How To Choose In-Line Valves

In-line valves start, stop or regulate the flow of water, gas or other materials through pipes

How To Choose In-Line Valves Buying Guide

In-line valves are commonly installed within a run of pipes to help manage the flow at various points along the line. They can also regulate the flow, prevent backflows or relieve water pressure.

This buying guide highlights the different types of In-line valves, along with their materials, connections and applications.


There are 5 primary In-line valve types: Gate, Ball, Globe, Butterfly and Check valves

The table below breaks down the types of valves and their uses:

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Valve Design Applications Points to Consider


  • Starting and stopping flow
  • Regulating flow
  • Temperature range may be limited
  • Available with auxiliary drains


  • Starting and stopping flow
  • Regulating flow
  • May be used for liquids and air
  • Durable and economical


  • Preventing backflow
  • Available in multiple designs
  • May be used for fluid, air or gas


  • Starting and stopping flow
  • Rising stems indicate position
  • May be used for water, air and oil


  • Regulating flow
  • Available in multiple configurations
  • Use bolted bonnets for heavy-duty

Materials and Connections

Most valves are comprised of metal or plastic materials

  • Gate valves feature metal to metal construction and do not allow bubble-tight sealing, but can be utilized for hot and cold water, air or oil.
  • Ball valves are made from metal, ceramic or plastic and are ideal for regulating flow with bubble-tight sealing, while requiring only a quarter-turn to open or close completely.
  • Globe valves are configured in straight, angle and cross flow, allowing for versatile installation options, and feature a bonnet that prevents leaks.
  • Butterfly valves provide a tight seal to minimize leakage and are comprised of stainless steel, aluminum or plastic.
  • Check valves are designed to prevent backflow to stop contaminated water from entering your drinking supply, and are made from plastic, brass, stainless steel or bronze.