In the agriculture industry, livestock producers understand how small differences in equipment can dramatically impact profits and losses. Out of all equipment, the value of the float valve in the water trough cannot be overstated.

Traditional float valves have been around for more than two centuries, yet the basic design of water float valves has remained the same. Over the years, some innovations have been made, but most cattlemen do not find these newer, alternatives to be suitable.  However, the rodeo of float valves is gradually changing, and one valve–called the Brown Weight Valve–has the potential to change the stakes.

Enter the Brown Weight Water Valve

As a dairyman, Garry Brown had seen his share of premature failures, problems, and design flaws in traditional float valves. However, Garry Brown saw the need for change and created the Brown Weight Valve.

Unlike traditional float valves, the Brown Weight Valve is typically closed. The valve contains a weighted arm, which pushed upward to open the spring-loaded valve as water levels drop in the trough, swamp cooler, or other reservoirs. The arm adjusts for setting water levels with ease.

Construction and Design

The Brown Weight Valve employs a solid HDPE (high-density polyethylene) block on the valve’s arm. HDPE has a density lower than water, so the material floats on the surface. The valve housing and weight are constructed from HDPE, and all metallic parts are made from stainless steel, which helps reduce corrosion and premature malfunction.

During sub-zero temperatures, the solid HDPE float does not become damaged from the pressure of expanding ice. A stainless steel piston, spring, and threaded bolt hold the rubber ball, the actual valve, in place when closed. As a result of ingenious design, water does not become trapped within the float, and freezing problems melt away with ease.

Comparing the Brown Weight Valve to Traditional Float Valves

Traditional float valves have a non-weighted arm, which is susceptible to pressure from rising and falling water levels. However, the Brown Weight Valve places all pressure on the weight, so when the float rises, the weight floats up, which shuts off the water flow. Therefore, no actual force is exerted on the closing mechanism.


Brown’s Weight Valves are available in multiple sizes to accommodate any water-filling need. Valves range from sizes for four gallons per minute to more than 20 gallons per minute. Additionally, the valve can be customized with a short arm and hanging weight, which allows for the valve to be mounted underwater.

Freezing Temps and the Brown Weight Valve

To prevent damage from freezing temperatures, Brown devised an anti-freeze valve as an add-on to the Brown Weight Valve to stop water lines from freezing. The Brown Weight Valve may be adjusted from a dribble to a full stream through a 3/16-inch opening. At minimal operation in cold weather, the water-flow can be reduced to a rate of one gallon every 90 minutes.

During the night, when animals are not actively drinking, the weight valve can be shut off completely to prevent overfilling the tank. If an anti-freeze valve is used, which activates when the outdoor temperature approaches freezing, the traditional float valve can be easily damaged. However, Brown’s Weight Valve takes this concept to a new level.

If an anti-freeze valve is used, rising water cannot damage the Brown Weight Valve. Furthermore, the small amount of water released in freezing temps sprays toward the weight, which helps stop the weight from freezing to the water in the trough.

At daybreak, the drinking action of animals will actually help the flowing water to melt ice in the trough.

If the temperatures are going to be excessively cold, or lower than about 20 F, the valve should be opened slightly more than minimal.

During summer, the valve can easily be shut off by lifting arm and placing it atop the valve, which saves time and energy, especially during severe weather.

Both the Freeze Valve and the Brown Weight Valve work together in amazing synchronicity, and both designs came from the same mind, Garry Brown. The Brown Weight Valve even comes with a 5-year guarantee to refund or exchange them if they fail to meet your needs.