How to Install a Check Valve in a Drain


Water and fluid pumps within a house typically operate in one direction. The water will flow in the opposite direction once pumping ceases, causing damage to the pump. A check valve is a section of piping that allows for the water to flow in only one direction. Check valves come in a number of varieties for dozens of different applications. Installing a check valve protects your equipment from damage and only requires about 20 minutes to install.

Things You'll Need

  • Check valve
  • Hacksaw
  • Angle grinder
  • Pipe cutter
  • PVC cement and primer
  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Propane torch
  • Solder
  • Soldering flux
  • Sandpaper
  • Teflon tape

Prepare the Pipe

  • Trace the pipe and locate the position for the check valve.

  • Cut the pipe, using an angle grinder, pipe cutter or hacksaw, depending on the type of pipe. Unscrew the pipe from the joint, for a steel pipe, using an adjustable wrench. Use the hacksaw to cut into PVC or small, iron pipe. Use the angle grinder to cut larger pipes. The pipe cutter also works on brass pipe.

  • Smooth the cut edge on any pipe that you cut, using any grit of sandpaper.

Install the Check Valve

  • Screw the check valve into place for steel piping that you disconnected at a joint. Wrap the end of the pipe with Teflon tape and use the adjustable wrench to tighten the check valve into place. Connect the pipe at both ends of the check valve.

  • Spread soldering flux around the end of the cut brass pipe and attach the check valve. Heat the joint with a propane torch and apply solder to the joint. Go around the whole joint with the solder to ensure the joint pulls the solder into the connection.

  • Prepare the cut ends of the PVC pipe with primer. Apply liberally to both cut ends. Apply the PVC cement onto both cut ends of the pipe and attach the check valve to the line. Twist the check valve around until the PVC piping is fully seated within the check valve. Twist the check valve a quarter turn to ensure proper adhesion of the PVC cement.

  • Install the check valve to cut iron or larger pipes. Check valves for this size joint to the pipe by way of rubber tubing with retaining clamps permanently attached to the tubing. Slide the rubber tubing over one end of the cut piping and then over the other end. Secure the clamps by tightening the associated screw on the clamp.

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  • Photo Credit Andrew Howe/Photodisc/Getty Images
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