No matter the kind of setting it is used in, an air compressor is the lifeline of a long string of activities in any facility that it’s available in. Keeping your air compressor in terrific condition is essential if you want it to offer revolutionary performance from the time you purchase it and for many years to come. This is because it is the mother of all smooth operations. If not maintained well, it tends to disrupt systems throughout any facility that it is being used in, causing hours of delayed operations, increased costs of repair and on top of it all, amounts to tremendous losses in revenue. That is why if you are an air compressor owner, preventive maintenance should not only be an industry recommendation but a duty that you take seriously. Especially if you go through all the effort to find the best air compressor, you want to make sure it’s fully tuned up so that you’re getting the best performance out of it possible. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait till the last minute to start running up and down trying to look for ways to maintain its condition because below are handy tips to help you in routine preventive and maintenance of your air compressor system ensuring that it remains in tip-top shape and offers top-shelf performance for years to come.
Read and understand your air compressor manual
Most people won’t tell you this but we are here to ensure that you are completely informed and well versed when it comes to your air compressor. Even though it might seem obvious, always keep in mind that we live in a technological era and equipment tends to get outdated fast. Furthermore, one company’s equipment varies from that of its competitor and with this in mind it is crucial for you to read, understand, and follow the manual. Additionally, preventive maintenance starts when you learn to operate your air compressor correctly. If you are not familiar with simple things such as where you should place it, how certain elements work, how to keep it clean, and so on, then there is no doubt that it might break down soon. That will leave you crying foul and blaming the manufacturer when in real sense the problem was you.
Drain the air from tanks
Whenever you use your compressor, the receiver tank tends to collect moisture from the environment . If not drained, condensation tends to build up and if nothing is done it might lead to severe damage to your equipment causing it not to work as it should. To prevent this ensure that you drain its tank every time you use it especially if you operate it an area with humid conditions.
Change the air filters regularly
Another important component of your air compressor machine is its filters as they prevent dust and other radical debris from damaging the internal components. If you stay for too long without changing them then they tend to overwork the entire system by causing a pressure drop hence damaging the entire system and reducing its efficiency. Therefore ensuring that you maintain and change them regularly makes certain that they not only achieve their unit uptime but also maximizes their efficiency. This should be done after every 2000 hours.
Prevent air leaks by tightening fasteners
Your air compressor has a powerful engine to ensure that it executes its functions effectively. That means most of the time when on, you’ll find it vibrating which might cause some of the nuts and bolts unscrewing themselves. Make sure that you check after every few hours when it is running and tighten them up if you find them loose. That will help prevent air leaks.
Note: it is important that you take measures to prevent air leaks as they tend to be quite costly. For instance, it not only causes the pipes to clog with sludge, dust, or any other debris that might result to corrosion and damage but is also quite costly because a quarter inch air leak costs you more than $2000 in a year. In respect to that tighten those fasteners and check for air leaks on any part of your equipment to prevent any inconvenience that they might cause.
Sample and change oil
Take samples of oil from your compressor regularly for testing as it helps monitor the internal conditions of your machine. Analyzing your oil regularly acts as a pointer to a diverse array of underlying problems. For instance, it helps you know whether the oil in the system has a high water content, fluid degradation or ingested chemicals, dirt, metals or other debris which might cause your air compressor not to function as it should. Additionally, it helps you know when to change it. This applies to those which run on oil only and draw your samples from a clean port so your results can be free from contamination.
Check the separator element
Again if your compressor uses oil, it is important that you check and change the separator element. It helps save you oil by preventing excessive use. However, it is subject to wear and tear and thus cannot be of any help if it is left for too long. Change the element after every 1000 hours of operation to maximize its efficacy.
Eliminate guesswork from your preventive maintenance vocabulary
Nothing takes an air compressor to its failure path like an owner who does guesswork when it comes to maintenance. Don’t be that owner and the only way not to be him/her is by ensuring you troubleshoot to check for problems when anything seems unusual. For instance, if you note that the bearings are starting to whine don’t be quick to guess the problem. Go the extra mile to diagnose the problem so you can restore it to a proper working condition.
Keep an organized maintenance routine based on the manufacturer’s specifications
Even though the tips above come in handy, it is also important that you take your air compressor to a professional every once in a while for inspections based on the manufacturer’s specifications. This is why it is crucial that you read the company’s manual as it helps you learn about the manufacturer’s scheduled maintenance specifications.
In a nutshell, the amount of preventive maintenance that you offer your air compressor determines how well it serves you and also the amount of returns you get from it. So don’t be that owner who waits till something goes south so they can start worrying. Preventing problems is the best way to solve any problem.