Not to be confused with 3-PIECE valves, this is a 304 Stainless Ball Valve with three input/output ports. While the price tag is a little shocking, it effectively replaces two or more two-port valves, a tee, and several close nipples. Most of all, it simplifies flow changeover and reduces hose connect/ disconnect actions. We guarantee this is the highest quality 3-way valve available for less than $50.
The tricky part in integrating a 3-way valve into your brewery plans is to decide between the L-ball and T-ball versions. If you think of now a normal 2-port ball valve works, a ball is positioned inside the valve that has a bore through hole. When the hole is inline with both I/O ports, the valve flows. When it's perpendicular, the flow stops.
This L-ball 3-way valve has a ball with 2 holes bored at 90 degree angles to form an "L", hence the name. That means the flow on the side port of the valve can be directed to EITHER of the remaining two ports. The ball can also be rotated further to stop all flow. The most common use for this style is to select the inflow to a pump from two different sources or direct the outflow of of a pump to either of two destinations. This task is usually accomplished by using quick disconnects and physically moving source/destination ports.
NOTE: the picture showing flow diagrams contain both the T and L style valves. This item is the L style depicted on the bottom of the diagram. The only orientation that is NOT shown on the diagram is where the L dead ends and stops flow.
We recommend that you DO NOT take this valve apart to clean it. The three seats are lapped in position and removal and repositioning of the seats into different positions WILL LIKELY cause the valve to leak.