What causes cracked valves?
This week, we’re focusing on how to crack a valve. Crazy? No, not really.
To learn how to protect a valve, we need to understand why do valves have cracks. So instead of increasing your risk of cracking a valve, you could actually increase the life of your valve and save money with your tool budget. Here are four common reasons for a cracked valve.
- Cracking a valve by over-wrenching
This is pretty straightforward. When you twist too many times, or use more force or torque than needed while installing the valve, you can easily damage it. No matter how heavy duty the valve is, it’s easy to crack a valve by using a big wrench and strong hands by applying too much force on it.
- Cracking a valve with over-pressure
Each time you open or close valves, the surge of media that flows through the pi pe can impact and create extra pressure in the valve and pipe. This can cause a spike in pressure, or Hammer Effect, that can damage the valve.
- Cracking a valve with extreme temperature changes
Extreme temperature change can expand or shrink the valve you’re working with and the pipe or fittings. The most common example of this is the freezing garden valve that’s cracked during winter. Water expands when it freezes, so extreme weather can easily cause the valves to crack. High temperature media, like saturated steam, can greatly reduce the pressure tolerance.
- Cracking a valve by using pipe, fittings, and valves made of different materials
Different materials have varying degrees of hardness, strength, electric magnetic properties, and expansion rates – depending on their temperature. Using different material types on valves, pipes, or fittings within your application can cause damage to the valve when there are changes of temperature, pressure, or magnetic field.
Pay attention to what causes cracked valves, avoid the common mistakes listed above, make sure you understand how to protect your valve, and you have a chance at extending the life of your valve. If you know someone that will find this article useful, please share it!