How dry I Am…
Why do I Need Dry Air?
Actually, sometimes you don’t actually need dry air. Construction work, road work etc. typically use air straight from their diesel portable compressors. For the rest of us who are confined to manufacturing or repair facilities though, dry air is important. Water is corrosive and warm or hot water is even more so. Consider that superheated water can dissolve rock and you get the idea.
While water at or near room temperature is fairly benign to you and me it can still play havoc with metal, specifically steel. It causes problems in several ways. First, it can accumulate if you use pneumatic cylinders and if conditions are right it will cause short stroking and throw your manufacturing process off. Under the right circumstances, it can actually freeze up your lines! This, of course is an extreme case but it does happen.
The next way is sneakier. Small amounts of water can form, evaporate and leave rust behind that can cause controls to stick and become contaminated with particles. We have even seen cases where someone finally installed a dryer only to be shutdown because of the amount of rust liberated when the air lines finally dried out! By the way, there are simple and inexpensive ways to avoid this if you find yourself in this position. This does assume that your air lines are salvageable. Years of neglect can leave them weakened to the point were replacement is the best if not the only option.
It’s obvious, water is the enemy. Once you understand that, you only need to decide what type of dryer to choose. For an explanation of which dryer type is best for you click here.
We cannot stress strongly enough that the money and time you spend at the beginning to plan you compressed air system will pay off in many ways. Lower electricity costs and reduced maintenance and downtime are just two.