Today, one can easily think of air compressors as a common tool. However, things were quite different in the past. An air compressor isn’t a tool you’d have easily found in a factory or workshop. Instead, tools used were powered by a centralized source that transferred the power in different ways, depending on the tool. It was usually through a system of belts, wheels and drive shafts- a large mechanical system which was way too expensive and bulky. It was thus only available to professionals.
Today, air compressors can be found almost everywhere. They can be found in workshops, factories, gas stations and local mechanic outlets. Electric air compressors serve to power tools like grinders, sanders, staplers, spray guns, impact wrenches, nail guns and plenty of others. You can obtain one online, from your home depot or local hardware store.
Of course, the most significant advantage of compressors over the centralized power sources is their small size and not needing a massive motor. As well, they’re quieter, highly portable and more durable.
How Does an Electric Air Compressor Work?
According to aircompressortalk.com air compressors are versatile devices used to supply compressed air and power into the intended space. They’re used in activities that require high pressure, low volume air. They serve as a vital mechanic device for homeowners, commercial businesses, jet engines, manufacturing industries, refining and automotive industries.
In air compressors, atmospheric air is pulled in thus compressing the air. This, in turn, reduces the air’s volume and increases its pressure. We have 3 major types of electric air compressors: reciprocating, centrifugal and rotary compressors. Each of the aforementioned types is specially designed to meet the different requirements of different users.
1. Reciprocating (Piston)
This uses piston(s) to compress the air and store it in a tank. Depending on how many compression stages it has, a reciprocating compressor can either be a single stage or double stage configuration. With the single stage unit, only a single piston is used to compress the air. Two pistons are used to compress air in the double stage air compressor.
2. Rotary Screw
This is closely similar to the positive displacement configuration on reciprocating air compressors. Here, two spinning helical screws are used to compress the air, rather than pistons. As these screws mesh towards each other, the air gets compressed and is pushed into a storage tank.
This is commonly referred to as a dynamic air compressor. It’s usually applicable in the cases of high demand for compressed air. A high speed rotating impeller increases the velocity of air, which is then directed towards a diffuser that converts the air velocity into pressure. Centrifugal air compressors require more energy than the other two types.
The Electric Air Compressor
This comprises two main parts: a power source and a compressing system. The compressing system, in this case, can be a rotating impeller, piston or vane, depending on the type of compressor being referred to. The power is supplied by an electric motor. The compressing mechanism helps compress atmospheric air by making use of energy from the power source.
Basically, an air compressor compresses atmospheric air that’s then used as per the requirements. Atmospheric air is drawn in via an intake valve. More and more air gets pulled inside a limited space. Since the atmospheric air has been increased in the storage tank, the pressure is automatically raised and the volume gets reduced. Simply put, free air is compressed after reducing the volume and increasing its pressure.
A pressure setting knob is used as per the operator’s demands. Once the pressure in the storage tank reaches maximum level, intake of air is stopped by switching off the pressure from the pressure setting knob. Conversely, once the compressed air has been used, the pressure within the compressor falls. The pressure switch is then turned on, allowing for atmospheric air to make entry into the unit.
Depending on your budget and specific preferences, you can consult with reliable manufacturers on the most suitable electric air compressors. Ensure to purchase a model that’s durable, safe and easy to operate. In case you’re purchasing a used air compressor, ascertain to check the machine configuration, performance, operation type, operating cost and price of the unit before rendering the deal closed.