Motorized Ball Valves

A motorized ball valve, also called an electric ball valve, is designed to control the fluid flow. These valves come with electric actuators, which allow them to open and close as per the application’s requirement. As compared with other solenoid ball valves, electrically actuated ball valves support high flow rates and are suitable for quick actions, including urgent shut-off and anti-water hammer.

At Cannon Water Technology, we offer a wide variety of motorized ball valves ideal for various water, wastewater, and other industrial applications involving fluid transfers and dosing. Most of the ball valves we offer are manufactured by us, and some of them are sourced from top-brand manufacturers like Lakos.

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Types of Motorized Valves

There are three types of motorized valves used to move fluids from pipelines. 

  1. Linear Motorized Valve: This type of motorized ball valve contains a linear valve consisting of a diaphragm to control the fluid flow.
  2. Quarter Turn Motorized Valve: As the name suggests, these valves allow the port to open at an angle of 90 degrees. In addition, the working of quarter-turn motorized actuators is based on plugs, butterfly valves, and ball valves to control fluid movement.
  3. Multi-Turn motorized Valve: These valves can perform more than one rotation. The actuators in this valve use gates, ball valves, and so on to open and close the valves.

Basic Structure of Motorized Ball Valves

Motorized ball valves, commonly called electrically actuated ball valves, have several key components that control fluid flow through a pipeline. Here is a basic overview of the motorized ball valve structure. 

  • Body: This is one critical component of the electrically actuated ball valves. It is the outer casing that houses all the internal components. The body is made of materials such as brass, stainless steel, or PVC, depending on the application and the type of fluid being controlled.
  • Ball: It is a spherical component inside the valve, which rotates to control the fluid flow. The ball allows fluid to pass through when it is opened and blocks the flow when it's closed. 
  • Actuator: It is a crucial part of motorized valves responsible for moving the ball within the valve. It can be an electric motor or a similar device that provides the force needed to open or close the valve. 
  • Power Supply: These valves require a power source to operate the actuator. This power is provided by electricity, and the valves often operate on low-voltage DC power, commonly 12V or 24V. 
  • Control Mechanism: This interface allows the user to operate and control the valve. This can take various forms such as buttons, manual switches, remote controls, or more advanced systems like programmable logic controllers (PLCs) in automated setups.
  • Position Indicator: Most motorized valves have a position indicator. It provides visual feedback on whether the valve is open or closed. This is useful for operators and maintenance personnel to assess the valve's status quickly.
  • Connections: Motorized valves have two ports - Inlet and outlet ports. They are places where the fluid enters and exits the valve. The type and size of connections to use depends on the specific applications. 
  • Manual Override: Some valves come with a manual override feature, allowing them to be operated manually in case of a power failure or for maintenance purposes.

 The structure of each valve may vary slightly based on the manufacturer and the specific design features. 

How Does a Motorized Electric Ball Valve Work?

A motorized ball valve is equipped with an electric motor that generates torque transmitted by the shaft. This torque allows a rotary moment in the valve, which is controlled by an electric actuator. The electric motor in actuated ball valves rotates the ball with a centered hole to control the flow of movement. The valve is completely open when this hole is parallel to the flow. On the other hand, when the hole is perpendicular to the flow, the valve is closed. Motorized or electric ball valves are ideally used for large volumes of flow.

What Materials Are Used for Manufacturing Motorized Ball Valves?

Motorized ball valves are mainly made up of the following materials:

  • Brass: Brass is one of the most durable metals suitable for making electric actuated ball valves. It is also ideal for different temperatures, types of media flow, pressures, environments, and so on.
  • Carbon Steel: Carbon steel is a strong and durable material used for manufacturing motorized ball valves. It is ideal for applications where the valve needs to withstand high pressures and temperatures up to 400 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit without deforming or breaking.
  • Stainless Steel: Stainless steel is slightly more expensive as compared to brass. However, it is lead-free and corrosion-resistant, which makes it an ideal choice for drinking water applications.

