New tool extracts ball valves in seconds

Engineers at Westinghouse Savannah River Company (WSRC) have developed an easy, quick method for unseating and removing a ball valve from a process line. Using a simple, sliding impact tool, this method shortens labour time, reduces maintenance cost, and increases worker safety. Ball valves are seated between gaskets in a housing with tight dimensional tolerances to provide secure, leak-proof seals. Removal of the valves for repair, maintenance, or replacement is time consuming. Current methods of prying valves loose may result in damage to the outer surface of the valves. With the new ball valve extractor tool, workers can unseat and remove a ball valve in seconds. The easy, two-step method prevents damage to the outer surface of the valve, extending the life of the valve and sealing gaskets. The tool is equally useful with ball valve assemblies that are covered with process residue, which can make conventional removal of ball valves even more difficult.

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