How Often Should Shut Off Valves Be Replaced?


how often should shut off valves be replaced

When it comes to shut-off valves, there is good news and bad news. The good news is that they can last for 20 to 25 years. The bad news is that if they are not used and exercised every two years (at least), they may freeze in the open position and need replacement.

While true, you cannot ignore the importance of shut-off valves to your home’s plumbing system. They allow you to turn off the water to a particular fixture or area in case of a leak or other problem.

However, beyond them getting stuck in the open position, do you know the answer to “How often should shut-off valves be replaced? If not, don’t worry. You aren’t alone.

Here, you can learn more about shut-off valve replacement. With this information, you can keep your valves working efficiently and properly.

Reasons Your Shut-Off Valves May Need Replacing

While replacing your shut-off valves is not a regular occurrence, there are situations when it may be necessary. Certain issues may cause the shut-off valves to stop working.

If this happens, you may begin to have issues with your plumbing system. Some of the issues that may require you to replace these valves sooner than expected include the following:


If your valves are made of metal, they can corrode over time. This can make the valves difficult to turn and may lead to leaks.

Freeze Damage

When the valves are not properly insulated, they can freeze during cold weather. This can damage the valves and make them leak.


If you frequently turn your valves on and off, this can wear them out prematurely. While they need to be exercised (turned off and on) occasionally, dont overdo it. If you do, it may lead to spending money to replace them sooner than expected.

Signs Valve Replacement Is Needed

Above, you learned some of the reasons your shut-off valves need replacing. While that is helpful information, you also need to know when you cannot wait any longer to replace these important components.

If you notice any of the following signs, it’s a good idea to have your shut-off valves replaced:


If you see any water leaking from your valves, it’s a sign that they need to be replaced. If a valve begins to leak, it can lead to significant water waste.

For example, the average household with one leak wastes more than 10,000 gallons of water annually. As you can see, this serious problem requires immediate attention.

Hard to Turn

If your valves are hard to turn, it’s a sign that they are corroded or damaged. The harder a valve is to turn, the more difficult it will be to shut off the water if an issue occurs.

If you do not replace the valve when you notice this issue, you may have more serious problems later. Act quickly to avoid serious water damage in your home.

The Valves Reached the 20-Year Mark

If your valves are over 20 years old, it’s a good idea to replace them. Even if they seem to be working fine, don’t risk it. Replacing them at this point will save you issues down the road.

How to Replace a Plumbing Shut-Off Valve

Replacing shut-off valves is a relatively easy job that a DIYer can do. However, you can hire a plumber if you’re uncomfortable doing it yourself.

For some people, hiring professionals is the best option. You dont want to make a mistake that causes even more issues.

Here are the steps on how to replace a shut-off valve:

Shut Off the Water

Most homes have a main water supply line that can be shut off. Make sure to turn this off before getting started.

Once the water is turned off, you must drain the water line. To do this, turn the fixture closest to the valve on to remove all water in the pipe.

Remove the Old Valve

This is a more intricate process. To do this, you must cut the pipe on the inlet side. Another option is to sweat it off by applying constant heat. If you choose this option, you will need channel locks to remove the valve.

Install the New Valve

The installation process requires you to fit the new valve onto the pipe. You must also solder the valve to the pipe to ensure it remains in place.

Test the New Valve

Once the new valve is in place, turn the water back on. Test the valve to ensure there are no leaks.

Tips for Selecting New Shut-Off Valves

You must get the right type of valve for your needs. There are many types of valves to choose from.

You also need to choose a valve that will last. Some tips to help you find the right valve for the job include the following:

  • Choose valves made of a corrosion-resistant material
  • Choose valves that are easy to turn
  • Choose valves that have a good warranty

Selecting a valve with these specifications will help ensure that no other issues occur.

Finding the Answer: How Often Should Shut-Off Valves Be Replaced?

You should know the answer to “How often should shut-off valves be replaced?” By following these tips, you can ensure that your shut-off valves are working properly and that they will last for many years.

If you aren’t sure if new shut-off valves are needed or are not confident replacing valves, contact a professional. We can help you with your shut-off valve issues. Contact us today to learn more about our services and solutions.

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