Back Pressure Control Valve

Back Pressure Control Valves for High Flow Liquid or Gas Service

  • Equilibar schematic back pressure valve

Equilibar offers precision back pressure control valves for a wide variety of industrial applications, both liquid and gas.
Select your size range below:

Industrial Service Back Pressure Valves  BD Series
High Flow / Medium Pressure Valves
Line size 2″ to 4″
SS316, PVC or Anodized Aluminum
Maximum Pressure of 150 psig / 10bar(g)
Maximum Cv of 160

Precision Back Pressure Regulator

GS Series
Smaller Back Pressure Valves
Line size 1/4″ to 1″
Available SS316L standard
Maximum Pressure of 1500 psig
Maximum Cv of 8.5

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How the Equilibar Back Pressure Control Valve Works

 Traditional Valves Use Control Loops to Regulate Pressure

Traditional back pressure valve (BPV) designs use a rising stem globe-type design to modulate the flow of the process fluid. This design can only influence the flow and cannot control the inlet pressure directly. To control the pressure, an external control loop is required, which can be a complicated mechanical feedback or, more commonly, an electronic PID loop using a pressure transmitter for feedback.

Equilibar Valves are Simpler and More Accurate

how a back pressure regulator works

Equilibar® back pressure valves work in a completely different way than traditional back pressure control valves. Equilibar back pressure valves control pressure in a precise one-to-one ratio to a pilot signal that is applied to the top of a diaphragm. The other side of the diaphragm is exposed to the process media pressure that is being controlled. The diaphragm moves in response to a sensitive and precise 1:1 force balance between the media pressure and the pilot pressure. The pilot pressure is provided by a simple mechanical regulator or with a remotely controlled electronic pressure regulator. The internal operation of the Equilibar valve can be seen in the cross section diagram above. The diaphragm is the only moving part and acts as the valve member by directly sealing against the internal orifices.

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Advantages of Equilibar Over Back Pressure Control Valves

Easiest Control Loop

The diaphragm inside the Equilibar back pressure valve is its own closed loop system. The precise 1:1 pressure balance maintained by the diaphragm means that the Equilibar valve will automatically modulate the flow rate to keep the upstream pressure matched to the pressure setpoint. A complicated feedback regulator or hard to tune PID loop is not required

Accurate and Stable Back Pressure Control

The diaphragm inside the Equilibar is frictionless and sensitive to very small changes in the upstream pressure. This diaphragm compensates for system changes automatically and immediately to keep the pressure matched to the pilot pressure.

High Speed Response

The diaphragm is loaded with a compressed gas pilot signal. This allows the diaphragm to respond to changes in the upstream pressure or flow rate within 10mS. The compressed gas on the pilot does not inhibit or dampen the diaphragm’s ability to respond quickly.

High Flow Rate Turn Down Ratio

The Equilibar back pressure valve controls pressure using a multiple orifice design. As the flow rate increases or decreases more or fewer orifices will be brought in to play by the action of the diaphragm. Only one orifice might be required to modulate for very low flow rates while multiple orifices will be used when higher flow rates or surges in the flow occur. Flow rate turn down ratios of over 100,000:1 are achievable.

High Pressure Turn Down Ratio

The diaphragm inside the Equilibar regulator is flexible and strong as it is manufactured from modern polymers. This diaphragm allows the valve to control back pressure over a very wide range. For example, a 1000 psi control valve could be expected to control pressures as low as 25 psi while maintaining accuracy.

The Definition of Back Pressure Control Valves and Regulators

The term back pressure control valve and back pressure regulator are often used interchangeably. The Equilibar valves shown on this page are also referred to back pressure regulators on the rest of this site. However, Equilibar uses the term back pressure valve to describe regulators which are 1.5 inch size or larger while reserving the term back pressure regulator to describe products that are smaller than 1.5 inches.

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Flow Control using Back Pressure Control Valves and Regulators

Equilibar back pressure regulators and valves can be used to control flow across a wide range of flow rates using closed loop automation. Equilibar valves are being used for flow control in challenging operations such as extremely wide Cv ranges, low DP or high DP, multiphase or supercritical flow, continuous flow and sanitary applications.

schematic showing typical back pressure valve with PID feedback control

Traditional Back Pressure Control Valve
Typical control valve using PID feedback control to accomplish back pressure control. This approach can be complex, sluggish, and has limited flow range.


back pressure valve with integrated electronic pilot valve

Simpler Back Pressure Control Valve
An Equilibar® electronic pressure regulator can directly command the pilot of the Equilibar® back pressure valve with no PID, tuning, or sluggish performance. The Equilibar is capable of handling flow rate variations up to 1000:1 compared to 15:1 for most traditional control valves.


Cover image of the BD Series large back pressure regulator brochure

BD Series Brochure details Equilibar large back pressure regulators with 1.5″ – 4″ inlet ports.

Equilibar GS Series Brochure details common smaller sized industrial models.


For details about all Equilibar® back pressure valves and regulators, visit our BPR Main Page.
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David Reed with SBA award

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For more than 50 years, the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA) has celebrated National Small Business Week to  recognize the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.  As part of this year’s celebration, Equilibar was honored to receive the 2020 award for North Carolina Small Business Exporter of the Year.  The award was Read More

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