Bronze Ball Valves (stainless and Dezincification) 2021

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schafphoto

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I spent a few hours online reading about Lead-Free, Dezincification resistant, Bronze, ATSM B61, 600#, California drinking water approved, white handle, ball valves. There were many to choose from but when I selected USA made, I ended up with just the Apollo 77CFM series at about $33.00 for 3/4 threaded full port-two piece.
20 years ago I put 14 Nibco USA 1/2” and 3/4” ball valves in my old house rehab. Only the one on the hot side of the water heater has needed replacement. A couple have white crystalline fuzz on the body but still operate and do not leak. (Located In crawl space in California, and it never freezes here). I remember they were around $16 at Home Depot. We have City water at 80 psi that is quite hard, which The city treats with chloramines — that I then soften with a residential softener I fill with potassium — my water here burns through WH anode rods every two years.
I’m doing another project now and the home centers still have $15 valves — but cheap imports. And there are lead safe, USA, stainless steel valves available now at around $50 each which I suspect is overkill. I’m leaning toward the bronze Apollo 77CLF ball valves. Any thoughts on those?
Question, if it were your own house, and you wanted to retire there and never revisit the plumbing, what ball valves would you use, and are there any options I missed.
thanks!
 

breplum

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Locally available stocked brass brands I trust, here in the north:
Apollo ( I would just buy the 77LFL, in 3/4 at a wholesaler my cost =$20.53)
Red and White
Jomar
Matco
Viega propress -we use a lot

And I've also been fine with Hodes Co's Shome valves which seem well made.
I avoid home center plumbing imports.
 

schafphoto

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That's very helpful. There's just not much current info out there besides the marketing from manufacturers and Amazon/Lowes/HD reviews.
 

LIBERTYNY

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I 'personally' dont care about a fraction of a percent of lead, and If I did would simply pickle the valve (god bless patina). Otherwise cheap valves tend to fail quickly where quality ball vales should last a lifetime. And HD/Lowes/Mart's stuff is mostly junk even brand names their are at mostly at best seconds. I could never warente anything bought their. I would never put a propress in my home.
Careful of oxidation on valve packings as it can rot the threads making tightening very difficult.
 

sarg

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You can't beat the "trouble free" characteristics of 300 series stainless ............ once you get past the trouble of getting the threads to seal ...... and I guess that problem goes away with practice
 

Twowaxhack

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I use rectorseal Teflon pipe dope on gas pipe. (Stainless)

I use 2 wraps of Teflon tape then a little pipe dope on water.

I don’t have any problems. Stainless can Gall.
 
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