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Thread: Water Shut off valve for residence

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  1. #1
    DIY Member 87vertgt's Avatar
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    Question Water Shut off valve for residence

    So I had to shut off the water to my building this weekend...didnt go so well...

    I turned off the valve inside the residence which worked to a certain point...as there was a small amount of water still coming out.

    Then I turned off the water at the Water meter....maybe slight almost no difference...i didnt wait a couple minutes-still no change.


    From what I heard theres a valve in the side walk that I need a special key?

    where do i get this key? what does it look like? and do you think it will work as far as stopping all water from entering the building?

    Talk to me boyz

  2. #2
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Two issues here. First, the valve inside the house should be changed to a ball valve. These provide a 100% shut off and do not leak. Second. The valve at the meter does require a special "key" These will vary in configuration. Some are a square or rectangular hole, some are a U shape that fits over a T, and there may be others. However, you should realize that most cities prohibit homeowners and sometimes even plumbers from using these keys. The meter is the property of the city and they just don't want citizens turning water on/off. They usually will come and turn the valve for you, but that can take some time. That said, my personal feeling is that for emergencies having a key of your own can prevent alot of damage to your property. I have a "war story" to go with that, but I'll save you from it. You should be able to tell what you need for a meter key either from a rod attached to the meter valve or from the valve itself on the meter. (Depends on how deep the meter is) I had my key made for me by a welder friend out of 1" pipe.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member wmills's Avatar
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    Or you can buy a "key" from one of the big box stores for around 6 buxs. Mine looks like a four foot piece of rebar with a t handle at top and an inverted u at the bottom
    Last edited by wmills; 09-21-2009 at 01:28 PM.

  4. #4
    DIY Member 87vertgt's Avatar
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    thanx for the response gents...


    whats the chances of this valve stopping %100 of the water?

    %50 / %50?

  5. #5
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    That Big Box key does not work with many meters.

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    The main shutoff to the meter probably hasn't been used in years...it could work, but it also could leak a little. If you break it, it could cost you big bucks. Best left alone...
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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