Edmonton Valve & Fitting Blog

Taryn Hardes

Recent Posts

5th Time's the Charm: FAQs from your Swagelok Customer Service Reps

Thu, Oct 16, 2014 @ 13:10 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Q&A, Fittings


This edition's FAQs have been answered by your Edmonton and Drayton Valve associates.

1. What is the difference between PFA, PTFE, and Teflon? 


Diane Rode:

Teflon® is a fluoropolymer. PFA (perfluoroalkoxy) and PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) are both forms of Teflon.

PFA was conceived by DuPont Co. and is melt processable. It is most commonly used for lab equipment as it has an extreme resistance to chemicals. PFA flexible tubing is good for highly corrosive process applications.

PTFE is most known for being the non-stick coating for pans and cookware. It is also used in applications for corrosive and reactive chemicals as PTFE is non-reactive. Compared to PFA, PTFE has a higher flex life (capacity to endure repetitive folding) and is slightly more heat resistant. PTFE is also less affected by weathering and water absorption but has a lower salt spray resistance.

Swagelok offers a variety of fittings and tubing in PFA as well as ultrahigh purity PFA fittings. You can use Teflon or metal fittings with Swagelok PFA tubing. Please remember that PFA tubing must be grooved for use with PFA tube fittings.

Most Swagelok hoses are PTFE lined for flex advantage and handling reactive and corrosive chemicals. Swagelok SWAK is also PTFE-based, which helps lubricate threads and prevent costly thread damage due to galling and seizing during assembly.

2. What is a weld socket fitting and why would I need it?              


Don Keith:

A socket weld fitting is a type of weld fitting that incorporates a tube or pipe socket machined into the fitting which provides tube/pipe support ahead of the weld area.  Swagelok pipe socket weld fittings feature socket depths that equal or exceed ASME B16.11 requirements.  

3. What size wrench do I need for Swagelok pipe fittings? 


Jon Cool:

The size of wrench depends on the size of the fitting. Please refer to the ‘F’ (i.e. flat) dimension in the Swagelok Pipe Fittings catalogue MS-01-147 for proper wrench sizes.

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4. What is the correct orientation of Swagelok ferrules?      


Shelley Lott:

Swagelok tube fittings come from the factory with nuts and ferrules already assembled in the correct orientation but we also offer replacement nuts and ferrules, so how do you know if you are putting them together correctly?

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The front ferrule (the beveled or cone shaped piece) sits inside the matching bevel on the Swagelok Fitting to form the sealing surface.  The back ferrule (the smaller ring shaped piece) is the tricky one.  It is responsible for gripping the tubing, so it’s important to get it right.  The back ferrule does have a beveled side to it, and that sits inside the front ferrule.  The flat side of the back ferrule sits against the inner shoulder of the nut.

If you are worried about ferrule orientation, or have lots of fittings to rebuild, we do have a handy solution for you.  Our “Nut and Ferrule Sets” offer 5 complete sets of Nuts and Ferrules on an arbor to keep them properly oriented from the factory to your fitting.  Ask your local distributor about these today!

5. How do I find my own authorized Swagelok Sales and Service Centre? 


Shelley Lott:

Swagelok is pleased to offer a network of more than 200 authorized sales and service centers that support customers in 70 countries on 6 continents.  Wow!  But how do you know who to contact?

Go to our website [www.swagelok.com] and click the link in the upper tool bar that says “Locate a Sales and Service Center”.

swagelok dot com
 swagelok dot com 2

Enter your Postal Code or Address information in the box provided to return the authorized distributor information for your area.

Register as a user on our site to have access to online quoting and ordering features with your local authorized distributor. We look forward to hearing from you!

Have any questions? Ask us!

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Find Highlights on Swagelok Regulators from Previous Posts

Wed, Aug 27, 2014 @ 12:08 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Regulators


When we started our blog in 2012, our first post was about regulators. We keep coming back to the topic because there's plenty to say. Here are some posts worth revisiting.

