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Help Your Air Compressors Beat the Heat

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The following is an excerpt from the article Help Your Air Compressors Beat the Heat by Beth Morgan, product marketing manager with Atlas Copco Compressors. The full version can be read online or in the June issue of Maintenance Technology. 

Summertime: The word conjures up images of relaxing on a beach with peaceful waves lapping at the shore. Most people equate summer with some degree of fun in the sun. For facility mangers, though, it can be a stressful time, given the unscheduled “vacations” that air compressors like to take during summer months and an associated rise in maintenance and energy costs.

With often-extreme temperatures and substantial increases in humidity, summertime presents textbook conditions for unexpected compressor shutdowns. Failure of this equipment can result in high repair costs and, more important, a disruption in production schedules that can lead to more costs and, ultimately, less revenue.

What can your operations do to battle the effect of summer on these systems? Beth Morgan of Atlas Copco Compressors (atlascopco.com, Rock Hill, SC) points to the following items that deserve special attention in terms of summer maintenance.

—Jane Alexander, Managing Editor 

Ventilation

Sufficient and temperate airflow is crucial to compressor performance. During the sweltering months of summer, confirm there is nothing prohibiting air from flowing freely around the unit and that the recommended ambient temperature is maintained. Repair loose foam or panels and remove any obstructions in or around the unit.

Oil

A compressor’s oil isn’t protected from the consequences of hot weather. Sweltering heat can decrease oil life expectancy, leading to damaging repercussions on the unit’s element. Using the correct oil (replaced at proper intervals, of course), and keeping oil filters clean will help ensure that your compressors run cool and consume less energy.

Keep Reading…

Don’t stop now. You can read the full article online in Maintenance Technology.