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SMC > Valves > Soft Start Valves
Soft Start Valves
Soft Start Valves


Soft Start Valves

What is your work routine for pneumatic foam-related projects? Do you run through checklists before operating? Clean your machines on a regular basis?

A good checklist will keep you prepared for daily hiccups during daily projects. So will set safety standards and making sure that no debris has gathered within your machines. Clutter benefits no pneumatic device, and neither will negligence. 

Even if you have a checklist on hand, you can always make your workplace safer. Also, you can do more to maintain your equipment. Yes, you constantly check the filter regulators and clean them of water and dust. Even so, do you have spare parts on hand, and keep an eye out for technological developments that can save you?  


Why We Use Air-Driven or Pneumatic Machines

We love pneumatic machines because they demonstrate functional simplicity compared to electric or hydraulic. Also, they are reliable while replicating work routines, cost less than other machines, and have relatively less troubleshooting. Air pressure drives these machines and allows them to pack a punch when applying foam to surfaces. 

Even so, you want to reduce potential problems as much as possible. Simple repairs can still cost a lot. For a foam sprayer, its motor and pumps provide consistent air pressure, but you always have to watch the machine because it doesn’t come with an automatic system. 

This extra step can prove tedious, and worrisome. If you don’t watch your internal cylinders correctly, then you can risk damaging your equipment from the inside. Wouldn’t it be great if there were options to passively monitor pressure from the compressed air?  

While soft start valves cannot automate the monitoring, they can assist in preventing damage to the equipment cylinders. Any little part that helps should be in your toolbox or your parts storage at least. 

That’s why we recommend keeping these valves on hand. SMC has them in stock, for your use. We can help fit you with the right valve, for your specific machine.


The Worst-Case Scenario With Pneumatic Cylinders

The cylinders in a pneumatic machine spin due to air flow. This spinning allows them to power the machine’s engine. Pressure switches can regulative the amount of air flow, and maintain it consistently. Even so, you need more tools for control.  

A typical valve when releasing air will maximize flow all at once the minute that you open them. That does not allow the air flow to level out, which in turn can cause the cylinders inside to spin out of control and crash. Then they need replacement. Obviously, the repair costs can accumulate and hurt your business. 

The worst-case scenario would not be machine or engine damage due to misfiring cylinders, though it would be terrible. No, you absolutely do not want an employee to get injured due to an air flow malfunction. If that happens, you not only lose a valuable employee and time on a job, but also you risk a lawsuit on the grounds of negligence or workplace injury. You would rather avoid having to settle out of court and take preventative measures. 

Can you avoid this scenario? Yes, you can; you already practice common sense safety procedures. A safety valve also helps reduce the risk, which in turn will reduce the risk of injury and save you a lawsuit headache. These measures make all the difference when applying for insurance, or setting up projects for the year. 


How Soft Start Valves Function

A soft start valve releases tiny bits of air, in small increments, so that the cylinders can start spinning and adjusting their positions slowly. They can assume their starting points, without risk of damage. The speed can make all the difference between a safe stop and a preventable emergency. 

Soft start valves can assist in emergency-stopping and restarting machines. The physics is similar to how car brakes if they stop abruptly, can cause a rapid forward motion. The valves slow down air flow enough to keep cylinders from spinning too fast and causing internal or external damage to the machine.

As you can see, having a soft start valve will assist you in operating pneumatic machines safely, because of the brakes that it applies to air pressure. You have many good reasons to get one, including the safety factor. Reducing future repairs also helps with setting budgets. When you purchase a soft start valve, you are investing in your workshop’s future. 


Finding The Right Soft Start Valves For Your Machines

You believe in a workspace where the machines function regularly and do not cause harm to you and your employees or contractors. Also, you want to reduce the necessary repairs as much as possible, so that you can keep working and finish your projects. Having a soft valve will prevent injury to yourself or other people as well as cylinder damage to your machines.

SMC Pneumatics has the valves you need for installation and implementation. Our Solenoid Actuated Dump Valve comes in six sizes and types, which should adjust well to your machines. It has a pressure range of 27 to 145 PSI. In addition, ambient and fluid temperature runs between 32 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit (0 to 60 degrees Celsius). 

Each dump valve can also accommodate to your electricity needs and expectations. Coil voltage includes the following: 100, 200, 110 to 120, 220 VAC (50/60 Hz), 240 VAC (50/60 Hz) 12, 24 VDC. The valves only need 1.8 watts of power, and you can choose an optional indicator light or voltage suppressor. 

Our valves come in the following models:

  • 1/4" NPT NAV2 000-N02-3DZ
  • 1/4" NPT NAV2 000-N02-5DZ
  • 3/8" NPT NAV3 000-N03-3DZ
  • 3/8" NPT NAV3 000-N02-5DZ
  • 1/2" NPT NAV4 000-N04-3DZ
  • 1/2" NPT NAV4 000-N04-5DZ

Still not sure which model is right for you? The experts who work at SMC will be very happy to help you find the right soft valve for your machine and offer installation tips to ensure the utmost satisfaction. Contact us online to find out more today.