Gate valves tend to be used for main supply valves in houses. Since they don’t depend upon washers to quit the flow of water, they can be useful in spots certainly where an washer might harden, decay or become dislodged over the long period of disuse. That is not to convey gate valves can’t develop problems of their over time when neglected.
The side and bottom guides that enable the gate portion in the valve to shut and disconnect water flow are perfect capture points for small items of debris. These tend to build up once the valve is left, since many supply valves such as forged steel gate valve are, continually open. In most instances, finding the valve thoroughly close is an easy task.
Never remove a valve or faucet that may be under pressure. Then, open the gate valve fully. Remove the the surface of the valve housing by attaching a wrench to the the top housing. Do not loosen the nut for the valve stem. This is the packing nut to hold packing that prevents water from leaking round the handle. Loosen and take off the the top of the valve housing. The valve stem and gate will stay attached to your housing. Inspect the outer edges in the gate for irregularities and scrape off any calcium deposits before reassembling the valve. Use a small screwdriver to scrape any loose debris out in the grooved channel that acts because the valve’s gate guide. Clean this thoroughly; a small amount of buildup prevents the valve from closing completely. Slide the gate into its guide and tighten the the top of the housing using a wrench. Turn the river supply on and test the valve again. The valve needs to be replaced if severe pitting or corrosion are mixed together inside the guide channel or gate.
We’ve previously examined the result of leaks in a very mission critical facility for Facility Executive. As part of good practices highlighting vulnerabilities, we listed both “Piping Issues” and “Environmental Intrusion” as elements to see in order to make best use of leak detection technology to watch a facility. A burst pipe may affect both of these elements of concern. This is especially crucial in critical facilities, but just the same imperative in other buildings at the same time to help avoid incidents much like the examples above. The first step should be to install leak detection and environmental monitoring solutions, however in the event of the burst pipe, the basic familiarity with knowing where that main water shutoff valve is found goes far minimize the injury that can occur.
We certainly we imagine you won’t experience a burst pipe this winter and will continue to proactively monitor your critical spaces for leaks and fluid intrusions. If a pipe ruptures however, please be prepared! While we let you know where the leak is, you should state how to shut down the water to your area affected to stay proactive, perform repairs, and resume optimal operating conditions.