To determine whether a system or component is operating adequately, the pressure gauge is the first component you should check. Imperative to most process plants, pressure gauges need to be reliable and easy to use.

Pressure gauges are designed to withstand harsh industrial settings and often require minimal maintenance, other than periodic calibration. However, if you find that the pressure gauges on your equipment are failing prematurely, here are some factors that must be examined.

Pressure Range Selection

Selecting the pressure range is a critical step. Your pressure requirements can be determined using both system operating pressure and maximum system pressure. The maximum pressure is the highest possible pressure that the system can withstand.

The operating pressure is the average pressure of the system and should fall in the middle half of the pressure gauge dial. Pressure higher than the full-scale reading can cause leaks in the system, rendering the gauge inaccurate.


The temperature specifications outlined by the manufacturer should never be exceeded. Moreover, operating and maximum temperatures should be verified, and regular inspections should be carried out to ensure limits aren’t exceeded.

Cooling devices such as siphons, capillaries, and cooling towers can be used to reduce the temperature of the gauge.

Wetted Parts Compatibility

Corrosive substances may not affect the system’s internal walls because they are thick. However, the pressure gauge’s wall thickness is much lower, and thus, it is susceptible to damage due to corrosive chemicals.

Use a chemical compatibility chart to determine if your pressure gauge can withstand the process media in the environment. Additionally, if the gauge is installed in a steam service, use a steam siphon to protect the gauge internals.


Excessive vibrations can cause the needle or internal mechanism to become loose. To prevent vibrations in the system from damaging pressure gauges, remote mounting with capillary is recommended. If this isn’t possible, use a liquid-filled case to dampen the needle’s vibration and keep internal parts lubricated.


Damage caused by poor installation is a common occurrence. Pressure gauges should never be installed by hand or by turning the case. An experienced technician will always screw the socket into the fitting using a wrench.

Contact Instruments is a reliable supplier of high-quality process instrumentation in Canada and the United States. Our products include electronic gauges, custom cables, pump stands, and weight indicators for drilling rigs.

Call us today to find out which custom cable meets your needs.