Advantages of Motorized Ball Valves

The following advantages of our motorized ball valves make them popular among various industries:

  • Ideal for Heavy Fluid Flows: Motor operated ball valves are mainly designed for heavy fluid flows owing to their design and construction. The ball within the valve provides a large, unobstructed passage when fully open. This allows for efficient and unrestricted flow of fluids, even in applications with high flow rates.
  • Anti-water Hammer: Water hammer is a pressure wave resulting from a sudden change in the fluid flow and velocity. To avoid this, motorized actuation is implemented as it allows for controlled and gradual valve opening and closing, thus reducing the flow changes that lead to water hammer.
  • Simple Installation: These valves have a two-wire connection that simplifies the electrical wiring needed to operate motorized ball valves. This streamlined connection eases the process of integrating the valves into existing control systems. 
  • Cost Effectiveness: Motorized ball valves can be cost effective when considered for long-term use. While the initial upfront cost may be higher compared to manual valves, the automation capabilities, precision control, and reduced maintenance costs over time can make them a cost-effective choice. 
  • Low Maintenance: The electric actuator is often the only moving part in the valves, reducing the risk of wear and tear associated with manual valves. Durable materials and the absence of complex components contribute to lower maintenance issues.
  • Compatibility with Automated Systems: These electric actuated ball valves are known for their compatibility with automated systems. They can be easily integrated into automation systems to be a part of a process, controlled remotely, and programmed to respond to specific conditions. This makes them ideal for industrial processes or building automation systems.

Electric Ball Valves vs Manual Ball Valves – Know the Real Difference

Both electric and manual ball valves are used to control the fluid flow in pipelines. However, they differ in their control mechanisms and operation. The following are some differentiating factors between them.

  • Operation: Manual valves are manually operated by turning a handle connected to the ball inside the valve. When the handle is turned, it rotates the ball to open or close the valve. Oppositely, electric ball valves are operated by an electric motor. The motor can be controlled remotely, allowing for automated and precise valve control without manual intervention.
  • Speed of Operation: In the case of the manual valve, the speed of opening or closing the valve depends on the operator's manual effort. Electric ball valves open or close more quickly and with greater precision. This is especially important in processes that require rapid adjustments or fine tuning.
  • Cost: Manual valves are less expensive than electric ball valves. This makes them a cost-effective choice for simple applications. Electric valves are expensive due to the additional components like electric actuators and control systems. However, the automation and excellent control capabilities may justify the high cost in specific applications.
  • Application and Industry: Manual valves find applications where occasional adjustments to the flow are sufficient. They are commonly used in small-scale systems or applications where automation is not critical. Electrically actuated ball valves are ideal where precise control, frequent adjustments, or automation are paramount. Industries such as chemical processing, water treatment, and HVAC systems often use these valves for their automated and remotely controllable features.

The pointers mentioned above will help you in making a firm decision. Choosing between these two also depends on the specific application requirements. 

Applications of Our Motorized Ball Valves

Motorized ball valves have the following applications:

  • Filtration system purging
  • Condensation line purge
  • Water treatment blow down
  • Flow control valve
  • Drain Valve
  • Centrifugal separator purge valve
  • Two-way motorized ball valve
  • HVAC motorized ball valve

Cannon Water Technology provides a wide range of electric actuated ball valves for water or other applications with liquid flow or transfer. We understand the importance of your industrial applications, and therefore we strive to serve you with the best quality products you can rely on. We manufacture motorized ball valves with high precision to meet your application requirements. In case you have any queries regarding our electric ball valves, please feel free to get in touch with us. Our customer support team will answer your queries and help you throughout the purchasing process.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Prospective clients and visitors often have questions regarding motorized ball valves. We have answered some of them here. 

  • Is it Possible to Manually Operate Motorized Ball Valves?

Many motorized valves have a manual override feature. This allows the operator to have access in the event of a power failure or for maintenance purposes. This feature provides flexibility and ensures continued functionality in case of electrical issues. 

  • Can Motorized Ball Valves be Used Outdoors?

Yes. Motorized ball valves are made with materials that withstand exposure to environmental elements such as rain, sunlight, temperature variations, and so on. 

  • What is the Control Mechanism for Motorized Ball Valves?

There are different control mechanisms used for motorized valves. This includes remote control devices, manual switches, PLCs, and automated systems. The type of control mechanism to use depends on application specific requirements.  

  • How to Maintain Motorized Ball Valves?

Motorized valves are low on maintenance. The basic requirements comprise periodically inspecting seals, lubricating moving parts, and checking electrical connections. 

  • Is it Possible to Retrofit Motorized Ball Valves into Existing Systems?

Yes, motorized ball valves can easily be retrofitted into existing systems. They can replace manual valves in many applications and offer the benefits of automation without significant modifications to the overall system.

  • What is the Typical Lifespan of a Ball Valve?

The operating life of a ball valve depends on various factors such as usage, material, and environmental conditions. A well-maintained valve can last for years.