Energy is the most expensive component of compressed air’s total cost. In fact, energy often costs several times more than the compressor’s purchase price during the compressor’s lifetime. In the end, increasing your energy efficiency saves you money. How to Reduce Air Consumption and Energy Costs? Measure and monitor your compressed air system’s energy usage, flow rates, and operational air pressure as the first step in lowering compressed air energy expenses. Small modifications can help you save money on energy and lower your operating pressure while increasing flow rates and production. Here are some actions you may take to improve the efficiency of your compressed air system and save money.
Switch it off.
Although a week has 160 days, most air compressor systems only operate at or near-maximum capacity for 60-100 hours. Keeping your compressor off during the weekends, depending upon your time schedule, might just save you up to 20percent of the total on your operational costs.
Examine the piping system. Many systems aren’t tuned to their full potential.
The design of a compressed air pipe system should maximize the transmission of compressed air to the point of use at the specified flow and pressure. How to Reduce Air Consumption and Energy Costs?
Pressure drop can be reduced by up to 50percentage points by doubling the thickness of a pipeline from three to four feet. By reducing the distance that air has to travel, pressure decreases can be decreased by 20-40%. The pressure drop increases as more fluid flow through a pipe. The pressure drop in a pipe grows by the square of the increase in flow, therefore doubling the flow will result in a fourfold increase in pressure drop. To prevent pressure drop, airflow piping must have a large enough diameter.
Emphasize the need for proper maintenance.
Ignoring maintenance has a higher expense. A compressor, like other industrial machinery, performs more efficiently when it is well-maintained. Compressor maintenance reduces energy expenditures by about 1% and helps prevent problems that result in lost productivity and downtime. Maintaining your reputation and profitability is essential. Identify and eliminate the use of compressed air for inappropriate purposes. Any application that can be done more effectively or efficiently using a means other than compressed air is considered inappropriate use of compressed air. For example, high-pressure air is frequently utilized for cooling or other purposes that require much lower air pressure.
Variable speed compressors
In practically every application, variable speed compressors are a “don’t.” When compared to typically fixed-speed machines, the capital outlay is very low (if any) due to the falling cost of technology and the use of the ComEd Smart Ideas Program. Furthermore, if the machine(s) are appropriately scaled and implemented, the continued energy savings would most likely save your organization tens, if not tens, of dollars a month.