Safely Handling Your Rotary Screw Compressor
No matter if you work in a mine or any other type of industrial sector, a rotary screw compressor is an important part of your everyday routine. Compressed air is one of the most common utilities, and it is as critical to production in many cases as gas, water, and electricity. If you currently utilise this type of machinery often, it is likely that you know already the importance of proper handling, but this may often be neglected by many companies until the machine no longer is effective or even running correctly.
It is critical that you properly maintain your rotary screw compressor, and fortunately, this is a machine that is surprisingly simple for having such a complex design. As the two screws turn, air is allowed into the designated chamber, which will get smaller and smaller in volume so as to increase the pressure inside that space. Mechanical or digital controls are set in place to allow the compressor to operate within your specific pressure ranges.
Although the most basic function of the machine is simple, it is actually a large host of complex parts that work together for the compressor to correctly operate under normal conditions. Thus, it is in your best interests to regularly maintain the machine, either using your own workers or the men and women who offer servicing for such machines. Rotary screw compressors can break down due to a wide range of reasons, and knowing what to do to prevent this could save you many years of trouble.
As with all complex machinery, proper personal protective gear should always be worn and training before use should always take place, and this should be the case before ever operating, maintaining, or adjusting the compressor. Be aware of the many safety risks involved with this type of machinery, and always lock and tag the electrical source as well as the isolation valve found on the compressed air piping. From there, be sure to verify that the power source is turned off with a meter you trust, and then vent all air pressure before you perform any maintenance, being careful to avoid hot surfaces, rotating parts, pressurised oil, high air pressure, and any other danger.
The screw element of your compressor, also called the pump or the airend, is the most important component of your compressor. While airends can last for much longer than 40,000 hours of work, they may still incur damage before reaching that critical lifespan point. For this reason, it is important that you avoid overheating, improperly applied lubrication, corrosion, condensation, incorrect control adjustment, vibration, and excessive pressure, all of which may lead to premature failure of the device.
Be sure to always check for oil seal leaks and any bearing noise. It is imperative that you call a compressor technician if you even for a moment suspect pending failure. This will not only help you to save time and money but it may help you avoid replacing your compressor with just some fairly simple repairs. Many problems may be prevented if you pay attention to the behaviour of the machine and call on help immediately.