Gas Ball Valve Guide 101:Works,Size and Materials

In this blog post, you’ll read:A gas ball valve is a quarter-turn valve with a hollow, punctured ball as the closing part. The ball has a port, or hole, in the middle that controls the gas flow when the valve is opened or closed. The valve opens and lets gas flow when the ball lines up with the pipe or tube. When the ball is turned so that it is not in the flow line, on the other hand, the valve closes, and the gas flow stops.
Table of Contents

A gas ball valve is a flow control device that consists of two ports and a quarter-turn. Additionally, it operates more efficiently, seals more effectively, and closes off more effectively. The majority of ball valves are engineered to withstand extreme temperatures and pressures. However, gas ball valves are compact and lightweight. Hence, they find applications in many sectors. Gas ball valves are applied to pass fluids, including liquefied petroleum gas, natural gases, lubricants, and chemical compounds within conduit systems.

Common Applications of Gas Ball Valve

residential gas lines
residential gas lines

· Gas processing plants

The gas ball valves are implemented in critical areas for gas processing plants, controlling or shutting raw and processed gases. They work at high temperatures and pressures with reliable tight sealing.

· Residential gas lines

Gas ball valves turn on/off or shut off residential natural gas supply to appliances such as stoves, heaters, and fireplaces. Due to their reliable sealing and smooth operation, they have found a fit in domestic applications.

· Emergency shut-off systems

The gas ball valve is crucial in various emergency shut-off systems within facilities like a chemical plant or storage ends. It shut off the gas flow quickly and reliably to enhance safety in an emergency situation.

· Industrial gas distribution

Usage in industrial aspects flows through the regulation of various gases, including natural gas and propane gas, and inlets their respective distribution systems. These types of valves serve dependability and safeguard in places of high demand.

Main Types of Gas Ball Valves

· Standard Ball Valves

Standard ball valves are commonly used to control gasses. They have a straightforward design, wherein there is a spherical ball inside the body of the valve, and through the center of the ball, there is a hole.

When the valve is open, that hole aligns with the gas flow to allow it to pass through. The ball rotates to block flow when closed. Due to the simplicity of their operation, durability, and tight sealing ability, these valves find applications in general gas applications.

· Reduced Port Ball Valves

The reduced port, or reduced bore valves, have a smaller ball and hole, which results in less overall flow area. This type is more compact and less expensive than full-port valves. While pressure drops may be caused in them, they’re appropriate for use in applications where some reduction in flow is acceptable, like branch gas lines or reduced systems.

· Full Port Ball Valves

The full port, or full bore, performance has increased the size of the ball to hold an enlarged hole whose diameter is equal to the pipe’s internal diameter. Such a design keeps the pressure drop to the lowest values, and the flow achieved is maximum.

This makes these valves most suited for applications that demand unrestricted gas flow. They are fitted in various systems in service where the flow rate must be upheld, including pipelines and main gas lines.

· V-Port Ball Valves

V-port ball valves have a V-shaped notch in the ball. This provides finer throttle flow-rate control since the V-notch has better throttling action and flow control. Because of this ability, these valves are used in various applications, from gas processing plants to systems requiring variable flow rates, where the flow must be modulated accurately.

· Trunnion Mounted Ball Valves

In the trunnion-mounted ball valves, the ball is supported by top and bottom trunnions that minimize the load on the valve seats, making the operation smoother, especially in high-pressure applications. The additional support is helpful in large-diameter or high-pressure gas lines where tight sealing is under severe conditions and reliable operation is required.

gas ball valve applications
gas ball valve applications

What Are the Features of Gas Ball Valves?

· Fire-safe Design

Fire-safe gas ball valves are designed not to leak flammable gas due to exposure to fire. They incorporate specific materials and construction methods to ensure the valve will retain integrity and shut off a gas flow in case of a fire to reduce relevant risks of accidents.

· Extended Bonnet

A lengthened part of the valve body containing the stem. This characteristic is helpful in applications with extreme temperatures, helping to locate the stem packing away from the process fluid, thus increasing the lifetime of sealing elements and ensuring reliable operation.

