How to Prepare Your Compressed Air System for Efficiency in Each Season

In order to keep your compressed air system fully operable and efficient year–round, it’s crucial to prepare your compressor for each season. As part of a process referred to as “weatherization”, experts on compressor maintenance suggest biannual inspections of various points along a compressed air system.

When it comes to air compressors, weather extremes can be detrimental to the performance of internal mechanisms and end tools if faults along the system are allowed to fester. Some of the most troubling ailments in this regard include air leaks, clogged drains and dirty filtration systems. Read on to learn of ways to prevent these problems and prepare your compressor for each season, including the hottest summers and coldest winters.

Eight Easy Steps to Prepare Your Compressor for Each Season

An air compressor is capable of working under all types of weather, providing that the compressor is kept in optimal shape and the operating environment is suited to the technology. With periodic maintenance of your compressed air system and its room of operation, you could enjoy optimal performance throughout the year with minimal downtime. Therefore, it’s wise to mark each of the following steps onto select seasonal dates of your working calendar.


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#1. Check the Drains

As weather gets warmer during the months of summer, condensation levels are bound to increase within an air compressor. When this occurs, it can be problematic on numerous levels, because moisture can impact the performance of pneumatic tools and also erode the mechanisms within an air compressor.

If the drains fail and water buildup gets out of hand, it could spoil a production or even cause an air compressor to shut down. Condensate is particularly troublesome for spray paint operations, especially when misty air transports aerosolized oil to the end point.

Check the drains to ensure that they function optimally for the heightened demands placed on the compressor once temperatures spike. Make sure that the water passes out without any backup or blockage, and that the drains are capable of handling the increased flow of water from the air compressor.

On a side note, oily water shouldn’t be released into the drain of the air compressor. Therefore, the condensate should first be treated before it makes its way to the drain. In order for this to occur, the treatment system and filters within the compressor must separate the oil from the water. To ensure that oily condensate doesn’t filter into the drain, check the oil separators to ensure that they’re working properly.

#2. Clean the Coolers

The temperature that surrounds an air compressor is integral to the quality of the machine’s performance. If the air that surrounds the compressor is hotter than normal due to rising outdoor temperatures, it can affect the performance of pneumatic tools and machines. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that the air compressor itself maintains consistent temperatures throughout the year, including those months where outdoor temperatures top 80 degrees.

In order to prevent an air compressor from getting hotter during summer, the coolers must be cleaned each year just as temperatures begin to rise. If the coolers are clogged, it could impede their ability to keep your compressed air system at desired levels. To prevent this from happening, perform the following actions several weeks in advance of each summer:

  • Inspect the coolers for traces of dirt, gunk or misty residue.
  • Clean away any dirt deposits present on the coolers.


If the air compressor gets overheated, the impact could be troublesome for the compressor itself, as well as for any attached pneumatic tools and machinery. If a compressor is used to power air blowers, for example, the quality of air that reaches the end point could be ill–suited to the task at hand when the system is overheated.

#3. Clean the Air and Oil Filters

steps to prevent the occurrence of problems with the oil and air filters

The filtration system is integral to the efficiency of an air compressor. As long as the air and oil are sufficiently filtered throughout a given cycle, the air compressor can be expected to produce cool air at consistent volumes with an overall smooth performance from the machine. However, if the filters are clogged with dirt, pressure drop can ensue, and this forces the air compressor to work harder just to perform basic functions. Consequently, energy gets consumed and parts get worn in the process.

If gunk and dirt are allowed to accumulate over several seasons, the decline in air quality could serve as a warning sign of costlier problems down the way with an air compressor. To prevent these problems from occurring in the first place, check the filters regularly and clean them out as needed.

#4. Check the Ventilation

Maintenance of an air compressor unit is only part of what keeps a compressed air system in optimal condition throughout the four seasons of a given year. In order to keep a well–functioning compressor performing up to par, you also need to ensure that the compressor room is maintained with optimal working conditions for the machinery contained within.

As with the air and oil filters within the air compressor, it’s important to check the ventilation for the room that houses the machine. To prevent the ambient air from becoming too congested, perform the following steps on a routine basis:

  • Check air vents for dust deposits.
  • Clear away dust buildup from air vents.
  • Inspect the HVAC system for dust buildup and defects.


In any kind of work environment, the air needs to circulate in order to remain healthy. Even if you have an HVAC system in place that’s been especially programmed to maintain suitable temperatures and ambient air quality inside the room that stores your compressed air system, the HVAC unit itself could become compromised if not subject to periodic inspections. This, in turn, could degrade the quality of air within the compressor room and have a domino effect on the compressor and related tools. All such problems can be prevented with routine inspections of the air vents and HVAC system.

