Problem turning off main shut off -- curb stop

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by jimsimm, Nov 21, 2009.

  1. jimsimm

    jimsimm New Member

    Nov 21, 2009
    I need to turn off my water at the curb to replace my shut-off valve in the house (my water meter is in the house, not buried outside). I bought a wrench silmilar to this one: but when I opened the hex nut on the cover outside at the curb I find that I have access to a 1 1/2 inch metal conduit or tube that has a small metal rod (less than 1/2 inch diameter) that seems to extend into that tube about 15 inches below ground level. It's hard to explain exactly what it looks like but needless to say, the wrench I bought does not fit down this narrow opening nor would it seem to do any good if it did as it doesn't seem that this metal rod would turn. It must need to be pushed down, pulled up, or pushed in, the nearest I can figure. Does anyone know how this shut off works? The cover on it says QSP water, if that's a help.

    I know I can call the water company, but they will charge $50 to turn it off and on and will only do it during business hours and I need to make the repair in the evening or weekends. (and this is New Jersey, so don't even suggest I call a plumber).
  2. johnjh2o1

    johnjh2o1 Plumbing Contractor for 49 years

    Aug 9, 2009
    You need to turn the small metal rod 1/4 turn clockwise.

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  4. nhmaster

    nhmaster Master Plumber

    Jul 30, 2008
    Tech. Instructor
    S. Maine
    In most municipalities it is not legal for you to mess with the curb stop.
  5. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Jun 22, 2009
    Red Seal Journeyman Plumber & Licensed Gas Fitter
    Penticton, BC
    I'm a professional service plumber and I don't even like cranking on the curb stops... why? Because if I break it then I'm paying for the repairs/damages it does.

    No thanks.

    $50 is cheap insurance against this kind of mistake or accident.
  6. davesnothome

    davesnothome DIY Member

    Jul 31, 2009
    Ontario, Canada
    Maybe the tool you have is no good. It needs to be hollow to fit over the centre rod? Usually they slide the tool right over that centre rod all the way to the bottom. Its like a guide right onto the valve. Here in Ontario Canada, that rod on mine is six feet down. The tool they use is about eight feet long, but I did see its hollow not a solid bar. Call them during buisness hours to shut it off. You will be without water just overnight. Bottle up some water and have a shower before you call. You brake the curbstop and its going to cost you alot more than $50. Up to you...but I would,nt do it.
  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona

    You have a water meter key, NOT a curb stop key, which is usually a lot longer and slimmer.
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