Quarter turn shutoff valves

I often find that oldish shutoff valves (toilet, sinks, garden hose) around the house have a tendency to go leaky if they are turned on or off after they are about 20 or 30 years old. Leaky in the sense that water drips out of the step and no amount of adjustment will correct it. Inspection inside shows that the washer inside is no longer pliable at all. Sometimes I will put a new washer inside... but most often I just replace the shutoff valve with a new one.
New ones I've been buying are "quarter turn" shutoff valves, and they are obviously different construction inside (no compression washer). The ones I'm getting are metal outside but the inside is a plastic piece with a hole that goes from being "on" (holes line up) or "off" (holes don't line up) without a washer. Are these generally superior to the washer-type ones?
Tim.
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You're describing a "ball valve" and in general, yes. The downside to ball valves is "service" means "replacement" but it seems that they are more reliable than stop valves and their service life is much longer. I don't like the garden hose ones but the brass bodied ones used inline with your plumbing are great. I've been using them whenever I need to replace an existing valve. Also you can get a pipe- to-garden hose adapter in the loose brass section of the plumbing aisle, I've been using threaded ball valves with one of those adapters to replace spigots as well (e.g. water heater drain) not only are they more reliable but they offer much better flow.
nate
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wrote:

You're describing a "ball valve" and in general, yes. The downside to ball valves is "service" means "replacement" but it seems that they are more reliable than stop valves and their service life is much longer. I don't like the garden hose ones but the brass bodied ones used inline with your plumbing are great. I've been using them whenever I need to replace an existing valve. Also you can get a pipe- to-garden hose adapter in the loose brass section of the plumbing aisle, I've been using threaded ball valves with one of those adapters to replace spigots as well (e.g. water heater drain) not only are they more reliable but they offer much better flow.
******************************************************************
Or, you can get a full flow ball valve with the hose bib built onto it.
like http://www.arrowheadbrass.com/op_champarrow/orderportal/catalog_presentation/by_product/0/302BV/0/0/0/0/0
I got mine at Lowe's
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Bob F wrote:

http://www.arrowheadbrass.com/op_champarrow/orderportal/catalog_presentation/by_product/0/302BV/0/0/0/0/0
Those are cute. Are the handles stainless? (e.g. could they be used to replace a sillcock?) For the price they better be! For the applications that I have used, however, a straight fitting actually works better than an angled sillcock (cistern drains, water heater drains, etc.) so the 3/4" pipe ball valve with the garden hose thread adapter is the perfect solution (and cheaper too...)
nate
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wrote:

Actually, the one I got at Lowe's wasn't much more than a regular ball valve. The handle is stainless, but it is beginning to look like the nut that holds it on is not.
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wrote:

I rigged up a regular plumbing type of ball valve on the end of a garden hose for farm use. I turn it on and off about ten times a day, it's only one year old and already leaks a little. Not to mention the handle kept falling off and under the nut the threads were stripped in short order. I finally used JB Weld to keep the handle in place. They are more reliable than those cheap plastic ones made for hoses, but if used all the time they dont last long. No valve used regularly lasts very long, but at the same time if they are not used they sieze up and if they have washers the washers deteriorate. For full house shutoffs, they are better than washer valves adn allow better flow too. Gate valves are another option, but those things take far too many turns to open and close. Yet, I think a well made gate valve has the longest life span. By the way, I am a retired plumber.
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wrote:

Something I have not heard mentioned in any of many threads on valves is that the lowly globe valve is the only one of the bunch that can be repaired , even without removing it from the line. I like the ball valves but I am not convinced that they are any more reliable, whether used often or sitting immobile for many years developing mineral deposits.
Don Young
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wrote:

You're right, and the ball valves with the nylon plastic ball are easily chewed up by minerals. One piece of sand and the ball is trash, meaning the whole valve is junk. Brass balls are better, but these days everything is plastic, unless you go to a high priced one which you wont find at Home Depot.
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I don't know about superior, but they should be fine for low pressure full on-off applications. Partially open, the ball may wear to the degree it no longer offers complete shut-off, so these are not a good choice for pressure/flow/noise regulation. -----
- gpsman
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how is a stainless steel ball going to wear with mere water going past it?
s
wrote:

I don't know about superior, but they should be fine for low pressure full on-off applications. Partially open, the ball may wear to the degree it no longer offers complete shut-off, so these are not a good choice for pressure/flow/noise regulation. -----
- gpsman
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I have one of these in my main water inlet in my basement (quarter turn shutoff valve). If I close it and open it, it will drip out the stem and no amout of adjustment will stop this. So I just let it drip. So, my answer to your question is NO, they are not superior in this respect. YMMV...
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I would not buy any ball valve with plastic inside it.
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NOT with a plastic innards! The ball will wear almost instantly the first time it gets used after the initial install.
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yes.
s

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On Fri, 2 Jan 2009 13:00:41 -0800 (PST), Tim Shoppa

There are valves that vary greatly in quality. I've got the cheap builders-grade valves, so far, no leaks yet after 17 years. I might buy a $15 valve, but certainly not a $65 valve. You can get the better quality at a plumbing shop.
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