THE PVC BALL VALVE T-WING HANDLE AND ASSOCIATED PROBLEMS
PVC Ball Valves have been in use for 3 to 4 decades. As valves go they are very desirable; minimal leak, easy to install and cost effective. They are found in residential, commercial, and industrial plumbing installations. They have become the standard for residential pool, and spa plumbing configurations and they are a standard fixture on Marine (boating) water and waste routing hardware.
ALL being said there is an "Achilles Heel" to these valves - the T-WING HANDLE. The problem is particularly noticeable in the 1" and larger valves. As the valve ages the ability to rotate the wing handle to ON or OFF becomes stiffer. To add to the problem, as the handle ages, it becomes more brittle; additionally, the plumbing configuration can be awkward making it hard to get a good grip on the handle. The typical solution is to employ a crescent wrench or similar device on one of the wings of the handle in an attempt to rotate it. This asymmetrical force often results with the wing section of the valve handle failing and breaking off.
PURPOSE OF THE "DOGLEG" HANDLE
Though simple in design this wrench applies a symmetrical uniform force to both sides of the wing handle. It will even work if one or both of the wings are broken off, so long as there is some stump of the wing remaining.
The key hole on the wrench is just large enough to fit over the center HUB of the wing handle. The two slots are wide enough to snuggly capture the wings or wing stumps. The extended "Dog Leg" remains on plane with the initial section of the handle with an additional 20 to 30 degree bend. This increases the handle length, thus applied torque/leverage, while minimizing rotational swing radius.
THE BOTTOM LINE
The Ball Valve Wrench will make turning those sticky ball valve T-Handles feel like they are better than brand new. This wrench is a MUST have for pool, spa, or boat owners, or for maintenance companies that service these ball valves.
If you have a pool or plumbing system that employ these type of ball valves you know that it makes you cringe when you take a channel lock to the "stuck T-Wing" and you hope it does not break.
This will even work if you have had that "bummer" moment when you have broken the "T-Handles" off the ball valve.