Brass Ball Valve Vs. PVC Ball Valve

In this blog post, you’ll read:Have you ever completely understood brass vs PVC ball valves while comparing? If not, you're at the right site. Ball valves are commonly employed as on/off control valves in pipe systems to control the flow of liquids and gases. Both valves have their uses, and their choice depends on the application's requirements.
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Have you ever completely understood brass vs PVC ball valves while comparing? If not, you’re at the right site. Pipe systems commonly employ ball valves as on/off control valves to control the flow of liquids and gases. Both valves have their uses, and their choice depends on the application’s requirements.

Since there are many uses for ball valves, it is vital to understand the many options available before purchasing. Even though brass and PVC ball valves are not the same, they are both robust choices that may help you save time and money on your next project.  This article will explain in depth about PVC ball valves and brass ball valves.

What is a Brass Ball Valve?

components of brass ball valve
Components of brass ball valve

Brass ball valves composed of copper (57-63%) and zinc (35-40%) typically exhibit a light yellow or golden hue. Brass ball valves are highly resilient and have excellent corrosion resistance. In certain situations, plates can coat these valves. For example, a brass ball valve plated with nickel enhances its resistance to corrosion.

Main Advantages of Brass Ball Valve

Brass ball valves are robust and long-lasting. They are resistant to high temperatures and pressures as well as corrosion.

Additionally, brass ball valves are simple to clean and maintain. They are an excellent option for applications requiring a secure seal, such as plumbing or water lines.

Brass valves, if left untreated, will erode faster than other valves. To prevent corrosion over time, you must coat them with lubricant, oil, or another substance. 

The best way to avoid this extra cost is by buying them when they are on sale. Make sure you understand the manufacturer’s return policy before making a purchase. Some ball valve manufacturers provide price reductions when buying bulk quantities of the same valve type simultaneously.

What Is a PVC Ball Valve?

A PVC ball valve regulates water flow in a piping system. The valve’s globe regulates water flow by opening and closing the passage. PVC ball valves are available in many sizes and designs to meet specific requirements.

pvc ball valves with red handle
PVC ball valves with red handle

PVC ball valves are resilient and resistant to extreme temperatures and pressures. In addition to being resistant to corrosion and having a long lifespan, these valves are classified as oil and gas valves because they are typically used in many applications but can also be utilized in residential applications. When selecting a PVC ball valve, it is essential to consider the valve’s size, pressure, temperature, and material compatibility.

PVC Properties

The following enumeration presents a comprehensive synopsis of significant attributes of the material:

  • Durable, lightweight, and lengthy in service
  • Compared to alternative polymers, it is recyclable and has a comparatively low environmental impact.
  • No corrosion
  • Many compounds, acids, and bases are resistant to it.
  • They are utilized frequently in sanitary applications, including potable water. PVC is an essential material for transferring or storing food products. The maximum pressure rating of most DN50 PVC ball valves is PN16 (16 bar at room temperature).

Difference Between Brass Ball Valve and PVC Ball Valve

The material is one of the most essential considerations when purchasing a ball valve. Brass and PVC are two of the most prevalent materials for chemical processing, but what’s the difference? Here is the main difference between brass and PVC ball valves.

brass ball valve vs.pvc ball valve
Brass ball valve vs. PVC ball valve
  • Temperature Limits

PVC ball valves can withstand higher temperatures than brass ball valves. It is a superior material for high-temperature applications. PVC has a low softening point and dissolving point. The temperature range is -15 to 60 degrees Celsius.

  • Corrosion Resistant

PVC ball valve is the most commonly used material for manufacturing ball valves. Durability is a crucial factor in their popularity. The material is rust-resistant and requires no maintenance, so they can be used in outdoor applications where they are not frequently needed but must function correctly.

They can also be utilized in chemical blending applications where corrosion would be a significant issue. PVC’s resistance to high pressure also makes it a popular material for applications involving high-pressure liquid flow. There is minimal pressure loss when the valve is open because the ball and conduit’s port are nearly similar in size.

In contrast, brass ball valves are highly corrosion-resistant and ideal for severe conditions. Brass resists corrosion and is unaffected by acidic or basic substances. This corrosion resistance allows brass ball valves to endure longer without requiring routine maintenance or replacement. This advantage ultimately results in a greater return on investment over time.

  • Durability

Due to its inherent characteristics, such as chemical resistance and durability, numerous customers prefer PVC ball valves over brass ball valves.

Different colors and shapes of pvc
Different colors and shapes of PVC

Material Composition

All brass ball valves are made from alloys. However, each valve has unique qualities because the alloys used to cause them differ. Adding copper to zinc makes brass. U-PVC, (unplasticized Polyvinyl chloride), makes up a PVC ball valve. This material is also known as rigid PVC. Manufacturers always use unplasticized PVC when discussing PVC as a material for valve housings.

