Different Types of Valves Used in Water Pipelines

Ball Valves
Commonly found in newer homes, ball valves utilize a handle to position a hollow, perforated sphere within the mechanism.
Rotation of the handle opens or closes the water flow, and the handle’s orientation indicates whether the valve is open (lying flat) or closed (perpendicular).
Ideal for shut-off and control applications due to their quick response.
Butterfly Valves
Like ball valves, butterfly valves have a rotating metal disc, known as the “butterfly,” on a rod.
Closed butterfly valves use the disc to block water flow, while open ones rotate the disc a quarter turn to allow water passage.
Lighter and less expensive than ball valves, they are often used in industrial applications.
Check Valves
Also called non-return or one-way valves, check valves permit flow in one direction and automatically prevent backflow.
Compact and inexpensive, these valves are crucial for backflow prevention in pumps, safety applications, and lawn sprinklers.
Gate Valves
Gate valves, or sluice valves, are controlled by a round knob attached to a sillcock, regulating water flow by lowering or raising an internal gate or wedge.
Used for controlling the rate of water flow rather than an immediate stop.
Commonly found in older houses and homes with hose bibbs.
Globe Valves
Also known as stop valves, globe valves feature a stem that controls a disc inside the mechanism.
Despite the name, many modern globe valves do not have a spherical design.
Easy to maintain, effective for throttling and shutoff, and commonly used in outdoor residential faucets, boiler systems, and cooling water systems.
Pressure Relief Valves
Pressure relief valves, or pressure reducing valves, are designed to reduce water pressure in plumbing systems to a specific limit.
Essential for homes with high-pressure water sources to prevent damage to plumbing and appliances.
Plug Valves
Plug valves are designed to control the flow of fluids through a cylindrical or conical plug. The plug has a through hole, and when the valve is open, the hole aligns with the inlet and outlet of the valve, allowing fluid to flow. By rotating the plug, the hole can be positioned perpendicular to the flow, effectively shutting off the flow.
Needle Valves
Needle valves control the flow of fluids by using a pointed conical or needle-shaped disk. The needle is attached to a threaded stem, and by rotating the stem, the needle can be moved in and out of the seat to adjust the flow.
Understanding the distinct characteristics of each water supply valve type is crucial for maintaining an efficient plumbing system. These valves play a vital role in ensuring proper water flow and temperature control. For a comprehensive selection of water valves, consider exploring products available through The Home Depot, and use their mobile app for convenient access and inventory checks. If assistance with water valve installation is required, professional plumbing services are available to ensure the job is done with expertise and precision.