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Your Guide to Compressed Air Testing

Did you know that certain industries are already mandating the need for regular air testing? Learn about the compressed air testing and analysis options that are available for you.

Reach Out to Discuss Compressed Air Testing

Do You Know How Clean Your Compressed Air Is?

Let's Talk About Compressed Air Testing

There could be oil, water or even potentially harmful microorganisms in your compressed air - and you may not even know it. Here are a few compressed air testing options that we have available:

  1. Basic Testing. Customers can purchase a simple, disposable detection device for measuring oil aerosol in compressed air. This simply alerts you if aerosol is present in your compressed air. Find these devices for purchase here.
  2. Simple Lab Testing. A kit is available to order which will allow you to take a small air sample and send it to a laboratory for air testing. The analysis would provide results on the levels of oxygen, water vapor, VHC, nitric oxide, methane, dew point, and many other contaminants. Please note that this test does not include microorganisms testing. You can find these kits here.
  3. Professional Testing. This will involve a technician or trained auditor visiting the facility and taking a small air sample, which will then be sent off to a laboratory. Air testing is also part of our AIRScan program. A fully detailed report (including analysis of any microorganisms) is provided, and one of our auditing team will then discuss the results with you directly, which will include the full details on any bacteria growth. The cost for professional testing varies depending on location and testing needs.

microorganism in compressed air system

Compressed Air Filters are Essential for Compressed Air Quality

A compressed air filter is a piece of ancillary compressed air equipment that helps to remove any unwanted and potentially harmful contaminants from the compressed air; these contaminants can be aerosols, particulates, or vapors. Particulates are small, solid particles, like dust, dirt, metal particles from pipe corrosion, and pollen. Aerosols are small liquid droplets (i.e. oil and/or water, depending on the type of compressor), and vapors are liquids that have been converted into a gas. Different applications require different levels of filtration, so to select the right type of filter for your compressor system, you need to really know your application.

Compressed air isn’t inherently clean; like the ambient environment it’s drawn from, the air in your compressor system is filled with a variety of particles, aerosols, and vapors that can contaminate end processes and products, as well as harm machinery and other equipment. This is where compressed air filters come in! By implementing a robust filtration system, you’re improving the quality of your compressed air while simultaneously increasing your system’s efficiency. Keep in mind that the amount and types of filters needed will be dependent on the quality of air your application or process requires. Check out our compressed air filters here.

Compressed Air Quality Standards in Focus

Depending on your industry and application, you might be required to stick to stringent compressed air quality levels; examples include the medical, pharmaceutical, and food and beverage industries. Or you might be in an industry where air quality takes a bit of a backseat, such as the automotive industry and some processes in general manufacturing. No matter your application, however, it's always beneficial to have a thorough understanding of your compressed air quality, as well as the more common compressed air quality standards. These include:

  • ISO 8573. The key standard focuses on contaminants and purity classes. Specifically, ISO 8573 outlines nine compressed air quality classes in respect to particles, water and oil independent of the location in the compressed air system at which the air is specified or measured. 
  • ISO 12500. This standard outlines how to test compressed air filters and determine how effective they are in removing oil aerosols.
  • ISO 22000. Introduced in May 2021, this standard includes requirements for annual compressed air quality testing by food processors.

Learn more about microorganism growth in compressed air systems here.