Only P.V.C. has phthalates in it, but U-PVC doesn’t have any. You can use hot water with CPVC, which stands for chlorinated PVC. It can handle more heat. When you chlorinate PVC, you get CPVC. It has 67 % more chlorine than before. Some things, like water heaters, only use CPVC because it’s more expensive than regular PVC.

Sizes comparison

The brass ball valve and PVC sizes are the same as usual

Size D L H
¼ inch 0.23 2.99 2.20
3/8 inch 0.32 2.99 2.20
½ inch 0.51 4.02 2.20
¾ inch 0.75 4.25 2.72
1 inch 0.99 4.53 3.50
1 ½ inch 1.50 5.24 4.49
2 inch 1.89 6.06 4.72
Size specifications of ball valves
And some applications with 2½ inch,3 inch, and 4″

Maintenance Requirements

Both materials need about the same amount of maintenance. However, PVC may be a better choice if not cleaned or drained. This is because it can fight chemicals commonly found in places where it’s used. Electricity and metals react chemically when metals are immersed in water. PVC doesn’t have the same problems with this as brass does. Additionally, areas that come into touch with fluids don’t have to be cleaned before they are sealed together, so there is no chance of rusting. In general, PVC might be a better choice for some users, like those who work in toxic environments like the manufacturing and petroleum industries.

Brass Vs. PVC Ball Valve: How to Select

Choosing the appropriate valve for a given application can be difficult. Here are some elements to consider when comparing brass and PVC ball valves.

  • Temperature Range

The operating temperature range for PVC and brass valves is 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • Design of Heat Exchangers

Some heat exchangers employ valves with threaded connections, making them more compatible with threaded ports, while others require solder connectors, making them compatible with welding junctions. This factor may determine which ball valve type is optimal for welded joints.

  • Fluid Handling

Brass ball valves are superior for fluid control because they do not experience plasticizer leaching over time, unlike PVC valves. Plasticizer draining in PVC piping systems causes severe corrosion and degradation, diminishing longevity. Brass, however, does not rust as rapidly as PVC when exposed to water and other fluids.

  • Clogging

Due to their low density, PVC valves typically obstruct quicker than brass valves. Brass is a denser metal that makes it simpler for fluids to travel through tubes without becoming blocked with residue and particulates.

  • Bore Design

The bore design of the PVC ball valve can be linear 2-way, T-port, or L-port 3-way. A 2-way valve is preferable for straight passage. A 3-way valve is utilized for combining, disseminating, and diverting applications.

  • Quality of Water

Brass is highly resistant to chlorides and other corrosive compounds in water, whereas PVC materials corrode more rapidly when exposed to these compounds.

Gas ball valve works
Gas ball valve works.

Brass Vs PVC Ball Valve: Applications

  • Applications for Brass Ball Valves

In most applications, brass ball valves provide the same level of performance and durability as stainless steel ball valves. However, stainless steel, a more durable material, may be preferable in applications with extremely high pressure or temperature requirements. However, the flexible seals, typically made of PTFE, will continue to be the weakest link. This necessitates the use of specialized barrier materials in these extreme applications.

Ball valves built with brass are commonly used in residential and commercial plumbing, HVAC, and other applications. To comply with FDA regulations, specific applications, such as those involving potable water or food processing, must utilize lead-free brass ball valves.

  • Applications of PVC Ball Valves

It has both domestic and industrial use. PVC ball valves provide many vital purposes.

  • Aquariums
  • Swimming pools
  • Landfills
  • Domestic irrigation
  • Water features and fountains
  • Water treatment
  • Chemical processing
  • Food processing

Brass Ball Valve Vs. Stainless Steel Ball Valve?

Both brass and stainless steel ball valves have benefits, but brass valves offer more advantages to users. Brass ball valves are more cost-effective, resistant to corrosion and heat, versatile, and resistant to heat and corrosion. When purchasing a new valve or replacing older valves, brass ball valves are the best option. They are superior to stainless steel in quality, durability, and cost, making them the best choice for your plumbing requirements.

Brass Ball Valves Or PVC Ball Valves: Which One Is Better

Brass is the material of choice for a ball valve that can endure high temperatures and corrosive substances. Brass ball valves are typically more expensive than their PVC ball valve. Therefore, opt for PVC if you value affordability over durability but still desire a reliable product.

In the conclusion of this article, brass vs PVC ball valve, we conclude that brass ball valves are more robust and resilient than PVC valves but are also more expensive. Brass is the material for ball valves that can resist high temperatures and corrosive substances.

In contrast, PVC ball valves are typically less costly than brass ones, so if you’re not overly concerned with durability but still want a dependable product that won’t break the bank, choose PVC. Ultimately, it goes down to the individual’s specific requirements and spending capacity.

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