Their main feature is ductility: ball valves for water are among the most used in plumbing systems - for example in domestic taps - but we also find ball valves in various industrial applications where air, water or other liquids are conveyed. In general, to stop the flow of a fluid or isolate parts of a system, this type of valve uses a spherical shutter equipped with a cylindrical cavity coaxial to the flow. A 90° rotation of the shutter, through the operating lever, allows the opening and closing of the valve.
The ball shutter mechanism requires perfect adherence to the sealing seat, that is, optimal contact between the ball and the gaskets placed on the valve body. The gaskets are two rings in plastic material, for example Teflon which guarantees excellent resistance to temperature and contact with chemical substances.
Ball valves can be full bore, when the diameter of the shutter hole corresponds to that of the pipeline, or with reduced bore. The total passage is one of the strengths of these valves, together with the speed of opening and closing. Ball valves with brass shutters are used for low pressures, while those in 316 stainless steel are ideal for high pressures and aggressive liquids.