#5. Adjust the Water Cooling System

When water is the cooling factor in any kind of air system, the water itself must be cool in order for it to have the desired effect. When the weather gets warmer, the water that goes in should be even cooler. Just as with air coolers, a water–cooled air compressor needs sufficiently cool water to offset the ambient warmth during hotter months.

To ensure that the water in a water–cooled air compressor maintains sufficient coolness, perform the following actions before each working cycle that takes place during humid days:

  • Check the temperature of the water.
  • Adjust the water temperature if necessary when ambient temperatures rise.


With any machine that has been made to supply quality air, external factors can impact the performance of the machine and the quality of air that reaches the end point. In the case of a water–cooled air compressor, the quality of compressed air is liable to be compromised if a normally cold water supply is rendered warmer by humid ambient temperatures. To prevent such problems from occurring, check the water supply during hotter months to ensure that the water temperature remains consistent with fall, winter and spring levels.

#6. Check the Weather Stripping

The performance of a compressed air system is inevitably affected by its surrounding environment. If unwanted elements are slipping into the room in which the air compressors are situated within a given facility, the compressors are liable to be somewhat compromised in their performance, regardless of any maintenance that might be performed on the machines in question.

In an insulated room, the quality of air can be compromised by any given number of overlooked factors. For example, if small gaps exist around a door when it’s shut, air is going to pass between that door no matter how tight it’s locked. By the same token, gaps around a window — regardless of how slight they might be to the naked eye — will cause conditioned indoor temperatures to be diluted with slivers of airflow from the outside. To prevent these factors from compromising the air quality in your compressor room, apply weather stripping as needed.

v#7. Check the Insulation

For all the questions about seasonal maintenance that primarily apply to select months out of a given year, there are certain maintenance protocols that apply year–round, such as insulation upkeep. In the rooms where compressed air systems are operated, insulation must be maintained during the humid summer months, as well as through the cold of winter. If temperatures that are either too hot or too cold for ideal operations leak into the facility from the outside, the affects could compromise the performance of an air compressor and lower the quality of productions.

In order to prevent the dilution of air insulation within a compressor room, perform these inspections in advance of each summer and winter:

  • Check for gaps between the walls and window sills.
  • Inspect the doorways for gaps along the top, bottom or sides.
  • Inspect the walls and ceiling for holes and cracks.


One of the most elusive problems that can occur with compressor room ventilation is the passage of air through small slivers and cracks in unexpected places. These cracks or holes could be located along the wall, ceiling or especially along the trimming. Inspect these areas semi–regularly and patch up any holes or cracks that do materialize.


#8. Identify and Fix Air Leaks

Regardless of the season or the outside temperatures, air leaks are the ultimate enemy of a compressed air system. An air compressor could have perfectly functioning filtration and be free of condensate or traveling oil, yet still lag in its performance if air leaks are present at any point between the machine itself and the tools at the end of the pipes.

When air leaks form along a compressed air system, tool performance weakens and operations become less efficient. If an operator is unaware of the problem source, the first solution that often comes to mind is to simply crank up the pressure on the system in order to compensate for the lagging power. This, in turn, leads to increased wear and tear on the internal mechanisms of an air compressor.

Simply put, there’s nothing to be gained from leaks in a compressed air system. The problems associated with leaks are easier to spot and remedy, or prevent altogether, with routine inspections along all the parts that transport air from the compressor to the end tools.


Buy Air Compressors for Year-round Performance from Quincy Compressor

When summer temperatures are at their peak, ambient air contains infinitely more water than the cooler air of fall, winter and spring. For obvious reasons, this can be troubling for compressed air systems if maintenance protocols aren’t enacted in advance of each hot spell.

Then again, freezing temperatures can also be troubling for a compressed air system, particularly for applications that rely on even–tempered ambient settings. As such, weatherization of your air compressor should be thought of as a year–round concern with maintenance undertaken every six months, at minimum, preferably in the late weeks of spring and fall.

For air compressors with the power to work at maximum efficiency through all seasons of a given year, people turn to Quincy Compressor. For nearly a century, Quincy has been the world’s leading provider of compressors that work in all seasons and climates. From pressing–plant operations to garage–based crafts and repairs, Quincy makes air compressors and pneumatic tools that keep the world productive.

At Quincy, we sell air compressors that drive a vast range of vital year–round operations, including food packaging, construction and auto assembly. To learn more about what our compressors can do for your operations, click on over to our sales and service page to contact a local dealer.


