How Do I Choose An Oil-Less Air Compressor?

In the market for a new oil-less air compressor or expanding or building a new facility that you’ll need to adequately outfit with such a device? The last thing you want to do is just pick one and roll with it. When it comes to industrial air compressors, selecting the correct one is essential, or else you could see the efficiency and productivity of the work that goes on inside of your facility greatly compromised. In this post, we get to the bottom of what you need to be considering when it comes to selecting the right oil-less air compressor for your operations. Here’s a closer look:

Oil-Less Air Compressors Explained

Before we get into explaining some of the factors for selecting an oil-less compressor, it is worth taking a moment to revisit these types of compressors to further explain what they are and how they differ from oil-free and oil-based compressors. Simply put, it is important to remember that oil-less compressors do not have any oil within the compressor package, which helps to reduce the risk of any contamination in the system’s output. Keep in mind though that an oil-less air compressor is not the same thing as an oil-free compressor. Conversely, oil-free compressors do not have any oil within the compression chamber of the device, another measure by which these systems avoid the potential of contamination. While there are some key differences between oil-less and oil-free compressors, the key trait that each type of device shares is that they are ideal compressors for when the air quality must be at a certain level within an environment.

Best Practices for Selecting an Oil-Less Air Compressor

So, what are some of the key considerations that you should be weighing when it comes to selecting an oil-less compressor? Here is a closer look:

What Are Your Air Requirements?

As we noted above, one of the main considerations behind selecting an oil-less air compressor over an oil-based one is to meet certain air quality standards. But one of the other big considerations you will need to weigh during your compressor selection is as it pertains to air requirements. Requirements, as in how much CFM (cubic feet per minute) do you need to power your application. To determine this, it helps to take an audit of all your tools and devices and identify the CFM needs on a per-device basis. You might even take things a step further and check with the manufacturers of each of your tools to get a better idea of these CFM requirements. After you have taken this audit, add all the CFM numbers up to get a comprehensive idea of system air requirements. Additionally, it is a good rule of thumb to increase this grand total CFM amount by about 25 percent to allow for any leaks or issues in the compressed air system.

What is Your Duty Cycle?

Do you need consistent pressure and air flow to run applications? This is another major consideration that you should be weighing.

There are many different types of compressed air technology that all have different operating conditions and parameters. For this reason, duty cycle measurement and sizing should be done by an expert who can match technology to your particular instance and application.

We suggest talking to an expert and getting an evaluation done on your instance.

How Much Pressure Will Your Tools Need?

Aside from CFM and duty cycle, the other key consideration you will need to factor into any oil-less air compressor purchase is your air pressure requirements, or PSI. Most tools work just fine at about 100 psi, but depending on the type of shop that you run, you may have some more advanced tools that require upwards of 150 PSI. Unlike determining air requirements, you do not need to total up the sum of each tool’s PSI requirement. Just make sure that you know what tool requires the most PSI value to function. That is where you’ll want to base your air compressor purchase.

Contact JHFOSTER Today

For more information on calculating PSI, CFM, and duty cycle requirements, contact us today.