I need to replace the valve that serves as the main shutoff for all
water entering my house. The handle broke off of the ancient one. Since
they are not too expensive, I'd like to put in the best possible
I was considering a ball valve with a sturdy handle. I like having a big
handle that only needs to turn 90 degrees rather than the multi-turn
gate valve that it is replacing.
Is there a reason not to use that type or is another type preferred?
I like ball valves because they do not restrict flow. I think gate valves
have this feature as well but will require more turns. I no of no reason not
to use a ball valve for your application and have done so myself. I am no
plumber though so take my free advice for what its worth.
Good catch - I assumed copper there are dialectric unions available to
transition galv to copper but are there galvanized ball valves? I wouldn't
think it would be worth using tow of these unions just to put in a
copper/brass ball valve.
<< a dialectric is needed >>
Watch out here as you may interrupt some critical electrical grounding
functions. With a dielectric union it may be appropriate to install a water
meter type bypass cable.
Ball valves for everything. You will never be sorry. Like you said they are
not all that expensive. If you can get the water drained from the area it is
a pretty easy install. Use a plastic tube to pull the water out of the
supply side. Get the water down a foot, makes sweating much easier.
SQ - Can you describe this trick more? Have you ever used the "Bread" trick?
I am told that white bread works best for this although I have never needed
to use it. I have used a shop vac to ensure all the residual water is clear
from a pipe before soldering. If you don't do something sweating pipes is
near impossible if there is some water left.
Stick a plastic tube down the pipe and suck on it like a straw or use
it like a dip tube. Stick it in the water, cover the other end with
your finger and pull it out.
MAPP gas will help your soldering, and bread works well too. White
bread seals better and doesn't leave residual grains to clog
Later in the thread you stated that the service is galv iron.
Based on loads of experience, I have reason to believe that
you won't get the old valve out without destroying the galv pipe.
Lots of maybees in there, but I offer this as a caution so you
don't wind up for days with no water...
Yes, this has occurred to me. As much as it pains me to crack open my
wallet for such a "simple" job, I've been considering calling a pro.
The consequences of a screw up could be extremely inconvenient.
Actually, a pro warned me that the galvanized pipe could break they could
not guarantee it would not and quoted a price for running new pipe if it
did break. I chose to buy a key to shut off the water at the city main $5
solution instead of a potential $1000 solution if the pipe broke
My vote is to use a ball valve, but I am no plumber. This is just based on
what I was told at a plumbing supply house recently. They said, "no one
uses gate valves anymore".
I'd get one with a waste port (or whatever it's called) so you can drain the
whole system if you ever need to.
I am curious -- what is a "dielectric"?
Off topic but...,
that reminds me of a Yogi-ism (a Yogi Berra quote).
When someone suggested a place to go eat, he said, "Nobody goes there
anymore; it's too crowded."
Here's a link that I just found to some other Yogi Berra quotes:
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