In simple terms, flow meters play a crucial role in accurately determining the speed and volume of liquid or gas passing through a pipeline. Taking that into account, the right flow meter is a differentiating factor between efficiency and inefficiency.
Choosing the right flow meter will contribute to efficient business processes, while the wrong one will prove to be a costly, troubled affair.
If you are in the process of selecting a flow meter, we’ve outlined a few tips to assist you with the decision making.
Know the types
The first and foremost factor to consider is the types of flow meters. There are different types of flow meters available namely gas flow meters, liquid flow meters, vapour flow meters and slurry flow meters.
You can begin by eliminating the flow meters that simply won’t cater to your unique application. You need to consider the properties of the fluid that will pass through the pipeline. For instance, slurry fluid won’t be compatible with a thermal mass flow meter.
If you are unsure about this, you can always reach out to calibration professionals to help you pick out the right one.
Understand your purpose
Flow meters have a diverse range of applications, from household use to application in agriculture or aerospace.
Considering their versatility, to choose the right flow meter you first need to understand your purpose. You should take into account its turndown ratio, type of fluid it has to measure, the required temperature and how user-friendly it is. For instance, Electromagnetic flow meters can take measurements across a wide range while Coriolis flowmeters can only measure the mass of viscous fluid. To explore a wide range of flow meters, visit Litre Meter.
Check chemical compatibility
The material of the flow meter should be compatible with the fluid or gas that will pass through it. The interaction of incompatible materials will lead to adverse results. It will affect the quality of the fluid and durability of the flow meter while concluding inaccurate measurements.
To prevent such issues, test each material against a reputable chemical compatible table.
Don’t rely solely on price or popularity
The cheapest option is not necessarily the best. Solely relying on price might seem like a good deal now, but can prove to be expensive in the future. Look beyond the short-term savings and choose a flow meter that promises durability and quality down the line.
Similarly, simply going along with what’s popular in your industry can be disastrous. Look for a flow meter that suits your unique application performance-wise. An inappropriate flow meter will result in inaccurate measurements, in turn will negatively impacting your operations.
For a flow meter to be cost-effective in the long run, it has to promise durability. Ask your supplier regarding the durability of the flow meter and its failure rate. Better durability is always offered at a higher price, but it’s worth it.
Installation and maintenance
Correct installation of a flowmeter is just as important as the flowmeter itself. Check exactly where and how a flow meter will be installed. This will significantly impact its efficiency and accuracy.
Another factor you should look into is the repairs and maintenance requirement over time. For instance, Coriolis mass flow meters are expensive but need minimum maintenance.
Some other specifications that you should look into include accuracy, rangeability, repeatability and hygiene requirements.
These are some of the basic variables of the right flow meter. Hopefully, these tips help you with selecting a suitable flow meter for your application. The attributes of flow meters are much more diverse than this. Hence, it’s highly advised to get professional assistance for the best results.