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Baseboard Heating Really Loud

Oliver_97 Member Posts: 4
edited February 2019 in THE MAIN WALL
We recently moved into a new appartment, and the baseboard radiators have been making really loud noises, everything from slight ticking to loud knocking and popping, and even really loud shifts in the baseboard covers. I understand it’s probably something to do with expanding and contracting because it’s worse when the heat turns off but I’m not sure how to fix it.

The landlord hasn’t been very helpful, they just say it’s normal for it to make noise.


  • Intplm.
    Intplm. Member Posts: 1,618
    No. It is not "normal", the noises you are describing.
    Does it sound like some one is shaking a piggy bank full of coins in the pipes?
    Sounds like the system has air in it. The pictures show that you have hot water baseboard heat with zone valves at the fin tube elements.
    A few more pictures. Of the boiler could help. My first thought from here is the system needs to be purged to get rid of the air.
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,914
    How hot does the pipe seem to get?
    If you get near the boiler see what the pressure and temp gauge read, pictures would be good.
    Do you have a thermostat in your apartment?
    Are those wires connected to anything?
  • Oliver_97
    Oliver_97 Member Posts: 4
    It doesn’t really sounds like the pipes are full of coins, more a knocking/popping sound. It might be the metal fins clicking against the baseboard cover but the popping noises are likely air in the pipes.

    Unfortunately I can’t see the boiler because it’s a large appartment building.

    The pipe doesn’t seem to get too hot, I think I can put my hand on the fins when it’s on.

    I only have one thermostat in the appartment.

    And the wires came loose in that picture but when it’s working they are connected that that square thing which is the heater?
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,914
    That is a zone valve with the wires on it, typically your thermostat would open and close it as needed.
    Turning the tstat up and down you might hear it operating.
    Some are purposely designed to have a time delay, so wait possibly 2 minutes.
  • Oliver_97
    Oliver_97 Member Posts: 4
    Ok then yes that’s working fine, other than the wires being loose. They also rattle against something an make noise.
  • Intplm.
    Intplm. Member Posts: 1,618
    You can also try this just to get some idea of what's happening with the heat.

    -Turn the thermostat all the way up.
    -Allow the zone to come up to temp. Maybe give it about five min.
    -Hold your hand on the bare pipe at the beginning of the heat loop but not on the fins.
    -Then hold your hand on the bare pipe at the end of the heating loop.
    If you can't hold your hand on the bare pipe at the end of the heating loop because it's getting to hot, you should have "heat".
    This is just to get a feel for how things are working from the rooms you are in.

    The rest might just be noise from poorly mounted radiators as mentioned above.

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,175
    Try @Keith M 's ideas -- your description sounds more like expansion noises (and contraction noises!) than anything else. The plastic slides -- bits cur from a plastic milk (or water!) jug will work -- and may do the trick.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • bink
    bink Member Posts: 97
    I had what i call knocking in the pipes in one bedroom which was air in the system. I found that that loop was not using the air eliminator. Those noises will drive you crazy hope you can get this resolved. Could be expansion of the pipe hitting something when it expands.
  • Oliver_97
    Oliver_97 Member Posts: 4
    Is there a knob I should look for to try and release some air? Or would that be somewhere else in the building?

    I was also wondering if it’s safe to just remove the baseboard radiator covers? We don’t really use that side of the room anyways.
  • Taking off the covers (at least temporarily), would establish whether the fins are rubbing against the covers, or other support brackets.
    It makes me wonder if in light of their tolerance of this problem, which some of your neighbors must also have; whether their maintenance of the rest of the system is lacking as well.
    Is this rental a great deal?—NBC
  • DZoro
    DZoro Member Posts: 1,048
    Yes there is a chance you may find vent tees at the end of some of the baseboards.
  • SuperTech
    SuperTech Member Posts: 2,032
    Thats really strange to see the zone valve right at the baseboard, I wonder if that is a contributing factor to the excessive noise, it's too bad we can't see the boiler.