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Justification and benefits of implementing manifolds in small gas distribution systems

Implementing Manifolds in Small Gas Distribution Systems Beneficialn

Safety, efficiency and resource effectiveness improve with implementing a manifold if you use just three cylinders per week

If your gas supply does not have a manifolded central gas system, you may have witnessed something similar:

The operator is moving right along when the gas tank hits empty. They shut down the process, unhook the empty tank and head across the plant to exchange. On the way, the operator runs into friends and they talk about upcoming holiday plans for a few minutes. The operator continues, pausing for a quick restroom break and to check out the new items in the vending machines. After successfully exchanging the tank, they take a different path to check in with their other friends about their latest fantasy football standings. After that, the operator finally returns to their station just as it’s time for break, so they finish installing the new tank when they return.

Sound familiar? This process is not unusual. Yet, it costs time and money. In fact, Rexarc International has a tool that can tell you how much it costs you just by inputting some basic information.

Rexarc International offers three key benefits to choosing a manifold system.

  • Maximize system efficiency — fewer downstream production interruptions
  • Maximize system effectiveness — maximize use of all resources and allow for system to match needed output
  • Maximize safety — more controlled changeover processes and fewer system pressure changes

If your in-plant gas usage is more than three cylinders a week, you should switch to a manifold system for increased efficiency, better effectiveness, and safer operation. Now is an opportune time to implement a manifold system to improve efficiency, effectiveness, and safety.

Manifold systems improve operational efficiency, increases savings

Manifolds maximize system efficiencies in numerous ways.

One of the biggest improvements is in time spent switching cylinders. The scenario presented at the opening of this piece may elicit laughs, but we all have experienced a similar situation. Rexarc International’s Manifold Savings Calculator can show you how much cylinder changeover time costs.

Changing tanks means that your downstream production is offline. The Rexarc International Manifold Cost Savings Calculator only calculates the time it takes to change cylinders used at point of use. It does not include the loss of downstream production because of being less productive at this stage. That means your actual costs (and consequently savings) could increase greatly depending on the number of operators reliant upon those who produce products before their step in the production process.

Outside of time actually spent changing gas cylinders, there is time invested in training. When a manifold is implemented, training those who handle and change cylinders also can be centralized to a core of people whose core competency is on managing the facility’s operation and not an operator with the duty of cylinder handling added. This not only reduces training costs and needs, it helps ensure safer handling of tanks.

Manifolds maximize resource effectiveness

Those downstream disruptions are costly, but they also mean that valuable resources are not being fully utilized most effectively. Typically, justifying the cost of adding staff, and upgrades and new equipment is calculated using maximum operational uptime. Manifolds, even for small gas distribution systems using just three cylinders per week, maximize that uptime for both human and physical resources.

Manifolds make it easier to schedule cylinder checks and changes during downtime. They easily can be scheduled for between shift changes. Also, with multiple tanks connected to manifold, changes will be required less often. Operators will be able to focus on their core competencies and be more effective in their roles.

Manifolds also help achieve the most effective use of your inputs. Many managers will try to change cylinders before they are empty but that practice also is not effectively using resources. By changing a tank too early, the full gas volume is not used — it is wasted.

With multiple cylinders installed in a manifold, pressure is constantly maintained over the span of tanks connected to the system rather than just drawing from one. With pressure at a constant, downstream production can continue uninterrupted, maximizing production of the entire operation and safety of those who operate it.

Manifolds increase safety

Safety is of utmost importance in every plant. Changing to a manifold system can improve safety not only for those handling cylinders and changing out tanks, but also downstream operators.

The specific function of a manifold is to convert pressure from the source to the proper operating pressure. With consistent pressure maintained by the manifold, downstream operators are not surprised by pressure changes that could impact their point of interaction with the needed gas. Sudden pressure changes can cause potentially dangerous situations for downstream processes. At the very least downstream processes, especially in situations like metalworking, can cause imperfections and repetitive work. The consistent flow provided by a manifold eliminates sudden highs and lows.

Because several cylinders can be connected to a single manifold, they require fewer cylinder changes and fewer opportunities for something to go wrong during that time.

Also, Rexarc International liquid flashback arrestors (LFA) can be added to a fuel-gas pipeline such as natural gas to provide additional levels of safety. LFAs prevent flame from reaching the supply source should a flashback occur, decreasing damage and injury. Rexarc International includes LFA’s standard with most fuel gas manifold systems and offers a number of LFAs based on your needs, and tips for their minimal maintenance.

Reputation matters when seeking a manifold

If considering adopting a manifold for your gas distribution system, now may be a good time to do so. With the year winding down, managers are seeking to use budgets for maintenance and upgrades. Using even just a few cylinders a week can justify the transition from a single connection point when considering the efficiency and effectiveness gains along with improved safety considerations.

To get the best value for your investment, seek a provider with a long-standing reputation in the gas distribution business. You know if they are a long-standing provider known for quality, safety and value, they have earned their reputation. Rexarc International has been working in the gas distribution space for decades. Known widely as a pre-eminent global supply of systems and parts, Rexarc International will work with you to choose the solution that works for your system and conditions.

You can start choosing a manifold for your gas distribution system by using Rexarc International’s gas manifold savings calculator. Once you input your data, a Rexarc International representative will contact you and you will be able to place your order.

To learn more about Rexarc International, visit


Summary – Adopting a manifold system for gas supply could increase the efficiency, effectiveness and safety of your equipment and your team. Rexarc International’s Manifold Savings Calculator can show those savings. And Rexarc can help you find the right manifold for your needs.



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