  Swagelok Regulators

The RHPS Series Catalogues looks at the two types of RHPS series pressure regulators, the variety of models available, and features. To request your copy of this catalogue, click here. 

Sizing up regulators

With so many types and sizes of regulators in the Swagelok catalogue, a person might wonder how to figure out the right model for the job. This post starts you down the right path.

Learning curve

One of the primary tools for matching a regulator to the job is the flow curve. If you learn how to read these charts, you'll feel a lot more confident when you talk to your Swagelok representative about your needs.

Straight from the expert

On one of his visits to Edmonton Valve and Fitting, Swagelok Field Engineer Eric Kayla was kind enough to give a quick training session to our account managers and customer service representatives. It included these 7 facts about regulators.

That's creepy

"Creep" is an increase in outlet pressure that occurs when pressure escapes, even though the poppet is closed. Every regulator is susceptible to it, but there are ways to prevent it. This post tells you how.

Blanket statements

Plain old ordinary air can cause problems when it comes into contact with some fluids kept in storage tanks. How do you prevent that when the level of fluid in the tank rises and falls? The best answer is often the Tank Blanketing Regulator. This post explains why.

An analytical look

For analytical instrumentation, Swagelok offers the K Series of regulators. It's a nod to the original manufacturer, Kenmac, a British company that Swagelok acquired in 2003. This post links to the full K Series catalogue.

High flow

When Swagelok wanted to add high flow regulators to its product line, the RHPS Series was the answer. These regulators come in flange sizes up to 4 inches. The Dutch company that developed them spent more than 20 years engineering them for applications in the chemical/petrochemical, oil and gas, power, biopharmaceutical, semiconductor, and alternative fuels industries.

Of course we're not done writing about regulators. So keep checking back to see what new aspects we cover.

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James Dickie Takes Swagelok Services to the Next Level

Thu, Aug 14, 2014 @ 14:08 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in People, Value Added Services


Wide-ranging duties keep Edmonton Valve and our customers running smoothly

  Edmonton Valve Vendor Managed Inventory

Account Manager James Dickie manages a variety of services at Edmonton Valve, including inventory management solutions. Connect with Dickie on Twitter and LinkedIn.

James Dickie's job title is "account manager," but that doesn't begin to describe the wide range of service he provides both internally and externally at Edmonton Valve and Fitting. "You never know what you are going to do every day," Dickie says of his multiple roles.

Leading the way

Many of our customers know Dickie because of the on-site training he conducts.

"We do a lot of that. It used to be you came in to Edmonton Valve and Fitting for a full day of training, or we would come out to the customer site and do an abbreviated session," Dickie recalls. "Now we take the whole show on the road.

Recently he was getting ready for a trip to Fort McMurray for a three-day training session. He'll be talking about how to properly install Swagelok tube fittings, what precautions to take when handling tubing, and good tube-bending practices. Sending Dickie on the road offers a great advantage to our customers. Not only do they save on travel time to Edmonton, but they can stay right on site in case some work-related emergency pops up.

Even people who have been working with tubing and fittings for years benefit from the training, Dickie says. A lot of companies require that their crews receive refresher training every few years to keep up with new features and new products.

"You see some folks who have been in the industry for years saying, 'I learned a lot of things today. I was taught a different way of doing it.' It helps remove a lot of bad habits," Dickie says.  By making sure a new generation is properly trained, the workplace becomes safer too.


Thanks to Dickie's efforts, Edmonton Valve and Fitting now has five client locations using RoboCrib. This high-tech vending machine swiftly dispenses a wide range of components, keeps track of who is taking parts and what job they're for, and then prepares inventory reports for management.

"They have started to take off," Dickie says. He not only introduces customers to the product, but he has been using RoboCrib software to run our tool rentals program. He's working on a piece of software that takes the RoboCrib orders and puts them in our own business system so they don't have to be re-keyed.

