If you need air compressor for your processes, production or workshop, you have to decide which compressor is best suited for your application. In addition to criteria such as the quantity and quality of compressed air, the desired operating pressure and the planned running times, the costs for the suitable compressed air supply also play a role. There are several factors to consider that we cover in this article:
• How much is the purchase price for the compressor? • What are the energy costs for me? • What are the factors that affect energy costs? • How will the maintenance and repair costs be charged?
Energy accounts for around 70 percent of a compressor's entire life cycle costs. Because compressing air uses a lot of electricity. Incidentally, this creates a lot of compression energy, which you do not have to let unused escape into space, but can be used for heating purposes or your processes. This significantly reduces the costs of your compressed air supply! You can find information on the posibilties of heat recovery here!
Above all, users with high compressed air requirements can save a great deal if they rely on highly efficient technology: Even if a more efficient compressor is more expensive to buy, the difference to the higher initial investment pays for itself very quickly - usually in a few months . And anyone who replaces an older compressed air station, possibly with poorly utilized full-load idle control, with modern machines will often recoup their entire investment in one year - simply due to the higher efficiency
If you want to find the most economically sensible solution, you have to keep an eye on all costs for compressed air generation. In addition to the investment costs for the compressor, there is also the expense of installing the compressed air network, possibly setting up the compressor room and that of the components for air conditioning (dryer, filter, oil-water separator).
The prices for a compressor depend on what the compressed air generator “has to” be able to do. A simple workshop compressor that is only used occasionally to fill tires with air cannot be compared to an industrial compressor that has to reliably deliver dry and oil-free compressed air for over 8000 operating hours per year.
We have both oil-lubricated piston compressors for the workshop and speed-controlled screw compressors for trade and small industrial companies, with outputs of up to 30 kilowatts. The prices vary with the technology and equipment of the compressors, ranging from a few hundred to several tens of thousands of euros. The more performance, the higher the investment. With the offers of different manufacturers, make absolutely sure that the technical data of the machines are really comparable.
Anyone who needs solutions above 30 kilowatts, which is the order of the day in industry, should get advice beforehand. Always discuss your specific requirements with a compressed air expert you trust or with the consultant of your provider. Have the compressed air requirement measured on site and simulate the use of various compressor combinations in order to find the most economically sensible solution. You can get this service from Atlas Copco under the term AIRScan . Even if you are not currently looking for a new compressor, a check of your compressed air supply, for example for leaks, can be very useful in order to uncover efficiency guzzlers.
A compressor that seems cheap in the beginning can become expensive in the end: the investment costs are only about 20% of its life cycle costs. The lion's share of this TCO - Total Costs of Ownership is made up of energy costs . You should always keep that in mind.
The following factors play an important role in the purchase price of a compressor and later in operation:
• Technology: piston, rotary tooth, screw or turbo
compressors. B. Air treatment modules on board
• Degree of innovation: speed control
, control, highly efficient motors (IE3,IE4, IE5)
• Reliability and run times
• Maintenance- friendly design
Only about 7 percent of the life cycle costs of a compressor are accounted for by the maintenance and repair of the machine. Maintenance costs are therefore negligible over the entire life of a compressor. There is no saving on this item - and you should not save on it either. On the contrary. Regular maintenance and repairs keep costs for repairs low and breakdowns avoided. Those who plan maintenance well ensure that the compressed air supply is reliably guaranteed and that the machine runs as efficiently as possible. Regular maintenance increases the lifespan of your compressors and that of the treatment components.
Atlas Copco offers various service packages to meet individual security needs for the compressed air generators. If you want to be completely carefree, you can also have your machines monitored using diagnostic systems. With the Atlas Copco software link SmartLink , data from the compressor can be read out. Changes and atypical operating data are analyzed in order to intervene as proactively as possible before a major repair can become necessary. Individual components are only replaced when it is really necessary.