Broken gate valve

This is a follow up post to a thread I started in the structural section of this forum.

To try and eliminate the water heater as a source of heat in my garage floor, I had closed the 16 year old gate valve on the inlet pipe to the water heater. I thought the valve was fully closed when it was not. Then, when I tried to open the valve to resume normal flow, the handle just spun freely. The valve stem had snapped off inside. The damaged gate was stuck closed and only let a small amount of water though the damaged portion of the gate. This made taking a shower a bit difficult.

I am not a home inspector (yet), but I have learned from reading the posts in this forum that opening or closing old valves can be risky. In fact, I noticed that most home inspectors will not touch the main water supply cutoff valve. My experience with the water valve on my water heater reinforces that wisdom.

I’ve attached a picture of the corroded interior of the old gate valve. It was replaced with a new ball valve.

Greg Sullivan / Canyon Lake, CA.

Damaged valve.JPG

Broken stem.JPG

I never operate any valves, heck, I’m a little worried about door handles now, one fell off in my hand the other day :eek:

…and now you know why we don’t!!

golden rule of plumbing… snug is tight, tight is broke.