On-site inventory

Dickie is also involved in one of our newest offerings, on-site inventory for our customers. We can keep up a steady supply of parts on consignment or set up a vendor-managed inventory. We can even offer inventory in a shipping container, sometimes known as a Sea Can. (Ours is named “Swagelok 24/7”.) It's a great way to handle inventory at, say, a construction site. Dickie meets with the customer to go over the list of needed fittings and other requirements, then he arranges for the container delivery. These are fully outfitted containers, with heating, air conditioning and power outlets. They also have a 20-foot workbench inside, and they're fully insulated.

"We could let them fill it up, or we can maintain it and top off the inventory so that it's ready when they need it," Dickie says.

Next up

As our Value Impact Partnership program continues to develop and grow, our services continue to become a larger part of our business. Luckily, James Dickie is here to make sure we step up to the challenge.

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New Apps Put Swagelok Product Information at Your Fingertips!

Thu, Aug 07, 2014 @ 14:08 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Value Added Services


Our eDTR, P&D, and iAssemble apps make it easier to research and order Swagelok products.

  edtr image

All Swagelok catalogues on your desktop and iPad - always up to date. >" target="_self">Get more info here>>

In recent years, Swagelok has made it easier and easier for customers to get information about parts and services. It was a great breakthrough when Swagelok put its catalogues on CDs, and even better when they put the Swagelok catalogues online. Then came the Electronic Desktop Technical Reference software, known to most of us as the eDTR.

The free Swagelok eDTR software makes sure your desktop always has the freshest version of Swagelok's catalogues. It installs quickly onto your hard drive from a flash drive that's pre-loaded with the eDTR software. Updates are downloaded to your computer through a “one-click” update process. 

Not only is eDTR available for your desktop, but we've also made an eDTR App!

Edmonton Valve and Fitting worked with our counterparts at Swagelok Northern California and a company called Logical Labs, also in California. John Pataki of Logical Labs created a mobile version of eDTR for the iPad. Now you can browse through Swagelok's catalogues from anywhere.

eDTR for iPad is available on the App Store. 

Speed and ease

  p&d app

 P&D App

The eDTR App isn't the only app we've developed. There are a couple more tools available for mobile devices.

Pataki also created the Price & Delivery app, which we call simply P&D. We started using it internally this past March. P&D is a mobile app showing our inventory for current in-stock availability, plus pricing, with near real time accuracy. It has a simple, intuitive interface for searching and viewing items by part number. We can use it to immediately obtain up-to-date pricing and availability for any product.

When an account manager is working with an engineer on a fluid system design, the account manager can answer any technical questions and look up the various options. It's easy to see which ones are standard, in stock, and which is the lowest cost. The account manager assists the customer with the technical details, price and availability, and can create a quote that can instantly be emailed to the customer.

The customer gets the quote in writing, with hyperlinked text to the product detail on the website where they can place an order, download a CAD drawing, or get all the technical details for use in their design.

Account managers often get after-hours calls from customers. With the P&D app they can instantly determine what is in stock, the price, and if they need to open the office to get the part for the customer. The app even gives them the stock location in our warehouse.

In the past, when account managers needed a quick answer as part of a technical discussion, it involved a call back to the customer service representative. This added extra wait time for the customer, and tied up both the account manager and customer service representative. Now the P&D app does the work.

Putting it all together


 iAssemble App

Our other new app, made available just this month, is iAssemble. This tool can help account managers create a layout for a customer with all of the individual components identified. The first release is very basic. The next version will leverage the database of information created for the P&D app to provide part numbers, part names and descriptions, pricing, and numerous other product details such as fulfillment strategy code, stock location, weight and more.

Our reps will be able to quickly layout a customer’s assembly requirement, take a picture of the existing layout (if applicable), create a priced bill of materials, attach all of that to a detailed quote, and email it to the customer as soon as they confirm the layout.

The idea for the iAssemble app actually came first, though the P&D app took top priority. Logical Labs has built the apps with multiple potential industries in mind, but kept the focus on making sure they first met the needs of Swagelok Northern California and Edmonton Valve & Fitting. 

iAssemble is available on the App Store.

