Soccer - What are the different valves used in soccer balls and why?

Valves can be made from different materials and produced in different ways, all of which alter the feel of the ball

Sometimes you will hear about different valves used in balls, standard rubber and butyl are the main two. There are also a few ways to produce valves, and this is usually dependent on the ball, quality and price.

The change between rubber and butyl is usually thought of as an improvement in air retention, and while this is the case in a small way, the main reason is weight. The use of the butyl valve usually means it is lighter and weights the ball less.

Roll any football on a flat surface with the valve on the side, and watch it curve to that side. Some bigger valves also make the panels push out and look bulbous, which will make the ball roll with a bounce. This is not ideal and should be avoided where possible.

Our valves here are SUMMIT are the same across all balls. Each ball's valve panel contains all the relevant information including ball size, inflation pressure and endorsements. This is your go to if you need info about the specific model of ball you are using.

SUMMIT Sport Resist Football Australia approved, ball valve panel
SUMMIT Mero football valve panel has Football Australia's approval stamp
SUMMIT Sport switch soccer ball valve panel shows if it is a size 5, size 4 or size 3 ball, it is available in all three sizes.

Can you fix or replace a leaking valve?

Simple answer is it is possible, but quite difficult as it means a replacement of bladder. I have only seen it done on old leather or valuable balls with players signatures. The hardest thing is to find someone to do it. If we wanted a special ball fixed, we would send it overseas to have it pulled apart, internals replaced and then sent back. In most cases, we find that it is a small hole in the bladder and not a leaking valve – this happens when pushing a needle into the bladder too hard and pushing a hole into the rubber.

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