General Questions

About Air Operated Pinch Valves

We are an owner-operated family enterprise which has succeeded as a market leader in providing absolute customer satisfaction by always being able to supply the best and most efficient pinch valve solution as quickly as possible.

To that effect, our unique modular construction kit systems offer absolute product diversity and flexibility.

Furthermore, we produce our pinch valves using the most efficient manufacturing processes, which do not only conserve resources but are also accompanied by efficient production costs.

AKO pinch valves thus offer the best price-performance ratio and with their outstanding service lives, also “the best total cost of ownership”.

Yes, the air-operated pinch valves can be used at vacuum pressures up to around 100mbar without auxiliary equipment.

We offer our AKOVAC units as compensation for applications having higher vacuum pressures, see link:

Vacuum conveying with air operated squeeze valves

If compressed air in the housing escapes, then the air-operated pinch valve opens.

Are your air-operated pinch valves also available with a failsafe position?

The only option for the air-operated pinch valves is to install the safety circuit which enables the air-operated pinch valve in the closed position to remain closed during a compressed air or power loss. The mechanical pinch valves (e.g. OV Series) also offer spring return valves with pneumatic cylinders.

We have never received any customer feedback in this regard. Care should generally be given to ensure that the installation position is stress-free.

We offer the spare pinch valve sleeves as wear parts. The flange and cover rarely exhibit wear. The customer can make the replacement on site; installation videos for the assembly/re-sleeve of pinch valves and all of the installation instructions can be viewed on our website at all times.

The air-operated pinch valve can be installed in any position. If the air connection points downwards, then any accumulating condensate (of the compressed air) can simply be drained.

Follow the information on this in our “Operating manual for AKO air-operated pinch valves” or simply call us. We will be happy to advise you.

The air-operated pinch valves can also be controlled by water or other neutral liquids.

We use an industrial standard powder coating with a layer thickness of 80µm. Depending on the pinch valve type, they are standardly painted with RAL 9010 or RAL 9006.

Special colours, thicknesses or designs on request.

The service life of an air-operated pinch valve generally depends on the pinch valve sleeve. This depends on numerous factors and operating conditions such as the pinch valve control/closing pressure, the media/operating pressure, the operating temperature and the operating medium.

Unfortunately, no general statement can therefore be made about the service life. Thanks to our decades of experience, however, our sales team is able to estimate the service life based on information on all of the usage details for each pinch valve size and design; simply contact us with your usage details and we will be able to provide you with a rough estimate of the service life for your application.

Due to its design, a pinch valve has almost no dead space.

Pinch valve types are available which provide this feedback as an option.

Care should be given to keep the closing and opening times of the air-operated pinch valve as short as possible because the actual abrasion/wear on the pinch valve sleeve is primarily caused during closing and opening. For this reason, the control valve (solenoid valve) should ideally be installed directly on the pinch valve. We further recommend the installation of a quick exhaust valve directly on the pinch valve. An optimal compressed air supply and exhaust system should be ensured by appropriate tubing/piping of sufficient size. Furthermore, most of the air-operated pinch valves are additionally equipped with a second or larger air connection at the customer’s request.

Please visit our Pinch Valve Accessories page for more information on the accessories mentioned above.

The air-operated pinch valves are subject to Pressure Equipment Directive 97/23/EC and fall under various categories depending on their nominal width and valve size; please see this link for the AKO manufacturer certifications.

Yes, the air-operated pinch valve can be kept closed when an air loss occurs by using what is referred to as the protection circuit

AKO Safety Arrangement

The flow through the air-operated pinch valves is “waterproof” (drip-proof) when the differential pressure supply is sufficient. At the customer’s request, we offer a flow tightness test with a protocol in accordance with DIN EN 12266-1 P12 leak rate A. The air-operated pinch valves are generally hermetically sealed from the outside.

