5 elements that influence the lifespan of ball valves

The inherent design of ball valves makes them best for on/off management of a extensive variety of media, but what exactly do you have to anticipate in terms of service life? A quick Google seek for “ball valve lifespan” turns up a blanket response of 100,000 cycles. If solely the real reply was that simple.
The reality is that the lifespan of your ball valves is dependent upon a handful of things. Ball valves in high-cycle or high-pressure settings will need servicing or replacing more often than these with infrequent operations — and that’s earlier than factoring in any media-specific nuances.
You will see that the majority of ball valve suppliers do set guarantees for the life expectancy of their products as a outcome of there are such a lot of components to assume about first. Here’s a better have a glance at 5 that may influence the longevity of your ball valves.
1. Media
Ball valves are traditionally used for the on/off management of gases and liquids, including water, oil, air and chemical substances.
เกจ์วัดแรงดันน้ำ with suspended particulates which are abrasive in nature may cause the valve seals to fail prematurely. This can come in the form of a leak or, relying on the severity of the media characteristics, the ball valve working torque could rise dramatically ultimately causing actuation failure.
Use ball valves only for the on/off control of liquids or gases. Avoid abrasive media.
A three-piece ball valve includes a main body and two pipe connectors, which are threaded or welded to a pipe. The major physique could be easily removed for cleaning or repairs without removing the pipe connectors.
2. Materials
The right supplies on your ball valve will depend on the kind of liquid or gasoline flowing through the valve. Some of the commonest supplies used to fabricate ball valves embody chrome steel, PVC, brass and bronze.
The materials of both the valve physique and the seals should be appropriate with temperature and strain rankings, as well as the chemical makeup of the gas or liquid that will circulate through the valve.
Here’s a extra in-depth take a glance at material choices:
Metals: Stainless metal, bronze and brass are highly durable and corrosion-resistant. Metal supplies are your greatest option for high-temperature applications.
PVC: Polyvinyl chloride is a type of plastic that offers more flexibility than metallic valves. However, PVC is not as durable as metallic choices and isn’t designed for high temperatures (over 140°F) or high-pressure purposes. PVC ball valves tend to have shorter lifespans than other choices.
PTFE: Polytetrafluorethylene is used for many ball valve seals and is compatible with practically all kinds of media. This materials has a high melting level, but applications with very high temperatures should use metal or ceramic seals.
Elastomers: Elastomers such as Viton and EPDM are also utilized in certain ball valve designs. When utilizing valves that include an elastomer, it could be very important ensure that the material used is suitable along with your utility media.
One useful resource that is generally used for identifying chemical compatibility is the Cole-Parmer Chemical Compatibility Database. This is an efficient tool for figuring out fundamental chemical compatibility between the valve parts and the applying media.
Where the materials come from is simply as important. Some resellers may source ball valves from producers around the globe, so there could be always the potential of design inconsistencies or performance issues. Valves from home producers usually provide extra dependable and long-lasting merchandise.
Plastic ball valves are economical however shouldn’t be utilized in high-temperature settings and have a tendency to have shorter lifespans compared to metal choices. Pressurized gases ought to be used with metal valves for maximum security. It is essential to make certain that each the valve physique and seal supplies are safe to be used with the media that shall be flowing via the valve.
Ball valve manufacturing components
3. Temperature & strain rankings
When figuring out suitability, it may be very important contemplate both the valve media stress and temperature, generally referred to as pressure/temperature rating. In basic, as the media pressure will increase, the media temperature must lower, and vise versa.
The pressure/temperature score will affect the correct materials, valve design and valve seal supplies that should be used. This, combined with cycle frequency, are all elements that have a big have an effect on on the lifespan of a ball valve. A ball valve utilized in an utility that is near the pressure/temperature rating might final years if the valve is cycled (turned on or off) occasionally. The identical valve in the same application might have frequent replacement if the valve is cycled usually.
The closer your particular valve media is to the higher limits of the valve pressure/temperature score, the less cycles (on/off) the ball valve will yield. If you still have questions, reach out to the ball valve manufacturer for advice.
four. Actuation
There is multiple way to energy a ball valve. Manual ball valves are managed by turning a lever or deal with on prime of the valve. Since these valves have to be powered by an operator, they do not seem to be the proper choice for high-cycle applications or for valves situated in hard-to-reach places.
Actuated ball valves could be automated and managed remotely through the addition of a power supply. You will likely see the next choices:
Pneumatic actuated ball valves are utilized in environments with access to compressed air. They present fast cycle instances and high durability.
Electric actuated ball valves should be utilized in applications that require low cycle speeds or those with no access to compressed air. The slower index times can help forestall water hammer in high-pressure applications. You may additionally see these known as “motorized ball valves.”
Hydraulic actuated ball valves function on similar principles as pneumatics however supply extra torque output. These are typically costlier than other actuator choices and may require further parts for correct functioning.
Although pneumatic actuators are essentially the most sturdy choices, in most applications all actuator sorts (pneumatic, electrical, hydraulic) will lengthy outlast the ball valve they function. Regardless of the actuator that’s chosen, it’s going to doubtless last the lifespan of multiple valves.
Electric actuated ball valves, also called motorized ball valves or rotary ball valves, are the most popular alternative for ball valve automation. These products use an electric motor to operate the ball valve and management the circulate of media.
5. Maintenance
With an actuated ball valve, the valve seals are almost always the primary component to fail, often in the type of a leak either from the stem seal or seats noted by downstream leakage when the valve is within the off position. For this cause, it’s common to aim to repair the valve by changing the soft seals.
If you’re planning to keep up the valve in your software, you will need to select a valve that is designed for serviceability, such as a three-piece ball valve. These valves are designed so that the center part and seals of the valve could be easily and safely changed. One-piece and two-piece ball valves aren’t designed to be taken aside and should be replaced somewhat than repaired. The excellent news is that the replacement ball valve cost is a small proportion of the general value of the actuated ball valve meeting. Depending on the model and high quality of the actuator, one actuator will host a number of ball valves earlier than needing alternative.
An actuator will usually final the lifespan of a quantity of ball valves, so you should count on to switch the ball valve more regularly than the actuator. In functions where the valve might be subjected to excessive wear and tear, a three-piece ball valve ought to be thought-about to permit for serviceability of the valve.
Ultimately, wear and tear are anticipated regardless of the media or software. But with correct installation and the right materials development, you can maximize the time your ball valves spend in service and, in flip, get probably the most bang in your buck.
George Packard is VP of marketing at Gemini Valve. Hemanages the creation of digital marketing mediums to facilitate one of the best person experience with the company’s products and services. With earlier experience in sales, Packard mentors company buyer assist representatives and is concerned in product gross sales, support and post-sales observe up.
Gemini Valve

Scroll to Top