· Anti-static Design

Anti-static gas ball valves prevent the generation of static electricity, which may ignite flammable gases. This shall usually be achieved through electrical continuity between the ball, stem, and body arrangements so that the static electricity generated by operation safely discharged to the stem and seat sealing arrangements:

The gas ball valve offers excellent gas-tight sealing of the stem and seat to prevent gas leakage. The stem and seat are made from specialized materials and finished precisely to ensure tight sealing under continuous pressure or significant temperature changes, including safety and excellent performance.

· Yellow Handle

The yellow on the handle of a gas ball valve indicates that it must be used with gas. This color coding helps identify, at a glance, what and for which application a specific valve is meant so it will not be altered or opened by mistake.

· Pilot Tap

A pilot tap is normally a small ancillary tap hole attached to the gas ball valve. It is intended for pressure testing, venting, or sampling. The presence of this pilot tap allows easy access to the gas flow without disrupting the main pipeline for maintenance or safety purposes.

What Makes Gas Ball Valves Different?

    gas ball valve with yellow butterfly handle
    gas ball valve with yellow butterfly handle                            

    Gas ball valves offer a significant advantage over other valves in many applications. They will replace heavy brass gas valves made small and lightweight. These ball valves come in varying sizes and configurations to suit different needs. They work well in hydrocarbon and aerosol, air, and gas systems.

    Most gas ball valves include a quarter-turn system to facilitate operations and create a tight seal due to the ball’s rotation without restriction. When closed, the valve makes a bubble-tight seal and is used to start or stop the flow of many liquids. Ball valves are very often the best way to attach residual conduit devices.

    Metal-seated ball valves perform dutifully in many high-temperature and high-pressure applications. Gas ball valves can shut off and open quickly, allowing great control over high-pressure flows.

    Working Pressure & Temperature

    Temperature range:

    One of the most critical characteristics of a gas ball valve is its temperature resistance. This is crucial in applications where the valve may be subjected to hot or extremely cold gases.

    Brass gas ball valves are highly adjustable, operating within a temperature range of -10˚C to 120˚C. However, it is essential to evaluate the specifications of the gas valve manufacturer before deploying the valve in extreme temperatures to ensure that it operates at its best and is safe.


    Brass gas ball valves are rated at 600 psi or higher. This makes them suitable for residential and specific industrial settings. However, for natural gas applications, its range is up to 125 PSI.

    natural gas valve meter and yellow pipeline for household energy
    natural gas valve meter and yellow pipeline for household energy

    Selecting a Right Gas Ball Valve

    · Size of Gas Ball Valve

    Gas ball valves have various sizes to complete their functions. Gas valves typically have connection port sizes.


    1/4 ”




    • Raw Material

    Gas ball valves are engineered from quality raw materials for safety and strength. Common body materials include brass, stainless steel, and PVC, which display high wear and tear and corrosion resistance and can withstand even the toughest environments.

    The balls are fabricated from stainless steel, chrome-plated brass, or Teflon-coated steel. Seat materials like PTFE, PEEK, and metal provide high wear resistance and good sealing capacity. These materials ensure our valves’ reliable, continuous operation under different conditions, offering prolonged service life and enhanced safety.

    • Flow Characteristics

    If applied, the choice of material in a gas ball valve will determine how much it will alter the gas flow rate and pressure drop. However, the material that will be suitable is the one that offers very little resistance to smooth, efficient flow in a gas system to ensure the best performance.

    • Design

    The design of a gas ball valve is tailored to the application at hand. This includes not only the size of the valve but also the pressure rating and the type of end connection used. Other features include a fire-safe or an anti-static valve.

    • Cavity Relief Mechanism

    The gas ball valve and its cavity relief mechanism cease creating excess pressure within the valve cavity due to the thermal expansion of trapped gas. This feature ensures extra safety, achieved automatically through the pressure relief actions it performs on the valve and pipeline system.

    Ratings Make All the Difference

    brass gas ball valve
    brass gas ball valve

    CSA establishes the ratings for gas ball valves. The evaluations are contingent upon the country (Canada vs. USA) and the location of installation (indoor vs. outdoor).

