Top Industrial Fluid Systems Components, Tech Support & Global Solutions Blog

From single components to complex fluid handling systems we have the products, expertise, and resources to meet your needs.

7 Facts About Regulators from a Swagelok Engineer

by Taryn Hardes, on Tue, May 27, 2014 @ 15:05 PM

Swagelok Field Engineer Eric Kayla popped by Edmonton Valve recently and was kind enough to give a quick training session to our account managers and customer service representatives. Here are 7 facts straight from the expert.

  RHPS Reg

RHPS Series regulators come in a variety of configurations. For more information about K Series Flow Curves, download the newly updated bulletin here.

Filters can minimize creep

Upstream filtration is a good way to prevent creep. Filtration will remove particulates from the process stream before it reaches the regulator, which will minimize any potential seat damage.

Regulators control pressure, not flow

Regulators reduce the pressure of a gas or liquid from a source, such as a cylinder or compressor, to a lower pressure required by a device, such as an analyzer. Regulators are used to allow high pressure fluid supply lines or tanks to be reduced to safe and/or usable pressures for various applications.

Never use a regulator for a shutoff device

Try using an appropriate shutoff valve (like a ball valve) upstream of the regulator instead of using a regulator for shutoff.

Two-stage regulators can minimize Supply Pressure Effect

Supply pressure effect (SPE) is an effect on the set pressure of a pressure reducing regulator as a result of a change to inlet pressure. This is normally experienced as an increase in outlet pressure due to a decrease in inlet pressure. This can be minimized by using a two-stage regulator, such as the KCY, or by using 2 pressure reducing regulators in succession.

An increase in flow causes a decrease in outlet pressure in the case of pressure reducing regulators

This is called droop. It is primarily caused by the set spring. The more flow required, the more the set spring relaxes and loses load force, causing the outlet pressure to drop.

Droop can be prevented in several ways

By using a longer spring or by using a dome loaded regulator, the effect of droop can be minimized. You can also use a regulator with external feedback or with a pilot regulator, as they have flatter flow curves than a spring loaded regulator.

Most Swagelok Flow Charts use Nitrogen at 70°F/20°C

If your system fluid is not nitrogen, then there is a coefficient chart for you to recalculate the scale of the flow chart. If your system is held at a temperature other than 70 F, then there is another coefficient chart for you to recalculate the scale. Both these calculations are key in properly sizing a regulator for your application. In these cases, the shape of the flow curve will not change, just the scale of the chart will.

For assistance in selecting the right regulator for the job, download the newly updated Flow Curve Technical Bulletin from Swagelok. 


Central & Northern Alberta’s leading fluid handling components supplier.

For 50 years we have provided professional support and an extensive local inventory of Swagelok products. We offer custom solutions, applications support, training, equipment, and tools to help ensure safe and reliable operations.

CONTACT US 780-437-0640

Learn More About Us



Edmonton Valve & Fitting Inc.
4503-93 Street NW
Edmonton AB T6E 5S9
PH: 780.437.0640

Drayton Valve & Fitting Ltd.
5614 - 55 Street
Drayton Valley AB T7A 1S9
PH: 780.542.7988

Fort McMurray Valve & Fitting Ltd. 266 MacKay Crescent
Fort McMurray AB T9H 5C6
PH: 780.790.0640

Join Our Newsletter

    More... (blog home page)