Industrial air compressor systems provide compressed air for various industrial and commercial applications. For example, they power pneumatic tools, operate factory machinery, and more. There are various types of industrial air compressor motors available, each with its advantages and disadvantages.
Businesses need to properly maintain air compressors to ensure that they continue running smoothly and efficiently. Therefore, many businesses must have their air compressors inspected and tested regularly. This is commonly referred to as Preventive Maintenance (PM). The purpose of PM is to ensure that the system continues to operate at its optimum level so that it does not break down or become damaged.
Here are some recommendations for Preventative Maintenance of your compressor:
Compressors are critical to many businesses, and ensuring that they’re in good working order is vital. According to motor suppliers, the following components must be thoroughly inspected, cleaned, and lubricated regularly:
The air filter on an air compressor system should be checked every time the system is turned on. The filter should be cleaned and replaced if it is dirty or damaged. If the filter is not clean, it can cause the compressor to overheat and damage the system. It is also essential to keep the area around the air compressor clean so that dust and dirt do not collect on the filter or in the compressor itself.
When oil passes through the system and is carried to the end of the application, it can degrade compressed air quality. Processes such as pneumatic spray painting, air cleaners, and other equipment where oil may contaminate a surface are susceptible to the effects of oil. To ensure that the compressed air is clean before leaving the machine, it is imperative to remove any oil present in the system.
Maintain lubricated or non-lubricated compressor oil filters weekly. The oil filter should also be replaced routinely at specified intervals, which may vary depending on the unit. The oil filter should be replaced sooner if it becomes heavily covered with oily residue before this time.
The importance of lubrication in an air compressor motor cannot be overstated. Compressors use lubricants to help cool and protect their internal moving parts. Without proper lubrication, a compressor will overheat and eventually break down. To select a suitable lubricant for your compressor, you need to understand the different types of lubricants and their properties.
There are three main types of compressor lubricants:
- Mineral oil – Mineral oil is a traditional type of lubricant that is made from refined crude oil. It has good wear protection and thermal stability, but it can cause environmental problems if it is released into the atmosphere.
- Synthetic oil – Synthetic oils are made from purified petrochemicals and perform better than mineral oils. Synthetic oils also have better resistance to chemical breakdown and oxidation. They are also less likely to attract dirt or moisture.
- Ester oil – Ester oils are synthetic lubricants made from esters, which are liquids derived from oil refining.
Air compressors require that their belts be appropriately adjusted to operate efficiently. Each belt’s rubber material must be firm but flexible so that the pulleys of its connected components can move in a balanced manner. There will, however, be gradual wear down of the rubber on a belt over time, and it will eventually crack at certain points. Because of this, motor suppliers recommend having the belts replaced before the tension is lost or, even worse, if they snap during operation.
It is recommended that each belt be inspected once a week to ensure it is in good condition. The tension should be adjusted if necessary, and each belt should be replaced once it has begun to wear out.
When an air compressor is not running smoothly, it is often due to a problem with the motor bearings. The motor bearings help the motor turn, and if they are not functioning correctly, the entire compressor will not run smoothly. However, there are a few things you can do to check the motor bearings and determine if they need to be replaced.
The first thing you can do is listen carefully to the noise that the compressor is making. If you hear a grinding noise, this is an indication that the bearings may be bad. You can also feel the fan on the back of the compressor. If it feels hot to the touch, this may be another sign of a problem with the bearings.
Performing Preventive Maintenance checks on industrial air compressor motors is critical to keeping them running smoothly and ensuring safety. By following the tips listed in this article, you can help keep your air compressor system running safely and efficiently.