That’s Not a Ghost In Your House

plumbing or HVAC sounds

When you hear a bump in the night or some other strange, unexplained sound, it can make your mind wander. Fall is the time to celebrate the supernatural, whether that means joining a virtual ghost hunting tour or looking into your own home for signs and sounds of the paranormal. Nearly 45% of Americans believe in ghosts, so it’s not uncommon to assume there’s a presence behind that knocking and groaning. While we don’t want to burst anyone’s bubble, we’re here to put your mind at ease and let you know it’s not a ghost, it’s likely plumbing or HVAC sounds.

Knocking in The Walls

Knocking on walls are probably from plumbing or HVAC soundsHave you ever woken by a rapping on your chamber door? If so, you and Edgar Allen Poe aren’t alone. Unexplained knocking is one of the most common claims from people who believe there’s something unhuman lurking in their home. Paranormal theorists believe knocking can be a ghost trying to get your attention or it could signal a bored spirit just playing around for some laughs.

Unfortunately for some believers, a ghost knocking might actually be plumbing problems. Plumbers have a term for that knocking in your walls; it’s commonly known as “water hammer.” Oftentimes, water hammer happens when water finds its way into your air chamber. An air chamber is a pipe that regulates pressure and waves in the home’s main supply pipes. Knocking in your walls could point to high water pressure or old creaking pipes.

Faucets Randomly Opening

Dripping sinks aren't ghosts, they're plumbing or HVAC soundsSometimes, when a faucet is turned off, another one opens. For example, you flush the toilet and suddenly, a burst of water comes from the showerhead. While this may seem like a trickster ghost trying to scare the daylights out of you, it’s actually a sign of high water pressure.

Many plumbing appliances shut off quickly and can cause a sudden spike it water pressure. If you’re already dealing with high water pressure, this extra push can force a burst of water from a nearby faucet or appliance. If you’ve experienced this, it’s not ghost activity it’s your plumbing and it’s time to call a professional.


That's not a ghost moaning, it's plumbing or HVAC soundsDid you know, your toilet can make a distinct moaning noise? If you’re hearing a noise that sounds like La Llorona looking for her child, don’t call a ghost expert, call your plumber. Most toilets are outfitted with a ballcock valve which refills the water tank after a flush. When the ballcock valve gets too dirty or breaks, it can cause the toilet to make a very loud moaning noise.

Honorable HVAC Mentions

While most ghost sounds can be attributed to plumbing, there are a few caused by HVAC. If you’re hearing any of these noises, it’s time to make an appointment with an HVAC professional.

  • Scratching – A distinct scratching sound can be a sign of debris caught in your HVAC system or a broken part.
  • Squealing – Your HVAC system will make a loud squealing noise when a belt is worn or misaligned.
  • Hot and Cold Spots – Unexplained cold spots are a sign of paranormal activity. But they could also be a sign of leaky ductwork.
  • Auditory Hallucinations – Perhaps the most concerning thing on this list are auditory hallucinations which can be attributed to carbon monoxide poisoning. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include auditory and visual hallucinations, paranoia, confusion, and depression.

Don’t Call the Ghost Hunters, Call Bell Brothers for Plumbing or HVAC Sounds

Are you hearing any of the spooky plumbing or HVAC sounds or having any strange occurrences? Before you go calling the Ghost Busters, give Bell Brothers a call first! Our experienced and highly trained plumbing team can diagnose that knock or groan and tell you how to have a nice, quiet home again. If you’re in Sacramento, Stockton, Vacaville, or the Bay Area, schedule an appointment. Call the number at the top of the screen or click here to book an appointment online.