Angle Valve | Types
An angle valve is a flow control device that utilizes a piston seated within a metal casing in order to control the flow of fluid or gas through a system. The valve gets its name from the fact that the piston in the system is set at an angle inside the casing in order to provide maximum flow throughout the system. The casing in an angle valve is most typically made from metal or plastic. While any handle can be used, an angle valve usually has a circular handle in order to facilitate the screw mechanism that raises and lowers the valve. Angle valves come in a variety of sizes suited for most applications.
The angle valve has a great deal of uses throughout the home, mainly outdoors as external faucets for garden hoses. In industry, an angle valve is used when a directional change and fluid control is required at the same time. The oil industry makes extensive use of the angle valve in refineries, and rigs. Industrial angle valves can be quite large and are often made of corrosive proof materials.
To replace an angle valve in your home, first make sure that the main water into the house has been shut off and that the system has been bled. Once this is completed, take a standard plumbing torch and heat valve and its connecting pipe in order to loosen the solder around the connection. Once this is completed, clean the connecting pipe with a wire brush and make sure all of the old solder has been removed. Once you have done this, coat the connecting pipe with flux and place the new valve on the connecting pipe. Make sure the valve is snug but is able to move as well, so the solder can flow into the gaps. One the new valve has been placed; begin heating the pipe and the angle valve. When soldering plumbing, you need to heat the work and not the solder. After you have heated the work, touch the solder to the connection. The solder should flow through the gaps in the connection and create a good seal. Immediately wipe the connection with a damp towel. Be sure to not touch the hot angle valve with you bare hands, as this can cause some severe burns. Once the angle valve has cooled, turn on your main water supply and check the connection. If the connections leaks, turn off the main water supply and repeat the process.
The angle valve is an integral part of any household plumbing system. By knowing your household plumbing fixtures, you can make more informed decisions about home repairs and even attempt them yourself. The next time an angle valve breaks, why not try replacing it yourself instead of getting a plumber. Angle valves are inexpensive and if you make a mistake you can always try again. Doing your own plumbing can save you time and money and gives a great sense of accomplishment when you have finished. If you ever get stuck, consult a well qualified professional.