I have a valve on a hot water line that "appears" to be stuck just a little bit open. I don't want to risk breaking it so want to turn off the water earlier on the line. The problem is that when I tried to close THAT valve (CW) the stem just about popped out and into my hand. The line was full pressure (and HOT) but I managed to reverse the direction (CCW) and get the stem to go back in. Googling this doesn't come up with anything. I can't believe this is a unique situation. I don't have an earlier valve on the line I can turn off so I need to work out a handling.

  • What kind of valves are we talking about here? Globe, gate, ball? Aug 29, 2017 at 22:14
  • It's just a 3/4" gate valve.
    – Jerry P.
    Aug 29, 2017 at 23:19
  • If you can shut off the supply water to allow for a quick fix you could buy a compression connection valve in a ball or washer type valve, shut off the supply, reduce the pressure in the line, cut the copper and replace the valve. I don't necessarily like that type of valve but they work for a quick fix
    – d.george
    Aug 30, 2017 at 8:57

1 Answer 1


The parts below this stem have corroded off. You will need to turn the water ahead of this valve even if it means shutting down the whole water system. If that is impossible because it is in a hospital or a production line setting, then you could freeze the line with dry ice or with a freeze kit as long as the flow can be stopped long enough to get the line to freeze.

  • It's a gate valve that is sweated in. What are the odds that it's just the stem that needs replacing? That would make the freeze a good option.
    – Jerry P.
    Aug 29, 2017 at 23:22
  • If you're pretty sure it's a gate valve, try lightly tapping all around the gate with a hammer. LIGHTLY. You might be able to bust the gate loose.
    – NPM
    Aug 29, 2017 at 23:47
  • 1
    You generally can't just replace the stem. There are hundreds (thousands?) of different makes and manufacturers seem to change the designs over time. Aug 29, 2017 at 23:59
  • If this is from the HOT supply, you should be able to close off the COLD. Depressurize the hot line. Go to work,
    – noybman
    Aug 30, 2017 at 2:52

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