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cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT

Plumbing: valve requirement for main shutoff?

Planning on adding a pressure regulator and while at it I plan on replacing the main shutoff (not closing properly).
Is there a requirement for it to be a gate valve or is a ball valve acceptable too? (I'd highly prefer a ball valve).

Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
While I would check with the water authority or the actual building codes. I cannot see why they would require a gate valve when ball valves are superior.

Naturally you will always see more gate valves because of cost.


leibold
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-09
Sunnyvale, CA
kudos:10
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
reply to cowboyro
Ball valve should fine.

If you don't already have an expansion tank you may need to add one when you install a pressure regulator (check the instructions for the specific pressure regulator you are installing).
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walta

join:2001-05-22
Saint Louis, MO
kudos:2
reply to cowboyro
Ball valves are great all brass and stainless.

Will almost take a look at the handle mine was all carbon steel now totally missing from the valve in the meter pit.

Walta

Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
said by walta:

Ball valves are great all brass and stainless.

Will almost take a look at the handle mine was all carbon steel now totally missing from the valve in the meter pit.

Walta

Also never ever a doubt of if the valve is off or on. I know that sounds like a minor thing but it sure is nice to know at a simple glance the status of a valve sometimes.
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nunya
LXI 483
Premium,MVM
join:2000-12-23
O Fallon, MO
kudos:12
Reviews:
·Charter
·voip.ms
reply to cowboyro
I hate gate valves. Every house I've ever had with a gate shutoff has leaked. Every one of them. And God forbid you should ever turn it off and on.
On my current house, the valve is too close to the concrete wall for the plumber to replace unless it absolutely has to be done. True story: the pipe, valve, and riser were installed before the foundation was poured. I've never seen anything like it. Couple that with the city shutoff leaves a trickle. He showed me how to tighten it up, but said it could only be done 5-6 times.
--
If someone refers to herself / himself as a "guru", they probably aren't.


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8
reply to cowboyro
Never open a gate valve to the full open position. Always close it a half-turn. This is to allow you to work the valve back and forth and make closing easier.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
said by John Galt:

Never open a gate valve to the full open position. Always close it a half-turn. This is to allow you to work the valve back and forth and make closing easier.

It's a valve from 1975. If I try to operate it is starts leaking. It leaks in all positions except for fully open...

boaterbob
Premium
join:2005-08-01
Moncks Corner, SC
Why the need/desire to install a pressure regulator valve? You live in a) a manufactured home with plumbing that won't take the city pressure, b) a older home with older plumbing, 3) ??

Why would you want to reduce the pressure coming into your home?


bobrk
You kids get offa my lawn
Premium
join:2000-02-02
San Jose, CA
reply to cowboyro
Ball valve. I had a valve with a washer (gate valve) and the packing died right after I used it, spewing water all over my basement. My plumber replaced it with a ball valve and I just go down to the basement and stare at its awesomeness for hours.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
reply to boaterbob
said by boaterbob:

Why the need/desire to install a pressure regulator valve? You live in a) a manufactured home with plumbing that won't take the city pressure, b) a older home with older plumbing, 3) ??

Why would you want to reduce the pressure coming into your home?

Because I typically have 80-90psi... registered 150psi spikes.
Hammers are bad, hammer arrestors reduced some but not all... even had shower head hoses rupturing...

Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
wow and the city does nothing about this? that much pressure swing could turn out dangerous. There are things not rated for 150psi in a home

But I think my assessment is correct about gate valves. primary usage reason is cost. Ball valves are costly, However you do get what you pay for and a stainless and brass ball valve will last a long time and from those pressure swings will likely take the beating better too.

kherr
Premium
join:2000-09-04
Collinsville, IL
reply to cowboyro
Be sure to spend a couple of extra $$ and get a full through ball valve. Gate valves have been outlawed in IL for awhile.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to Kearnstd
said by Kearnstd:

wow and the city does nothing about this? that much pressure swing could turn out dangerous. There are things not rated for 150psi in a home

I believe code requires a pressure regulator if the pressure is 80 or above.

JTY

join:2004-05-29
Ellensburg, WA
reply to cowboyro
You've got pressure like I do. Though mine only spikes when the city does water maintenance. Otherwise it's a constant 85psi. A 1/4 turn ball valve is the way to go.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
reply to cowboyro
2hrs30min later and no additional trip to the store..