Energy efficiency is a growing area of concern for manufacturers and consumers alike. Engineers are looking to improve machines’ ability to use energy. Those who are seeking to purchase equipment look to save money for their organizations via reduced energy bills. Both parties have an interest in encouraging the development of products that help reduce impact on our environment.

If you’re looking to purchase an air compressor for your company, you’ll want to be aware of resources that alert you to federal and state government rebates that promote the purchase of energy efficient products. Let’s take a look at a few of them to determine how they can save you money and promote environmental conservation.

DSIRE — The Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency

DSIRE is a very helpful research tool that offers location-specific searches for energy efficient incentives offered at the state level. Simply enter a zip code or click on a state to get a complete listing of all of the programs available to you. When you find something you like, click on it, and details will appear about what you can do to take advantage of the offering in question.


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Much like DSIRE, Energy.gov offers a search feature that can help you find location-specific incentives that promote energy efficient practices. Select your state from the drop-down list to view an array of programs in your area. Filters are included allowing you to sort by eligibility and savings category.

Why Pursue Energy Efficiency Rebates?

There are two prominent reasons why pursuing energy efficiency rebates are a bright idea for your organization. First, energy efficient equipment can help save you money on your utility bills. Next, energy efficient machines place less strain on our natural resources, preserving them for future resources and keeping the threat of climate change at bay.

The total life cycle cost you can use to calculate an equipment purchase is:

True Life Cycle Cost = Purchase Price + Energy Costs + Parts & Service + Additional Factors

Note that energy costs are a significant variable. Even if a machine has a higher-than-average purchase price, it can be offset by utilizing energy efficient features. Energy prices are subject to wide fluctuation, so doing what you can to minimize the expense from the start is a smart move.

Curious to Know Your Air Compressor System’s Efficiency Quotient? Quincy Compressor Can Help

Quincy Compressor offers an efficiency quotient analysis to help you determine how well the air compressors in your facility process energy. We’ll start with a free plant walkthrough and a preliminary EQ analysis that will help determine where cost savings can be attained. We’ll conclude with an evaluation and action plan for how you can lower your operating costs.

Alternatively, you’re welcome to use our self-analysis worksheet to complete an EQ inspection on your own.

Quincy Compressor: Energy Efficient Air Compressor Solutions

Quincy Compressor has long maintained a reputation for manufacturing durable, energy-efficient air compressors for a wide variety of professional applications. Many Quincy compressors are already eligible for rebates, and new compressor models are more efficient than ever.

To learn more about how our products can save your organization money and preserve natural resources, contact us today.

controlling leaks in compressed air systems

Leaks in a compressed air system cause more problems than are normally recognized.  For instance, the imbalance of pressure in most air systems is a function of the level of unregulated demand of which leaks are the greatest contributor.  The inability of the system to maintain consistent pressure throughout the header piping is also function of the unregulated demand.  The increased power and elevated pressures that are required as a system ages are a result of a combination of factors including leaks at the point of use.

Identifying and fixing leaks is the most obvious means of reducing compressed air costs but it is also the least permanent reduction.   In fact, we classify leak repair in most systems as pointless, frantic activity.  We have witnessed countless plants identify and repair leaks throughout their systems only to see the air demand return in a few weeks.  Most leak control programs are short lived because of the temporary nature of the improvement and the difficulty of quantifying the value of the repairs.  To effectively control leaks on a long-term basis, we need to understand why the leaks reoccur with such persistence.


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compressor leak control programs

Let’s examine the impact of leaks from a systemic point of view.  The flow through a leak is similar to an orifice in that the flow is determined by the pressure immediately upstream of the opening.  The pressure drops in the line supplying air to the leak based on the line’s ability to support the rate of flow.  For example, the air flow across a 1/4″ orifice at 90 psig is 94 scfm but the flow through ten feet of 1/4″ I.D. copper tube at 90 psig will be less than 40 scfm because the pressure will drop to 35 psig in the tube.  If you attempt to raise the pressure at the discharge of the tube, the flow increases and the pressure will not rise at the discharge as fast as it does at the inlet to the tube.

Leaks in an air system make it impossible to equalize pressure in an air system for the same reasons.  When a new user enters the system, it is called a demand event.  The air to support the event is removed from the header which causes the pressure to drop in the header from the application back to the compressors.  The size of the drop in pressure is a function of the size of the event, the transmission time from the application back to the compressors, and the capacitance of the system.

leaks in an air system

When the compressors respond with increased delivery to the system, the pressure will rise from the compressors out.  Unfortunately, as the pressure increases so does the demand for air in all users which are unregulated including leaks, open blowing, and users with the regulator cranked all the way open.  This phenomenon is called artificial demand and it prevents the compressors from being able to equalize the pressure throughout the header.  The pressure will rise to the modulation or unload setpoint at the compressors before the pressure in the piping system will equalize.  In systems with high levels of artificial demand, the system can actually absorb the increased power and flow.  In either case, the pressure cannot be equalized from the supply side of the system and the droop in pressure from the supply to demand is the result.  

