There is an old gas pipe for a dryer unit that hasn't been used in maybe 15-20 years. The pipe seems to be of good integrity (as good as anything else in the house) however the valve which is currently perpendicular to the pipe (closed position) is stuck. It may be painted shut but I can imagine that there may also be corrosion at the pivot joint.

I have only tried moving it by hand. I plan to chip and scrub away any paint that I think may interfere with turning. Then wasn't sure what sort of lubricant to use and if I should try a gorilla wrench or avoid any tools?

I assume there is no flint and steel in the ball valve that I should worry about (kidding). But seriously, wondering if the ball itself could fail when I crank the valve if there is corrosion gluing it. Currently in the closed position no gas coming out so it's doing its job.
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6 Answers 6


There is not much to fail on that valve, i think you are correct that it is the paint. Put a little paint stripper on and let is soak for while. Clean it all up and run the edge of a flat blade screwdriver around where the valve handle meets the valve body.

Find the closest or the main gas shut off and have the appropriate wrench ready at that location in case you need to quickly shut of the gas supply. check with your gas company before you do this, some times they will have to come out to reset the diaphragm after a meter has been shut off

Get the appropriate size pipe cap and use a pipe wrench to put it on the open end of the pipe with pipe dope so you can work on the valve.

Get a pipe wrench in order to secure the pipe assembly from moving while you work on the valve handle. Take an adjustable wrench ( crescent wrench ) and adjust it so it fits over the handle, The longer the better for leverage. Have a helper hold the pipe assembly from moving with the pipe wrench and then try to gently get the valve handle to move, use caution and just try to move it a little. IF it starts to move then gently make short movements in both direction until you feel that is moving freely. If you feel you are not getting it to budge then stop.

With all of that being said, i would suggest you ( or a pro ) just replace it with a modern 1/4 turn ball valve and not mess with the old one.

If you do then have all of your new fittings, dope and valve on site and ready to install. You will also need a test solution of soapy water to test the connections for leaks once the gas is turned on. You can find a small bottle of the solution in the plumbing section of your home improvement center. ( a pro will have everything need to do this.)

Check with the municipality and see if you are allowed to work on gas supply in your town.

Find the gas shut off up stream or if not then at the meter and shut it off. Check with your gas company before you do this, some times they will have to come out to reset the diaphragm after a meter has been shut off

You will need Two pipe wrenches. Take it off at the threaded nipple coming out of the 90 elbow. The nipple may come out, replace it if it does. Put new nipple on the valve and then the appropriate fitting for the gas appliance you will be connecting, Use pipe dope on all the connections.

Did i mention, check with your gas company?

Disclaimer: I am not a plumber i just play one on the intertubes, proceed at your own risk.


First off, in many areas it's illegal to hook up gas appliances. The gas company usually does it. Secondly, I wouldn't mess with the valve, I'd have it replaced, again, something you might not be able to do yourself.

As far as cleaning or "unsticking" the valve, I'm a big fan of those Dremel drills with the rotary wire brush. It will strip the paint right off. Make sure you wear safety glasses and a dust mask. Good luck


That type of valve has a tapered plug

they are easy to disassemble, so the paint won't stop it from working for long.

Clean off the paint with a wire brush then use a ring wrench to loosen the nut on the bottom below the handle then try the handle if it's still stuck place a bridge over the handle and lift the nut using a clamp over the bridge.

finally lubricate it with grease and tighten it back up.


You can move it with a big wrench - DO NOT DO IT. I would remove the nipple and put in a plug to double seal the line . If you want to install a new appliance , put in a new valve. ( regulations permitting).


It is not too hard to un-stick this gas valve if you have the expertise and it is allowed by the "code" in your area. If you don't have the expertise I would call an appliance repair shop or the gas company and have them replace it. Heres how; First, turn off the gas in the house so you don't blow yourself up or cause a disaster, loosen the bottom nut, tap the bottom of the plug upward to loosen the tapered plug, remove the tapered plug, lubricate with a special gas valve grease , and re-install the plug, job done. This job is not for the homeowner since it entails natural gas or other explosive gas.


Try loosening the nut on the underside of the valve slightly try to turn it. You may need to tighten the nut again when done.

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