Along with functional improvements, the consistent further development of our air-operated pinch valves also focuses on efficiency. The air consumption has therefore also been reduced to a minimum. The air volume for a closed pinch valve at each nominal width is provided in the data sheets of the air-operated pinch valves.

Areas of Application

AKO air-operated pinch valves are hermetically sealed from the outside and their flow is “waterproof” (drip-proof). They can therefore also be installed under water.

We recommend that you discuss your pinch valve application with our sales department. The more application details you provide, the more precisely we can advise you and specify the most efficient pinch valve solution for your application.

Depending on the design and elastomers, pinch valves can be used without additional actions at temperatures as low as -10°C.

Our experience shows that a large number of pinch valves have already been installed in colder regions and applications without functional impairments.

Depending on the design and elastomers, pinch valves can be used at temperatures up to +130°C.

Yes, air-operated pinch valves are available for use in the food, pharmaceutical and chemical industries. See VMCE Pinch Valves for more information.

These pinch valve configurations primarily consist of stainless steel or plastics having appropriate hygienic connections (tri-clamps, threaded spigots, milk pipe threads, hygienic/sterile flange) and corresponding FDA-approved pinch valve sleeves which make them suitable for foodstuffs.

AKO air-operated pinch valves in special designs are approved for EX-zones 1/21 and 2/22.

Function + Technique

The air-operated pinch valve is opened by the enormously high restoring force of its elastomer sleeve and with the aid of the media pressure.

Function of Air operated Pinch Valve

Devices referred to as pressure switches exist which can be used for closing to corresponding positions. They, however, do not 100% replace the function of the stop position sensors such as with mechanical pinch valves.

The closing pressures of the air-operated pinch valves depend on the nominal widths and pinch valve series. This information can be found in our data sheets.

By means of larger compressed air supply lines, solenoid valves with higher flow rates, the usage of a quick exhaust valve, and possibly a double valve air connection.

If the air supply is interrupted, then the pinch valve is opened by the rebound resilience of the sleeve.

In principle, yes. However, AKO does not offer such valve solutions for air-operated pinch valves in connection with proportional valves as a complete solution because the compressed air prevents reproduction of the hysteresis curve. Due to their reproducible hysteresis curve, the mechanical pinch valves in connection with pneumatic position controllers or electrical actuators with control properties are suitable for precise flow or position control.

Yes, pinch valves can also be operated with media other than compressed air such as with neutral gases or fluids.

Connections + Materials

Depending on the pinch valve series, a selection can be made among different
Flange connections according to DIN EN 1092-1 PN 10/ 16 or ANSI B 16.5 / 150lbs
Internal Thread Connections according to DIN EN ISO 228 “G” or ANSI/ASME B1.20.1 “NPT”
Tri-clamp connections according to DIN 32676 rows A and C or DIN 11864-3 and DIN 11853-3,
Weld-on ends according to DIN 11850 row 2 and ASTM A554 or
Threaded spigot connections according to DIN 11851 or DIN 11864-1.

Aluminium, stainless steel or various plastics can be selected as the housing and flange/cover materials.

Control + Accessories

Along with the solenoid valve, which is necessary to control the air-operated pinch valve, we also recommend the usage of a pressure/filter regulator, pressure switch and quick exhaust valve.

For further information please see Pinch Valve Accessories.

The AKO accessories are carefully adapted to the pinch valves. Our solenoid valves, for example, provide very high air output and thus ensure short switching cycles and high service lives of the valve sleeves.

AKO generally offers all of the control elements for air-operated pinch valves such as various solenoid valves, pressure switches, pressure/filter regulators, quick exhaust valves, backflow protection indicators, throttles, visual position indicators, protection circuits and AKOVAC units for vacuum mode.

Maintenance

Yes, the sleeves for the air-operated pinch valves can all be replaced on location without special tools.

We provide installation instructions and videos for all pinch valve types.

Experts in Pinch Valve Design & Manufacture

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