As atmospheric air contains varying amounts of moisture based upon the temperature – higher air temperatures can hold more water, while air at lower temperatures is not capable of holding as much. This is true in compressed air systems as well, and if our bodies are any indication of the ways excess water and humidity can impact performance, imagine how this impacts a compressed air system.
Containing solid, liquid and gaseous contaminants, untreated compressed air poses a substantial risk as it can damage your air system and end product. Moisture, one of the main components of untreated air can cause the following issues:
• Causing rusting and wear of the interior part of the compressed air piping which leads to holes and accordingly air leakages which leads to pressure drop and accordingly loss of energy and Money!
• Can adversely affect the color, adherence, and finish of paint applied by compressed air
• Can jeopardize process industries where many operations are dependent upon the proper functioning of pneumatic controls. The malfunctioning of these controls due to rust, scale, and clogged orifices can result in damage to product or in costly shutdowns
• Can freeze in control lines in cold weather, which may cause faulty operation of controls
• Causes corrosion of air or gas operated instruments, giving false readings, interrupting or shutting down plant processes.
• Finally if the air is in contact with your End Product can leads to Rejection of your product and affects your profitability.
That’s why, to avoid disturbances and disruptions due to water and humidity in the pipes, compressed air must be dried with after-coolers and drying equipment.
Before looking at the several types of dryers available, you need to look at what to consider in deciding which dryer is best for the specific requirements.
- Know the Specific Uses of the Compressed Air, the required Air quality and the maximum allowable water content according to ISO 8573-1:2010 Edition.
- Know the maximum ambient temperature that the air dryer will operate at, however Atlas Copco have all the kinds of air dryers technologies to achieve any required air quality at any working ambient temperature.
- Know the minimum working inlet pressure to the air dryer as the pressure goes down the volume increases and the same affects the air dryer performance.
- Know the lowest temperature that the compressed air pipe will pass through.
- If you have multiple compressors always better to go for separate dedicated dryer for each compressor (number of dryers to match the air compressors number).