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Todd Scorah: Our Man Serving at the Oil Sands

Wed, Jul 23, 2014 @ 16:07 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in People


He went to Fort McMurray planning to stay only a few years – 23 years ago


Todd Scorah joined the Swagelok team back in 1989. With his background in engineering he was the perfect fit for the start-up location in Fort McMurray.

Back in 1991, Edmonton Valve & Fitting needed a full-time sales and service rep to serve the oil sands region around Fort McMurray. We had a couple of people who would make the trip monthly to service accounts, but in order for the business to grow we needed a resident salesman in Fort McMurray.

Todd Scorah said he was willing to come up for a few years.

"And here I am, twenty-some years later," he says.  

Scorah already had been working for us in Edmonton for a couple of years in sales, after a brief career in mechanical engineering, designing and testing valves and related products.

"I found I was far more interested and better at sales than I was at engineering," he says.

His engineering knowledge was crucial, however, in his first years at Fort McMurrayValve & Fitting. That's when he spent a lot of time building up a clientele and working with customers to specify allied Swagelok products as the standard in various facilities.

Scorah comes to the industry naturally. His father was in the oil and gas business, taking the family around the world. While Scorah was born in Edmonton, he grew up mostly in England and Singapore.

Growth and change

When Scorah first came to Fort McMurray, we had only two major accounts .We had a good contact base but it needed to be increased. He was on his own, and he liked it that way.

"I was a gunslinger type, just trying to build the business as best I could, and meet as many people as I could," He recalls. There were no cell phones then, so it was just Scorah, a fax machine at home, and a car.  

A lot has changed over the years, including the way companies work the oil sands. In the '90s, they were basically mined using bucket wheels that placed the oil sands onto conveyor belts. Then the industry shifted to trucks with mobile shovels. About 80 percent of the ore body is too deep to mine, so the oil is extracted using steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD). In that method, two horizontal wells are drilled, and steam is sent through the upper bore. The heat causes the oil to drain into the lower bore, where it's pumped out.

Scorah's job has changed too. As the area grew and our customer base expanded, it became too much for one person to handle the entire territory alone. Now, four people from Edmonton come up, typically for a few days each month, to service some of the customers that Scorah no longer has the time to service properly. In addition we have a team of 5 full-time people in the Fort McMurray Valve office, which is a good thing since we are the go-to supplier for fluid system components in the Fort McMurray area.

Scorah also is more involved these days in value-added services such as vendor-managed inventory. He checks the stock on hand at the client's site, then schedules deliveries of whatever parts are needed. With one client alone there are 18 different inventory locations at the base plant and the remotely located SAGD site. He's also involved in energy surveys, training and facilitating the discussions for custom solutions assemblies.

Looking ahead

Scorah is looking forward to more changes in his territory. Basically, the industry is always looking for ways to get more oil out for reduced cost.

"The mines will continue to scale up their equipment. Every couple of years the trucks get bigger," he says. "Big" hardly seems an appropriate term for the trucks, which can cost $10 million apiece and weigh as much as two jumbo jets when fully loaded. The tires alone cost about $50,000, Scorah says, and each truck needs six of them. SAGD technology will continue to evolve and become the dominant source for bitumen to be upgraded into synthetic crude.

"The facilities are also continually going to get greener," he says. "We get bad press all the time, but if you come up here and take a look at what they are doing, they do a lot to keep the impact on the environment to a minimum."

Wastewater used to flow into large ponds to contain the tailings, the residue left when all the oil has been extracted. Processing tailings has been one of the most difficult environmental challenges for the oil sands mining industry. At one point it took up to 20 years for the tailings to become inert, Scorah said. Now it's down to one year, and researchers are looking for a way to eliminate the need for tailings ponds altogether.

Scorah expects to see that day come. After more than 25 years with the Swagelok product line, he doesn't expect to leave any time soon. Besides, with the advancement of technology in the Fort McMurray area, there is always something new to learn.

