Water Heater making "jackhammer" noise


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Old 04-23-09, 06:52 AM
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Water Heater making "jackhammer" noise

Hi All,

We've moved into a new house and we noticed that, in the morning hours, our water heater makes a loud noise that sounds like a jack hammer.

What's even more of a concern is that a few days ago the heater was leaking and I replaced it (thankfully it was covered under warranty). I was hoping that the replacement wouldn't have the same issue but, alas, it makes the noise as well.

My dad thinks it's air in the water line which makes sense since it is very similiar to the sound a faucet makes when it has been off for a long period. He thinks it happens in the morning because everyone is taking showers for work in the neighborhood and drawing from the water line; so the issue is not even the plumbing/water heater in our home.

That theory makes sense but doesn't ease my concerns that I will be replacing this w.h. again in the near future.

Does anyone have any experience with this and an explanation of what could be causing this sound? Is it detrimental to my w.h?

Thanks for any help!
 
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Old 04-23-09, 01:34 PM
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it is most likely not the water heater. the most common problem is a loose/bad washer or o-ring somewhere in your system. do some detective work and see if you can pinpoint the fixture or at least the area that causes the noise. is there a shower, toilet or sink that is used in the morning that might not otherwise be used ? if so start there and turn off the water to one fixture (toilets and sinks) at a time and see if the problem stops. very often it is the fill valve in a toilet or the stop valve for a toilet or sink that is the culprit. also washing machines sometime cause the problem as they, toilets and ice makers have quick closing valves in them and if that is the case, hammer arrestors may help
 
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Old 04-26-09, 10:34 PM
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This happens a lot in houses many service calls for it. Its simply water hammer.

Water hammer - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Viddler.com - Simulation of the water hammer effect - Uploaded by jrdul

Put one of these on the heater side and it should be fine no worries.

Water Hammer Arresters from FAMOUS PLUMBING SUPPLY
 
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Old 04-27-09, 05:52 AM
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it will not work if it is not installed close to where the problem is coming from.

why not find and fix the problem rather than trying to cover it up ?

if a new heater is making the same noise as the old one then it is safe to say that it is not the heater causing it
 
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Old 03-31-10, 06:12 AM
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I forgot I posted this question because, shortly after I reached out to you all, my water heater died. My dad and I replaced it and the noise went away.

That was a year ago and now it's back again.

I did also contact the water dept and they checked the pressue. They said it was a bit "erratic" and corrected it somehow?

Anyway, it's obvious that the w.h. is not causing this. I may look into the arrestors while using some of the troubleshooting methods already described to determine where the issue is.

Thoughts? thanks
 
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Old 03-31-10, 06:24 AM
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I just realized that you all are up-to-date on the fact that the water heater was replaced.

Sorry, I had lost touch with the info for so long. Not sure why the noise subsided and is now back again?

thanks.
 
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Old 03-31-10, 11:57 AM
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It sounds to me like the City is having issues with their water pressure, and your hammering is occuring when the pressure is high. Installing a PRV will cure the problems at your house -- not for the entire city of course, but it will probably eliminate the hammering at YOUR house!
 
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Old 03-31-10, 12:01 PM
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Thanks for the response.

Where would I put the PRV? Right at the water line entry point?

FWIW, the gauge reads 5.
 
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Old 03-31-10, 02:30 PM
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Put the PRV as close to the incoming water that you can, so long as you can shut the water off to install it. You want it to cover all of your water system.

"FWIW, the gauge reads 5." -- I have no clue what you are talking about!!
 
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Old 05-27-11, 09:42 AM
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Woodpecker pecking on water heater and/or furnace vent = jackhammer noise!

Hello,

I have this EXACT same problem and after all sorts of investigating, we discovered that the jackhammer noise is a WOODPECKER pecking the metal vent pipe on our roof! The sound is magnified inside your home as it echoes through the pipes. We thought that it was our water heater too. But if you look on youtube and listen to several different recordings of woodpeckers pecking on metal pipes, etc., you will notice that the sound is identical. Assuming you have the same problem, that would explain why replacing your water heater did not work.

Here are some examples:

YouTube - ‪Woodpecker Takes On Metal‬‏
YouTube - ‪Steelpecker‬‏

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 06-21-11, 05:00 AM
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Do you hear the hammering when nobody is using water?
 
 

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