Leaky water shut-off valve.....repair?


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Old 10-21-08, 12:50 PM
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Leaky water shut-off valve.....repair?

Hi-

Here's a picture of the water pipes coming into my house, with a shutoff valve on the right of the picture shutting water off before it gets to the meter, and the one to the left downstream of the meter. That's the background. The two valves are identical except for their relative position.

The valve on the left (on the vertical, picture here) is the one that is giving me problems.

Side view of valve here.

I put all of that in there just for background information.

Anyway, whenever I rotate the handle of the valve mentioned above to the "off" position, it drips water at a rate of about 1 drop every 3 or 4 seconds. It doesn't drip any water when it is in the "on" position. I usually alternately "exercise" the valves on/off a few times a year when we go on vacation as I tend to shut off water and drain the water pipes in the house when we are away for more than a few days to prevent the proverbial "pipe burst" with no one home.

Concerning this leaky valve.......what is the best way to fix it? Looking at the valve (see pictures), it looks like one is able to disassemble the valve. When a valve like this starts to leak, should I disassemble it and figure out what is leaking...do these things have gaskets? Do the nuts in the pictures simply need to be tightened? Or do I need to cut the whole valve out and put a new valve in?

Thanks for your time!
ualdriver
 
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Old 10-21-08, 05:47 PM
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OK,

I am assuming you are saying that the valve leaks from where the stem goes into the valve.

This is caused by the packing getting loosened up during use of the valve. If you look at that side view picture you presented, here is what you must do. Take the large nut holding the handle off. Carefully wiggle the handle and get it to come off. Now, see the thin nut behind the valve, that is called the packing nut. Take a wrench and tighten it a 1/4 - 1/2 turn. Your problem should be solved. That valve looks relatively new, so you should be fine after replacing the handle
 
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Old 10-21-08, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by plumbingods
OK,

I am assuming you are saying that the valve leaks from where the stem goes into the valve.

This is caused by the packing getting loosened up during use of the valve. If you look at that side view picture you presented, here is what you must do. Take the large nut holding the handle off. Carefully wiggle the handle and get it to come off. Now, see the thin nut behind the valve, that is called the packing nut. Take a wrench and tighten it a 1/4 - 1/2 turn. Your problem should be solved. That valve looks relatively new, so you should be fine after replacing the handle
I suspected that might be the case but I didn't want to mess with it without getting a second opinion. And yes, it is leaking from the stem.

The valve is about 8 years old and probably has been used about 50 times.

Thanks!
ualdriver
 
 

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