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5 Tips for Tubing Installation from Swagelok

Thu, Jul 17, 2014 @ 15:07 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Tubing


1. Always use two people to handle longer tube lengths

Dragging long tube length out of tubing racks by oneself can cause damage to the product. Surface scratches, dents, and chips and burrs can all cause potential leak points in your system. Never drag tubing on the ground when packing or unpacking.

To protect the tubing, you can use end caps. They will keep the tubing's inside diameter free of dirt and contamination. You should also always store tubing in its original crate and protective packaging.

2. Never use "foot rail" and "handrail" tube locations

Installing tubing at foot height or within arms reach may encourage associates to use tubing as a handrail or foot rail. Any weight added to a tubing run could cause side load, damage to the tubing, or create a safety hazard.

3. Ensure proper tubing support 

Proper tubing support will reduce sagging, vibration, and increase the life of tubing, fittings, and equipment throughout a facility. There are many options for tubing support systems from Swagelok.

Swagelok Tube Support Swagelok Tube Support 
 Swagelok Tube Support  Swagelok Tube Support


4. Ensure proper tubing placement 

Proper tubing placement is essential when running line throughout a facility. You should never block panels or screens with tubing lines - the tubing should always be routed around other instruments. It is important for tubing to stay clear of controls and not prohibit an operator's access to controls.

When running multiple tubes together, tubing should always be stacked vertically, not horizontally. This prevents the collection of dirt, corrosives, and contaminants in the spaces between tubes. 

5. Determine number of tube fittings and length of tubing required in system design 

It's important to provide enough tubing in a given line to ensure the tubing will bottom out into the fitting bodies. It is good practice to mark tubes above the nut when pre-swaging tube connections, to ensure tubes are bottomed out in final installation.

You should also plan to allow for accessibility in your system design to prevent damage during assembly and to allow for ease of maintenance.

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 To learn more about Tubing Data, download the Swagelok Tubing Data catalogue.

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'Now, where did I see that post about valves...'

Thu, Jul 10, 2014 @ 12:07 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Valves


Here's a quick list of links to some of our most popular posts about valves


The VB04, manifold, block and bleed, and gauge valves illustrated here are just some of the valve offerings Swagelok provides. 

Our blog has been running for a couple of years now, which means we have a lot of posts about a lot of different Swagelok products. Sometimes you might remember that we've covered a particular topic you want to revisit, but aren't sure when it ran. We don't want you to use up a lot of time browsing through the whole list (as entertaining as that might be) so here are some of our more popular posts about valves.

A Tutorial

This past April we took a tour through some of the different types of valves and how to best match them to different kinds of jobs. We started with simple on-off valves, then gave a bit of information on flow-control valves, directional flow valves, overpressure protection, and excess flow. The post includes a link to a complete tutorial by Michael Adkins, Swagelok’s valve guru.

Ball Valves

A ball valve is one of the more basic designs. Line up the hole in the ball with the tubing on either side, and fluid can flow through. Turn the ball 90 degrees and the path is completely shut off. Within that basic design, however, Swagelok offers various features. Within the 60 Series of ball valves are special designs for operation in the presence of heat, steam, chlorine and other conditions.

Check Valves

In some fluid systems, it's important that the flow always be in one direction. That's the purpose of a check valve. This post explains the importance of two key terms: "cracking pressure" and "reseal pressure."

Proportional Relief Valves

When your fluid system has too much pressure, how do you bring it back to where you want it? One way is with a proportional relief valve. Swagelok's proportional relief valves can be adjusted to activate over a wide range of pressure points. Don't confuse these with safety relief valves, however. That's an entirely different device.

Bellows and Diaphragm Valves

Most types of valves use a packing material to form a seal between the valve stem and the bonnet. But there are some applications when it's better to use valves without packing. Swagelok offers two kinds: bellows valves and diaphragm valves. This post explains the difference and describes how each design gets the job done.

Space Savers

Standard valves can take up a lot of space, especially when you need several in a single assembly. That's when our VB03 and VB04 process interface valves come in handy. They have the footprint of a single valve, but do the job of two or three.


