Are you looking to optimize your existing compressed air system or looking to buy a new air compressor in San Jose? In either case, it’s important that you understand the relationship between pressure and flow in a compressed air system. In addition to affecting the overall performance of a compressed air system, pressure and flow can also affect an air compressor’s operating costs. To help you save money and get the best performance from your existing or new air compressor, here’s a closer look at the relationship between pressure and flow.
Artificial Demand Increases Energy Usage
In a compressed air system, “artificial demand” refers to the practice of supplying more pressure to the air compressor than necessary. For example, if 75 psi is needed to maintain steady production and the compressed air header is set at 100 psi, the artificial demand is 25 psi. As a general rule of thumb, every 2-psi increase in discharge pressure measured at the compressor increased energy by 1%. In the aforementioned example, the air compressor’s artificial demand results in a 12% increase in energy usage, which can equate to thousands of dollars in excess energy costs annually.
Higher Pressure and Flow Increases Maintenance Overhead
In addition to increasing operating costs, non-optimal pressure and flow levels can also increase maintenance overhead. The higher the pressure and flow, the more heat that is generated in the compressor and the shorter the intervals between service appointments. Unnecessary pressure and flow settings can also reduce the air compressor’s operating life, which means you’ll have to invest in new air compressors more frequently.
Determining Critical Pressure
There are formulas for determining the critical pressure in a production process, but it’s also important to consider the overall design and implementation of your compressed air system. For example, you must first ensure that the industrial air compressor you purchase is properly sized for your operation. An air compressor solutions provider in San Jose can help you size the right system based and determine the critical pressure of your new air compressor.