Gate Valve or Ball Valve

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Hiya folks, I've got a water supply line that has a leaky valve on it. I intend to replace it this weekend. This is for a cabin so the valve gets used a fair amount as we drain the lines when not there, re-charge when there, etc... Anyway, currently I've got gate valves on it but was wondering if I should consider ball valves instead? Is there an advantage of one over the other? Cheers, cc
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Cubby wrote:

Gate valves are better for 'fine tuning' th flow of water. If that's not an issue then the ball valve is a better valve.
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I use ball valves whenever I can, But what do I no I'm just a Plumber/Pipefitter
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For situations where a valve will always be either all the way open or all the way closed, a ball valve is superior. In a gate valve, the water is always in contact with the gate and closing mechanism, and will eventually corrode it. It's also nice that you can see at a glance if a ball valve is open or closed.
Gate valves are better when fine control and adjustment are needed.
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud wrote:

Not true. Gate valves are meant to be fully open or closed just like a ball joint. When a gate valve is open, the disc should be completely out of the flow path. Gate valves are not meant for flow control. To control flow, a globe valve is used. And if that isn't fine enough, a needle valve is used.
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Ball joint?
Bwhahahahahaha!
rusty redcloud ps. They even use gate valves to control flow on Hoover Dam, as well as valves that control water flow in boilers, and even your own bathtub, nitwit.
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Red Cloud wrote:

When I worked in the nuclear power plants a gate valve was NEVER used in a circumstance where flow control was desired. And those plants have 1000s of valves in them and I knew them all. (Part of the qualification process was to be able to draw every piping system from memory, including the valves.)
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A nuclear power plant is a very special circumstance. They do a lot of things in a nuclear plant that you would never do anywhere else. You are posting advice in A.H.R., where gate valves are commonly and correctly used as throttles.
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud wrote:

Face it. You don't know what you are talking about. Valves are valves, no matter where you use them. Go to any website adverting gate valves and they will say they are specifically for on/off purples. That's why they are called "gate" valves. They are either open or closed.
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The word gate in no way implies or states, "either opened or closed"
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud wrote:

Yes it does. You obviously know nothing about valves. I mean, the crap you are saying makes you look like a Best Buy salesman. Why don't you quit while you are ahead? Nothing you have said about valves is even close to right. As someone who has opened, closed, lapped, packed, and replaced more valves than you will ever see, I think I know what I am talking about. Maybe you have replaced your faucet valve and the guy at Home Depot said that gate valves are good for throttling but that doesn't make you know what you are talking about. The other poster is exactly right, using a gate valve as a throttle valve will harm the disc after awhile. Also, if you know anything about fluid flow, you will realize that the design of a gate valve makes it a terrible flow regulator because until the valve is over 1/2 closed, at least, it doesn't change flow hardly at all. With a gate valve, fluid flow is really only effected when the valve is almost closed. On the other hand, a globe valve does a good job of controlling flow through the entire range of the open-to-closed position.
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Not according to O.E.D.
One of the definitions, in fact, is, "a device regulating the passage of water"
Go argue with them, dimwit.
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud wrote:

Yes, it regulates the flow. Either flowing or not flowing.
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wrote:

You must have been the inspiration for Homer Simpson, Luser Example.
reg-u-late 3: to fix or adjust the time, amount, degree, or rate of (~the pressure of a tire)
Tell us again how the use of valves in a nuke plant corresponds to the use of valves in a residence. In my house, there is no written plan of inspection, maintenance and scheduled replacement of any valves. In a nuke plant there are written plans for regular inspection, maintenance and scheduled replacement.
A shut off valve for a residence is installed and expected to be in place for 50 or more years. It may never be operated during that entire lifespan, or it might be closed after being open for 10 years. A gate valve left in one position that long will likely never move again. That's why ball valves are used for residential shut off valves. The valves in a nuke plant lead a very different life. They get operated more frequently than once every 10 years, and they are checked regularly. They are replaced at specified intervals.
Gate valves are used for a number of reasons that would not apply in a residential installation. The size of the pipes is grossly different. A ball valve on a 12 or 24 inch pipe would require a VERY long handle, which would be a problem in confined spaces. A gate valve makes use of the mechanical advantage of a screw (continuos inclined plane) which allows it to be more compact, and able to be operated in tight spaces. It is also much easier to manufacture motorized gate valves for remote operation. If they could use ball valves in nuke plants, they would, because the ball valves would last longer and be more reliable.
rusty redcloud
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Rusty,
I am a 4th generation plumber / pipefitter.
I have done plumbing and pipefitting work, including process piping and residential plumbing, hot water and steam heating work since 1975.
I am licensed in South Carolina. I was previously lcensed in Pennsylvania.
A gate valve should not be used for throttling service in residential use.
A gate valve should not be used for throttling service in commercial use.
A gate valve should not be used for throttling service in industrial use.
I have not worked in power plants, but gate valves should not be used for throttling service there either. It is the wrong application for that valve. Actually, they make motorized ball valves with worm gear drives. You won't find them a Lowes, but they could use them in power plants if the wished.
You are mis-informed. I have seen you give good advice here before, but this time you are mistaken. It happens to all of us sometimes. Getting belligerant does no one any good, including yourself. Even experienced people can still learn new things. Please take this oppurtunity to learn something new.
Stretch
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Thanks Stretch,
Here is the original question and my original answer: -------------------------------------------------------------------

For situations where a valve will always be either all the way open or all the way closed, a ball valve is superior. In a gate valve, the water is always in contact with the gate and closing mechanism, and will eventually corrode it. It's also nice that you can see at a glance if a ball valve is open or closed.
Gate valves are better when fine control and adjustment are needed.
rusty redcloud
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Regardless of whether a gate valve is intended for use as open/shut, it is absloutely superior to a ball valve for finer adjustments. A ball valve is still the better choice than a gate valve for a shut off valve in a residential application, which is why I recommended it.
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud wrote:

Yep, but it doesn't say it has to be infinitely adjustable and I still argue that gate valves are for regulating either 0 flow or no flow.

Fluid in a nuke plant is H20. Fluid in the house is H20. The valves look and operate pretty much the same. Especially those on the 2ndary side. The primary ones are still the same, just leak proof. There is no scheduled replacement of valves... unless they wear out.

Nuke plant valves are expected to be in place the life of the nuke plant. They cost too much otherwise. Some are never operated except in emergencies. I have a gate valve on my water supply at home. Not a ball valve.

Not necessarily.

Ball valves are used in nuke plants but usually in the air or hydraulic systems. They aren't as maintainable or leakproof as gate valves.
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One more time: Mr. Redcloud, you are badly misinformed. Gate valves are NOT used as throttling devices. Their design is such that prolonged semi-open operation will wear the channel that the valve gate rides in, rendering it useless to stopping the flow.
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General Foods used rising stem gate valves in the San Leandro, CALIF instant coffee processing facility. They were used to control flow of VERY HOT water at pressures approaching 400psi. I don't have any idea if they were special or not.
wrote:

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Actually, a globe valve should be used for throttling service.
A gate valve should be used like a ball valve, either wide open or fully closed. If you use a gate valve for fine adhustment, after a while it may not close tightly.
For on-off service, a ball valve is usually superior to a gate valve as they last longer and there is less turbulence when it is full open because of the smooth bore inside the valve. I prefer the Apollo valve, but there are other very good ball valves as well. Use a Full Port ball valve for lowest pressure drop.
Stretch
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