Manifolds aren't as complicated as they look. A manifold is basically a block of steel with a series of stainless steel needle valves to control flow through the block. Like many of our posts on specific parts, there's a link that lets you download a catalogue for more information.

Questions from our Customers

We count on our readers to keep us on our toes. Our fourth FAQ installment, from this past May, was especially valve-centric. If you have a question that hasn't been covered in one of our posts, send it in and we may use it in our ongoing series of questions and answers. 

Click here to browse our entire library of valve content, or Ask Us your valve questions. 

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Check Out Swagelok's Check Valves

Thu, Jul 03, 2014 @ 15:07 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Valves


When you want fluids to flow in only one direction, check valves point the way

  Swagelok Check Valve 

There is a variety of check valves available from Swagelok. All of them are covered in the Check Valves Catalogue. Download the catalogue here.

Did you know that you carry your very own check valve around with you every day of your life? It's your heart. When your heart pumps, it makes sure the blood goes in only one direction. If the blood were to leak back where it came from, you'd be in really bad shape.

Swagelok check valves perform the same basic job. They prevent back-pressure from pushing a fluid in the wrong direction in your system.

One of our account managers, Mike Taylor, got a reminder of the value of check valves when he built a pond with a waterfall in his back yard. When he would shut off the pump for maintenance or other reasons, he noticed something about the waterfall. 

"Every time I turned it back on, it would take seven minutes for the waterfall to start flowing," he said.  Well, of course. Gravity was pulling all the water back into the pond. He realized that with a check valve on the waterfall, the flow could restart right away.

An application our customers are more likely to see in the field would be, say a pneumatic timer. The check valve would be used in filling a bottle with air or gas. When the bottle is full, the air or gas can escape only through the metering valve at a set rate.

Several Series

Swagelok check valves come in many styles, including poppet, ball, disc, flapper and gravity poppet valves.

A key term to understand is "cracking pressure," the inlet pressure at which the first indication of flow occurs. Then there's "reseal pressure," the pressure at which there is no indication of flow.

Our C, CH and CP Series valves have fixed cracking pressures set at the factory, while our CA and CPA Series valves have adjustable cracking pressures. Even better, we also have maintenance kits, including Seal Kits and Spring Kits, which allow you to adjust the cracking pressure of your valve in case your application or system requirements change. 

You can look at the full range by downloading our catalogue. Or call us to talk about your system and what might be the best check valve for your needs.

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Edmonton Valve Merchandisers Don’t Just Deliver Product

Thu, Jun 26, 2014 @ 13:06 PM / by Taryn Hardes posted in People, Value Added Services


As this role has evolved, our merchandisers have become a vital part of our business.

  Merchandiser Truck

Our merchandisers are on the road to help service customer inventories. For more information on these services, Ask Us.

In the last few years, a new role has emerged at Edmonton Valve and Fitting. To our customers, it might not have been a noticeable change, but internally, it’s been a huge improvement for processes and time management. This new role is the merchandiser position, and it’s filled by three associates, one at each branch.

Back in 2001, when we began to expand our service offerings, one major service we implemented was Vendor Managed Inventories (VMI). This service was implemented to help leverage the automated business systems many of our customers use for order production and inventory management. We would receive the replenishment order from the customers’ automated systems and then the account manager would fill the inventory for the customers on a regular or semi-regular basis, depending on the customer’s needs.

As VMI and Consignment Inventories continued to become more popular and more highly demanded, we started to see the potential for some new roles to provide this service. We implemented a Mobile Truck Service fleet, which included two 5-ton mobile stores and three 1-ton merchandising trucks. Over time, having our account managers monitor and maintain the numerous inventories became time-consuming and labour-intensive. Today we have three merchandisers servicing customer inventories, which allows our account managers to focus their time and energy on technical assistance and sales calls.

In 2013, we hired Jason MacDonald for our Edmonton office and Steve Mugridge for our Drayton Valley office. Jon Besa, our Fort McMurray merchandiser, was previously a customer service associate and he began to transition into the merchandiser role. All three merchandisers were trained in basic warehouse and basic customer service skills. Since they’re out on the road, interacting with customers on a regular basis, they all needed a certain level of familiarity with the products. If customers require enhanced technical advice, the merchandisers can always refer the customer to the appropriate account manager.

