How to Fix an Air in Line Problem with Your Plumbing

  • 0.5-1
  • Beginner
  • 7-10
What You'll Need
Replacement screws
What You'll Need
Replacement screws

Repairing an air in line problem is one of the most commonly occurring plumbing requirements. Air in the line is hinted when the water from a faucet spurts out in small, violent rushes instead of having a steady, smooth stream. The disrupted flow of water is caused by air in the line, i.e. air that is trapped inside the plumbing lines.

Water flow impaired by air in the line is often described as having a ‘hissing’ or ‘hammering’ sound. Air in the line is damaging beyond the aspect of disturbed water flow. For instance, the distressed water supply can induce excessive pressure on the plumbing installations, causing leaks among faucets and other water-supply fittings. An air in the line problem can be easily resolved without using any tool or professional assistance. This method is often referred to as ‘bleeding’ out the air trapped inside the plumbing.

Step 1—Getting Started: Locating Faucets

Start by assessing every point of water supply in your home. This method needs you to access all the water supply sites. This includes connections to the dishwasher, spigots, washing machines and even garden hose connections.

Step 2—Systematically Turning-on Faucets

Turn-on the water on every faucet you can locate. However, you have to start at the highest point. This means that you have to start with the faucet you deem is located vertically higher than other faucets in the house. Proceed in decreasing order, i.e. turn-on the lowest-lying faucet at the end. If you cannot decode the highest-lying faucet, simply start with showers that have vertically raised water supply or bathrooms located upstairs.

Remember to turn on the hot and cold water supply and turn the faucet handles to the maximum. When you approach the toilets, remove the covering of the tank and pull at the plunger located inside. You might need a screwdriver to do this. This ensures a full-strength outlet of water. When you turn-on the water supply in the washing machine or dishwashers, change the water setting to higher temperatures. This ensures that both hot and cold water supplies are running simultaneously.

Step 3—Identifying Air In Line Sounds

Once the water is gushing out from the faucets, pay attention to the sound made by the splashing water. You have to concentrate hard for identifying the faucets that are producing the maximum degree of hissing sound that is indicative of air in the line. Keep running the water until you are sure that all such sounds have ceased, i.e. the air has been ‘bled’ out of the plumbing.

Step 4—Shutting Off Faucets

For shutting the water supply, you need to start in the reverse order of turning-on the faucets. Start by turning-off the faucet you had opened last, i.e. the lowest-lying faucet. This ensures that air cannot re-enter the plumbing.

Step 5—Securing Plumbing Straps

Check the straps that hold together the pipes. Many times, these straps get loosened and weaken the entire framing of the plumbing. The weakened pipes are prone to banging against each other when there is considerable air in the line, as the excessive water-pressure presses against the water pipes. Apart from raising the noise emanating from the water pipes, the banging action can permanently damage the framing and the plumbing connections. Using a screwdriver, tighten the screws. If any screws are missing, replace them.