Have you experienced an unexpected rise in your energy bill? The culprit may be your compressed air system piping.
While you may regularly carry out maintenance on your air compressor system, and your tools and equipment are in good shape, if your compressed air distribution system is not up to scratch, your air compressor system will need to work harder and can drive up energy costs.
To avoid these issues and ensure you have an energy efficient air compressor, there are three key problems to look out for.
System air leaks
System leaks are a common problem and can appear in any part of your compressed air system, but most frequently occur in pipe joints, quick connect couplings and deteriorated thread sealants.
System leaks can cause your air compressor system to overwork, which not only drives up your energy consumption but increases the risk of damage and extra maintenance costs.
Choosing the right design and type of compressed air delivery pipe system will help eliminate system leaks.
While stainless steel and black pipe require threading to join the connections that will inevitably leak over time, aluminium piping — like Pilot Air’s Quickline — uses polymer fittings to join the connection points.
Polymer fittings align perfectly with the connection points, eliminating the need for threading, welding or gluing, and they dramatically reduce the risk of leaks.
Air pressure reduction
Drops in air pressure within the compressed air system force the air compressor to labour harder to supply air, making it less efficient and accelerating wear and tear. The major causes of these drops in air pressure are corrosion or obstructions within the distribution piping.
Despite the fact that your system may have a moisture trap, wherever there is air there is moisture to cause corrosion. When the inner surface of your distribution pipe is corroded, it restricts the airflow and results in decreased air pressure.
Choosing Pilot Air’s aluminium Quickline piping with its non-corrosive, smooth inner surface, over corrosive piping like black pipe, will reduce the incidence of air pressure drops. Avoiding copper piping that requires soldering of joints (which make it impossible to obtain a smooth inner surface) will also help in keeping energy costs at bay.
Internal pipe size
Optimising the pipe diameter, length and number of bends within the system will ensure any pressure drops are minimised. The velocity of air running through the pipes is largely dictated by the internal pipe diameter, and although external-piping diameters may appear the same, it’s important to take a close look at the internal free section.
This diagram compares the internal diameter of standard plastic piping with Pilot Air’s Quickline aluminium piping. Our aluminium piping offers a larger internal pipe size, which allows greater air flow, distributing air efficiently when it’s demanded. More efficient air flow will reduce energy consumption.
Ensuring your compressed air system piping is up to the task of efficiently distributing air will go a long way to ensuring your system is operating at its optimal level. After all, every dollar saved on energy goes straight to the bottom line of your business.
Extensive product range
From air compressors through to compressed air storage, treatment and distribution, we’ve got you covered. And if none of our standard compressed air products are suitable, we offer custom-built solutions to meet your individual requirements.
Our product range and large stock levels, combined with our comprehensive spare parts inventory, ensure we maintain your compressed air system’s reliability and efficiency while reducing whole-of-life operating costs.
Learn more about our compressed air products.