Compressed air fail: Incorrect equipment for the loadDesign World, March 14, 2014
A tire shop was having problems with its small 15-hp air compressor. It had served the shop well over many years, but it was failing due to its age—and it needed to be replaced. Because it was a single stage reciprocating compressor, the plant employees were not sad to see it go. It had always bothered them due to its high noise level. When choosing a replacement, the company owner became interested in a much quieter type of compressor, the lubricated rotary screw style, which was said to be a more efficient way to produce compressed air.
After installing the new compressor, the shop owner was very pleased by the low noise level of the new unit, but he became concerned because the new compressor was running all the time. The previous reciprocating compressor ran in a start/stop mode where it only turned on to fill up the system after compressed air was used. In all, it usually ran only a few hours per day, as the average shop air demand was low. The new compressor, however, never shut off and the owner suspected that this meant it was less efficient that the previous unit.