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The 4 Most Important Things to Consider before Buying an Air Compressor
If you are responsible for making a decision on what air compressor to buy, we have some questions for you to keep in mind during the buying process. As with any major purchase, it pays to understand what your true needs are and what you expect for your money. From our years of experience designing compressed air systems for a wide range of applications we have some suggestions on what to think about before you sign on the dotted line. Here is a checklist to keep handy when you are about to buy an air compressor.

1. What are you using the compressed air for?
The type of work you do is probably the most important factor in determining the Air Compressor size. Do you intend to use the Air Compressor six hours per day, five days a week, or only occasionally? Are your demands for compressed air relatively constant during the day, or do they vary widely? Purchasean Air Compressor designed for a duty-cycle which equals or exceeds specified requirement. Reciprocating Air Compressors are meant for intermittent /interval running whereas rotary screw compressors can run 24/7-365 Days a year!

2. Where will the Air Compressor be located?
Outdoor applications require special protection against water and freezing. Indoors, sufficient ventilation is crucial for successful operation since most Reciprocating Air Compressors are air cooled. Don't put the Air Compressor in a closet, for example. Place the Air Compressor at least 3-4 Feet from the wall to ensure proper air flow. And be sure the installation site is sufficiently ventilated to handle the heat generated by the compressor during operation. Best practice would be to install an exhaust fan in the Air Compressor Room ensuring proper ventilation.

3. How much pressure (PSI or kg/bar) do you require?
The PSI (pounds per square inch) capability of a compressor must match or exceed the PSI requirement of your hungriest air tools and pneumatic equipment. Check the manufacturer's specifications and pressure requirements for all of your equipment. PSI also determines whether the unit should be a single-stage (Max 125 PSI) or two-stage (Max 175 PSI) compressor. Pressure can also be measured in KG/BAR where 1 Bar = 14.5 PSI. 75% of all machines require air between 7 Bar to 10 Bar-Be sure to ask your machine supplier at what pressure the air is needed in the machine!

4. How much air flow (CFM) do you require?
CFM (cubic feet per minute) is a measure of airflow the compressor can create. CFM is stated in two different forms, piston displacement (PD) or actual cubic feet per minute also called FAD or Free Air Delivery. Always consider the FAD as it reflects the amount of useable air available for work. Read the fine print and make sure you understand whether the CFM rating is "piston displacement" or "Free Air Delivery" at a specified PSI. There are many more questions to ask before you make a purchase decision.

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