As do-it-yourself home repair person, or even a professional installer, having a good understanding of the different types of PVC check valves on the market can help you in selecting the right part of the job.
There are many applications that use check valves, which can also go by a variety of different names including a non-return valve, a one-way valve, or a clack valve. As the names implies, the purpose of any check valve is to allow a liquid, or less commonly a gas, to flow through the system but only go in one direction.
How a Check Valve Works
There are several different types of check valves available, including air diaphragms, ball check valves, swing check valves and compression swing or diaphragm spring check valves. At FlexPVC, you will find both PVC valves as well as anti-corrosion stainless steel or Hastelloy options.
In essence all PVC check valves, or any check valves, operate using the same operating principles. Since they are simple valves that operate based on flow pressure they don’t require any calibration or specialized installation. This also makes them a low-cost option for any type of system where fluid or gas flow will only be needed in one direction.
All check valves have to be installed with the direction of flow in mind. As the liquid or gas moves through the system, the pressure forces the valve, or the ball, or the diaphragm to open, allowing the liquid to flow in the desired direction. Should the system fail past the check valve and the liquid or gas try to reverse direction the increasing pressure on the downside of the valve simply causes the valve, ball or diaphragm to reverse position, effectively sealing the valve and preventing backflow.
What to Consider
Depending on the use, and the size of the pipe in the system, there may be more than one option in PVC check valves for any given requirement. There are some valves that come in a variety of colors to match with the corresponding PVC pipe. This is important in areas where the system is visible and aesthetics are important.
There are also clear PVC check valves that can also be found in white or gray, but the clear provides the ability to see the valve and ensure that it is allowing the flow of liquid or gas through the system, which can be very important in identifying system failures or verifying system components are in top working order.