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Is My Compressor Sized Correctly?

Ask Experts!

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

February 4, 2021

Sizing a new air compressor can be a difficult task. It requires a thorough knowledge of the pressure and flow needed for the application, a solid understanding of how frequently jobs are performed & how many jobs are being completed at once, and the ability to plan for upcoming changes in the application or in upcoming business needs. But how do you know if your current compressor is actually sized correctly? The answer is simple: by paying close attention to your existing system! Below are a few common signs that indicates your compressor may be undersized or oversized for the applications it powers.

Undersized Compressor.

If your compressor is undersized, it’s likely running at all times! Keep in mind that this can be a bit difficult to distinguish with rotary compressors, as they are intended to run virtually 24/7. However, this would be noticed right away with piston compressors, as they aren’t intended to run 24/7. So, if you’re experiencing pressure drops and the inability to complete a task (as in the application isn’t able to be completed due to the lack of compressed air supply), chances are that an undersized compressor is the issue.

Oversized Compressor.

Is your compressor constantly stopping and starting? It could be oversized! This means that your compressor will start-up, immediately meet the demand, and then stop; it then realizes that demand is present and will start-up again. This will lead to huge energy bills, largely caused by the spike in energy produced when the compressor starts up. The excessive start/stop cycle can also result in motor burnout, future mechanical problems and potential failure of the compressor.

If any of the above sounds like a familiar issue, then it’s time to conduct a compressed air audit with a trusted compressed air provider. Knowing your system’s compressed air demand, and subsequently determining how to deliver the right amount of compressed air at the lowest cost, will help you avoid choosing a compressor that is undersized or oversized for the job that it needs to complete.

Learn more symptoms of undersized & oversized compressors, as well as discover ways to avoid under or oversizing your compressor system.

Download our free Compressed Air Manual

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