What is a Flow Restrictor and How Does It Work?

A flow restrictor is a device that regulates the flow rate of water through an outlet. It allows water to flow at a constant rate in and out of systems that operate better with consistent volumes of water. It is a device that monitors, measures, and controls the flow of liquid through a pipe. It also calculates the rate at which the flow is traveling; it not only lessens the flow, but it can perform many other processes that help in smooth functioning of the plumbing system.  


A flow restrictor is best known for its use in shower heads, but it is also used in a variety of applications throughout your home. A flow restrictor plays an important role in preserving health and maintaining the efficiency of the home and industrial water systems. Flow restrictor helps in filtration systems and irrigation systems, thus playing a valuable role in the environment. A flow restrictor is basically a two-port valve, which helps in reducing the flow of the valve stem, as the stem gets lowered and the plug is pushed onto the valve seat.  


What is a flow restrictor?

A flow restrictor is a device that acts as a restrictor to lessen or limit the amount of liquid or any kind of air or gas that comes out of a tap or any other kind of water dispenser. These devices are quite environment-friendly, saving electricity and thus helping in lowering water bills. For example, flow restrictors will control the use of water when washing dishes or showering, or doing any extreme water activity. The water pressure and the valve size of a tap typically determine how much water is emitted from a tap. Taps with high capacity of water pressure that tend to deliver large amounts of water require water controlling, and performing tasks like washing hands or bathing require heavy pressure of water. Flow restrictors are used anywhere where flow rates of the plumbing system need to be held to a steady rate with no significant variation in the flow rate. Because flow restrictors only allow a predetermined amount of water through, the flow rate is constant on the downstream side of the device, even if it is highly variable on the upstream side of the device. 

Basically, the flow restrictor limits the amount of water that is let out of a tap. It is often used in plumbing for the purpose of controlling water flow in showers. Flow restrictors allow any kind of liquid, air, or gas to run smoothly and optimally, thus helping to prevent any system from damage, which might get damaged by the excess flow. Flow restrictors also keep the water flow system have a long lifespan at high efficiency.  


Types of flow restrictors:


  1. Domestic Flow restrictor uses

  •  Shower head flow restrictor  
  •  Reduction of water flow in a function  
  •  Stability in water flowing from a tap  
  •  Reduction of water flow from a tap garden hose  
  •  Flow regulators for washers    
  1. Industrial/commercial flow restrictors uses

  • Fluid metering, controlling flow throughput  
  • Medical applications  
  • Chilled water balancing  
  • Semiconductors  
  •  Food and beverages  
  • Water flow regulation for skills  


How does a flow restrictor work?

A flow restrictor is capable of creating a barrier to the heavy flow, gradually decreasing the available area for the flow to move through. This decreases the flow rate, and thus it automatically reduces the gallons per minute. When the flow rate is cut down, the total water consumption happening per minute automatically lessens. A pipe has a fixed cross-sectional area that the media flows through. Because of the fixed cross-sectional area, flow rate becomes a function of pressure, where an increase in flow is a function of an increase in pressure.  


Water works of the flow restrictor operates in a two-port valve, by maintaining a consistent flow rate of water in a water outlet. As the supply line’s volume increases, flow restrictors decrease the area that the water can flow through. Flow restrictors will work regardless of any fluctuations in water pressure and can be easily used in household applications. In low-pressure supply lines, flow restrictors provide the comfort of use, and they save energy in high-pressure supply lines. A flow restrictor not only manages the flow of water but also prevents any additional built-up pressure from damaging pipes, appliances, and fixtures. Not only do flow regulators save your money by decreasing damage to appliances, but they also save water in lines with high pressure. In applications where a large volume of water is used, such as showers, water tanks and water filtration systems, a flow restrictor can save you money on your water bill each month.  


Is a flow restrictor necessary?

In the case of domestic applications, areas that are strictly prone to drought need water consumption control. Flow restrictors control the amount of water and lessen its consumption and use, thus allowing for more tasks to happen with the same amount of water used at the same time. It not only saves time but money as well. Areas, where water is not monitored closely can deliver cost savings.  

As far as industrial applications are concerned, when you want the flow to be held to a constant in your process line, a flow restrictor can be used in order to control extreme flow variations. Slowing the variation can easily reduce the necessary turn-down requirements of any flow meters placed downstream of the flow restrictor. The flow restrictor reduces the pressure on the upstream side of the restrictor; thus, the flow output is decreased in water output.  



A flow restrictor is used in gaseous as well as liquid environments. For liquid environmental special flow restrictors are available only at TopLine Industries. Our flow restrictor is designed to maintain a consistent flow rate of water. When flow controllers are used in conjunction with a pressure regulator, the devices allow water to flow at a constant rate without building up any pressure in the supply line. Our team constantly works hard to redefine the standard of excellence through technology and new innovations.  




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