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​Basic Tips for Troubleshooting Your Air Compressor

Jun. 02, 2022

Your air compressor is one of your most valuable assets and a highly complex machine. When it breaks down, it's critical to understand how to troubleshoot your air compressor. It's a major investment for any company and critical to operations. It's important to know exactly what to do when it breaks down for any reason.

1 Excessive noise while running - When a compressor is running louder than usual, there could be many problems such as a loose pulley, flywheel, belt, cooler or attachment. Tightening any of these may help. You may also want to add oil to the crankcase and check the bearings for any damage.

2 Insufficient operating pressure - There may be a leak somewhere in the compressor line. At this point, it is important to check the hoses or lines for leaks or restrictions. If you find anything, this is easy to fix. It may also be necessary to clean or replace the air filter to improve pressure or airflow. There are ways to reduce the pressure drop in the system.

Basic Tips for Troubleshooting Your Air Compressor

3 Air is blowing out of the intake valve - One cause of this condition may be a damaged first stage intake valve. In this case, the valve assembly needs to be replaced.

4 Excessive belt wear - Excessive belt wear can have several different causes. The belt pulley may not be aligned, in which case it simply needs to be realigned with the compressor flywheel. If the belt is too loose or too tight, the tension will need to be readjusted. If there is wobble, you can check the warning crankshaft, keyway or pulley bore. These things can be caused by a loose pulley.

5 Excessive fuse blowing - If this is a recurring problem for you, it may be as simple as checking the fuse amperage and rating for proper use. The system may also have low voltage, or a defective unloader or check valve. It may be time to replace or repair. You will also need to check the belt to see if it needs to be loosened.

Basic Tips for Troubleshooting Your Air Compressor

Oil Free Air Compressor

6 Excessive Oil Consumption - Any number of problems can have an effect on increased oil usage. Restricted air intake may exist at this point and can be addressed by cleaning or replacing the air filter. If an oil leak is the culprit, tightening the bolt or replacing the gasket will do the trick. Piston rings may also need to be replaced.

7 Excess water in the air - If you are dealing with excess water in the compressor tank, you will need to shut down the system, lower the pressure and drain the water. Installing an air dryer or air filter will minimize the amount of moisture in the air used. There are many more ways to reduce the amount of water in compressed air.

8 Compressor Vibration - If the compressor continues to vibrate, the mounting bolts may be loose. In this case, they may simply need to be tightened. Installing a vibration pad may be another way to reduce this problem.

Basic Tips for Troubleshooting Your Air Compressor

Screw Air Compressor

9 Compressor stops working - There may simply be a power failure. You can try plugging the compressor into a new power source. A bad unloader valve can also cause the compressor to stop working. If this is the case, it may just need to be replaced.

Contact a professional

Sometimes, replacing or tightening the part in question may simply not be enough. If you have done everything you can to troubleshoot your air compressor and are still experiencing problems, it may be time to contact a compressor service. Our experienced technicians can help ensure the job is done right. If you need an air compressor for your vehicle, contact us today!

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