Review of valve designs

Valve Size does matter
Valve Size does matter

End-user valve review is important to determine the success of valve design and installation about the intended purpose of the project. A valve may be deployed as a commodity valve or as a specialized high-pressure design on an aggressive cyclic duty. The end user must answer the auditor’s inquiries on the success of the project. This is not the business of the installation expert to answer questions on the performance of the project. When the auditor interacts with the end user, he wants to find out the users views of the system.

Valve design review is a question and answers session involving the end user, manufacturer, and the auditor. The auditor already has a full brief of the system design and intended purposes; he wants to look at each module of the project construction to known the users view and compare it to his expectation and the intended design.

First audit: Sample auditor’s manufacturer’s design questions

  • Do you have a maintained, controlled list of all the international standards used? The auditor will politely request to see the document.
  • In what ways do you maintain, control End User specifications and guarantee the incorporation of their requirements into the valve design?
  • Explain the basis of the valve design including the pressure containment part of the valve?
  • What are the design principles for sealing elements?

Conducting a review of this nature is crucial to determine the knowledge of the designer, and how they have put in place best practice in the design and implementation of the project. An impressive response from the builder of the project will be to answer all questions with facts, document, and people in charge of each area of the project. System design and installation must plan to provide necessary information the end user will need to have a smooth operation.

Experience has shown that the above manufacture questions are not surprising to an established international manufacturer. This is something they see and are familiar with in their day to day project design and implementation. As for up and coming manufacturers, giving a response to such questions may take some time. They are not up to date on the list of international standard, and the controlled information is out of date; the practically lack control on multiple issues of standards. The issue of language where the local contractor’s mother tongue is not in English can also pose some serious challenges.

Second audit: design interrogation questions

The auditor wants to know how the system is maintained and how end-user control specifications and requirements are incorporated into the valve design. It is expected that end-user expectations of international standard vary because they are likely to add their requirements in the specifications. The auditor wants to see how such end-user expectations have been factored into the final specs of the project.

While the manufacturer must go with the internationally accepted standard, it is important they factor at the end user expectations into the system specification requirements. They have a process different from others, and their way of doing things must reflect in their final design. Unless the end user needs are incorporated into the final design and documented, the project risks getting a poor rating from the user.

Valve Size does matter

The third, fourth and fifth audit questions dig deeper into the structure and depth of design of the system. It seeks to bring out core engineering design and control objectives as well as establish the principles and purposes of each component used. The final question is interested in training for the engineers about maintaining the system. Valve design review brings the end user and manufacturer closer on a trust path. It presents an avenue for the end user to have clarity about the system and how to operate and maintain it. However, the questions to ask in a valve design review will vary according to the reality of each environment.