Troubleshooting Miniature Check Valves
A check valve may be a small in-line component in any type of system, but it plays a very important role. A check valve can be very small, or it can be very large, and they can be found in all types of compressors, pneumatic systems, processing systems as well as in oil and gas refineries and chemical manufacturing operations.
In many types of small air compression systems, such as dental equipment, miniature check valves are used. These valves that function automatically to allow the flow of the air in the pneumatic system in one direction only. The design of the valve results in the closure of the valve if the pressure on the outlet side of the valve exceeds the pressure on the inlet side of the valve outside of a given range. This prevents any backflow of air through the location of the valve, protecting sensitive equipment and preventing any debris or moisture in the air from reversing direction.
Occasionally, problems can arise with an existing valve or after replacing miniature check valves in a system. Often these problems are easy to correct and do not require another valve.
Valve Not Allowing Air Flow
When replacement miniature check valves in a system are not letting air through the valve, they are typically the wrong size, and pressure rated valve. Check to make sure the pressure difference is correct in the valve to match the pressure in the system on the inlet and outlet side. If the inlet and outlet pressures are too close, the valve may fail to open or close.
Valve Not Functioning to Stop Backflow
Often when a check valve is not stopping backflow, there is some type of debris in the valve that is not allowing the valve to seat. It may also be an issue where there is a leak around the outlet or inlet port that is impacting the pressure in the system.
Generally, a check valve is a long-lasting, durable valve. They require no special maintenance and are typically problem-free for years of use.