Worst part was shutting the water completely at the meter (pit was full of dirt) and flushing the pipes to avoid the drips. That took more than 1hr
45psi now, started the washing machine (after properly flushing the pipes)... and no hammer
I wonder how much a plumber would have charged... Parts were in the $90 range total.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
said by cowboyro:

2hrs30min later and no additional trip to the store..
[att=1]
Worst part was shutting the water completely at the meter (pit was full of dirt) and flushing the pipes to avoid the drips. That took more than 1hr
45psi now, started the washing machine (after properly flushing the pipes)... and no hammer
I wonder how much a plumber would have charged... Parts were in the $90 range total.

Why are you running it so low? 45 psi. Heck I have my well pump set at 35/50 psi. I would go higher but the pump is old and 50 is about all it will do.

A pressure gauge at the regulator would be good to have.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
said by Jack_in_VA:

Why are you running it so low? 45 psi. Heck I have my well pump set at 35/50 psi. I would go higher but the pump is old and 50 is about all it will do.

A pressure gauge at the regulator would be good to have.

45 is enough. I have good flow at all faucets. Plus I want to install a sprinkler system and sprinklers apparently don't like above 50psi. Anyway I can adjust now IF I feel the need to...
I may install a gauge near the boiler in the future... but based on my experience with pool pump gauges (I am yet to find one that lasts more than 1 season) I'd rather not add a point of failure.


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8
reply to cowboyro
When you install the gauge, make sure you install an isolation valve and pressure snubber. Gauges get damaged by very sudden changes in pressure, which is why you see them fail in pool pump applications.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
Why would a gauge see sudden changes in pressure installed after the pressure regulator?


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8
said by robbin:

Why would a gauge see sudden changes in pressure installed after the pressure regulator?

Valves slamming shut, etc.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
Why won't the expansion tank even that out?


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8
It can't respond quick enough.

As usual, it depends on the particular configuration of the plumbing system...

Snubbers are cheap, worth the extra expense.

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
I've never had a problem but I will trust your expertise.

OP -- don't forget that you need to install an expansion tank if you installed a pressure regulator.


leibold
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-09
Sunnyvale, CA
kudos:10
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
reply to robbin
It all depends what kind of water usage happens on the downstream side of the pressure regulator. Any appliances with electric valves can create water hammer (dish washers, washing machines) due to the instant changes from off to full flow and vice versa. The bigger the flow the more pronounced the sudden change in pressure.
Around here I have seen homes where the sprinkler valves for the yard irrigation are connected to the water line after the pressure regulator. It is not unusual to see a 5/8" water meter and pressure regulator followed by 3/4" or 1" sprinkler valves. Even the best pressure regulator will have difficulties maintaining steady pressure under those conditions.
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boaterbob
Premium
join:2005-08-01
Moncks Corner, SC
Plumbing - what a variable. Most city water supplies are around 70psi - not an issue for modern homes. Also important is the flow rate inside the house. I had our county/city water company come out to check my water pressure/flow - they do this for free. The hooked up a hose bibb to their side of my water main - had 70 psi and 15gpm flow. After my builder installed pressure regulator valve they showed I had 68psi but 4gpm flow! They said that was why the person taking a shower yelled when a toilet was flushed somewhere in the house.

Anyway, we have a pretty constant pressure (no great fluctuations) so I cut out the PRV (PEX pipe) and things seem to be better with the flow rate issues (I have not had the water flow tested again by the county).

I called the PRV company and talked about my flow rate issue and they said the problem 'could' be the house builder plumber trying to adjust the PRV w/o having the water turned on - they said you only adjust the PRV with water turned on (don't turn the adjust screw w/o the water on) and maybe that damaged the PRV ??? Beats me! Anyway, I have no PRV and things seem fine.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to John Galt
said by John Galt:

When you install the gauge, make sure you install an isolation valve and pressure snubber. Gauges get damaged by very sudden changes in pressure, which is why you see them fail in pool pump applications.

When I replaced my pump iin 1995 I put a new gauge on it. It is still there and works perfectly. I doubt if you can get any worse service than right on a well pump. No isolation valve and no snubber. It's a stainless steel gauge liquid filled. 0 - 100 psi range.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

1 edit
reply to robbin
said by robbin:

I've never had a problem but I will trust your expertise.

OP -- don't forget that you need to install an expansion tank if you installed a pressure regulator.

Why would you need an expansion tank if you have a regulator.

I've installed and had my workers install hundreds of pressure regulators just like that one and I've yet to ever install an expansion tank except on my fathers old hot water heat boiler.

However if you have a back flow preventer on your supply line then you need a tank but since you don't have one I assume there is no BFP on your supply.

expansion tank typical installation


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to robbin
said by robbin:

Why won't the expansion tank even that out?

It would even it out. That's what it's for.


cowboyro
Premium
join:2000-10-11
Shelton, CT
reply to cowboyro
The valve has a bypass if low side pressure exceeds high side pressure.