3 Air Compressor Areas To Maintain For Extended Equipment Life

Posted on: 15 January 2015

When setting your price point for manufactured products, you must consider equipment replacement costs to ensure you make a profit on each sale. You can reduce your equipment replacement costs by performing maintenance on a regular schedule. Start with maintenance on the smallest pieces of equipment that tend to run down fastest, such as air compressors. After all, these compressors may run all day to power tools that activate using pressurized air. Sticking to an appropriate maintenance schedule will give you a better return on investment for your equipment. Here are three areas to maintain on your air compressor to keep it in good condition throughout its expected lifespan.

Lubricant System

Air compressor oil flows up from the pan into the moving parts inside the engine. The oil cools down the parts and provides a layer of lubrication to decrease wear as much as possible. As the oil heats up, its lubricant and coolant properties decrease substantially. After a month of constant use, it is often time to suck the old oil out of the system and replace it with fresh lubricant.

You will also need to replace the filter at this time to make sure the oil will flow through the system properly. Changing the oil and filter on time protects the pump, bearings, cylinder walls and pistons from damage. You must use the proper synthetic blend of oil designed for compressors, not plain automotive oil, during this maintenance procedure.


If your air compressor uses a dual stage motor, you will also need to replace the belts on the same interval as the oil change procedure. The dual stage motor consists of two separate motor units connected together with a single belt. The belt wraps around pulleys on either side to keep the motors running in tandem.

As the belt spins around and around, its fibers slowly break down and fray at the edges. The material will eventually snap if you neglect to replace the belt on schedule. As a result, the valves inside the cylinder head could violently bend or snap the moment the belt breaks apart.

Check Valve

Air compressors work by building up enough pressure in the tank to run the attached equipment. The tank maintains its air pressure using a one-way device called a check valve. The check valve is a simple device with a small metal flap that stays closed with help from vacuum created by the motor. Unfortunately, the valve can wear down over time, eventually allowing small amounts of air to escape the system.

When this happens, the motor will attempt to work even harder to maintain the required amount of air pressure. As the engine spins faster, it runs the chance of overheating and frying the seals and gaskets inside. You can protect your air compressor from premature wear by preemptively replacing the check valve at least once a year. Alternatively, you can have a maintenance technician periodically check the pressure in the tank to see if the check valve is starting to fail before performing the replacement.

Obtaining Maintenance Services

Although you could complete these air compressor maintenance tasks yourself, it's often better to hire a professional machinery repair technician from a company like Kruman Equipment Co. instead. While performing the maintenance tasks, equipment technicians will inspect the parts for wear that could indicate a problem brewing beneath the surface. For example, your technician may spot worn bearings that need replacement before adjacent parts end up damaged.  

In the end, you will save money from delaying the amount of time between equipment purchases due to your good maintenance practices. To further recoup the cost of hiring a technician, you may be able to list the total repair amount as a deduction on your taxes