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The Plumbing Noise Guide: Beware of these Sounds!

October 20, 2023 / in plumbing tips, seasonal, and water heaters / by Clayton Plumbers


You’re in your home, and suddenly, a loud creak echoes… What was that?!! Is it normal, or should it cause concern? Some minor “creaking” is not unusual in a home, particularly if your house has some years on it. This sound could simply be the natural settling and aging of your home’s building materials. But when should you consider calling a plumber?

Strange Plumbing Noise

How to Identify a Bad Plumbing Noise

Plumbing noises can be a nuisance, but they can also be a warning sign of potential problems in your home’s plumbing system. Here are some common plumbing noises and what they might mean:


Rattling pipes are often caused by loose pipes vibrating against each other or against the wall when water runs through them. Securing loose pipes often solves this problem.

SOLUTION: The remedy is quite straightforward: ensure your pipes are secure so they don’t collide with the wall. If you can reach them, you usually have the ability to tighten or replace the fasteners on your own. However, if the area is difficult to access, it might be advantageous to enlist the help of a plumbing expert.


This is a common noise you might hear when you turn off the water suddenly. It’s caused by the water’s momentum causing the pipes to shake and bang against the wall or each other. This can be fixed by installing water hammer arrestors or pressure reducing valves.

SOLUTION: Consider lowering your water pressure or fitting a water pressure regulator to see if it resolves the issue. If the unpleasant plumbing noise is primarily in your laundry room, it might be beneficial to attach hose-threaded hammer arresters to the supply valves of your washing machine.


This sound is usually a direct result of some type of sediment building up inside a water heater unit. Once the debris/sediment that is in the water heater is heated, it begins shaking and moving within the unit. You may experience a crackling sound as well, which is the sediment being popped.

SOLUTION: Regularly flushing your water heater to remove debris and sediment is a good practice. Take a look at our article on the 4 Benefits of Water Heater Maintenance. Additionally, familiarize yourself with the usual sounds your water heater makes. If you notice any sounds that deviate significantly from the usual, it’s a good idea to contact a highly-rated plumbing company.


The vibrations you’re hearing are often due to a malfunctioning toilet fill valve. These “vibrations” originate from an old valve that can no longer form the airtight seal it once did. As the seal weakens over time, the cap on the valve starts to wobble, preventing the gasket from fully closing.

SOLUTION: By simply replacing your fill valve, those “vibrations” will become a distant memory.


This noise is usually caused by a worn-out valve or washer. It’s most commonly heard when a faucet or valve is opened partially.

SOLUTION: Regarding your appliances, it’s probably best to call in a local appliance repair company to assess the problem. As for your toilet, you can try to fix it by either adjusting the toilet’s mechanism or replacing the valve if too damaged.


Gurgling sounds often indicate a blockage in your drain or vent pipe. This could be due to food particles, hair, or other debris. If not addressed, it could lead to slow drains or even backups.

SOLUTION: It’s advisable to contact a plumber immediately, as a gurgling sound can quickly escalate into sewage backing up into your home.

Knowing When To Call a Professional

main sewer line inspection

Remember, while some noises can be fixed with simple solutions, others may indicate more serious problems. If you’re unsure about a noise or if the problem persists after attempting to fix it, it’s always best to consult with a professional plumber.

When its time to bring in the reinforcements, call the number one plumbing professional in Clayton, JoCo Plumbing NC!

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