Why Does My Shower Make A Whistling Noise?

Your one-person concert in the shower might sound pretty good – the bathroom acoustics are always better than in the hall. However, once your shower joins in with a high-pitched whistle, this might dampen your tune (no pun intended). While a quiet whistle might not bother you, the high-pitched screeching isn’t so lovely. 

So, what’s causing your shower to serenade you? How do you fix it? We’re here to help, so continue reading to learn more!

Why Does My Shower Sound Like A Whistle?

Quite a few reasons may result in your shower releasing a high-pitched whistle. Some problems are more straightforward than others, with quick and easy fixes. However, some issues can be more involved, potentially even requiring a professional’s assistance. 

Here are a few common reasons why showers make a whistling sound:

Old Showerhead

Nothing lasts forever, including showerheads. So, if your showerhead has been around for a while, it might be time to let it retire. Over time, the inner parts wear out, causing all sorts of issues, including high-pitched noise. 

The buildup of limescale and years upon years of use cause the showerhead to wear out. If you have hard water in your home, the showerhead might tire out faster than it would in a house with soft water. 

Worn-Out Shower Valve

Like the showerhead itself, the shower valve will eventually wear out. The shower valve is located at the handle, where you engage water flow to the showerhead. It controls the flow and mixture of cool and hot water, allowing you to regulate the temperature and turn the water on and off. 

Eventually, the valve will wear out. Usually, this is accompanied by a few problems, including a whistling noise. On top of that, you might notice a leak from the area. 

Clogged Showerhead Pipe

Hard water is hard on nearly every fixture in your home, including your plumbing. Over time, the minerals in your water can build up inside the showerhead pipe, causing the whistling sound as the water squeezes through the smaller hole. 

Clogged Showerhead

A clogged showerhead could also be the problem causing the annoying noise. The tiny holes where the water exits the showerhead might be clogged by limescale, causing the high-pitched sound. Once mineral deposits like limescale block enough of these holes, the water has a more challenging time passing through. 

High Water Pressure

When water is pushed too quickly through the pipes in your home, you might notice a high-pitched sound. Other issues often accompany this issue, including almost painful water pressure and short-lived hot water. You might notice that your hot water runs out rapidly, potentially indicating this same issue. 

Sometimes, this problem is isolated to the showerhead itself, while it plagues your entire home in others. 

How Do You Fix A High-Pitched Noise In The Shower?

To fix the high-pitched noise you hear when you shower, you need to identify the problem. So, you might have to troubleshoot a few potential culprits. Here are a few possible fixes:

Clean The Showerhead

First, check the showerhead. If it’s been around for a while, you might need to replace it entirely. However, check it first before tossing the whole thing out. If there are worn-out parts throughout the showerhead, it’s probably best to replace the entire thing. 

That said, if there are only a few mineral deposits clogging the holes in the showerhead, you can try cleaning those first. Tie a bag of white vinegar to the showerhead and allow it to soak for several hours or overnight. 

Remove the bag and turn on the shower to dislodge the mineral deposits. 

Check The Showerhead Pipe

If everything looks fine in the showerhead, check the showerhead pipe. To check for mineral buildup, remove the showerhead. Look inside the pipe with a flashlight for mineral deposits or buildup. 

If you see buildup, carefully turn the shower arm upwards and pour diluted white distilled vinegar in there. You don’t need to pour a lot, just enough to dissolve the deposits. Let the solution sit for an hour or so, then rotate the arm to its original position. 

Turn the water back on to rinse the pipe and check your handiwork. 

Replace Worn-Out Valves

Removing deposits from the showerhead or shower arm is easy enough, but replacing worn-out valves isn’t as straightforward. To replace worn-out valves, you need to access the plumbing inside the wall. While this is doable, you shouldn’t attempt to replace inner parts unless you’re familiar with plumbing or are comfortable doing so. 

If you’re not comfortable replacing the problematic valves, consider calling a professional to fix the issue. In the event the valves aren’t the issue, your plumber can help you troubleshoot the problem. 

Check The Water Pressure

In some cases, the water pressure might be the culprit. When your home’s water pressure is too high, you might notice a squealing noise from your showerhead. Check the water pressure throughout your home with a water pressure gauge. 

When the water pressure is too high for too long, it can cause issues throughout your home, including small leaks, burst pipes, and appliance damage. So, it’s best to address the problem sooner rather than later. 

If the problem persists throughout your entire home, you’ll need to install a water pressure regulator near the water meter entrance. Generally, it’s best to have a professional plumber handle this process.

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