Keeping koi and the pond healthy can mean pump and filt […]
Keeping koi and the pond healthy can mean pump and filter service.
Garden ponds usually have at least one ball valve attached to the plumbing pvc ball valve so you can easily shut off the water flow to the pump and filter when service is required. Ball valves have winged handles -- usually red or blue -- that turn a ball inside the valve body to close off the water flow inside the pipes. The ball and handle might require lubrication if the valve becomes difficult to turn. It's easiest to lubricate the ball valve before gluing it to the connecting PVC pipes, but you can still lubricate it even after installation.
Brush silicone lubricant thoroughly over all inside parts of the ball valve before installation, focusing the application around the ball inside and the walls surrounding the bulb. Silicone lubricant won't harm potable water and is also commonly used to lubricate O-rings inside the pump. After lubricating the ball valve and allowing the lubricant to dry, you can connect the valve permanently to the PVC pipes, using PVC primer and glue.
Spray penetrating lubricant around the ball valve handle, at the point where the colored handle meets the pipe portion of the ball valve. Turn the knob back and forth several times so the lubricant can work its way through this tight crack and down around the ball. This is the only way to access the ball inside without cutting through the pipe. Use this type of lubricant sparingly.
Cut the connecting PVC pipe about 2 to 3 inches outside the union where the pipe meets the ball valve body, using a hack saw. Apply silicone lubricant thoroughly over all inside parts of the ball valve. Install a PVC pipe union fitting to connect the PVC pipe that you cut, using a fitting that fits the size of the pipe in your plumbing system. Cut out a section of the pipe that is equal to the width of the screw collar on the union. Attach the union to the pipes by applying PVC primer and PVC glue to the outside of the pipes and inside of the union hub ends. Push the union onto the pipes. This union fitting has a screw-type collar that unscrews for easy access to the ball valve without the need to cut the pipe in the future.
Penetrating lubricant spray
Union plumbing fitting
Before cutting into the pipe, you must shut off the water flow. If you're unable to turn off the pump, shut off the main water supply valve at your house.
If this is a new pond installation and you're lubricating the ball valve before use, install a union fitting on the line at the time of installation so you can access the ball valve easily in the future, if needed.