The extensive or wide array of flow meter options can make choosing the right technology a confusing or perplexing task. Many factors can impact the decision of a person when selecting a flow meter, of which cost is among them.
In many industries, flow is one of the most critical measurements. How much fluid you’re required to conduct a particular task? Or how much gas is needed to sell at gas stations? Either a seller makes the selection for you or you do it yourself, there are a plethora of things to consider.
With that said, you need to think of many critical factors to choose the correct flow meter for your application. For a little help, here’s a quick rundown of things to consider before buying a flow meter. Take a read!
First things first, you need to determine necessity. Do you need a flow meter? A lot of people usually only want to find out the rate at which a fluid is passing through a vessel. In this matter, a simple flow meter will typically suffice.
Such flow indicators are available in any flow meter stores, and it comes at an affordable price. Easy to install and uncomplicated, these flow meter technology can be leveraged to obtain the flow rate.
Directly speaking, it’s paramount that you determine the rate of the fluid you’ll be measuring. With this in mind, you will be able to choose the right flow meter for your application. On the opposite, if determining the volume of fluid or flow rate is not essential, then you do not need a flow meter.
When choosing a flow meter, the most affordable and inexpensive one does not automatically mean it is the best option. Even though it may look like it’s the ideal way to save money in a relatively short period. Selecting the lowest cost option might, in the future, result in serious problems later on.
As such, when it comes to picking a flow meter technology, be extra careful. Little did you know, cutbacks in the purchase price of most inexpensive flow meters have been pulled off by reductions in expertise and supplier support.
In the end, the most cost-effective solution will be the one wherein the manufacturer can provide a superb track record, excellent technical support, high-reliability products, and traceable test facilities.
When choosing a flow indicator, a critical thing to keep in mind is that every gas, liquid, or gas differently behaves when moving through the vessel. The primary or chief cause of this is viscosity.
Viscosity refers to how much resistance the fluid have towards the flow. As a result, it influences the velocity of flow through the vessel. By knowing the flow of a liquid, gas, or fluid through the pipe, it’s possible to determine how it acts.
From there, you can streamline your flow meter options to those capable of managing the conditions of the application. Various fluids can be, for the most part, categorized into Non-newtonian and Newtonian fluid types.
Non-newtonian fluid types include paints, shampoos, and yogurt. On the other hand, Newtonian fluid types include sugar solutions, mineral oils, milk, and water. Non-newtonian fluids differ upon the resistance of the fluid towards the flow.
Newtonian fluids are likely to attach to the machine walls, causing the flow to slow down. Thus, needing lots of pressure to achieve a certain level of flow. Knowing these factors can aid in determining the correct flow meter technology to stimulate proper flow.
Turndown is the quantitative relation of the minimum flow rates and maximum flow rates a flow indicator can gauge within its determined accuracy range. A flow meter’s turndown ratio is very important or crucial as it’s virtually impossible to determine the exact scope of flows in advance to be calculated.
Picking a flow meter technology that provides the most extensive potential turndown will make certain that it can include all expected flow variations.
When it comes to choosing a flow meter, it’s paramount to consider precisely how and where the flow indicator will be installed. Keep in mind that the installation can greatly impact both the efficiency and accuracy of the device.
Install flow meters in areas where a few straight-lengths of unblocked vessels both downstream and upstream of the flow meter to ensure the best results. Thus, it is quintessential to know the recommendations of the manufacturers as to how and where to install the device.
As you consider your options about flow meters, make sure to take the previously mentioned steps in mind to find the best technology for your application, demands, and needs. Whether you opt for variable area flow meters, Coriolis flow meters, turbine flow meters, and so on, it can be wise to consult with a professional or expert to make certain that you’re on the right path.
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