Air release valves are a critical component of any pipeline system and are responsible maintaining the right operating pressure of a pipeline. While these valves are designed to be reliable and efficient, they can still experience issues due to a variety of factors. Here is a discussion of common issues with automatic air release valves and how to solve them.
Purpose of Air Release Valves
Air release valves are used in pipelines to ensure that the standard pressure of the system is not exceeded due to excessive air. They are also used to release any trapped air in the pipeline, which can cause damage to the system.
Air release valves are typically installed at high points on the pipeline and work by allowing air to escape when it reaches a certain pressure. This helps to maintain a safe pressure level in the system, and can prevent damage caused by high pressure levels.
In addition to their use in maintaining pressure levels, air release valves also help to reduce the amount of turbulence in a pipeline. This is done by allowing air to escape quickly, reducing the amount of energy that is transferred to the pipeline. This helps to reduce the risk of damage to the pipeline caused by turbulence.
Common Air Release Valve Problems and Solutions
Improper Valve Size or Material
Automatic air release valve failures can be the result of improper sizing or inadequate material makeup. First, if the valve is not the correct size, it can malfunction and not release the accumulated air. This increases the pressure to dangerous levels. If the valve is too small, leakage can occur. Additionally, choosing a valve with material that is not fit for the pipeline’s operating pressure can cause air release valve failures.
Properly evaluating the size and material needed for an adequate air release valve for a pipeline is critical. Knowing the diameter of the pipeline, rate of flow, and the operating pressure of the pipeline can guide you to choosing the right valve.
Leaking is a sure sign of a faulty air release valve. If there is leakage at the bottom of the connection, valve connection should be tightened and re-sealed with a thread sealant. Leakage at the cover of the valve may require a gasket replacement. If the valve leaks when it is closed, it should be inspected for debris and flushed. The float, valve seat, and orifice button should additionally be inspected. If there is water in the float, it must be replaced.
Valve Not Venting Air
In some cases, air release valves may fail in venting air pockets in the pipeline. If this is occurring, the operator should check to make sure the valve is built to perform at the same operating pressure as the pipeline. If it is, the valve must be disassembled and inspected to ensure it was properly installed.
Automatic air release valves are a critical component of any pipeline system, and it is essential to ensure that they are properly chosen, installed, regularly inspected, and maintained. By taking the time to inspect and address any common issues, you can ensure that your system is operating at its full potential and minimize the risk of costly repairs or downtime.