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How Do You Check a Compressor Safety Valve

The air compressor safety relief valve automatically opening to release excess pressure when the compressor pressure switch fails, because the pressure hits the predetermined system pressure limit and seamlessly closing once normal levels are restored.
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    In the world of compressed air applications, air compressors serve as vital workhorses, delivering pressurized air for an array of tasks. Ensuring the safe and efficient operation of these devices is the responsibility of air compressor safety relief valves, also recognized as pop-off valves or pressure safety valves.

    pressure relief valve prv
    pressure relief valve prv

    The air compressor safety relief valve automatically opening to release excess pressure when the compressor pressure switch fails, because the pressure hits the predetermined system pressure limit and seamlessly closing once normal levels are restored.

    Their role in maintaining safety and optimizing equipment performance is irreplaceable. Regular checks are crucial, ensuring these valves remain in good condition, undamaged, and in optimal working condition. Periodic inspections not only safeguard against potential equipment failures but also contribute to a secure environment, shielding both property and personnel from potential hazards.

    Today, THINKTANK will share with you what is a compressor safety valve, how to inspect your compressor safety valve, and also note the importance of maintaining a compressor safety valve regularly.

    Understanding Compressor Safety Valves

    Understanding the mechanics of compressor safety valves is essential for maintaining a secure operational environment. These valves main role is preventing overpressure scenarios in air compressor systems. Understanding their functionality involves recognizing the set pressure limits, compressor’s pressure vessel, where the valves automatically open to release excess pressure. Key components include the valve disc, seat, and spring, working together to create a balanced and safe system. In essence, these safety valves are precisely adjusted to respond with precision, ensuring seamless operations and safeguarding against potential hazards. Regular understanding of their mechanisms contribute to a proactive approach in preserving equipment integrity and preventing costly malfunctions.

    Parts and Materials

    safety relief valve parts
    safety relief valve parts
    part 9
    part 9
    part 22
    part 22
    safety relief valve seat
    safety relief valve seat
    1NozzleBRS B283-C48500 or BRZ SB623
    2Body set screwSTL A108 Black oxide
    3Warn ring set screwSS 18-8
    4DiscBRS B21 C485004
    5Wire and sealSS wire and lead seal
    6Guide set screwSS 18-8
    7Retainer nut2BRS B16
    8StemSS A582-303 for D orifice SS A582-416 for E thru J orifice
    9BodyBRZ B584-C84400
    10LeverSTL A109 or JIS SPCC equivalent/ZN plated yellow
    11Compression screw locknut BRS B16
    12Lift nutSTL A108-1018/ZN plated
    13CapAluminum, anodized
    14Lever pinSTL A108-12L14
    15Cap set screw10STL A108 Black oxide
    16Compression screwBRS B16
    17SpringASTM A-313 TY 631
    18Spring stepBRS B16
    19Stem end12BRS B16
    20GuideBRS B283-C37700
    21Warn ring7BRS B283-C37700
    22SeatTeflon, Stainless Steel, Alloy Steel
    23Seat retainer8BRS B165
    24Soft seat disc8BRS B21 C485005
    25Warn ring spring6SS A313-302/316
    26Gag screw9STL A108-1018/ZN plated
    27Pop rivetAluminum
    29Vibration dampener springPH BRZ B159-C51000

    Frequency of Inspection

    Ensuring the smooth operation of air compressor safety valves involves understanding how often to inspect them. In this section, we explore general guidelines and factors influencing the frequency of these crucial inspections.

    a. Establishing a Routine

    Guidelines suggest regular checks for air compressor safety valves to ensure optimal functionality. This routine inspection is typically recommended at least once every six months, but industry-specific regulations or the equipment manufacturer’s guidelines may influence the frequency.

    b. Influential Factors

    Several factors impact inspection frequency, including the operating conditions, system criticality, and the environment where the compressor operates. Harsher conditions or high-demand environments might necessitate more frequent checks to maintain safety standards. It’s crucial to align inspection schedules with the unique demands of the air compressor system to guarantee reliability.

    Signs of Wear and Common Issues

    To maintain the reliability of air compressor safety valves, it’s essential to recognize signs of wear and address common issues promptly. This section explores indicators that valves may need attention, providing insights into potential problems and ensuring a proactive approach to system safety.

    A. Identifying Signs of Wear

    Wear and tear are inevitable aspects of any mechanical component, including air compressor safety valves. Look out for any signs such as leaks, corrosion, or unusual sounds, as these could indicate potential wear. By understanding these indicators, individuals can proactively address issues before they escalate, preserving the optimal functioning of the air compressor safety valves.

    B. Common Issues Impacting Safety Valve Performance

    Ensuring the reliability of air compressor safety valves involves addressing common issues like debris accumulation, corrosion, spring fatigue, calibration errors, and malfunctioning seals. Regular inspections and cleaning are crucial to prevent debris-related malfunctions, while protective measures and corrosion-resistant materials combat corrosion issues. Monitoring and replacing worn-out springs, ensuring proper calibration and addressing seal malfunctions through routine examinations are essential practices.

