Butterfly Valve vs Isolation Valve – What’s the Difference

Butterfly Valve vs Isolation Valve

When it comes to industrial valves, there are many types to choose from, and it can be overwhelming to know which one to select. Two common valves are butterfly and isolation valves, but what sets them apart? In this blog post, we’ll compare and contrast the two, discussing their design, purpose, and differences.

Difference Between Butterfly Valve and Isolation Valve


Butterfly valves consist of a disc that rotates to open and close the valve and a shaft attached to the disc that operates the valve. In contrast, isolation valves use a gate to block the flow of liquid or gas, which lifts when the valve is open and lowers when it’s shut. Essentially, butterfly valves are a type of rotary valve, while isolation valves are a type of linear valve.


Butterfly valves are primarily used for regulating flow. These valves are known for their fast operation, and their design allows for a more precise adjustment of flow rates. On the other hand, isolation valves are used entirely to block the flow of liquid or gas. Therefore, isolation valves are typically found in emergency shut-off systems, where the flow must be stopped immediately.

Pressure Regulation

Butterfly valves are designed to handle low to medium-pressure applications, while isolation valves are used mainly in high-pressure systems. Butterfly valves’ design can’t accommodate high pressure because it could cause the disc to bend or break, making the valve inoperable when needed most. In contrast, isolation valves can handle higher pressures and are generally built much more robustly to withstand the pressure conditions they work in.


Butterfly valves are available in large sizes, but their maximum size is relatively small. These valves generally have a disc diameter of up to 72 inches. On the other hand, isolation valves come in larger sizes and can handle a more extensive range of fluids with consideration of temperature and pressure conditions. They are generally available in sizes from 1/2″ to around 24″.


Butterfly valves are typically less expensive than isolation valves, particularly for smaller sizes. However, as the disc size exceeds 24 inches, Butterfly Valves become more expensive than isolation valves. In contrast, isolation valves tend to be more expensive due to their robust construction, high-pressure rating, and resistance to wear and tear.


In conclusion, butterfly and isolation valves differ in their design, purpose, pressure regulation, size, and cost. Understanding the differences between these two types of valves can help you choose the right valve for your application. Whether you’re selecting a valve for an industrial process or a plumbing system, ensure that you select the right type of valve, as it can impact your system’s efficiency, productivity, and safety.

Minal Jogale

Minal Jogale

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