05:41 PM
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Still have the vibration. It seems to happen mostly when I use the water dispenser on the fridge or the cold water at the kitchen sink. I don't have anything new (Everything is about 3 years old) and never had the problem before last week.
 
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Old 07-24-19, 06:19 AM
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You adjusted the water pressure to 65 psi. Now try lowering the pressure to around 50 psi.
 
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Old 07-24-19, 09:56 AM
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I'm in agreement with tribe_fan. When I've seen vibrations like that in the past, it's been a loose or worn washer on a valve. For whatever reason, the water 'bumps' over the washer and creates a jackhammer kind of noise.

Tracking down which valve is sometimes hard, but if it happens with most/all fixtures, it could be the washer in the PRV. Some PRVs can be rebuilt, but it's often easier/cheaper to just replace. Unfortunately, it's hard to troubleshoot without actually replacing it.
 
  #10  
Old 07-24-19, 12:27 PM
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I will try reducing the pressure to 50 tonight.
Since this is happening on several flows, I am inclined to think it is related to the PRV.
As always. Appreciate everyone's comments.
 
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Old 07-24-19, 06:58 PM
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could be the meter too. I have seen this on occasions. Meters have check valves. I have seen a few whine...
 
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Old 07-29-19, 06:48 AM
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My problem is definitely not getting better. Last night was the worse so far. This time I got to observe the pipes. The copper pipes start to resonate at the PRV and vibrate all of the way to the hot water tank where the expansion tank is located. It is hard to determine if it starts are one end or the other but my guess would be the PRV. The water meter is out by the street (50-60 yards away) and I have not checked it to see if the resonating starts there.

My PRV is a 3/4" Watts LFX65B 20-80psig (09/24/14 N). This device is discontinued. I haven't been able to figure out what model it is precisely so I can check out if a repair kit is available or find a direct replacement. Appreciate any advice
 
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Old 07-29-19, 07:06 AM
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You do not need the same model number, just buy a new one, something like this.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Watts-3-...B-Z3/202922385

If you have an Ace hardware store nearby, they seem to have the same thing cheaper. Lowes has them too, but are much more expensive although they will price match.

https://www.acehardware.com/departme...gaAlVYEALw_wcB
 
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Old 07-29-19, 07:54 AM
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Thank you. It looks like the one you propose has an integrated check valve? I already have a check valve out by the meter. Any issues if there are two in same line?

It would be nice to get one with the same dimension so that I wouldn't have to make adjustments to the copper pipe. I can do it if I need to though.
 

Last edited by ijourneaux; 07-29-19 at 09:17 AM.
  #15  
Old 07-29-19, 03:13 PM
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I went to test the expansion tank pressure tonight. Turned water off as it entered the house. Exposed the Schrader valve. When I went to test the pressure with a tire gauge, it immediately started to leak from the Schrader valve. Can't get it to stop leaking.

As I understand it, there shouldn't be any water on that side of the bladder.Do I need to replace the expansion tank?

Upon further inspection, the expansion tank was completely full of water so it needed to be replaced. Unfortunately after replacement, I still have the resonating pipes. I think I have the PRV and expansion tank set to 56#. Will check it again tomorrow.
 

Last edited by ijourneaux; 07-29-19 at 06:00 PM.
  #16  
Old 07-30-19, 04:49 PM
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It looks like the one you propose has an integrated check valve? I already have a check valve out by the meter. Any issues if there are two in same line?

I found those two quickly, if you check you may find one without a check valve although having two check valves shouldn't be an issue. I believe you will find though that check valves are becoming more and more common especially in new water meters. The last PRV I bought was around 10 years ago and it had a bypass rather than a check valve and same for the one here at home that was purchased maybe 15 to 20 years ago
 
  #17  
Old 07-30-19, 05:33 PM
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Thanks very much for the comments.
After I replaced the expansion tank last night, the pip vibration when using cold water was terrible. Today, it has not been an issue at all. I am not sure why it would be different today than last night.

If it comes back, the PRV is the next target. If I get there, I am going to replace to cutoff valve with a 90deg ball valve so it is compatible with a auto shut off system so getting a direct replacement for the PRV is no longer a priority
 
  #18  
Old 07-31-19, 06:38 PM
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2nd day and not a hint of any pipe vibration. Clearly the expansion tank needed to be replaced as the bladder had obviously ruptured. I wished I understood why it still vibrated in the few hours after I replaced the tank. Regardless for now the problem seems to have gone away.
 
  #19  
Old 08-01-19, 01:09 PM
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Glad it's working!
My guess with a bad pressure tank is that it was not directly the tank causing the vibrations, but instead the too-high pressure in your system from the pressure tank not doing its job. The higher pressure was then causing something else to vibrate. Just a guess though.
 
  #20  
Old 08-01-19, 06:17 PM
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What ever it was, it is nice to have it behind us. I really appreciate everybody's comments. It was quite helpful.
 
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