Insertion Valves: Understanding The Basics

November 01, 2018

Water mains work hard 24/7. Thousands — if not millions — of people depend on them to keep water flowing in and out of their homes and businesses. Unfortunately, nothing lasts forever. Their workload may never decrease, which means the condition of municipal water systems can and does deteriorate over time. Even the most well-engineered and well-constructed utilities need to be upgraded and rehabilitated periodically.

Because these systems are vital to so many, replacing outdated equipment isn’t simple. Shutting down the entire main just isn’t an option. This is where insertion valves are invaluable solutions for utilities and municipalities. Thanks to the nature of these devices, essential work can proceed without service interruptions.

Here is a brief overview of how they function and what makes them so beneficial.

How They Work

Because the contents of a main are under pressure, simply cutting into it to remove and replace an old valve is not possible. To perform the job safely, it would need to be shut down, which requires a massive disruption in service for a large number of customers. This also would put workers at risk for injury.

Installing an insertion valve, on the other hand, eliminates these concerns. Crews install a collar onto the main, and then make a singular hole into the pipe under full pressure with no reaming. The insertion valve is permanently installed on top of the pipe through the flange in the collar. This results in a utility that has the same level of system control and access for maintenance as with a resilient seated gate. For all intents and purposes, the new gate operates just as any other standard one in the system.

The Benefits of Insertion Valves

Using insertion valves provides municipal water systems and utilities with numerous benefits, including:

  • The ability to upgrade water mains without stopping service
  • Worry-free maintenance with lower potential for injury to workers
  • Faster and more efficient upgrades
  • The ability to replace multiple outdated valves for greater system reliability

America’s infrastructure is at a critical point in its history. Communities across the country are faced with a challenge in the form of systems that have outlived their intended life spans. Ensuring that residents and businesses will be able to continue counting on essential services requires some necessary upgrades. At the same time, the sheer scope of work needed to update this infrastructure can be daunting.

Insertion valves represent a clear solution to these issues, enabling important enhancements and expansion of water mains without interruptions. Hydra-Stop is recognized as an industry leader in the design and manufacture of such equipment. For more information or to put our expertise to work for you, contact us today.