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Question DetailsAsked on 3/19/2015

hot water pipes humming sound--stops as soon as you turn on the hot water--starts again when hot water is off

25-year-old condo -- guess pipes are that old as well ...

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2 Answers



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Answered 5 years ago by Member Services


Assuming you have confirmed that cold water is not doing it - that it does not stop when cold water is turned on:

Three likely sources - a pump in the system, or a leaking valve seat.

1) if you have a hybrid water heater it has a heat pump in the top or on the side of it which has a motor - listen to see if that is getting a bit buzzy. Also, if you have a hot water recirculating system that pump might be getting old or its mounting bolts a bit loose.

2) listen at water heater and make sure it is not micro-bubbling (boiling) in the bottom due to sediment buildup

3) Go around to ALL the various faucets (including tub/showerand outdoors) and listen at each to see if the sound is far louder at one than the other - a very slightly leaking valve seat washer can cause a humming or buzzing sound because it is leaking just a tiny spray of water - maybe only a drip every 10 seconds or so, which could show up as a drip from the faucet, or a leak under or around it. Also listen at toilet tanks, dishwasher, clothes washer, and any other water consuming device - a slightly leaking fill valve can do this too. Reason it stops when you turn hot water on is you are relieving the pressure in the hot water pipes whenb water is running.

If you do not find it that way, while one person is holding ear to hot water faucet or pipe have another turn the hot water on at the furthest point away - may be that the sound is not actually going away when hot waer is turned on just being masked by the sound of the water running. Might turn out to be a fan or pump in the HVAC system or such running, and just being masked by the sound of the water turning on- though of course would soiund same with hot or cold water running, in that case.

If these hints do not solve it, respond back using the Answer This Question button right below your question with details of what you found out or ruled out,and of where the soundis loudest - might be able to help more with partial elimination of the sources.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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