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20 May 2018

MINIMIZE COMPRESSED AIR LEAKS

Leaks are a significant source of wasted energy in a compressed air system, often wasting as much as 20-30% of the compressor’s output. Compressed air leaks can also contribute to problems with system operations, including:

  • Fluctuating system pressure, which can cause air tools and other air-operated equipment to function less efficiently, possibly affecting production
  • Excess compressor capacity, resulting in higher than necessary costs
  • Decreased service life and increased maintenance of supply equipment (including the compressor package) due to unnecessary cycling and increased run time.
  • Although leaks can occur in any part of the system, the most common problem areas are: couplings, hoses, tubes, fittings, pipe joints, quick disconnects, FRLs (filter, regulator, and lubricator), condensate traps, valves, flanges, packings, thread sealants, and point of use devices. Leakage rates are a function of the supply pressure in an uncontrolled system and increase with higher system pressures. Leakage rates are also proportional to the square of the orifice diameter. (See table below.