What’s a Water Control Valve?

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Water control valves regulate water flow for production needs. CNC machines use them to control coolant levels and pressure. Individual valves allow for optimal pressure without spikes or drops. Some machines use hydraulic valves with sensors for automatic control. Individual valves also facilitate repair and maintenance without disrupting the rest of the line.

A water control valve regulates the amount of water dispensed from a given water line or outlet valve. The flow of water must be regulated to maintain a certain amount of pressure at the outlet for many production needs. The water control valve is variable from off to full on and anything in between. This allows the water regulation to be adjusted to meet all production process requirements.

Some computer numerical control or CNC machines use water mixed with other chemicals to act as coolant for the machine’s cutting heads. The amount of water or pressure is controlled by the water control valve. The CNC operator adjusts the valve to regulate the desired amount of water, ensuring that the coolant level remains at the desired level within the machine. Failure to maintain the proper amount of coolant could cause flooding or the machine to run dry.

Often, the water pressure on the main water line is much greater than that required to operate a machine on that line. This is intentional and ensures that all machines on the line are receiving optimal water pressure. The water control valve located on the individual machines allows the operator to set each station to the correct water pressure. By operating the system with individual water control valve characteristics, the main control pump is able to maintain maximum pressure without pressure spikes or drops.

While many water control valve settings are done manually, some machines use a hydraulic valve. The hydraulic water control valve is operated by sensors located inside the machine. These sensors monitor the level and viscosity of the coolant, as well as the temperature. Automatically open and close valves as needed to maintain optimum refrigerant mix and level. On this type of machine, an operator programs coolant information into the machine and the computer takes over the settings and operation.

Individual water control valve installations also greatly facilitate repair and maintenance. By allowing each machine to be cut off the waterline, the rest of the machines can continue to operate while one part is being serviced. A machine can also be replaced without interrupting the rest of the line. Machines can be set up to produce different parts or brought online to produce identical parts, all without disrupting other machines. The water control valve is an invaluable tool in the manufacturing process in many manufacturing plants.

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