Where would we be without air compressors? These devices serve an important purpose: to transfer power of potential energy stored in pressurized air to perform work. Thus, air compressors have become increasingly valuable for business operators and homeowners alike and help users around the world complete numerous tasks quickly and efficiently.
Rarely considered, air compressors are used all around us to perform vital functions from stopping roller coasters on a dime to launching a rocket. Air compressors from around the world, in industrial and home applications, are often seen as the fourth utility after water, electricity, and gas. Compressed air supports many applications that make daily life possible.
From rotary screw and piston air compressors to vacuum pumps to air treatment products, people use compressed air equipment and related products in many demanding and critical installations. These devices help users bolster their efficiency and keep overhead costs down, making them vital components of a variety of work environments.
So how are air compressors used around the world? Here’s a closer look at some of the more common air compressor applications, along with the reasons why air compressors can deliver significant results for business operators and homeowners globally.
How Are Air Compressors Used Around the World?
Today, we use air compressors for many applications, including:
1. Inflating the Tires on a Car
Ever notice the air compressor at your local gas station? Well, this air compressor enables motorists to inflate a car’s tires with ease.
There are thousands of gas stations in the United States, many of which are equipped with state-of-the-art air compressors. Numerous gas stations set up air compressors with built-in handheld tire gauges, ensuring motorists can check their cars’ tire pressure and refill them with compressed air as needed. Furthermore, many state laws require California and Connecticut gas stations to allow motorists to check their cars’ tire pressure and refill the tires with compressed air at no charge.
Spending a few minutes checking your car’s tire pressure can make a world of difference for motorists. In fact, the U.S. Department of Transportation estimates that motorists waste 5 million gallons of fuel per day — or 2 billion gallons per year — due to low tire pressure. Thanks to air compressors, however, motorists are better equipped to address their car’s tire pressure and ensure safe and efficient driving conditions.
Gas station air compressors are readily available and allow you to check your car’s tire pressure regularly. That way, you’ll be able to minimize the risk of low tire pressure that otherwise could lead to a flat.
2. Powering Operations at a Construction Site
Air compressors remain common at construction sites in the United States and beyond, helping construction workers perform their day-to-day operations.
Air compressors typically used in construction activities include:
- Blasting — For heavy duty blasting, there is no better choice than compressed air.
- Concrete Conveying or Spraying — Compressed air enables construction workers to perform concrete spraying on hills to eliminate the risk of landslides, while constructing tunnels. It also provides a viable alternative to mobile concrete mixers at remote construction sites.
- Product Fluidization — When compressed air is combined with products such as dust coal, fluidization occurs, which often makes it easier for construction works to convey and handle various materials.
- Reverse Jet Filtration Cleaning — Construction equipment may require air filters, but construction workers can keep these filters clean and reduce the risk of downtime by using compressed air for reverse jet filtration cleaning.
- Shot Blasting — With compressed air, construction workers can complete sandblasting to clean bridges, oil tanks and ship hulls.
Air compressors help power a variety of tools. Therefore, air compressors play a vital role in the construction sector and can make it easier for construction workers to complete everyday tasks.
3. Enabling Dentists to Clean Your Teeth Properly
Let’s face it — for many people, a trip to the dentist can frightening. But without dentists, you likely wouldn’t be able to enjoy a picture-perfect smile.
Dentists rely on air compressors during the dental cleaning process. Compressed air enables dentists to blow teeth dry as needed and may be located under a dental chair or elsewhere in a dentist’s office. They frequently operate at around 7 bars of pressure, delivering the right amount of air to help clean teeth.
Ultimately, air compressors provide quick, easy access to clean air, ensuring dentists can go above and beyond the call of duty to clean the teeth. As a result, air compressors are common equipment found in dental offices globally.
4. Ensuring Paintball Players Can Get Their Game On
Paintball, which is a game that allows players to eliminate opponents by shooting them with breakable “paintballs,” has become exceedingly popular since its inception in the early 1980s. Without air compressors, this game may not have become the worldwide phenomenon it is today.
In a paintball match, a player has a specially equipped gun that uses compressed air to shoot paintballs at opponents. Many mechanical paintball guns require compressed air and are semi-automatic, allowing a player to fire one shot per trigger pull. Also, mechanical paintball guns do not require players to pump the gun each time before they fire a paintball, making them great choices for both first- and long-time players.
Many paintball players will rely on compressed air to power their mechanical paintball guns, and may need to recharge them over the course of several hours. Fortunately, recharging a paintball gun’s compressed air canister can be done quickly, guaranteeing a player won’t have to wait too long to recharge their mechanical paintball gun before returning to action.
