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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Water Hammer Found as Cause of Broken Pipes in Esmont Home?

11/27/2023 (Permalink)

A broken pipe is rapidly leaking water. We are leaders in water damage restoration services in Albemarle County.

Our local Charlottesville team responds to water damage emergencies every year in Esmont. A water hammer is a hydraulic phenomenon that occurs in plumbing systems when there is a sudden change in water flow or pressure. It results in a loud, banging, or hammering noise, often resembling a hammer striking a pipe, hence the name "water hammer." This noise is typically caused by the rapid deceleration or stoppage of water flow within a pipe system. Here's how a water hammer happens:

Fast Changes in Water Flow: Water flowing through a pipe has momentum. When a valve is suddenly closed, a faucet is quickly turned off, or a water-using appliance like a washing machine or dishwasher abruptly stops using water, the flow of water is abruptly halted or changed.

Pressure Spike: As the water flow is suddenly stopped or changed, the kinetic energy of the flowing water is converted into pressure energy. This results in a sharp increase in pressure within the pipe.

Noise and Vibration: The increased pressure travels through the pipe as a shock wave, causing the pipes to vibrate, producing the characteristic loud noise known as a water hammer. This noise can be particularly pronounced if the plumbing system has rigid pipes.

Water hammers can potentially lead to problems in a plumbing system. They can cause damage to pipes, fittings, and fixtures over time, potentially leading to leaks or other issues, and may cause pipes to burst.

To prevent water hammers, plumbing systems often incorporate devices like air chambers, water hammer arrestors, or water pressure regulators. These devices help absorb the excess pressure and prevent it from causing vibrations and noise in the pipes. Regular maintenance of plumbing systems and addressing any water hammer issues promptly can help prevent damage and prolong the life of the plumbing components.

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When your Esmont home or commercial business needs water damage restoration services, our local Charlottesville team is Here to Help. ® We typically arrive onsite within four hours of your call for help. Call us today at 434-977-5850.

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