Ball Valve vs Slide Valve: What is the Difference?

What is a Ball Valve? 

A ball valve is a valve that allows you to control the water through your firefighting nozzle. It is designed to be used fully open or fully closed, though some firefighters will gate the valve, or close it part way, to create turbulence and break their stream.  

What is a Slide Valve? 

A slide valve is another type of valve that allows you to control the flow of water through a firefighting nozzle. The main difference between a slide valve and a ball valve is that a slide valve is made to operate in any position with little disruption in flow quality. 

What Does a Slide Valve do in Your Automatic Nozzle? 

An automatic nozzle is a constant pressure, variable flow firefighting nozzle. When a slide valve is integrated into it, you can control the flow by opening and closing the valve to one of several detent positions. Since the nozzle maintains pressure for you, you can use the slide valve in any position, limiting your flow rate, but maintaining pressure without the need for your pump operator to make changes. 

Continue learning about different firefighting nozzles with us!  

Learn how a smoothbore nozzle works here!  

Looking for information on an automatic fire nozzle? Learn how automatic nozzles work here.  

Explore how fixed flow nozzles work here or explore the selectable nozzle with this video