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Is there a way to get this valve working?

baj702 Member Posts: 39
edited November 20 in Strictly Steam
This is a huge valve, I think it is ~5" pipe. It hasn't worked for a least 20 years. I tried turning is with a 3 foot pipe wrench but I was afraid to put too much pressure on it - for fear I would be in worse shape that if it just didn't work. Maybe something like a rebuild kit? Also, is it opened or closed?


  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,336
    edited November 20
    What’s it holding back?
  • baj702
    baj702 Member Posts: 39
    edited November 20
    This is a valve just after the header, shuts off steam to the main, I think they'e called king valves?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 3,336
    You’re going to have to dismantle it. 
    Pull the packing
    pull the top bell
    take it apart and
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 4,280
    If it is holding back toxic radio active cooling water from the nuclear power plant, what's the worst that could happen? Get a bigger wrench, with a bigger cheater on the handle.

    Edward Young
    Retired HVAC Contractor from So. Jersey.
    Services first oil burner at age 16
    P/T trainer for EH-CC.org

  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 6,670
    There is a good chance the packing may be asbestos so you probably want to take that part apart where you can keep it wet and contain it.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 19,960
    That is an eye-wateringly expensive valve. Further, even if you can repair it -- which I wouldn't guarantee -- you won't be able to do it quickly. So... if you can't wait until the whole system is down. I'd prepare a flanged spool piece to fit and take the thing out and the spool piece in and take it to a workshop to work on at my leisure.

    Do you even really need a king valve?
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    EdTheHeaterManLong Beach Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 12,658
    That old valve with threaded ends would be a tough replacement. You would have to cut it out and have flanges welded in.

    Looks like a gate valve. I would take the 6 or so bolts out and pull the whole assembly out of the valve body so you can work on the innards on the bench,

    We used to do that when installing a heavy valve with tight access. Install the body and then put the gut's in saves lifting all the weight at once.

    you can easily make a new gasket which you will need,

    If you put a big wrench on the stem you will break it.

    It's probably rusted up on the inside from condensate laying in the valve in a vertical position
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 12,658
    Once you get the guts pulled out you could install a temporary plate where the valve body bolts on if you need to keep the system running
  • baj702
    baj702 Member Posts: 39
    @Jamie Hall Well, they're nice when you need to build up some pressure to clean out the boilers. I was thinking about trying to get it working this summer - I'm in no rush.
    Long Beach Ed
  • retiredguy
    retiredguy Member Posts: 658
    edited November 21
    That valve looks like a 3" or possibly an old 3.5" non-rising stem Walworth gate valve. I can't tell from that picture. The size is usually indicated on the side of the valve body. If I were doing the repair, I would do it in the spring or when that part of the system is shut down. I have replaced Flanged valves up to 12" but that screw valve would be a nightmare to replace unless you have the expertise and the necessary equipment. I recommend that you do a "search" for a valve repair shop and have them do the job. Most valve shops can do a fair rebuild "in place", or if you do not need or use that valve to isolate that line, let it alone.