The reaction of operators to the lower header pressures is to crank open the regulator to the maximum setting on any critical pressure applications.  This will increase the article pressure (the pressure at the inlet to the device) up to the level allowed by the header pressure minus the differential on the regulator and filter.  It will also cause the article pressure to track the header pressure.  Effectively, this increases the artificial demand in the system by increasing the percentage of volume in the system that is a function of the system pressure.  The graph below depicts the droop in pressure that exists in most systems and the impact on operating pressures.

illustration of drop in pressure

The article pressure on critical applications now fluctuates with any variation in header pressure.  When this impacts the quality of the results, production operators will request higher system pressures to elevate the minimum article pressures above the requirement.  The pressure will continue to fluctuate at a higher level and the higher operating pressure will increase artificial demand across the entire system.  The size of the pressure fluctuations will actually increase as the artificial demand increases as a percentage of the total system demand.  Repairing the leaks runs into similar problems.

When leaks are repaired, the pressure will rise in the vicinity of the repairs.  The higher pressure increases the flow through any remaining smaller leaks.  The velocity through the leaks increases exponentially to the increase in flow.  The scale inside the pipe of most compressed air systems aggravates the problem by acting as a grit blasting compound when carried along by the increased velocity of the compressed air.  The result is dramatically increased propagation of the remaining leaks which in a short period of time, returns leaks to the original level.

repairing air leaks

The long-term solution to these problems requires controlling the demand pressure with extraordinary resolution so that decreases in leak load will not cause increases in localized pressure.  Compressor controls and sequencers, even PLC based systems, cannot possibly provide this type of resolution.  The only device we are aware of that can respond in this manner is a flow controller.

A flow controller uses precise control of a very low differential control valve to expand the air from the supply pressure down to the lower demand pressure without a detectable loss of energy.  Constant pressure is achieved by controlling flow to continuously match the demand for air which is very different from a regulator that restricts pressure with mechanical springs or pilot air.

The typical flow controller consists of a primary electronic PID controlled valve with a manual bypass circuit. A fully redundant pneumatic PID controlled circuit can be added for critical systems.  A flow controller separates the supply side of the system from the demand side of the system.  The pressure in the supply system can be set to maximize the efficiency of the compressors independent of any impact on the demand pressure.

In fact, this is a critical factor in the proper operation of an expander controlled system.  Maintaining a higher pressure on the supply side creates effective storage which can be used by the expander to respond in fractions of a second to changes in demand.  The maintenance of this potential energy in the supply system can be designed to support intermittent increases in demand without necessitating the use of additional horsepower.

A number of parameters must be considered to make a controlled system function appropriately.  The maximum and minimum system demand, the size of the largest demand events, the rate of decay upon failure of the largest compressor, the capacitance of both the demand and supply systems, the longest transmission time of large events in the system, and other issues, depending on the system must be weighed to insure appropriate design.

Once the system is controlled, the rate of leak growth will be limited as much as possible.  It is then important to determine the appropriate leak level to maintain.  This benchmark should be established based on economic factors.  The goal is to minimize the labor costs of repairing the leaks and maximize the reduction in online compressor horsepower.

The labor costs will be determined by the type and quantity of leaks in the system.  An assembly plant with hundreds or thousands of points of use will have many more leaks than a process facility with more pipe and fewer points of use.  Some leak problems are specification and purchasing issues.  For example, certain fittings, hoses, and disconnects are available which are markedly more leak resistant.  The reverse is also true, some hardware is markedly more leak prone.

While there is a higher initial cost for the better hardware, it is relatively small when compared to the costs of the leaks or the future repairs required.  The use of a quality ultrasonic leak detector is the best tool to minimize labor costs in locating leaks which can often be  most time consuming part of the process.  Leaks should be reduced to a level which allows one or more compressors to be turned off.  Any other goal is a waste of time.  With an average of 4 scfm/hp (if the compressor is operating well), it does not take long to justify a leak control program with an appropriate budget.  At $.06 per kWh, the costs to support 100 scfm or 25 hp of leaks will be more than $10,800 per year.  The key to this approach is that if 100 scfm of leak repair allows you to turn off the next compressor the savings will be much greater.

Leaks are inevitable in a compressed air system and left unchecked they will cause production and quality problems.  The cost of supporting leaks in a system makes a leak management program appear attractive, but efforts to repair or control the level of leaks actually increase the rate of reoccurrence.  Definitely a case of diminishing returns.  The application of some effort at understanding the actual critical article requirements and the proper application of system controls, such as a flow controller, can make leak control a manageable and financially attractive effort.

