Pressurized lines employing quick-disconnect couplers should be considered potentially hazardous and must be used with safety in mind. Proper selection and use of Foster products will help you maintain a safe working environment for your personnel, your equipment, and your products.
Foster's quick-disconnect couplers are precision devices—do not modify, strike, or otherwise abuse the coupling halves. Never exceed their pressure or temperature limits and always protect the hose and coupler assembly from moving equipment.
Be cautious when moving pressurized hoses as some types of quickdisconnect couplers may unintentionally disconnect if the coupler encounters an obstacle as the hose is dragged. The pressurized media subsequently escaping from the freed line can force the hose assembly to violently whip about, possibly causing personal injury, equipment/product damage, and economic loss. Foster couplers and plugs designed to minimize hose-whip hazards should be used whenever the risk is present, and personnel must be instructed to maintain a firm grip on both coupler halves when connecting or disconnecting pressurized lines.
Above all, always wear appropriate personal-protection equipment and safety glasses when working with, or near, pressurized lines utilizing quick-disconnect couplers.
Described below are several products offered by Foster Manufacturing Company that are designed to minimize the possibility of inadvertent disconnection and dangerous hose-whip:
Sleeve Guard Sockets:
Sleeve guard sockets (models SG3 and TF3) employ a rigid flange at the nose of the socket that protects the sleeve from accidental retraction if the coupler encounters an obstacle while the hose is being dragged or moved.
Sleeve Locking Options:
BL and SL options employ a ball or pin to restrict sleeve retraction and are available on all Foster manual and automatic couplers having retractable sleeves. Couplers with the BL or SL designation are constructed with sleeves having a slot that must be aligned with a ball or pin before the sleeve is allowed to retract. Rotating the sleeve 180 degrees so the slot is not aligned with the ball or pin will minimize the chance of accidental sleeve retraction.
Our twist-lock couplers (RL series and SHD series) offer another option for minimizing the chance of hose-whip. These models are very resistant to accidental disconnection because the sleeves must be rotated, rather than retracted, to release the plug. In addition, the RL and SHD couplers are push-to-connect automatic models designed for easy operation when using gloved hands.
Safety Vent Sockets:
Foster SV series safety-vent sockets are "zero pressure" connect/disconnect type couplers designed to safely vent downstream pressure prior to disengaging the plug. Besides being nearly effortless to connect and great for hose use, SV sockets are especially useful for single-hand operation when they are mounted to hard lines such as an overhead air drop. Once inserted into the SV socket, the plug is lightly gripped and will stay in place allowing the operator to use the same hand to actuate the sleeve to the "on" position. As the sleeve is being moved to the "on" position, the SV socket will securely lock the plug in place before flow begins. Foster SV sockets can also be used as a 3-way valve to turn off the flow of air and exhaust the downstream pressure without disengaging the plug. By turning and sliding the sleeve to the "exhaust" position, downstream air pressure is relieved but the plug remains locked in place. Turning and sliding the sleeve in the opposite direction allows air to flow again. Foster SV series sockets are the ultimate solution to accidental-disconnect hose-whip dangers.
Ball Check Plugs
Ball check plugs are offered in several sizes of Industrial Interchange and RL plugs. Ball-check plugs have a free-floating internal ball that acts as a check valve when the plug is disconnected from the coupler. The checkvalve action minimizes hose-whip by causing the pressurized gas to escape slowly from the disconnected hose.
Foster manufactures several types of air blowgun products designed for cleaning, blow-off, inflation, and other operations. The blowguns are available with zinc or nylon bodies and we offer a variety of optional tips for nearly any use. Foster blowguns are available in OSHA* compliant and non-compliant** models to suit your particular needs.
We strongly recommend that the end user obtain proper training before using quick-disconnect couplers, air blowguns, and other Foster products. Thoughtful analysis of the user’s needs and application must be given before selecting a product.
Our dedicated employees and distributors are eager to explain the features, benefits, and proper selection of Foster products, and answer your questions regarding their correct application and safe use.