It is crucial that you choose the right valve for your home plumbing. This is something that every homeowner should know. Valves are crucial mechanisms as they work in controlling the flow of water in your plumbing system. Given this, it’s important that you are aware of your options when it comes to water valves.
The water supply system in the home is partly made up of several valves. Depending on how they were designed, these valves can control, shutoff, or adjust water flow from a water utility or well to your plumbing.
Different materials can be used when it comes to producing valves, including bronze, PVC plastic, and brass. These are important factors that you should seriously consider when choosing the valve that will meet your needs.
What Are the Different Types Of Valves?
Each valve is used differently; there’s a valve for your water heater, a valve for outdoor faucets, another for the showers and still another for the sinks. Here are the valves that are commonly installed when it comes to residential plumbing systems:
1. Ball Valve
This type of valve is often used in plumbing for branch lines and main water shutoffs. The handles are normally operated through a lever and are connected to a ball through a hole in the middle part. Depending on your needs, a ball valve can be opened for a full water flow, or it can be closed to stop water movement completely.
When determining if a ball valve is on or off, simply take a look at the handle. The valve is usually open if its handle is parallel to the water pipes. On the other hand, a handle perpendicular to the pipes means that the valve is closed, which is why water is not flowing.
2. Butterfly Valve
This type of plumbing valve is often mistaken for the ball model. Butterfly valves, however, have a different exterior design.They usually have metal discs which rotate to regulate water flow. The water circles around this disc and not only controls the flow but also the pressure, a function that continues even when the valve is closed.
The main problem with the butterfly valve is its gasket which has to be regularly maintained. This is one of the reasons plumbers in Denver hardly recommend this valve type for home plumbing.
3. Gate Valve
Gate valves can shut off water flow or prevent it from flowing completely. However, they can be damaged or worn out easily if they are used in a different way other than what they are originally intended.
The typical gate valve is made of a metal gate that can be raised or lowered by a circular handle. It is usually found in the main water pipes or those that lead to your broiler. The metal parts are susceptible to corrosion and can get stuck at times.
4. Pressure-reducing Valve
This valve regulates water pressure in your plumbing system. It usually comes with a spring and a diaphragm that you can adjust easily depending on your preference.
Unlike other valves, the pressure-reducing model is not designed to shut off or open the water supply. Its main function is to reduce water pressure by managing the flow rate. Houses that have strong water pressure often install this type of valve in their supply lines.
5. Globe Valve
The bulge normally found on a globe valve is not present in other valve types. This is actually a twist knob located in the handle and works in regulating water flow. Twisting the knob will adjust the stopper at the stem of the valve.The stem can be raised to adjust water volume depending on your present requirements.
The globe valve is often found in properties where water flow needs to be adjusted frequently. Its unique design makes this valve ideal for outdoor or utility faucets.
6. Fixture Shutoff Valve
Also known as stop valves these normally have small knobs or handles that control water flow to individual fixtures like faucets and toilets.There are two types of fixture shutoff valves, namely, the 90-degree angle version and the straight model.
Fixture shutoff valves are plumbing mechanisms designed to repair fixtures without shutting off the entire water supply system. They have different internal designs depending on the model. Some use a simple compression washer to control a valve seat that is operated by the handle. A diaphragm-like design, meanwhile, is used to stop water flow.
When you want to control how water flows into your home, you’ll have to install a water valve in the supply line. A water valve, however, comes in many different types and you have to know the main function of each one so you can choose the one that will suit the current needs of your home.
Valve installation is not as easy as it seems, so professional plumbers should be considered if you want it to be done the right way.