A loud shower is a frustrating problem, to say the least. The good news is that it’s completely fixable. Age, piping, and a clogged showerhead will all give you a shower you aren’t necessarily prepared for or looking forward to. Believe it or not, the strange noise your shower makes is very common and easily diagnosed.
We all imagine a shower at the end of the day to be arguably the most comforting way to ease into a nighttime routine. The steam, warmth, and soothing sound of the water running provides a lovely wind down. Until you hop into your shower with high expectations, and it sounds like a motor is trying to fire up. Not only does it drown out your singing voice (which may or may not be a good thing), but it makes your shower less than inviting. Not sure how to fix it? Keep reading; we’ll have your shower opera back to normal in no time.
Why Does My Shower Make A Weird Noise?
There are quite a few different reasons your shower will make strange noises. This ranges from issues with the water pressure to faulty or clogged shower heads. Your shower needs to be in pretty great condition to run seamlessly, and the consistent noise is a telltale sign something is wrong.
Possible Causes (And Solutions) For A Loud Shower
Now, as we mentioned earlier, there are about a million different reasons your shower head is not working correctly. We’re kidding; there aren’t quite that many. Let’s dive in.
Clogged Shower Head
Let’s start with the simple problem. Your shower head may be clogged. Now we know what you’re thinking “why on earth would my shower head be clogged”? Great question; we’re glad you asked. If you live in an area known for hard water, there is often build-up on the end of the shower head. Water is considered hard when it includes dissolved solids such as calcium or magnesium.
Over time the minerals that hard water has will build up, clogging the shower head. When the water is forced through the shower head, it is unable to come out at normal pressure, causing the loud vibrating sound you hear.
There are a few different solutions. One, grab a new shower head and attach it to the shower. Suppose that particular shower head is a family heirloom or something you’re not wanting to get rid of; no worries. Create a solution of equal parts water and vinegar, and soak your shower head overnight. Come morning, it’ll be business as usual.
Believe it or not, there is such a thing as too much water pressure when it comes to showering. If more water flows through the pipes than they can handle, they will begin to rattle and shake, causing a vibrating noise.
Now, if excess water pressure is the culprit, to fix the issue, begin by shutting off the main water line (unless you’re looking for a shower while fixing the shower). Now turn down the water pressure by locating the regulator (it can be found by following the pipes that lead to the water heater). From there, find the nut and bolt, and loosen the nut using a wrench. Then, use a screwdriver to adjust the pressure by turning the screw slowly.
Now that it’s adjusted check the water pressure. If you turn the water on, and it comes out in slow trickles, you’ve turned the pressure down too low. Go back to the nut and bolt combo and slowly turn the pressure screw in the other direction.
Leaky & Loose Pipes
Another problem that can occur is leaky pipes. This is usually a result of age; as the pipes wear down, they begin to leak. Again, over time, pipes can also become loose, and unsecured pipes tend to make quite a bit of noise.
To address the problem, the first step is to check the plumbing. This can sometimes require getting creative and finding a way to access pipes located behind or in the wall. If your inner bob, the builder, isn’t surfacing, no worries; a plumber can also access the pipes.
Once you’ve located the pipes, congratulations, you’re halfway there (for some reason, the next sentence we want to write is livin’ on a prayer. Thanks, Bon Jovi). If the pipes are loose, secure them with a bracket.
If the pipes are leaking, clean the area around the leak and apply self-sealing tape or sealant. And voila, no more leaky pipes.
Water Hammer Arrestor
One significant factor when it comes to showers making excessive noise boils down to the water hammer. And no, not the hammer you use to pound nails into the wall. Let’s break it down.
A water hammer is known as hydraulic shock. In other words, when the water flows through the pipes is immediately ceased (like when you turn off the shower), the water rebounds off the valve that stops the water flow. This, in turn, creates sort of a vacuum within the pipe, and the water is pulled back to the valve, making loud noises. This noise continues until the energy is used, like a spring.
To combat this is where water hammer arrestors are put into play. A water hammer arrestor consists of an air chamber with a piston enclosed in a sealed chamber. When the valve is quickly turned off, the energy expands into the arrestor, muffling to completely silencing the aggressive noises.
All water hammer arrestors are made a bit differently. To find one that silences the loud noise in your shower, in particular, look for an arrestor that is designed for your shower, and attach it to both the cold and hot water pipes.