How To – Installing Shutoff Valves

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Shut Off Valve ImageA basic, but critical component of any water line is a shut off valve.  These are critical because they allow you to stop the flow of water in your plumbing system/water lines.  Some do it yourselfers are very capable of installing shut off valves but if you’ve never done so before make sure to follow the below instructions.  Or give us a ring and we can assist you or come take care of the project for you – then you wont have to deal with it!

Any plumber knows that if you install a water line its most important installation is including shut-off valve.  They should be added on hot and/or cold water lines and plumbing fixtures. Strategically placed shut-offs are nice features to have when working on plumbing fixtures, a washer or hot water heater. Anytime a fixture needs repair (or installation in new purchases) its individual shut-off allows the rest of the house to remain working and water flowing freely.

In-line lever shut-offs are a popular type of primary shut-off fittings. They’re usually made of brass with copper fittings for soldering. Install an in-line shut-off – by marking the center of its location on the existing water line. Make sure the fitting is installed copper to copper.

To instal shut off the water supply and cut the line. Sometimes, the pipe will spread enough to accommodate the shut-off. If not, cut back the pipe so the valve sets in-line. Clean both ends of the fitting and both pieces of pipe. Open the valve before heating it to protect the rubber seal from being damaged. Flux all four ends and fit the shut-off onto the pipe. Position the valve straight and heat and solder each joint. Wipe away any excess solder with a rag.

For appliances like toilets and sinks the process will be similar but look different.  Shut-offs to toilets and sinks are generally chrome-plated, oval handled compression fittings. Again turn off the main water supply and cut off the end cap of the copper water line, leaving enough pipe exposed so the shut-off will fit properly.

Fit any decorative cover over the line, followed by the compression nut and compression ring . Test fit the valve over the line and position the ring to meet the threads. Screw on the compression nut by hand. Then tighten it down firmly with an adjustable wrench while holding the valve in place with another wrench.  After you have the valve tightened you can turn on the main water supply and test the unit/installation to make sure there is no leaking.

Remember that shutoff valves are a critical component of any plumbing system.  They do need to be installed with care as any mistake in the installation process can cause leaks and result in damage to your home and appliances.  If you have questions call us today!  We recommend DIY installation for experienced people.

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