5 Tips for winterizing your compressed air system

1. Drain receiver tanks

compressed air receiver tank at large installation, compressed air systems, compressed air storage tanks
  • Keep moisture from freezing in the tank
  • Tank should have an automatic drain for maximum condensate collection
  • Check tanks weekly throughout the year

A sudden increase in condensate can indicate a more serious problem with your system.

2. Use heat trace tape

  • Winterize outdoor condensate drain lines and drain bowls with heat trace tape.

Heat trace tape won't work without power supplied to it. If your plant will shut down for the holidays, be sure to drain all the water from the lines.

3. Adjust louvers

  • Minimize cold air to the compressor inlet so it reaches operating temperature quickly by adjusting louvers. This ensures proper lubrication and minimizes moisture formation in the oil circuit.
  • Recover the heat from the compressor outlet by ducting the warm air away to heat an adjacent room or recirculate air in the compressor room if it's too cold.

Thermostatically controlled louvers are highly recommended. Otherwise you'll need to manually adjust them.

4. Use heaters

  • Use cabinet or ambient heaters to preheat and keep lubricant warm.
  • If you already have one installed, check to make sure it's functioning and adjusted for the lowest allowable operating temperature recommended by the manufacturer.

Keeping the lubricant warm prevents cold starts. Cold starts cause wear and tear on the motor and airend, and in some cases, catastrophic failure.

5. Maintain separators and drains.

AMD automatic magnetic drains for compressed air systems
  • Clean and rebuild separators, drains, and valves during the reduced production over the holidays and winter months.

Separators, valves, and drains are susceptible to moisture. Proper maintenance will keep valves from sticking and condensate from freezing.