It could be down to a few reasons. Maybe your pipes are too small. Your water pressure could be changing when you turn your taps on. Your toilet tank might not be refilling properly. Or maybe your washers are all worn out. Thankfully, humming pipes are one of those plumbing problems that don’t require a professional to sort them out. There are a few basic repairs you can carry out for yourself.
Find the source of the problem
If the humming stops when you turn your taps on, your water pressure could be too high. To check, get yourself a water pressure test gauge from your local DIY store and attach it to your outside tap. Turn the tap on, and the gauge will display the pressure. If it’s more than 60psi, you’ll need to adjust the pressure reducer valve on your main water line.
Adjust the pressure reducer valve
It’s usually located in your basement or near your water meter. The pressure reducer valve should be completely open. If it isn’t, turn it gently anticlockwise. If this doesn’t work, you might need to change the washer.
Change the washer
Make sure you ask your water company to shut off your supply before you try to change the washer. Then, unscrew the screw that connects the handle to the tap. Remove the handle, unscrew the nut, and remove the washer. Pop the new washer in, tighten the nut and replace the handle.
Check your valves
If the humming starts after you’ve flushed the toilet, you’ll need to close off individual shut-off valves to locate the source of the sound. When the noise stops, open each valve one at a time. If the noise starts again when you do this, you might need to replace the tank fill valve.
Test the toilet flapper
Add a few drops of food colouring to the water in your toilet tank. Give it about 30 seconds and then check to see if the water in the bowl changes colour. If it does, your toilet flapper (a small rubber plug) is leaking and you’ll need to replace it.
Check your hot water heater
Take a look at the pressure relief valve on your hot water heater for leaks. You’ll find these either on top of your water tank or on the side.
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