For more information contact Quincy Compressor today or find a local dealer in your area.

The modern workplace is full of noise. Whether you’re in a machine shop or office environment, loud sounds are everywhere, generated by a variety of machines that allow you the opportunity to carry out your work.

While some loud sounds are unavoidable at work, many can be prevented through the use of noise reduction equipment and investing in quieter machines. It is important to reduce occupational noise as much as possible, as prolonged exposure to it can have a drastic effect on your employees’ health and safety.

Let’s take a look at a couple of reasons why you should try to reduce occupational noise in your workplace.

Why It’s Important to Reduce Workplace Noise

A loud workplace is detrimental to you and your workers in more ways than one. Below are some of the main reasons to reduce workplace noise.

Loud Occupational Noise Accelerates Hearing Loss

There are a couple of mechanisms by which loud noise can bring about hearing loss. Exceptionally loud noise can alter your inner ear structure and cause tinnitus, a condition that is best described as a ringing between the ears. Should your employees experience hearing loss, their ability to heed warnings from co-workers and plant machinery can be diminished, increasing the risk of injury.

OSHA estimates that every year $242 million is spent on workers’ compensation claims for hearing loss incurred at the workplace. Save your company time, money and possible litigation — do what you can to reduce noise in the workplace and protect your staff from hearing loss.


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Other Health Ramifications Related to Occupational Noise

A noisy work environment isn’t just dangerous to your employees’ ears. It can also have other devastating effects on their health. Many studies have identified a link between occupational noise and hypertension, a serious medical condition that can lead to heart issues and strokes. Occupational noise is also believed to be linked with other disorders including sleep deprivation and behavioral issues.

Protect your employees’ health — invest in equipment that offers quiet operation and provide your staff with noise reduction equipment.

Loud Occupational Noise Increases the Risk of Injury and Equipment Damage

If your employees work in an environment where noise obstructs their ability to communicate, you’re putting them at risk for harm and jeopardizing the integrity of your company’s equipment. One missed auditory signal could be the difference between a successfully completed project and a major injury. Don’t put your employees in a situation they could be hurt. Take steps to reduce occupational noise in your workplace.

Why Are Air Compressors So Loud?

When it comes to air compressors, powerful machines tend to grow louder as the years go on. Thankfully, there are cost-effective air compressor options and solutions that allow you to protect the hearing of your employees. Certain options like soundproofing air compressors allow you to use the same powerful machinery you’ve already invested in.

The main reason that air compressors are so loud is because of their vibrations, intake noise and exhaust noise. Since all of these loud noises are happening alongside each other, they can easily push the decibel of your air compressor up into an unsafe range. The main reasons for loud air compressors include:

  • Vibrations: While the vibrations caused by air compressors don’t make much noise in themselves, the location of your air compressor and the equipment that houses it may lead to potentially dangerous sound levels. Air compressors with lots of hollow and shallow parts make the most vibration noises, and those are amplified when the machine is placed on uneven ground that makes the machine shake more. You can combat the sound of vibrations with insulation.
  • Air compressor placement: While you may not be able to control the decibel of the vibrations from your air compressor, your can move your air compressor to a location where the ground is more secure and produces less noise. Placing air compressors on materials like concrete and hardwood will amplify the sound of the vibrations, producing echoes. Solutions like rubber mats or other soft padding can greatly reduce the sound of your air compressor.
  • The type and material of air compressor: Louder air compressors require more power and, therefore, more noise. The larger the size or the thinner the material of your air compressor, the more noise it’s going to make. When it comes to buying large air compressors, it makes sense to invest in the best quality air compressor possible. While the sound of smaller air compressors can be minimized with rubber mats, large compressors are harder to muffle. Certain companies also produce air compressors that are designed to be quiet.

What to Do if Your Air Compressor Is Getting Loud

When your air compressor gets loud, there are several steps you can take to minimize the decibels in your workplace. If you can’t minimize the sound of your air compressor, it’s time to consider the following actions.

Consider Getting a Noise Assessment

If you’re concerned about the noise level of your workplace, consider conducting a noise assessment. You may be surprised to find how much excess noise your machines generate. A noise assessment is a unique opportunity for you to gauge the efficiency of your work environment to determine what needs to be upgraded.

Upgrade Your Equipment

Today, more and more companies are designing innovative air compressor equipment that keeps your workplace quieter and protects your hearing. Quiet air compressors do exist, and they’re probably more cost-effective than you previously thought. An investment in upgraded equipment will cost you less money in the long run by increasing efficiency and productivity while decreasing air compressor noise. No matter how large of an air compressor you need, solutions are available for preventing and eliminating excess compressor noise.

