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USE OF REGULATORS ON GAS CYLINDERS OVER 3000 psig

Gas Regulators can be used on compressed gas cylinders safely; however, failure to follow the manufacturer’s operating instructions can result in serious personal injury. Following the instructions listed below may reduce the possibility of incurring such injury.

     

  1. Do read manufacturers operating instructions and determine the maximum rated operating pressure before attaching a regulator to a cylinder.
  2. Do not use a regulator which is not designed for the specific gas and maximum inlet pressure it will be regulating.
  3. Do not remove inlet connections from a regulator (installed by the manufacturer) and replace them with different connections or an adaptor.
  4. Do not attach an adaptor to the inlet of a regulator even for the same gas, adapters must not connect a high pressure source to low pressure equipment. Adaptors include such devices as rigid or flexible fittings, control valves, pressure adjusting valves, etc.
  5. Do not use adaptors to change the gas service of a regulator.
  6. Do not modify a regulator to enable its use in a manner not intended by the manufacturer.

CAUTION: An adaptor regulator, e.g., a regulator designed to adapt a 3000 psig rated regulator to a 5500 psig cylinder, shall be provided with a pressure relief device to limit its outlet pressure so that, in the event of seat leakage or unintentional operation, the rated inlet pressure of the regulator on which it is installed is not exceeded.

REGULATOR SAFETY

  • THIS IS A TYPICAL WAY TO CONNECT A REGULATOR TO A CYLINDER 

IMPORTANT TEST

The regulator shall be installed such that the outlet is connected to a source of test gas at the maximum rated inlet pressure of the regulator. The inlet connection shall be blanked off, the delivery pressure gauge and external pressure relief valve shall be removed and the ports plugged and the regulator valve assembly/assemblies shall be removed. The test gas is then suddenly admitted into the regulator outlet. The regulator shall safely contain the pressure or release it without the throwing of parts.

The above test is based on the premise that regulator valves can leak, a safety valve can fail, there can be incorrect assembly of regulators and regulators can be wrongly connected to the pressure source, (for example, high inlet pressure by mistake can be applied at the outlet, delivery pressure gauge, safety valve or flow meter ports, etc., on a regulator body). This critical test is conducted to build safety into the design of regulators. It has been proven by tests that there are many regulator models presently in use in the field which meet the excess pressure test requirements of 3000 psig but fail at higher pressures; in other words, an oxygen regulator fitted with a connection withstands 3000 psig but fails at 5500 psig.

The requirement that cylinder connections shall be pressure specific was brought to a focus when a recent development in cylinder manufacturing technology enabled the industry to increase cylinder gas pressure substantially.

Finally, to promote safety, it is essential to follow the basic rules of gas specificity and pressure specificity for regulators installed on compressed gas cylinders. Attempts to circumvent them by adaptors or by other means may create serious hazards.

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