5. Allowing Arts and Crafts Professionals to Create Items Faster Than Ever Before
When it comes to arts and crafts projects, an air compressor is nearly essential. This device allows an arts and crafts professional to leverage a pneumatic nail gun — something that helps speed up the process of finishing arts and crafts projects.
A pneumatic nail gun empowers users to drive nails using air from an air compressor. It’s a powerful tool, one that allows professionals to forgo a hot glue gun and simplify the construction of arts and crafts.
Before you use a pneumatic nail gun to complete arts and crafts projects, it’s important to understand how to use this device in conjunction with an air compressor safely.
Home improvement retailer Lowe’s notes nail gun owners should check an air compressor’s ratings for pressure (measured in pounds per square inch) and volume (measured in cubic feet per minute) prior to using a nail gun. By doing so, nail gun users can guarantee these ratings match the nail gun’s requirements and minimize risk during arts and crafts projects.
6. Meeting the Heavy Demands of the Agricultural Industry
Compressed air is necessary to power many farming machines, including:
- Crop spraying equipment
- Dairy machines
- Pneumatic handling machines
Also, several different types of air compressors frequently are used for agricultural operations.
For example, a rotary screw air compressor offers a positive displacement compression system that features a pair of matching helical screws. An oil-flooded rotary screw compressor features a lubricant that fills the gap between two rotors to create an air-tight hydraulic seal and transfer mechanical energy between the rotors. Thus, this air compressor ensures that air moves through the threads as the screws rotate, while the meshing screws push the air through the compressor.
On the other hand, portable piston air compressors offer added mobility, enabling farmers to bring an air compressor with them to complete various day-to-day tasks. These air compressors usually are lightweight for easy portability and manufactured with high-end components to deliver long-lasting value.
7. Empowering Pharmaceutical Companies
Pharmaceutical companies globally demand oil-free compressed air to eliminate the risk of product contamination. Thankfully, air compressors are available that deliver clean compressed air instantly, ensuring pharmaceutical companies big and small can avoid product contamination dangers.
Pharmaceutical companies use compressed air in many applications, such as:
- Maintenance of over-pressurization on holding and mixing tanks, guaranteeing product quality and integrity
- Aseptic applications, i.e. tasks that require Class 0 100 percent oil-free air
- During package dosing/filling, blister packaging and bottling to prevent oil contamination from affecting product quality and integrity
- Fast, effective removal of dust and spray on tablet coatings
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also requires pharmaceutical companies to follow procedures designed to prevent contamination of equipment or products by substances that could adversely affect product quality. Therefore, American pharmaceutical companies are required to leverage air compressors to ensure product quality and integrity, and many international pharmaceutical companies utilize these compressors for the same reason.
8. Supporting Energy Exploration Companies
Oil and gas exploration companies are among the leading users of air compressor due to the remote nature of their day-to-day operations.
Air compressors frequently help oil and gas exploration companies reduce their repair and maintenance costs. These devices enable oil and gas exploration businesses to:
- Power ventilation systems for boiler houses
- Manage valves in steam and cooling circuits remotely
- Insert and remove reactor rods
- Power pneumatic tools and equipment both onshore and offshore
- Account for motion caused by turbulent waters
The global oil and gas exploration and production sector represents a $2 trillion industry, according to global market research firm IBIS World. Moreover, with air compressors, oil and gas exploration companies may be better equipped to power their everyday operations both now and in the future.
Find the Right Air Compressor for Any Application
Clearly, air compressors serve both business operators and homeowners worldwide, ensuring users can optimize their productivity and efficiency. But what does it take to find the right air compressor for a particular application? To do so, you’ll want to consider working with a proven supplier of air compressors to ensure you can find the right air compressor at any time.
At Quincy Compressor, we’ve provided customers with superior air compressors for nearly a century, and have built our reputation on providing uncompromising reliability and performance. We will go above and beyond the call of duty to guarantee you can explore many superb air compressors for even the most demanding applications, allowing you to maximize your productivity and efficiency.
Unlike other air compressor suppliers, we prioritize Total Customer Value (TCV) — a way of life for our business. As part of TCV, we provide our employees with consistent training to ensure they can respond to customer concerns and queries and continuously improve our everyday operations. TCV also encourages our workers to deploy lean manufacturing techniques and take responsibility for waste elimination and process improvement to meet our customers’ needs.
Lastly, we understand dozens of air compressors are available, and each air compressor may help you complete myriad tasks. To ensure you can find the right air compressor for any application, we’ll dedicate ample time and resources to learn about your air compressor needs and guarantee your requests are met.
Ready to explore what air compressors can offer you? Check out the Quincy products page to learn more about our air compressors, or you can contact our sales representatives to speak with one of our air compressor experts in your area today.