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Question DetailsAsked on 5/10/2016

I have loud humming/vibration from my hot water pipes only. Can the pressure from the jet tank be a possible cause

I have a surface well with a pump. The pump pushes water uphill to a factory charged jet tank(30psi).

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1 Answer


Yes - get a simple $10 screw-on pressure gage (comes with hose fitting, so test at a hose bib (hose faucet) - either outdoors one or one for washer ot such. You say it has a 30 psi jet tank - sounds like you have a well with piston or centifugal pump moving the water up the hill, then a jet PUMP with integral pressure tank near the house to pressurize the water to the house - generally would also have a storage tank at the jet pump/house to provide flow surge capacity during high demand periods.

This jet pump may be set to 30 psi - but the on/off pressure switch can drift or fail, and many jet pumps can put out up to 100-150 psi, so yoy could be overpressuring the household system.

However - that answer said - you indicated ONLY in hot water pipes, and a pump issue would be at all pipes. Put your ear to water heater and listen for boiling sound - if you have not kept up with annual flushing of debris out of the bottom of the tank, could be you are getting simmering (minor boiling) at the bottom of the tank, which can make a humming sound but only when firing and immediately after for a few seconds.

Also - if you have a constant-hot water circulating system, so you always have hot water at the faucets, there will be a circulating pump in the system that keeps moving the hot water through the pipes - would hum constantly if the bearings are going out or commonly if the gaskets are getting hard too.

If you are running high pressure, could also come from the pressure reducer in the household system if you have one - but only when water is flowing.

If you have a high-efficiency water heater with plastic exhaust pipe and a draft blower on it, could be a bearing going out on that - or a stuck solenoid or opearator motor on the damper in the duct at the exhaust fan. Hum would be only when unit is firing and shortly afterward.

Pinhole leak - actually more than a pinhole - would be a possibility too for a constant hum/vibration, but would be almost as loud in cold as hot pipes in most cases, and since you said loud would be quite a leak - or possibly a leaking hot water faucet, or a running toilet with a humming tempering valve making noise as the water runs at a low flow rate.

Listen with no water being used and water heater not firing - if you hear the sound and is not a hot water circulating pump, then likely from leak (you can hear the water rushing in the pipes by holding your ear to a cold pipe) - otherwise likely from something else like maybe a boiler, but would have to be from something contacting the hot pipe only if not heard through the cold pipes too.

If you don't find it that way, get a $10-15 METAL head stethoscope at your local pharmacy department and start listening around for where the sound is coming from.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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