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The short version of this question is how can I reduce or eliminate the noise my plumbing makes when I run hot water in the two bathrooms on the 2nd floor?

Background: 20 year old two story house with basement. Water supply and heater (along with a inline whole house filter) are in the basement. Original plumbing is copper, some new add-ons in the basement (a 1/2 bath, wet bar, and laundry) are plumbed with blue and red plastic tubes, I think this is called PEX.

When I turn on any sink or bath to hot - I hear the pipes expanding... quietly at first (tick tick tick, tock!) then louder (tang, tang, tang, BANG) until the water is running at supply temp.

On a side note - after our offer to purchase was accepted and paperwork was put through the bank, the sellers (nice honest folks, downsizing their empty nest) had to have a plumber come in and fix a leak in the wet wall that goes to the second floor. Assumptions are - if it continues to bang like this, I'll have another leak... some day.

None of the plumbing is accessible in the wet wall or second floor without destroying drywall walls and ceilings in the first floor... what options do I have?

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1 Answer

When installing PEX, there are clamps that are supposed to be used to attach it to framing. There are also gaskets for when the PEX passes through openings and such. These are nothing special other than made out of a smooth plastic to allow the expanding/contracting PEX to more smoothly slide.

Sounds like these weren't used, or a few are too tight, or maybe the PEX is just rubbing a little bit next to a structural element.

Is it something to worry about? Probably not.

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