Tip & How-To about Air Tools & Compressors
Small, easy to transport air compressors have become very popular over the last 25 years. However they do have their drawbacks.
The motors on these small compressors generate alot of heat as they cycle, especially under higher tank pressures (PSI's) and air volume usage (CFM's). They work very hard and run more frequently. In time, this heat creates increased resistance in the rotating armature windings (which act as quickly reversing magnets against magnets in the outer case of the motor for thrust to rotate). The magnetic force weakens, the motor gets weaker and hotter and has to work harder to do the same job.
When an air compressor motor seizes in it's cycle and hums or buzzes, it is over heating to a point where a thermostactic relay will break electrical contact (to prevent Fire) and the motor will have to cool before it will run again. each time this happens you are reducing the life of the motor by several hours.
To maximize the life of your compressor, use the following guidelines:
1.Always use the shortest possible cord and plug directly into a 20 amp cicuit when possible,no extension cords! SHORT WIRE+LONG AIRHOSE- electrical current is lost through longer wire and requires a larger gauge (diameter) to carry the current.
2.Make sure the plug contacts are clean- as with automobile batteries:CORROSION=RESISTANCE=HEAT=WEAR.
3. Should your compressor begin to stall during its cycle, attempt to turn it off or quickly or reduce the pressure in the air tank to reduce the load on the motor- while the motor is moving a fan blows air through it to cool it.
4.Should the motor overheat, let it cool untill you can touch it with your hand and bleed most of the air from the tank to minimize the start-up work load.
5.Remember to try to drain the tank after each use to minimize corrosion due to moisture and minimize load the next time you start it up.
Following these guidelines will increase the life of your compressor motor several months if not years.
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