How Quincy Compressors Can Help Reduce Noise in the Workplace

Quincy Compressor produces industry-leading compressor solutions for a wide variety of professional applications. We manufacture reliable products backed by extensive warranties. Our compressors strike a balance between high output capacity and quiet operation — Quincy’s new QGD and QGDV units produce three decibels less noise compared to similar machines.
Contact us today to learn how our products can help you reduce occupational noise in your workplace and protect your employees’ safety and health.

using kpis for compressed air efficiency

Considering how crucial compressed air systems are for the industrial sector, it is rather surprising that more companies aren’t keeping a closer eye on compressed air energy efficiency. In many shops and factories around the world, as long as the necessary level of pressure is maintained, managers and operators are satisfied.

That’s where Key Performance Indicators — often abbreviated as KPIs — come in. KPIs as an approach can be used in any and every business and industry. They reflect a more quantitative approach to efficiency and performance. They give managers the data to make better decisions and more precise adjustments in order to save money and increase profitability.

So why aren’t you applying KPI thinking to your compressed air system? As you search for systems and operations within your business that could be leaner, compressed air is a great place to start. That’s why we’ve put together this guide for using KPIs to improve your compressed air efficiency. We’re going to explore individual KPIs within compressed air systems and discuss how you can apply data collecting to minimize costs and maximize profits.


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System Pressure

Overall system pressure is the KPI with which most compressed air system operators are familiar. Even if you’re only monitoring the pressure gauge, you’re paying attention to system pressure KPIs. But there are more aspects to system pressure than simply maintaining a minimum pressure level.

Let’s consider this statistic from Compressed Air Best Practices’ analysis of pressure KPIs. On average, power consumption in screw compressors increases .5% for every increase in psi in discharge pressure. Similarly, unregulated compressed air flows increase at a rate of 1% for every increase in psi.

compressed air energy efficiency

While maintaining minimum pressure is important, these data show that having too much pressure can increase electricity costs. So if all you look at is maintaining minimum pressure without also considering the ways in which you’re unnecessarily exceeding minimum pressure, you could be losing money.

There are other factors that complicate KPI monitoring of system pressure. If you have an advanced system, especially one that includes filters and air dryers, the pressure gauge — which usually measures pressure before it goes through cleanup equipment — may not be accurately depicting the real pressure delivered to your tools.

That’s why it’s important to have more robust system pressure monitoring if you really want to apply the power of KPIs. If you only watch the pressure gauge, you could be losing money by not holding your average pressure at the minimum needed to keep your operations running. Similarly, the pressure gauge may be reporting real pressure inaccurately, meaning your tools might not be getting the power they need, hurting tool performance and worker efficiency.

Power Consumption

Despite countless incentives — let alone savings — to be gained through improved energy efficiency within today’s industries, many companies don’t closely monitor or measure the power consumption within their compressed air systems. In fact, Compressed Air Best Practices asserts that power consumption is the single least measured KPI.

One of the primary reasons is because operators are overly trusting of the energy rating provided by the manufacturer.

However, there are a number of factors that could cause your compressed air system to consume far more energy than it should. A small malfunction could cause an otherwise energy saving operating cycle to actually do the opposite of what it was designed to do. Furthermore, many components of more advanced compressor systems — such as those with filtration drains and dryers — are independently powered. While your actual compressor may be working fine, a small malfunction or complication with additional components may be causing them to use far more electricity than assumed.

using kpis for compressed air efficiency

By using advance data analysis, you can discover countless savings by simply tightening up the way your whole system consumes electricity. Furthermore, this kind of a data is important for claiming energy efficiency incentives.

Air Flow

The level of air flow produced by a compressed air system is also difficult to quantify. But this kind of data is essential for measuring the overall efficiency of system.

This is especially important if you have a complex system with the ability to vary capacity, modulate operations in alternate ways or blow off excess pressure. Not only do such variables make a simple air flow measurement insufficient, but they also present numerous opportunities for inefficiencies, especially if there are malfunctions. Such is the case with air dryers that use purge air for operation or nitrogen converting systems. While such systems pose advantages, especially when it comes to efficiency, monitoring is essential for ensuring that you’re reaping the benefits.

That being said, tracking these KPIs has only gotten better with the implementation of new, affordable and easy to use monitoring technologies.

Air Dryers

Considering air dryers, they provide an essential process for improving the functionality and efficiency of compressed air systems. Yet they themselves so often go unmonitored.

