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ball valve frozen in place . . . ideas?

I have a single-handle cutoff valve for both hot and cold water lines of my washing machine. The valve is frozen in the "on" position, after quite some time since being closed. I suspect the problem may be mineral deposits that have frozen the ball in position from the inside, but can't be sure. Any ideas for an easy way to troubleshoot the problem and free up the valve? The valve body appears to be brass, I remember the ball valve moving part was polished, probably either chromed or stainless steel. Would careful heating of the brass valve body with a torch and tapping the handle be worth trying to unfreeze the valve? I'm concerned with cracking the valve body and having a major flood if that happens. Thanks for any suggestions.

Re: ball valve frozen in place . . . ideas?

Can you post a picture of the valve?

If there are two very large screws on top or on the front of the valve, these can be removed to extract the valve body from the supply plumbing. Once you remove the valve, you can probably see the answer to your dilemma. Of course, you'll want to shut off the main supply before doing this. You may be able to find an identical replacement valve and just screw it onto the existing stubs.

Whenever working with stubborn equipment, remember this mantra: "If brute force doesn't work, use more."

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