The merchandiser role has become a vital position that fills the gap between our mobile inventory truck drivers and our account managers. (Click here for more information on our Mobile Inventory Truck offerings.) Our merchandisers drive 1-ton trucks that can get into gas plants and other smaller sites that our large 5-ton trucks can’t access. They also provide service to customers whose orders don’t justify the vast amount of inventory available on the 5-ton trucks. The position is meant to provide regular stock fills and inventory management, and it’s not intended for on-call delivery. Occasionally each driver will provide order drop off if it works nicely into their set schedule – all in the name of the best possible customer service.

The merchandiser role is a valuable way to develop relationships with customers. Besa says that the role has enabled him to build valuable face-to-face relationships with the customers he services. This relationship gives him the opportunity to get feedback on Fort McMurray Valve’s services as a whole, as well as the VMI and consignment services. In Edmonton, MacDonald says the number one benefit of the service is establishing a comfortable level of trust between us and our customers.

“They like to know that we care about them and we know what they need and when they need the product. And I like to be able to get to know them and follow up on a regular basis.”

The customers love the service. In Drayton Valley, Mugridge recently re-labelled, organized, and cross-referenced a customer’s inventory, which has made a huge difference in ease of use for both the customer and himself.  When asked about success in the position, Mugridge laughs.

“I once sold tubing to a customer at a gas station. They saw the truck and came running on over.” Nothing like bringing the product to where the customer is!

With the innovative way that this service has developed, we still want to continue to grow this customer-focused service. Interested in utilizing our vendor managed inventory services? Contact your sales and service representative to find out if you’re a suitable candidate or, ask us here.

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Proportional Relief Valves: One Way to Deal with Pressure

Tue, Jun 17, 2014 @ 09:06 AM / by Taryn Hardes posted in Valves


Safety valves and proportional relief valves handle pressure in different ways

  relief valves small

Swagelok Proportional Relief Valves come in both high-pressure and low-pressure varieties. For more information, download the Swagelok Proportional Relief Valves catalogue. 

When your fluid system has too much pressure, what's the best way to bring it back to where you want it? Often times, a proportional relief valve is the way to go.

Proportional relief valves are designed to open gradually as pressure increases. They open when the system reaches a set pressure, and close when the system falls below that same set pressure. They are available for liquid or gas service. Please note that proportional relief valves should never be used as safety relief devices as specified by the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code.

Swagelok Proportional Relief Valves (PRV) come in 1/4" and 1/2" size options with a variety of set pressures ranging from 10 psig to 6000 psig. Edmonton Valve & Fitting stocks a vast inventory of bodies and springs to fit almost any customer application. The relief valves are easy to set yourself, but we can also have them set prior to being shipped out. They even have lock wire capability to discourage anyone from changing the setting. Many times when we are called out to the field to fix a proportional relief valve that isn't seating at the right pressure, we typically find that the lock wire has been cut and that someone has changed the setting.

Where does the fluid go when the pressure is released? Sometimes you'll see it vented out, but more likely it will be routed into a containment unit or back into the system itself, especially when you don't want the fluid to contaminate anything.

However, your specification may require a Proportional Safety Valve (PSV). Unfortunately, PRVs are not a replacement or an appropriate alternative to a PSV. PSVs are sometimes called pop valves because of the sound they make when they open. They are designed to blow wide open in an instant and evacuate as much steam as possible. The "safety" part refers to why they are used. They are intended to prevent equipment damage and or loss of life or limb. They have a certifiable and repeatable relieving capacity. Unfortunately, Swagelok does not manufacture PSVs and therefore you will need to go to another vendor to get a ASME certified PSV.

For many applications, a PRV will work just fine. For ordering information, download the Swagelok Proportional Relief Valve catalogue. If you aren't sure about which valve you need, or if you want to confirm, call us.

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