The best way to track the efficiency of air dryers is to measure dew point. Because moisture within compressed air systems can lead to underpowered and malfunctioning tools, ensuring that the dew point within the system stays at a constant level is a crucial KPI measurement. Furthermore, variations in the dew point are the first warning of impending malfunctions, including the total failure of the dryer control system.

Specific Power

Not to be confused with overall power consumption, specific power measures the number of kilowatts (kW) required to produce a certain amount of air pressure, usually standardized as 100 cubic feet per minute (cfm).

By collecting this data, you’ll get the best sense of your system’s overall energy efficiency, and will be able to make close comparisons against how your system should be performing.

Using a Compressed Air Best Practices case study as an example, a certain company was using a compressed air system rated at 18 kW per 100 cpm. The factory’s system consumed 435 kW and was thus able to produce around 1500 cpm. However, this means that they were actually operating at a rate of 29 kW per 100 cpm, a rate over 60% less efficient then intended.

using kpis for peak performance

Specific power is an excellent indicator of your overall efficiency, but it generally needs to be combined with other KPIs in order to isolate the problem. That’s why many companies that haven’t previously been tracking KPIs throughout their systems turn to specific power first. It gives you the kind of big picture data you need in order to dig deeper into isolated issues.


One of these specific issues is leaks. While your compressor may be operating at peak efficiency, you may still find that you aren’t getting the kind of power you need from the compressor’s various applications. That’s because a perfectly operating compressor can’t do anything to prevent pressure loss further down the line.

One of the easiest ways to measure this is to observe individual applications and compare them with the overall specific power data. If a particular operation is requiring a severe increase in specific power, it likely that some element within that operation is causing a leak. With that information, maintenance crews can be employed in order to deal with the problem without wasting labor on components that are operating efficiently.


This important KPI that should be used in conjunction with air dryer and dew point monitoring. While air dryers may be operating properly, an excessive heat discharge can lead to increased moisture within the system. In this case, the malfunction isn’t in the dryer but instead is whatever is producing the excessive ambient heat. No amount of tweaking with the dryers will make the system operate at peak performance as long as the excessive heat is still produced.

Carbon Footprints

Reducing carbon footprints have become important initiatives within many industries, whether they have been implemented internally or through external financial incentives.

In order to keep up with such initiatives — and collect the financial rewards if they’re available — you’ll need to track and log these data.

Thankfully, KPIs related to carbon emissions are useful throughout a number of applications, so don’t consider them as an added burden, but instead as another potential application of robustly relevant data.

Further Thoughts on Energy Management Systems Certification

One such incentive that has grown to be especially important throughout many companies and industries is the ISO 50001 Energy Management Systems certification. While this certification is completely voluntary, it is a wonderful tool for companies looking to save money on energy while proving their commitment to energy efficiency to outside parties.

using kpis for compressed air efficiency

However, in order to receive this certification, it’s important that KPI’s be tracked and logged. This can be done through the installation of permanent monitoring systems, which will have continued value as they can log data for future analysis and efficiency adjusting. You can also employ external energy auditors if a temporary solution makes more sense for your business.

Coordination With Other Plant-Wide KPIs

It is also helpful to track compressed air system KPIs alongside other plant-wide KPI initiatives. While many of the compressed air factors and functions tracked are contingent on operational issues specific to the systems themselves, some KPIs may fluctuate in accordance with human resource factors. For example, increased seasonal workload may be putting abnormal pressure on compressed air systems. Your system may be more than able to satisfy the standard loads, but may be straining and inefficient during the elevated periods.

Furthermore, within companies that operate multiple plants, drawing broad comparisons can be a helpful tool for understanding how site-specific operations and procedures may be affecting compressed air efficiency. By developing company specific best practices based on the plant that is operating most efficiently, you can increase efficiency company-wide.

KPI Tracking Without Instrument Installation

While the most precise data collection and logging must be done with specifically designed equipment, installation could be cost prohibitive for smaller operations. Fortunately, there are ways to track KPIs without installing extra monitoring equipment.

For example, equipment ratings can be used to approximate output efficiency and then compared with data collected manually. While this won’t give you the same level of precision as monitoring equipment, it can give you a general sense of your KPIs. If you fear that you’re not operating at the level of efficiency that you should be, this could serve as justification for hiring an outside auditor. However, if you appear to be operating at or near the rated efficiency, then you may not need to invest in further auditing.

You can also collect more qualitative data in order to address potential sites for further investigation. For example, if employees report underpowered tools during certain parts of the day, then that might be an area worthy of additional review. While these data weren’t collected using precision instrumentation, the experience and expertise of seasoned workers should not be discounted. Their input can prove invaluable moving forward, and can be easily tracked through manual record keeping.

