Plumbing in the Home/noisy heating system

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Question
Hi there,

I'll preface this by saying I am not knowledgeable about home heating at all and apologize if I don't provide enough information during this first request for help but perhaps you can ask me some questions and we'll be able to get to the bottom of our noisy house problems.

Our house is heated by baseboard convectors (gas/water) and is extremely noisy - a loud banging noise (single bang) at irregular intervals. Happens throughout the house.

Answer
Dear Emily,

   Hot water baseboard is a heating system that is very popular.  It is notorious though for being a noisy system.  Steam systems are noisier, but the sound is very similar.  The problem in baseboard systems is usually caused by air pockets in the system plumbing.  The radiators are fitted with bleed valves so that the air can be removed but this can be time consuming and should be done by someone with experience.  Once someone has been shown how this is done, it can usually be done again by the homeowner whenever necessary.

   One other possible cause of noise in a hot water heating system is expansion.  There is a possibility that the heating of the pipes is causing them to expand making loud popping sounds or causing the pipes to bang into one another or into the structure of the house making a banging noise.

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Thomas Ambler

Expertise

I am experienced at troubleshooting and solving all types of plumbing problems. Issues related to specific manufacturers fixtures and specifications though are beyond my field of expertise. I have dealt with problems in both rural and urban areas, and with water supply and drainage systems. Plumbing issues can be very obscure... such as odors, stains or occasional seepage. I have even had to chase rats from a customer's sewer line.

Experience

I have 25 years experience dealing with plumbing systems (which also includes hot water and steam heating systems). My main expertise is in diagnosing and solving problems. I have worked in construction and installation of new systems but do not regard myself as an expert in that area.

Publications
Asbury Park Press, Seattle Times, Denver Post.

Education/Credentials
I completed high school and one year of college. I served 4 years in the Marine Corps and have education in electronic and electrical troubleshooting and repair. I have attended classes on installing and repair of oil burners, and I have EPA universal certification for air conditioning and refrigeration. I am now enrolled as a full-time student at Everest college to re-train for a new career. Any donations of financial support would be greatly appreciated.

Past/Present Clients
All of Denny's Restaurants in NJ, Several Burger King stores, I have done work at two different homes for Bruce Springsteen. I have also worked for Jim Johnson (of J&J) and his family, Whitney Houston, Steve Forbes and many others.

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