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CLEAN & CLEANER - The air supplied for the operation of air tools should be as clean as possible. Protect pneumatic tools  from dust, corrosive fumes and excessive moisture as much as possible. An FRL unit should be supplied with every work station and should be placed as close to the tool as can be arranged. The filter will remove impurities and moisture, a properly adjusted lubricator will ensure the correct flow of lubrication will be supplied to the tool while it is in operation.


DRY AIR (and the Importance of It) - Water in the compressed air supply is a serious problem for a variety of reasons. Anyone who sells air tools has had the situation arise where the customer brings back a (relatively) new tool that is not working. Upon opening the tool one discovers that it is seized solid from corrosion caused by water residue that has been left inside the tool from the unfiltered and unlubricated air supply. Once this has happened there is nothing to do but repair or replace the tool. A much more cost effective solution is to install a water filter or FRL unit, drain the system daily and inspect the filters regularly. Not only will this lengthen the life of the tool but when the tool is in operation it will be operating much more efficiently.


PROPER SYSTEM PRESSURE - Most air tools are meant to operate at 90 psi, contrary to popular belief it is not always possible to increase the pressure in the system and thus increase the production capacity of the tools in the system. Functionally the system pressure should be set as low as the highest pressure required by the end use, plus compensation for pressure losses in the delivery system. Minimize the pressure loss before boosting the system pressure.


SEAL THE LEAKS! - it is possible to lose a significant percentage of the air system capacity to leaks. The telltale sound of escaping air should be enough of a clue but leak testers are available if you wish a more accurate reading of the extent of the problem. Leak Repair Kits are available and are much cheaper than living with a leaky system. It is probably unrealistic to expect zero leaks but 5% leakage is possible to attain and should be considered adequate if it is attained.


AIRLINE SIZE - An undersize airline can cause pressure loss due to friction. All components in the distribution system cause resistance to the air flow with a resulting drop in pressure. At 90 psi a 25' long 1/2" hose causes 16 psi drop, a 3/4" hose (same length) causes only a 2 psi drop. On the other hand, the increased weight of the 3/4" hose may cause worker inefficiency. This is a trade off so use the largest hose I.D.  that you feel comfortable with and that your system has been set up to take.





Pipes and hoses used in the compressed air system are a major contributor of solid contaminants in the compressed air supply. Because of the moisture inherently present in compressed air, pipe scale and condensation is formed in the lines; if this is not filtered out it will find its way into the air tools being used in the system causing damage to them.



A Proper Working Arrangement of Air Lines and Tool Workstations (Closed-Loop System)


Air Supply System Set-Up