A pressure regulator is a type of valve that takes the upstream pressure of a compressed air system, and regulates it down to a pre-determined level so that it is suitable for use with other components of the system. They are used to allow high pressure air supplies to be reduced to a safe and usable pressure for different applications. Here, MGA Controls gives you all the need to know information about pressure regulators and their functions.

What is a pressure regulator used for?

The primary function of a pressure regulator is to deliver a fluid, normally compressed air or neutral gas, at a consistent downstream pressure to other parts of a system. They are also often used as a safety feature to limit the amount of pressure in a supply line. Pressure regulators are often a cost effective solution as they are reasonably cheap to buy, and can prevent machinery or system failure by ensuring compressed air pressures are at the correct levels, therefore optimising the running costs of a system.11-818 Regulator

How Pressure Regulators Work

Pressure regulators work by an air or gas entering the body of the regulator, which is controlled by a needle valve. As the pressure rises, it pushes the diaphragm, which in turn closes the attached inlet valve. This prevents any more gas from entering the regulator, whilst the needle valve maintains the required downstream pressure. These processes manage to keep the downstream pressure under control at all times.

The pressure regulator contains three elements:

  • The restricting element: This is a built in needle valve that provides a restriction to the flow of downstream pressure.
  • The loading element: This is a part that can apply the force to a restricting element, most commonly a rotating knob or T-Bar handle which closes the needle valve.
  • The measuring element: This function determines when the inlet flow is equal to the outlet flow. The diaphragm itself is often used as a measuring element.

Types of Pressure Regulators

General Purpose Regulators: General Purpose Regulators are designed for typical industrial use. These generally operate above atmospheric pressure and are normally used on compressed air systems.

High Pressure Regulators: These are used for inlet pressures that higher than general purpose, usually above 1000 psi.

Low pressure regulators: Feature special design characteristics for precise control of pressures, typically below 15 – 20 psi.

MGA Controls are leading suppliers of pressure regulators. If you have any questions or require any information on any of our air preparation products, please contact us today by calling +44 1704 898980 or email sales@mgacontrols.co.uk.