    Step-by-Step Guide for Checking Safety Valves

    Checking a compressor safety valve, also known as a pressure relief valve, is a crucial maintenance task to ensure the safety and proper functioning of an air compressor. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to check it:

    Step 1. Read the Manufacturer’s Instructions

    Before starting, it’s important to consult the manufacturer’s manual for specific instructions and safety precautions related to your particular compressor and safety valve.

    Step 2. Ensure Compressor is Off and Depressurized

    Turn off the air compressor and release any pressure in the tank. This can typically be done by opening the drain valve at the bottom of the tank until all air has escaped and the pressure gauge reads zero.

    Step 3. Locate the Safety Valve

    The safety valve is usually a small valve with a ring or a lever on top, located on the air tank. It’s designed to automatically open at a predetermined set pressure.

    Step 4. Manual Testing

    – Pull the Ring or Lever

    Gently pull the ring or lever on the safety valve. This should manually open the valve, and you should hear air hissing out if there’s residual pressure in the tank.

    – Release the Ring or Lever

    Upon releasing the ring or lever, the valve should snap back into its closed position. If it doesn’t, or if it continues to release air when the ring or lever is released, the valve might be faulty.

    Step 5. Inspect for Damage or Corrosion

    Visually inspect the valve for any signs of damage, corrosion, or debris that might prevent proper functioning.

    Step 6. Check for Leaks

    With the compressor running and the tank pressurized, listen for any air leaks from the safety valve. Any continuous hissing sound when the compressor is at normal operating pressure indicates a leak.

    Step 7. Pressure Check

    Observe the compressor’s pressure gauge as the tank is pressurizing. The safety valve should not open before the compressor reaches its maximum rated pressure. If the valve opens prematurely, it may be set at too low a pressure or may be malfunctioning.

    Step 8. Professional Testing (if applicable)

    For critical applications or if there’s any doubt about the valve’s performance, have the safety valve professionally tested. This testing may involve using specialized equipment to verify that the valve opens at the correct set pressure.

    Step 9. Replacement if Necessary

    If the safety valve is faulty, it should be replaced immediately with a new valve of the same rating and type. Do not attempt to adjust or repair a faulty safety valve yourself.

    Step 10. Document the Inspection

    Record the date of inspection and any actions taken. Regular inspections should be part of your routine maintenance schedule.

    Importance of Regular Maintenance

    A. Role of Maintenance in Prolonging Safety Valve Lifespan

    Maintenance plays a pivotal role in extending the lifespan of air compressor safety valves. Regular inspections, cleaning and adjustments, ensures optimal valve performance. By following detailed maintenance procedures, you can prevent premature wear and tear of the safety valves. A proactive approach to maintenance safeguards against potential malfunctions, contributing to the overall integrity and efficiency of the compressed air system.

    B. Risks Associated with Neglecting Maintenance

    Both safety valves and pressure relief valves prevent issues in pressure vessels, including those within the compressor’s pressure vessel. Neglecting the maintenance of these critical components poses significant risks to both safety valves and the overall air compressor system. Indicators such as leaks, corrosion, or unusual sounds should be promptly addressed, allowing users to proactively manage potential issues. Additionally, understanding common issues impacting safety valve performance is essential. Challenges like debris accumulation or malfunctioning components can compromise the effectiveness of the safety valves which affects the whole system.


    Safety Note: Always follow established safety protocols during the air compressor safety valve inspection process to prevent any excessive compressor pressure incidents. If uncertainties arise, consider seeking guidance from a certified professional to ensure comprehensive evaluation. We THINKTANK company underscores the paramount importance of maintaining the safety valve’s integrity, as it stands pivotal for the secure and efficient operation of an air compressor system.

    Picture of Will Don

    Will Don

    After earning my bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Zhejiang Normal University in 2008, l was fortunate enough to begin my career with Siemens, Fisher, and YTC, focusing on control valve accessories. Over the past dozen years, l've poured my heart and energy into understanding technology and fluid solutions for control valves.
    Now, as the marketing director for THINKTANK, a trusted branch of the Taiwan STONE valve group, I can't help butf eel proud of how far we've come. Our knowledge isn't just reaching professionals like engineer and valve distributors; it's also inspiring the next generation of automation college students.
    l genuinely hope you're enjoying our articles and finding them helpful.Your thoughts, questions, and feedback mean the world to me, so please don't hesitate to reach out to marketing[at] Whether you're a seasoned expert or just curious about the field, I'm here to connect, share, and learn together.

    All Posts »

    I am the author of this article, and also the CEO and marketing director of THINKTANK, with 15 years of experience in the industrial valve industry. If you have any questions, you can contact me at any time.

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