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Top Tips to Clear An Airlock in Pipes


Imagine a situation. You are getting ready for your office in the morning. You are in an extreme rush. On one hand, you have to get your children ready for school. On the other hand, you have to prepare yourself for your work. In the meantime, you go for a shower and find not a single drop of water trickling from the shower head. What should you do now? This is indeed an awkward situation that most people never want to face. However, you have to face such untoward situations when you are not aware of the waterlines. Top tips to clear an airlock in pipes in your house.

Often, you must have come across situations where you don’t get the water even on switching on the tap. There could be various reasons for this. But the one potential cause of the lack of water can be the airlocks that occur frequently in the pipelines. As you can understand from its name, the water in the pipe gets stuck due to the unwanted intrusion of some air in between. During such times, all you can do is rely on an emergency plumber.

In any case, if you don’t get in touch with a plumber so soon, we are here to help you. In this blog, we will share with you some important tips to clear airlock in pipes. All these tips are tried and tested. So, without further delay, let’s get started with the details of the blog.

What is an airlock?

Before you head to the tips to clear airlocks in pipes, it is necessary to have a detailed understanding of them. When there is a certain amount of air locked inside the pipeline that prevents the water from flowing seamlessly, it is known as an airlock. It is this trapped air that leads to the development of a blockage that prevents the water to flow smoothly. This affects the performance and efficiency of the pipeline and develops problems related to water flow.

There can be several causes leading to an airlock in pipes. However, the possible causes include the following:

  • When you do not install the pipes correctly, some of the air enters the pipelines and gets trapped in between. This leads to an airlock.
  • When the plumbing system starts leaking, the air can enter and get trapped inside the pipeline.
  • A sudden alteration in the pressure of water can develop an airlock.
  • After repair and maintenance work, when the pipeline remains empty for a long time, it leads to an airlock.

Often, people barely understand the intrusion of an airlock inside the pipelines. Indeed, it is not possible for laymen and commoners to figure out an airlock in the pipes. However, if you notice these symptoms, know that it is an airlock:

  • Lack of water from the faucet
  • Fewer water pressures
  • A distinct gurgling sound on opening taps
  • Banging noises from the taps and pipelines
  • The uneven flow of water
  • Sputtering faucet

The moment you notice any of these issues in the plumbing system, do not hesitate to call an emergency plumber.

How to get rid of airlocks?

Every time you will not find a reliable and experienced plumber at your service. Often, it happens that the plumber may take some time to reach out to you. If you want immediate help, you need to do it yourself. Wondering how? Here are two techniques you can rely on.

Method 1

This method is suitable for clearing airlocks in hot water pipelines. To formulate the clearing action, you need duct tape and a 1 mm garden hose pipe. The remaining steps are pointed out below:

  • Attach one end of the hose pipe to any water tap or sink at your home. Make sure to secure the hose pipe end with duct tape so that it does not come out while the work is in progress.
  • Now, turn the tap on. Remember, the sink or tap to which you connect the hose pipe should provide you with hot water.
  • Next, turn on the cold water tap for the next 5 minutes and then close it again.
  • Now, go to another room and turn on the hot water tap and let it run for the time being.
  • You have to repeat this process of turning on the hot water and cold water tap for the next five to eight times alternately. Make sure to carry on with this process as long as you do not get the results.
  • Finally, check out the tap with the airlock and see if water is coming out of it effortlessly like it was. If you still don’t find a single drop of water, you need to call the efficient plumbers in your locality who are experienced and skilled enough to take care of it.

Method 2

In the second method, you do not need any equipment to clear the airlock from the pipelines. Yes, you read that right. Many people have a tendency to insert some acidic cleaning agent inside the pipe in the hope of getting the airlock cleared. This is the least that you can do to treat an airlock. Instead, go through the steps of this method to get rid of an airlock:

  • First, turn off the water supply from the main water supply channel.
  • Right from the top floor of your house to the garage, make sure to open all the taps to let the air out.
  • This will make you run out of water but it’s worth it. Keep the taps open until all the water runs out and finally stops flowing.
  • To let the water run out faster, you can flush the toilets as many times as possible. This will fasten the process.
  • When all the water has run out, you have to reach out to every tap and close them tightly. Make sure that only a little water can pass through the pipes.
  • Now, turn on the mains to get water supply to all the channels in your house.
  • Finally, see if water is coming out seamlessly from the taps.


Other tried and tested methods of resolving airlock in pipes

Some other methods to fix the airlocking problem in pipes are:

Bleeding the radiator system

If it takes place in the boiler then bleeding all of the radiators is the only solution to prevent the problem. Reach out to the basement and switch off the radiators and close the valves after you bleed them. Count the number of twists you use to open the radiators as same number of twists will help you to reinstate them.

Opening all faucets of the home

The easiest method to remove the airlocks from the pipe is to open all the faucets of the home at a time. This will lead to augmented pressure in the pipe that loosens the airlock and finally removes them. Just make sure you open all showerheads and sink faucets. It is highly efficient to remove the airlock from hard to reach spots.

Fixing the airlocks with showerhead

Firstly remove the showerhead from its connecting pipe for removal of airlocks. Then wrap it using 3-4 plastic bags. It will make a membrane which will send pressure back into the pipes. Now place the showerhead back to its position. Open both hot and cold water taps of the shower as the pressure exerted by them will break down the airlock. Lastly put off the plastic bag for reinstating the showerhead. Although it takes some time yet it is highly effective if you perform it in the correct manner.

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Now that you have an idea to fix airlock in pipes, you do not have to suffer from a lack of water. If you still don’t have the time to fix them, you can call an emergency plumber to your aid. His experience and expertise will help you to resolve the plumbing process.

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