Control Valves vs. Regulators

Operationally, the main difference between a control valve and a regulator is that regulators are better defined as process powered valves without the demand for external power or even an instrument air source to operate. In the simplest terms, a valve controls flow and a regulator controls pressure. Since the use of process fluid pressure is a means for control, regulators are functional as pressure control valves. Another difference comes in relation to the design pressure rating of the body of the regulator. Control valves are able to handle the same pressures on the output as they are on the inlet side. However, a regulator may have a lower pressure rating on the control pressure side (P

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