Direct Acting Solenoid Valves

Electro-mechanical valves that are used to control the flow of liquid or gas.

Direct acting solenoid valves, also known as zero rated solenoid valves are electro-mechanical valves that are used to control the flow of liquid or gas. These direct operated solenoid valves convert electrical signals into a mechanical movement, by sending the signal to a coil, allowing movement to occur inside the valve.

Direct operated solenoid valves are available in various configurations, including 3/2 way and 2/2 way valves. Two way NC (normally-closed) direct acting solenoid valves have a spring that holds the core against the seal. While two-way NO (normally-open) zero rated solenoid valves have a fixed core which is usually in the bottom section of the armature tube. Three-way direct acting solenoids work in a similar way.

At MGA Controls, we also stock a range of high performance direct acting solenoids, that are suitable for use in extremely high or low pressure and temperature environments. Available in a range of seal and body materials, including stainless steel and brass, these valves are suitable for use with a wide range of media, including water, air, oils, fuel and aggressive or corrosive chemicals and steam.

Direct acting solenoids are used when there is no line pressure. They are commonly used in cleaning line applications, when a pump supplies bursts of water through a line. In order to operate efficiently, zero rated solenoid valves require a direct connection between the solenoid core tube and the valve’s opening/closing mechanism. MGA Controls stocks a wide range of direct acting solenoid valves, from leading, global manufacturers.

For technical advice, contact our sales team today on +44 (0)1704 898980 or email

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Frequently asked questions

What is a direct acting solenoid valve?

A direct acting solenoid is an electromechanically operated valve, controlled by an electric current. Zero rated solenoid valves are widely available as either a two or three port valve and are frequently used to control elements in fluidics.

Direct acting solenoid valves are used to shut off, release, dose, distribute or mix fluids. They are found in many application areas, due to their reliability, long service life and good compatibility with a range of media. Direct operated solenoid valves also feature low control power and a compact design.

Direct acting solenoid operation

A direct operated solenoid valve has the simplest working principle. Media flows through the small orifice which can be closed off by a plunger with a rubber gasket on the bottom. The plunger is held close to the valve a small spring, which is electrically energised. From this electric core, a magnetic field is created, pulling the plunger towards the centre of the coil. Once the electric current has pulled the plunger up, the orifice opens to allow, media can flow through. In a Normally Open valve, the valve will work in the opposite way. Direct acting solenoids don’t need a minimum operating pressure.

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