How to Maintain a Rotary Vane Air Compressor


How to Maintain a Rotary Vane Air Compressor

While having a rotary vane compressor maintained professionally by a service engineer on a regular basis is essential, there are a few things that you can do to ensure that your rotary vane compressor runs at the optimum performance. Simple tasks such as cleaning out the air and oil filters, replacing the oil, and replacing filters after a certain period of use will help you ensure that your compressor runs better for longer and is subject to less wear and tear. With the right maintenance and upkeep schedule, rotary vane compressors tend to have a long lifespan.

Checking the Oil

If you use a rotary vane compressor that is lubricated with oil, it’s important to check this regularly to ensure that the oil level stays consistent, which will help you avoid problems in the future. Check the oil level each time you are going to use the machine, before you switch it on and when it is still cold. Along with checking to ensure that the oil level is sufficient, it’s important to only use oils that are suitable for your rotary vane compressor. While non-specific oils might be cheaper, it could cause serious damage to the internal components if it is not suitable for your machine. Air compressor repair might be necessary if you have been using a non-suitable oil for your compressor.

Checking for Blade Wear and Damage

Under typical working conditions, most rotor blades are designed to last for a fairly long time. However, they do not last forever and will be subject to some wear and tear, which is why it is important to check them on a regular basis. This will allow you to spot any damage, wear or tear to the blades as early as possible and have them repaired or replaced before the problem gets more expensive to fix. To check the blade wear, remove the pipework from the most convenient port on the compressor, and turn the rotor until one of the blade slots is lying perpendicularly opposite the port. Push the blade down to the bottom of the slot and measure the distance from the top of the slot to the blade. On most machines, you should replace the blades before the distance reaches 16mm, although this can vary depending on the make and model of your compressor, so check the owner’s manual for specific instructions.

Checking the Filters

Rotary vane air compressors will often be working in dusty environments, which means that any air that they take in should be carefully filtered to prevent dirt and dust from getting into the machine and damaging the inner components. Because of this, checking the pre-filter element on the air intake is one of the most important maintenance tasks that you can do. Whenever you notice that the filter is beginning to become clogged or otherwise deteriorated, it’s important to order a replacement and fit it as soon as possible. Some compressors have inlet filters with a blockage indicator that clearly shows you the maximum blockage where you will need to get the filter either cleaned or replaced.

Checking the Energy Efficiency

One of the biggest costs associated with a rotary vane compressor is the energy that is used to power it. Because of this, another crucial maintenance task to do is to check that the pump is working as efficiently as possible.

The good news is that there are several things that you can do to ensure that your compressor is running at maximum efficiency. Most rotary vane compressors today will come with an automatic stop/start function, along with a fixed-speed motor that will always run at a constant speed regardless of the machine’s workload. Along with making sure that the parameters for these are set to ensure that the compressor is running as efficiently as possible, it’s also a good idea to check your ventilation. Poor ventilation when the compressor is working hard will increase heat and reduce efficiency. Wherever possible, ensure that the compressor is used in an area that is well ventilated to avoid unnecessarily high temperatures.

Rotary vane compressors are designed to last a long time and will experience minimal wear with the right maintenance. Whatever you use your rotary vane compressor for, these checks done regularly will help you keep it running at its best for longer.

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