We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Gate Valve?

M. McGee
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
About Mechanics is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At About Mechanics, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A gate valve is a type of stopper placed on a pipe system to block flow. These valves simply prevent the passage of liquid using a wedge that slides in and out of the pipe. In most cases, the gate valve is designed to be completely opened or completely closed. As a result, these valves are rarely used as a means of flow control; they generally just stop flow completely or are unused. Partially-closed gate valves may increase pressure in a system in unpredictable ways or cause vibration in the liquid.

The construction of a gate valve is quite simple. They generally have two threaded connectors that hook into the pipe system. It is possible for a gate connector to have more than two connections, but this is very rare. A post, called a bonnet, rises above the connectors; this area holds the stopping wedge and the mechanism for raising and lowering it. Lastly, a handle, which controls the rising and lowering of the stopper, sits on top of the bonnet.

When the handle is turned, it moves the stopper inside the valve. The stopper slides down into the pipe and blocks liquid from passing. The valve will typically indicate the position of the stopper on the outside of the valve, or the handle will screw in and out to show the relative height of the stopper. The valve casing is slightly wider than the connected pipes, allowing the stopper to totally cover the opening and make it completely liquid-tight.

The method used to connect the bonnet to the valve has an impact on the use of the gate valve. If the bonnet is simply screwed on, the valve will work well for light-duty applications. Bolted bonnets work well for heavy-duty jobs, but cannot be taken apart for repair or cleaning. Union-bond bonnets may be taken apart easily, but they also have the highest rate of leaking. The last style is a pressure-sealed bonnet—it works well in many different environments, but it is also the most expensive style.

Since a gate valve is supposed to be either all the way open or all the way closed, it shouldn’t have any impact on overall pressure. A properly-designed valve will be the exact same size on the inside as the pipe, since any narrowing or widening of the opening will change the speed of the flow. When the gate is closed, the pressure should be constant in the system, as there is no movement at all.

About Mechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
M. McGee
By M. McGee , Former Writer
Mark McGee is a skilled writer and communicator who excels in crafting content that resonates with diverse audiences. With a background in communication-related fields, he brings strong organizational and interpersonal skills to his writing, ensuring that his work is both informative and engaging.

Discussion Comments

M. McGee

M. McGee

Former Writer

Mark McGee is a skilled writer and communicator who excels in crafting content that resonates with diverse audiences....
Learn more
About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

About Mechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.