If you haven’t maintained your central heating system for a while and are beginning to use it again during the winter months, you may likely find some problems occurring, one of them being radiators and pipes making rather strange hissing, whistling, or tapping noises. The most common reason for this is single direction thermostatic radiator valves being installed with the water flowing in the wrong direction. The easiest way to determine whether the valve has been installed in the right way is to observe the arrow on it – as it should point in the direction of the water flow. However if the valve has been installed correctly and your central heating system is still making noise there really is no all-out solution to fixing the trouble, but rather a series of steps and methods you can take to locate and remedy the problem.
If you are hearing a constant gushing sound within the radiator it is likely you have a build up of debris inside it. An excellent way of determining if this is case is by turning the radiator on and then running your hand over it to determine whether there are any cold spots. If there are you definitely have some kind of clogging problem. The best way to fix this is have a heating engineer or plumber perform what is known as a ‘power flush’. This simply involves running a chemical solution through the whole central heating system that dissolves and breaks down any debris and sludge that may have built up, flushing it straight out of the piping.
Rattling sounds coming directly from the radiator are possibly the most common complaint regarding radiator noises. This sound is a result of steam meeting condensed water within the radiator. In order to fix this, you can insert a wooden strip under the side of the radiator to allow the condensed water to gradually travel back into the boiler unit.
Loud Banging Sounds
Loud banging sounds often occur when individuals attempt to control their heating by partially opening or closing radiator steam valves. This is a bad idea as not only will it result in unnecessary and excessive noise it also has the potential to cause radiator leaks which can seriously damage your ceiling and floor. This one has a rather simple fix and that is to ensure the radiator valve is fully opened when on and fully closed when turned off.
If All Fails
If none of these methods work for you, it is advisable to call in a professional Engineering Consultants who will be able to assess the situation properly. You could also consider utilising a radiator case that will help reduce the noise coming from the radiator itself. In any case, calling in a professional is probably your best bet as hot water running through the radiator can potentially burn you if you try anything too complex. Not only this, but if your radiators are altogether quite old and outdated they may need replacing altogether.