How to Repair a Gate Valve that Leaks

a water shutoff valve
What You'll Need
Propane torch
Copper piping
Packing washer

Repairing a leaky gate valve doesn’t necessarily mean you have to replace the entire valve. In some cases, you can repair the leak by just replacing the packing washer. Follow these steps to fix the problem.

Step 1 - Remove the Old Packing Washer

As with any plumbing repair, make sure you turn off the water supply to the area you’re working on.

To remove the old packing washer you’ll have to remove the supply piping at each end of the gate valve that’s showing signs of leaking. Use the hacksaw to cut away the copper piping as close as possible to the valve and then remove the faulty washer.

Step 2 - Install the New Packing Washer

Install the new packing washer into the gate valve and re-solder the supply pipe connections. To accomplish this you’ll need the propane torch and solder. Prep the end of the copper pipe with a wire brush to remove any burrs or rough edges. Then heat the copper and work the solder around the joint between the pipe and the gate valve.