    · Indoor gas ratings

    The CSA gas ratings for indoor approvals are 5G and ½ PSI. As the name implies, these ratings are exclusively applicable to interior installations. The ratings for residential valves are consistent across Canada and the United States.

    The two ratings are distinct due to their particular applications. The ½ PSI rating is utilized for valves located at appliances, while the 5G rating is designated for valves used in domestic piping systems.

    · Outdoor gas ratings

    A gas valve must be approved by CAN 3.16 in Canada and BRS125G in the USA to be installed outdoors.

    Gas Ball Valve Testing

    Various procedures are implemented during gas ball valve testing to evaluate their performance, integrity, and adherence to industry standards.

    Flow testing: Flow testing evaluates the gas ball valve’s capacity to regulate the gas flow precisely and consistently. The valve’s response to variations in flow conditions, pressure decrease, and flow rate are all measured during this test.

    Leakage testing: Leakage testing is essential to ensure that the gas ball valve maintains a secure seal. It prevents gas leakage that could pose a safety hazard.

    Endurance testing: Endurance testing assesses the gas ball valve’s operational reliability and long-term durability. It entails subjecting the valve to repetitive opening and closing cycles. It also enhances the anticipated lifespan under everyday operating conditions. This testing ensures the valve can withstand frequent use without significant structural integrity or performance degradation.

    Pressure testing: To simulate real-world operating conditions and confirm the valve’s capacity to accommodate the specified pressure rating without leakage or failure, it is subjected to elevated pressures (approximately 1.5 times the rated pressure). In general, pressure tests entail increasing the pressure and monitoring for any indications of leakage or structural integrity issues.

    Water Ball Valve Vs. Gas Ball Valve

    A reduced pressure rating and water-friendly materials are potential characteristics of water ball valves. Particular certifications are necessary for gas ball valves in gas applications. Conversely, water ball valves may not be suitable.

    Major Difference

    Water Ball Valve

    Gas Ball Valve


    PVC, stainless steel, brass

    Bronze, brass, stainless steel

    Best Use

    Traditional ball valve comes most as water, oil, and gas

    Best work for industrial and commercial use

    Sealing Efficiency

    Poor sealing

    Better sealing than a water ball valve

    Maxi Pressure Difference at 20℃

    25 bar-50 bar

    16 bar-50 bar

    Minimum Temperature




    Gas ball valves are crucial for most gas handling systems. They offer reliable flow control and safety. Their ease of use adds to their importance. Key factors in selecting ball valves include flow characteristics, material resistance, and industry standards. These factors ensure high performance and safety. Understanding and maintaining these valves enhances the effectiveness and safety of gas distribution and treatment systems.

    FAQs about Gas Ball Valve

    How Do You Evaluate the Quality and Performance of a Gas Ball Valve?

    Check for quality from the manufacturer’s standing and industry certification, followed by numerous standards in compliance with API, ANSI, ISO, and others. Check technical specifications regarding pressure and temperature ratings, materials, and design features such as anti-static and fire-safe options. Consider warranty conditions and how the ball valve manufacturer will provide after-sale support.

    What Are the Common End Connections for Gas Ball Valves?

    The end connections of gas ball valves are commonly threaded, flanged, or socket welded. Threaded connections are suitable for reasonably small valves, and flanged connections are used with larger valves for high-pressure applications.

    What Are the Normal Threads for Gas Ball Valves?

    thread sealant tape
    Thread sealant tape

    The common thread types used to attach the valve to a piping system are normal threads in gas ball valves. There are, therefore, three main thread types: NPT, BSPT, and BSP. The NPT threads are primarily utilized across North America and are tapered to create a tight seal when tightened.

    BSPT threads are similar to NPT but based on the British standard. In most other countries, especially in Europe, BSPT has gained wide acceptance. Other than BSP, a British standard that has parallel threading and does require, therefore, a sealing washer or O-ring for creating a leak-proof connection, all of the thread above types will be selected based on regional standards, system requirements and compatibility with existing installed piping.


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