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Old 08-06-2009, 11:05 PM   #1
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


Hey guys I have been using this forum to get advice on household repairs over the years. However, I have not been able to find a cure for one particular problem by searching and finally had to join, LOL.

I just bought a new(3 years old) house and am finding a few problems. First of all, let me say that where I live has extremely hard municipal well water and the house does not have a water softener, yet... Althought one is being installed within the next two weeks. So, if I can't fix these problems before then, I will just ask the plumber installing the softener to take a look at the rest of the system. Although the cost savings and challenge are two things I enjoy by doing it myself. I think I already know the answer to a couple of problems, but I will post them all in case they are related.

1. First thing I noticed when I moved into the house, is if I flush an upstairs (2nd story) toilet, particularly the main one. I will get a loud bang in the wall on the main floor. Only one, rarely two. It sounds like someone hits the wall with a hammer but it sounds like the drain pipe to me and not the water lines. However, I am not sure.

2. when the backyard hose is used, I get a very loud squealing noise from the outlet. It sounds like a cat dying, lol. This one, I think is just a bad anti-backflow hose bib but I could be wrong.

3. Sometimes I have low water pressure for a few minutes when I first turn on the water. I've only noticed it once when I was using the kitchen sink and fixed it, or at least I think I fixed it, by turning the water on and off a few times. My wife says she has noticed it a few times and just waits a minute with the water on for the pressure to build. FYI - the kitchen and sink and backyard hose are on off of the same pipe and within a foot or so of each other, as the backyard hose outlet comes in from outside under the sink.

All piping in my house is flexible plastic. I *think* it's called PEX.

Any suggestions for fixing these problems?

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Old 08-07-2009, 06:14 AM   #2
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


1. water hammer when the toilet valve closes. Check you water pressure, it could be on the high side(>60lbs), and you may need to install anti-hammer devices.
2. loose washer, valve not opening fully.
3. Low pressure and water hammer don't agree. There could be a lag in cities demand pumps. Are you at the end of the line??

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Old 08-07-2009, 08:28 AM   #3
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


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1. water hammer when the toilet valve closes. Check you water pressure, it could be on the high side(>60lbs), and you may need to install anti-hammer devices.
2. loose washer, valve not opening fully.
3. Low pressure and water hammer don't agree. There could be a lag in cities demand pumps. Are you at the end of the line??
I was thinking it was water hammer, as well. However the water pressure isn't too high, I used to have much higher water pressure in my previous house that was at the bottom of the hill (90PSI) and never had a problem. I'm wondering if it is maybe a lose plastic line that is moving when the water pressure surges or a lose drain pipe that hits the drywall when you flush. It is only the toilet that causes this.

As for the low water pressure, you could be right. However, I am not at the end of the line, maybe I will ask my neighbours if they have experienced this. Could it be build-up from the hard water?
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Old 08-07-2009, 08:31 AM   #4
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


I can answer number 3.
It's the diverter valve in the faucet. The next time you notice that the pressure is low, try the sprayer. My bet is that it will have full pressure.
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Old 08-07-2009, 08:47 AM   #5
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I can answer number 3.
It's the diverter valve in the faucet. The next time you notice that the pressure is low, try the sprayer. My bet is that it will have full pressure.

Yes!! I did try the sprayer at the time and you're correct! It did work at full pressure. Does that require a new faucet or just a diverter valve?
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Old 08-07-2009, 08:54 AM   #6
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


The diverter valve is located within the faucet. You can replace it or do as I did, just remove it. It can be accessed by removing the spout. You can find the schematics online if you need them.
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:44 AM   #7
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


this may be of help, even if it's not the exact brand as yours.

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Old 08-07-2009, 12:28 PM   #8
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Thanks!

That may or may not be the same model but it sure looks like the exact model I have. I will take it apart this evening after we're done with the sink.

If anyone has any suggestions for problem #1, it would be appreciated!
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Old 08-31-2009, 07:59 AM   #9
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


I've fixed all of the problems, except for this banging noise when I flush the toilet. I now think it may be water hammer because when the toilet sits for awhile, like overnight. The banging is worse and will sometimes happen about a couple of more times about ten seconds after the toilet flushes and not just immediately when flushing. I have PEX piping through the whole house and thought PEX wasn't supposed to be susceptible to water hammer.

Should I start by replacing the toilet valve?
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Old 08-31-2009, 08:15 AM   #10
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http://www.plumbingsupply.com/waterhammerarresters.html

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Old 08-31-2009, 12:50 PM   #11
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Does waterhammer only happen when the water is turned off? Because the noise I'm typically hearing, is when the water starts flowing, and this morning it did it at the beginning of the flush and twice during the flush.

Also, it is only the one toilet that causes this.
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Old 08-31-2009, 02:14 PM   #12
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


Lift the cover of the toilet tank and feel the incoming water after a flush? Does the banging match with differences in water pressure?

A loose part or loose washer in the toilet tank fill valve can cause water hammer with any kind of pipe.
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Old 08-31-2009, 03:53 PM   #13
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Multiple problems in 3 year old house I just purchased


I'll try that when I get home, as the toilet will have been sitting all day without any use, which is when it is at its worst.

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