If you’re using compressed air with any industrial equipment, for example a plasma cutter, a good quality air filter is something you can’t do without. In industrial applications, it is a no-brainer that clean and dry air is the essence for making your machine work at optimum quality. For instance, if you’re using a plasma cutter which used oily and dirty air, the plasma torch will use more power which will decrease the output quality and life of consumables.
First Things First
Before you learn how to choose a good quality air filter, it is important to know why filters are so important. Air filters remove any dust or oil from the compressed air. This is important because contaminated air destroys your machine like slow poison.
Know the different types of filters
To find the perfect filter for your needs, you should learn about the different filters available in the market.
High Particulate Filter
This filter is used in a hot environment with large temperatures. It secures the system from fires in heated desiccant dryers. These type of filters are capable of filtering 99.97 percent of dust particles in the air with a diameter of 0.3 micrometers. Therefore you can understand how important air filters are for different kind of machines.
Vapor or Charcoal Filter
Vapor or charcoal filter is used to separate organic impurities from water vapors and organic material. These type of filters are primarily used to remove dirt from electroplating solutions. The charcoal filtering is also known as activated carbon treatment. Active carbon is a powerful purifying agent and is used in various industries like medicine, water purification, air purification, sewage treatment etc.
If there’s any moisture or oil present in the air, the coalescing filter takes care of it brilliantly. It is also capable of separating large solid impurities from the compressed air. In fact, they are more efficient with solid contaminants than liquid impurities like oil and water in compressed air.
Compressor Intake Filter
This filter removes oil, dirt and chemical impurities from the air to produce clean and dry air for your machine.
Important Things to Consider
Get a high quality filter the first time around or if your machine is damaged, you’ll be spending a thousand bucks on repair. Industry professionals know that quality filters are integral to the maintenance of machinery.
Moreover, good filters have lower pressure drop. This means that with a good quality filter you can save on electricity as more pressure comes at lower electricity with these filters. Not only cheap filters have high pressure drop, they also get stuck with dust making the pressure drop even higher. Good quality filters don’t get stuck with dust easily hence giving a long lasting, low pressure drop experience.
You need to determine the temperature range under which your compressed air filter will be working. For high temperatures ranging up to 450 degree celsius, high particulate filters are suitable.
Before buying a new one, determine the brand of the filter previously installed on your air compressor. Buying an identical brand would be a good idea if you had a good enough experience with the previous one. However, you can always find a compatible filter if the previous one didn’t do the job for you.
Look for different parameters and their ratings before buying an air filter. These parameters include filter efficiency, dust holding capacity, resistance etc. Choosing an air filter with high efficiency, least resistance, average filtration velocity will be the best choice for you. Moreover, make sure the air filter is easy to install in the compressor.
Determine Attributes of Dirty Air
To get the perfectly clean air you want from your compressor, you need to first know your enemy, i.e. the dirty air. Take a sample of dirty air and gauge its dust level, the amount of organic or inorganic impurities, its temperature and humidity. This examination is especially important for industrial applications where there is very low margin for error.
Checking the dust amount in the outdoor air is important as this air enters the work area and gets inside the compressor. Once you know the dust content, you can buy a suitable air filter with optimum capacity.
Cleaning your air might require multiple filters, so make sure you have an arrangement of the best filters suitable for your compressor and machine.
Now you have extensive knowledge on the different types of filters and their functions. You know what to consider before buying the right air filter for your compressor. Make sure you check your requirements before selecting an air filter. For more help on air filters, always contact any leading manufacturer in the air compressor industry. Some leading brands include Ingersoll, Pneumatic Plus, Tekton etc.