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Media / Local company news / Prepare Your Compressed Air System for Summer in Five Easy Steps

Prepare Your Compressed Air System for Summer in Five Easy Steps


Recent weather reports suggest El Niño is back, meaning that global temperatures will continue to rise, possibly resulting in another record-breaking year for hot summer temperatures.

With the sun beating down mercilessly throughout the summer months, and temperatures and humidity on the rise, your compressed air system will experience additional water loading on the air treatment equipment. In fact, there is 650% more water in the air at the highest summer compressor operating conditions (122°F) versus the highest temperatures possible in winter conditions (60°F).

So what can a facility manager do to combat the rise in temperature, humidity and additional water loading when the mercury spikes? The answer is simple: maintenance. Now is the time to act before temperatures really start to climb. The following list can be used as a guide to prevent summer operating conditions from impacting your compressed air equipment.

Five Easy Steps to Prepare Your Compressed Air System for Summer

1.      Check Drains. Higher humidity in the summer causes more condensate to come out of drains. Be sure drains are in perfect working order so they can handle the extra flows. Expert Tip: Also remember that the additional water being produced during the summer has to go somewhere. Because the condensate is mixed with compressor oil, the water should not be released directly into the drain, but should be treated first. Check the state of your treatment units’ filters and separation tanks to make sure they are still operational. It is also a good idea to have the replacement service kit on hand so that no downtime is required during maintenance.

2. Clean Coolers. Blocked or clogged coolers can cause an air compressor to overheat on hot summer days. Get a jump on this by making sure coolers are clean before the heat hits.

3. Clean Air and Oil Filters. A compressor will run cooler and on less energy if the air filters are clean (just like your car or truck). Dirty filters lead to pressure drops, which the compressor must then accommodate for through higher run levels. Expert Tip: Filters are also affected by additional moisture; the increase in pressure drops seen in coalescing filters leads to higher compressor running costs. To decrease the pressure drops, replace the filter element with a new one.

4. Check Ventilation – Just like with air filters and oil filters, check and adjust your compressor room so that there is sufficient air flow. Expert Tip: Proper ventilation is extremely important when designing a compressor room. Learn how water-cooled and air-cooled compressors affect ventilation in our series,Designing an Efficient Compressor Room.

5. Adjust Water Cooling Systems – On water-cooled compressors, adjust the temperature of water entering the compressor to ensure that it is cool enough for summer conditions.

Don’t let the summer heat affect your compressed air system’s performance and your facility’s production. No time to think about maintenance? SMARTLINK, Atlas Copco’s data logging, monitoring and communication system, allows you to see how much air your system is producing, how much energy it is using, how the system is performing overall and when the system is due for service. To learn more, fill out our request a quote form and a representative will be in touch with you shortly.

Atlas Copco is an industrial group with world-leading positions in compressors, expanders and air treatment systems, construction and mining equipment, power tools and assembly systems. With innovative products and services, Atlas Copco delivers solutions for sustainable productivity. The company was founded in 1873, is based in Stockholm, Sweden, and has a global reach spanning more than 170 countries. In 2012, Atlas Copco had 39,800 employees and revenues of BSEK 90.5 (BEUR 10.5).      
Atlas Copco Compressors LLC is part of the Compressor Technique Business Area, and its headquarters are located in Rock Hill, S.C. The company manufactures, markets, and services oil-free and oil-injected stationary air compressors, air treatment equipment, and air management systems, including local manufacturing of select products. The Atlas Copco Group, which celebrated its 140th anniversary in 2013, is among the Top 100 sustainable companies in the world and a member of the Dow Jones World Sustainability Index. Atlas Copco has also been recognized by Forbes, Thomson-Reuters and Newsweek, among others, for its commitment to innovation and sustainability. Atlas Copco Compressors has major sales, manufacturing, production, and distribution facilities located in California, Illinois, Massachusetts, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas

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