Plumbing and Heating Sounds You Should Never Ignore

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Every home has its share of noises. Some of these are expected, since appliances like your heating, your dishwasher, or your dryer all have characteristic sounds when they run, and your home has a symphony of other noises, from creaky floorboards to whiny hinges, that crop up from time to time. However, when your plumbing or your HVAC system is adding new sounds to the repertoire, you should pay attention; these sounds are often the first sign of a problem, and a signal that you should probably call Contact Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning.

Plumbing Noises You Shouldn’t Ignore

Time for plumbing repair? Listen for these noises:

Running Water

Yes, we know. Running water is rather the point of plumbing. But if you’re hearing running water when the taps are shut, that’s often the sign of a leak or a damaged pipe. Besides wasting water, these leaks can eventually cause serious damage to other parts of your home.


When your drains gurgle, it’s usually because of a clog. Most clogs and blockages are easy to fix, but in extreme cases you’ll want the help of a plumber.


Whistling noises are often caused by a restriction in water flow. This is often the result of mineral buildup left by hard water, but it may also be caused by a faulty pressure-reducing valve.

Ticking and Tapping

Sometimes a tapping noise is the result of expansion when pipes heat and cool. Other times, however, it’s a sound that lets you know that there’s a loose fitting, a leak, or an issue with the water meter.


If you’ve got a banging noise that sounds like someone hammering on your pipes, a hammer just might be the culprit. Not the kind you’d use for nails, but a water hammer, which is a sign of a faulty hammer arrestor or pressure-reducing valve.

HVAC Noises You Shouldn’t Ignore

These sounds may alert you that it’s time for a heating and air conditioning repair or tune up:

Knocking and Banging

If you have a hot water baseboard system, you should expect to hear some noise as the baseboards heat up; they’re made of metal, which is prone to expansion and contraction, which can be noisy. But these systems can also develop water hammers just like your water pipes, and that can lead to similar damage.

Squeals and Rattles

A grinding or squealing noise often means a belt or bearing that’s on its last legs. If you’re hearing a rattle, on the other hand, that means that a part has broken or come loose. Depending on the age of your system, you can call for HVAC repair or get an HVAC replacement if the system is old or terribly worn out.


A gas-fired water heater will often make a noise similar to a gas stove when it first fires up. But if you hear a muffled boom, you’ve got a problem, since that usually means a gas buildup. The explosive ignition can cause system damage.

Repeated Clicking

Modern gas furnaces and water heaters use electronic ignition for their pilot lights, much the same as a gas stove would. If you’re hearing that ignition sound repeatedly, call us to diagnose and fix the problem.

Plumbing and HVAC Professionals in Sacramento

Of course, there are other noises that can indicate plumbing and HVAC problems, and noise isn’t always the first, or even only, sign of trouble. Paying close attention to unusual sights and smells is just as important, and if something doesn’t seem quite right, it’s a good idea to call a plumbing and heating specialist for your peace of mind. Ace Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning offers 24/7 emergency service throughout Central California, so keep our number handy!