Most circuit designers use effectively designed systems to prevent uncontrolled system pressures and pump flow during standby periods. In this way, hydraulic system damage, overheating of the hydraulic fluid, and power wastage are prevented or avoided. This is where pressure control valves are used.
Pressure control valves are used in hydraulic systems to deal with and control the actuator force. The actuator force is produced by a hydraulic actuator that consists of a cylinder or fluid motor, which uses hydraulic power to enable a mechanical operation. The valves are also used to determine and select pressure levels.
Primary functions of pressure control valves:
- Reducing and unloading system pressure
- Lowering pressure levels from the main circuit going to the sub-circuit
- Regulating system pressure in certain parts of the circuit
- Preventing maximum system pressure at a safe level
- Other pressure-related functions which involve pressure control
- Assisting the operation sequence of the actuators in a circuit with the use of pressure control
Pressure-limiting Valves. Are type of pressure control valves that safeguard the system against excessive system pressures. They also limit the operation pressure to certain system functions.
Pressure-reducing Valves. A type of pressure valve that maintains large pressures event at a variable inlet pressure.
Shut-off Valves. These valves are responsible for receiving control oil from a high-pressure circuit. It also switches the delivery flow of a low-pressure pump to unpressurised circulation if the set pressure value has been reached.
Load-holding Valves. These valves prevent loads on motors or cylinders dropping in an uncontrolled state. The valves are pre-loaded with a high-pressure setting that is higher than any possible load.
The main purpose of the pressure control valve is to provide safety within the workplace. It prevents the possible damages of excessive pressures from the equipment. This way, workers or users of any pressure equipment are protected.