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 Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: joeco316 (PA)

In my basement, the main water supply comes through the wall, where there is a functional gate valve. Then there is some copper pipe before the meter followed by more copper pipe after the meter. Next is a gate valve that no longer works, before the pipe starts breaking off and supplying the house.

Is there any reason not to replace the second, non-functioning gate valve with a sharkbite ball valve? I understand that some are skeptical of a sharkbite as a main shutoff valve, but in this scenario it would be replacing a failed secondary shutoff, so to me that seems like at least a minor upgrade, right? Would there be a huge advantage to having a plumber sodder on a ball valve instead or is the sharkbite downstream from a functioning gate a safe setup?

Thanks!

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: stuckinlodi (MO)

If the sharkbite valve will be in plain view so you can see if it ever leaks then you'd probably be ok. Not sure if it is ok with your local code. Realize that if the sharkbite ever fails and slips off you will have the full flow of your main water line running all over the place. If it is against your local code and it fails then your house insurance may balk at any ins claims you make due to flooding.

If you do this, since your whole house water flows thru it make sure it is a full port type of valve, the same size internally as the copper pipe it is connected to. The reason for the valve in that position is probably so they can change the water meter without having a bunch of water in the house pipes running back and making a mess.

There may not be a need to replace the frozen gate valve. If they ever have to change your water meter you can worry about it then. If you have a sink, shower or other water faucet in the basement you can shutoff the working main shutoff valve, then open a basement faucet to drain nearly all the house pipes.



Edited 7 times.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: joeco316 (PA)

Thanks for your response!

My main reasoning for wanting to replace the faulty second gate valve is as insurance against the still-functioning first gate valve failing as well and then not having a way to shut the water off in the house without having to call the water company to shut it off outside.

I was hoping I could do it myself with the sharkbite, but sounds like it may not be worth avoiding having a plumber sodder one.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: stuckinlodi (MO)

Is there a shutoff out by the street where your water line connects to the main city line? Most towns do it that way, if so you can always shutoff your house water out there if that shutoff valve inside the house near the meter fails. Most times there is an outside shutoff that the city can easily get to so they can shutoff your water in case of an emergency or non-payment of water bill.

I didn't think gate valves went bad very often. Why not just turn your shutoff valve near the meter off and then back on now and then, just to keep it working? Try not to do this when your wife is in the shower.



Edited 2 times.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: PlumberLoren (CA)

Personally I have seen too many gate valves where the stem fails and the gate can't move up or down. The main concern about shark bites is that they have O-rings that wear out or get damaged over time. Solder in an new Ball valve and be done with it....sleep at night.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: hj (AZ)

You "don't think gate valves go bad very often"? What planet are you living on? In this area probably 50% OR MORE of main shutoff gate valves are either frozen open or are broken.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: stuckinlodi (MO)

take it easy hj, I wouldn't want to be the cause of your blood pressure maxing out......

When I originally wrote that I was *thinking* ball valve but wrote gate valve, then just left it unedited since I already have to edit so many spellign mistakes.

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 Re: Sharkbite Ball Valve as Secondary Main Shutoff After Gate?
Author: packy (MA)

a few years ago i could not spell plumber. now i are one..

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