Also known as fixture shut offs or stop valves, under-sink valves allow you to turn off the water to the sink without shutting it off to the whole house. The number and type of fixture shutoffs you choose will depend on how many fixtures there are and where they're located.
The following guide will take you through different types of shut off valves that can help you identify what you have under your sink.
What is Shut off Valve?
Shut off valve is a valve that stops the flow of fluid in a plumbing system. This valve cuts off the water supply to a pipe once activated. However, shut off valves are not exclusive to plumbing systems.
They're also used to regulate the flow of gasses.
Angle Stop Valve
The Angle stop valve is the most popular of shut off valves, being used in over 75% of homes. The valve can be rotated around its main axis to cut-off water flow. The design of the angle stop valve allows it to rotate easily, but it also makes them prone to wear and more likely to leak.
Also known as a compression valve, an angle stop valve is found on the pipe which exits the wall. It allows you to turn the water off to the specific toilet or faucet when replacing it without shutting all water off to the entire house. Angle stop valves are very durable and can last many years without issues. In addition, angle stop valves are generally found in either brass or chrome-plated finishes.
Straight Shut Off Valve
Straight stop valves are typically found when the water supply pipe comes out below the flow or cabinet. A straight stop valve keeps the water from traveling in the same direction where it came from before entering the valve.
Straight stop valves have handles that point in the same direction as the valve, and handles are located in the middle of the valve body between the inlet and outlet ports. Similar to angle stop valves, a straight stop valve also allows you to turn off the water supply to one specific area. Also, you can do the replacements and maintenance on these appliances without shutting the water supply in the entire house.
Iron Pipe Stop Valve
Iron pipe stop valves are fitted with iron-pipe sized threads to thread a female inlet port. This type of under sink shut off valve can also be adapted to other pipes by using a male iron pipe adapter that can be fitted into plastic pipes or copper pipes.
This shut off valve can be screwed or unscrewed from the end of the water pipe. You'll only need two pliers. One to hold the water line in place and the other to tighten the valve.
Copper Sweat Shut Off Valve
A copper sweat valve is usually at the end of copper pipe sections. They are threaded to screw into the end of the pipes. Sweat is a term used by plumbers for soldering. This type of shut off valve is known as copper sweat valve because it needs soldering to copper pipe, and it's made of copper.
To install these copper pipes, you'll need common household tools like emery cloth, solder, flux, and torch. The copper pipes are installed at the time of building construction. Professional plumbers prefer this permanent and low-cost solution because they last longer.
Push Fit Stop Valves
Push fit stop valves use a collet to grip the pipe. Also known as push on stop valves, these valves are inserted into the end of the pipe, and the pipe is pushed home so that the collet grips the pipe tightly. They consist of a rubber o ring and stainless steel locking teeth.
Push fit stop valves are easy to install and can be used with copper, PEX, and CPVC pipe. The valve grips onto the pipe with metal teeth and creates a watertight seal with a plastic o ring. The small CPVC is inserted inside its intake port, and cement used with CPVC often works with PVC.
However, the adhesive used on PVC doesn't bond with CPVC. It's kind of overwhelming learning about this at first, but once you grasp the idea, you can fit a CPVC stop valve to a pipe by yourself.
PEX Shutoff Valve
PEX Shutoff valves are an innovation to help with fitting a pipe. The one-way valve does not let anything in or out of the line. It's great for reducing water backflow into your home, but it can't reduce pressure or prevent scaling on the inside of the pipe.
PEX shutoff valves are more expensive than copper or brass shutoff valves. This stop valve is often attached to pipes with crimp rings or clamp rings. A ring compression tool compresses the crimp ring against the outside of the pipe while a clamp ring tool squeezes a tab on one side of the ring.
The PEX stop valves can be removed, but you have to cut off the ring, which can cause damage to the pipe. This means that the pipe needs to be shorted to get a fresh section of pipe for the new valve.
CPVC Stop Valve
CPVC stop valves are one of the more expensive types of stop valves. CPVC stop valves are used in CPVC piping systems. CPVC stands for chlorinated polyvinyl chloride. They use a specific type of cement known as glue when installed. In addition, a CPVC valve can be used on PVC pipes. But PVC adhesive doesn't bond well with CPVC material.
Compression Shutoff Valve
A compression stop valve is used on copper pipes. It consists of a compression nut that squeezes a brass ring into the space between a water pipe and its body. Buildings with copper water pipes use compression stop valves with a compression intake port. This allows for more compression power and reduces the need for repairs.
A ball valve is a type of stop valve that uses a ball to control water flow. The valve has a threaded body and nut that screws into the water pipe. This valve is quite large and features a lever handle. It's commonly used in places where a quick turn-on is necessary, such as the main pipe.
You can open and close it fully with a simple quarter-turn of the lever. The internal ball will align with the pipe when the valve is open, allowing water to gush. The ball will rotate 90 degrees and completely block the hole when closed.
FAQs on Types of Under-Sink Shutoff Valves
Where is the shutoff valve located at home?
The main shutoff valve for the home is generally found on the perimeter of the house. A good place to look is where the water first enters your home. The smaller valves can also be found close to appliances and fixtures such as toilets or faucets.
Final Thought on Types of Under-Sink Shutoff Valves
Shutoff valves are an essential part of any plumbing system. They allow you to turn off the water supply to a particular area, which can come in handy when you need to make repairs or in an emergency. Also, if you’re experiencing low water pressure in your kitchen sink, the first place to check is the shut off valve. Installing these stop valves is an easy task if you know where they are and which type to use.