We have this pipe that cracked, and we wanted to fix it. One plumber claimed not only does the pipe need to be fixed but this shut off valve also needed to be replaced.

Mind you, he made this claim, simply from looking at this same image. What do you guys think? I don't know what kind of valve this is, but all he said was this valve would eventually fail and needed to be replaced with the same job. Thoughts?

enter image description here

  • 4
    Where is the crack? If the valve was exposed to the crack it may be damaged, or he may have suggested replacing it based on age. A 1/4-turn ball valve would typically be used in a spot like this, these older valves are less reliable. If you're already replacing adjacent pipes, it would probably be a good idea to replace this valve now as well. May 4, 2022 at 21:14
  • 2
    It is a shut off valve. It only needs to be replaced if it is not doing it's job or leaking. It is old and might fail soon, and if he is working on the pipe anyway, it should only add a few bucks to the job.
    – crip659
    May 4, 2022 at 21:14
  • 14
    Voting to close as opinion-based. If I was a plumber and was going to spend an hour or two doing this job I absolutely would not want to work with or reinstall a crusty POS valve that can (and should) be easily replaced for a few more bucks. It's a pain to do the job with old parts, and it's more likely to lead to a callback if not done.
    – isherwood
    May 4, 2022 at 21:16
  • 2
    Paint the valve; stops people moaning about it. Close and open the valve occasionally; keeps it in working order
    – Caius Jard
    May 5, 2022 at 9:58
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    @Chuck $10 for the valve and $45 for installing it?
    – Josh Part
    May 5, 2022 at 16:50

1 Answer 1


Yes, it needs to be replaced. It is severely corroded and will probably fail when the pipe is replaced. It looks to be a 3/4 inch gate valve, and a new one will be cheaper than having to take the piping apart again later.

  • Yes, have it replaced. It looks like it's a compression fitting to a copper pipe, minutes to remove and replace.
    – JACK
    May 4, 2022 at 21:50
  • 11
    Also, spend a few extra dollars to put in a quarter-turn valve. The older compression valves tend to get to be very hard to turn if they have not been operated in a while (common on shut off valves).
    – DoxyLover
    May 4, 2022 at 22:28
  • 4
    In general whenever I address old plumbing I always replace old gate valves. New high quality valves are cheap and simple to install. The plumber's time is expensive and shutting down water is annoying.
    – Matthew
    May 5, 2022 at 0:50
  • Save the valve. Worth cleaning and replacing the packing if needed. Valve quality today suffers compared to valves produced 30 years ago. I cringe at the number and differing types of valves I've pitched over the past 30 years just to learn they could have been rebuilt for less than the cost of a cup of coffee. May 5, 2022 at 1:48
  • 2
    I'm a victim of experience here. I have a home built in 68 and an office built in the 50s. The valve quality of the original valves were incredible (many lasted 40+ years). Up to about 2005 I could still find decent brass valves. Most made right here in town Nibco, Nacogdoches, TX Since then with all the hardware stores closed in favor of big-box stores, if I can find the valve I need -- it's total inferior crap. Thankfully all exterior faucets were frostless - so I was forced to rebuild those. Old brass is better brass. May 5, 2022 at 4:19

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