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Friday, July 17th 2015, 5:38pm

Can't shut off water

I have a joint leaking below a valve - underground. I managed to dig out enough space to replace the leaking joint, but I am not able to shut off the water. I've tried the irrigation valve shut off as well as the whole house water supply, but the leak is still spraying water. I tried the back flow valve but can't get it to move (and it's in a hard to reach location). In the past when I've changed sprinkler valves, there has always been a slow stream of water out of the line, making it difficult to glue pvc.

Any ideas?



Posts: 2,393

Location: USA


Friday, July 17th 2015, 6:38pm

Did you turn off the valve at the water meter?

You should try again to turn the valve off at the backflow. Use a pair of channel locks. Those can be hard to turn sometimes but it should turn.

Sometimes the water will continue to squirt out of a crack for a while even with the water supply shut off. You could try releasing the pressure from a hose bib somewhere in the yard. Maybe there's a second manifold where you can open a valve to release the pressure. Or just turn on one of the valves at the cracked manifold to drain the water as much as you can.
Look for a downstream faucet to divert the water to.

An old plumbers trick is to use some squishy white bread to seal the pipe then do the repair quickly. After you're done with the repair blow out the bread. You might want to disassemble the last valve on that manifold or cut it off then flush out the bread.

There's also a product called wet n dry glue. It will help a lot if there's water present. I personally try to avoid relying on wet n dry but I've been known to use it.

When you turn the water back on make sure to get all the air out of the line by turning on valves and faucets.


Friday, July 17th 2015, 10:05pm

Backflow valve

The back flow valve won't budge and turning water off at the meter doesn't work either. I will have to go ahead and use a couple of push-on connectors to make the repair.



Posts: 2,393

Location: USA


Friday, July 17th 2015, 11:35pm

Maybe you should install a shut off valve that works.


Saturday, July 18th 2015, 12:28am

Well, I guess I should. I also measured the water pressure, and it's coming in at 102psi! Guess my next call is to the city water folks. I've never even looked at the back flow valve in 20 years. So much for trying to save money by doing it myself. thanks for your help.


Supreme Member

Posts: 5,330

Location: Metro NYC


Saturday, July 18th 2015, 10:00am

If nowhere in the supply chain is a valve that will shut off a hundred percent, you definitely need to have one installed. Is there a shutoff valve upstream and downstream of the water meter?

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