Auditing With Quincy Compressor

If you’re ready to track KPIs and are looking for outside help, then look no further than Quincy Compressor’s industry leading EQ auditing program. By combining years of experience manufacturing compressed air systems with an understanding of the most technologically advanced tools, we’ve helped countless businesses improve their overall energy efficiency, while also ensuring that their compressed air systems are operating at peak performance.

The EQ: Efficiency Quotient process, which received accolades from Frost and Sullivan, this program collects relevant data while providing a keen understanding of industry-approved best practices in order to give you the information you need along with appropriate adjustments moving forward.

The program begins with a free plant walkthrough, to help you establish an energy efficiency baseline. Then, we collect information through monitoring equipment in order to identify energy cost reduction opportunities. We finish it off with an exhaustive action report that equips you to make the necessary changes in order to save your business money.

However, our engineered audit is even more exhaustive and a great way to establish KPI levels and uncover opportunities for improvement throughout your compressed air system. This is a great option for a company that is looking to maximize efficiency but is not able to afford the installation of permanent monitoring equipment. By employing one of our audits, you’ll get the kind of data normally provided by high-end equipment without the cost of purchase and installation.

No matter which route you take, tracking KPIs is a great way to minimize costs and maximize profits. While any and every industry operation system can afford the quantitative approach of KPI analysis, such analysis is especially beneficial for compressed air systems. While compressed air systems provide unrivaled durability, reliability and usability for plants of any size, they can be heavy electricity users. As more companies look at energy costs as an opportunity for lowering their bottom line, compressed air systems are a great place to start. So if you’re ready to start taking a serious approach to KPIs, begin with compressed air. As the leader in compressed air systems manufacturing, we look forward to partnering with you to help identify opportunities for improvement and equip you with the tools to turn opportunities into savings.

Oil plays a crucial role in many mechanical and electric devices. It powers, lubricates and cools, keeping machines running smoothly. It is a precious resource, and conserving it helps preserve the environment and lower your operating expenses.

Oil is also a very important component of your air compressor. It performs a number of critical functions, and it is crucial to check and change it on a regular basis. Let’s take a look at the role lubricants play in your air compressor and consider what steps you should take to ensure your machine is using it efficiently.

Lubricant’s Role in an Air Compressor

As a machine with a vast assortment of moving mechanical parts, an air compressor requires a fluid that can cool, lubricate and seal air leaks as it carries out its work. Much like an automobile, an air compressor utilizes oil for this purpose.

However, air compressors use a different kind of lubricant than a car. It’s a specialized fluid calibrated specifically the equipment’s components. Never use a conventional motor oil in an air compressor as it lead to catastrophic failure. Seek out lubricants manufactured for air compressor use to promote optimal efficiency in operation.


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How Often Should I Change My Air Compressor’s Oil?

Air compressor oil must be changed on a regular basis to ensure optimal viscosity. Like conventional motor oil, air compressor oil degrades over time and requires vigilance to maintain.

Maintenance intervals will depend on the variety of oil compressor you own. Depending on use, reciprocating air compressor requires new oil every 180 days or so, while rotary screw compressors require new oil at the 1,000 hour mark. It’s equally important to inspect oil filter in your compressor.

Choose a Compressor That Uses Oil Efficiently

When you’re in the market for an air compressor, seek out a model that uses oil in an efficient manner. Remember you’ll have to change the oil regularly regardless of usage, and you should build that cost in to your analysis. A cheaper sticker price will save you money in the short-term, but it may end up costing you long-term when you factor in repairs and maintenance.

In addition, consider using the manufacturer’s recommended synthetic oil in your compressor during oil changes. Developed to run for longer intervals than their conventional counterparts, optimally/properly formulated synthetic oils can be an excellent choice for compressor owners who strive to keep their machines running smoothly for long periods of time.

Quincy Compressors: Efficient, Reliable Compressors

Quincy Compressor has long been a trusted brand in compressor manufacturing. We build compressors for a wide variety of professional applications and industries. Our machines are developed with efficiency in mind — our new QSI and QGV models use 60% less lubricant than similar machines on the market today.

If you’re seeking a powerful, efficient compressor for your organization, contact Quincy Compressor today to learn more about our products.


When you purchase new plant equipment, you’ll want to seek out products that a strong a warranty. Warranties are excellent insurance policies that protect your machines from unexpected component failure and help minimize your repair costs.

Air compressors are one particular category of equipment purchase in which an extended warranty can prove especially helpful. They include a vast network of parts that require regular maintenance. Failure of one part can mean downtime for your entire machine.

Quincy Compressor, an industry-leading manufacturer of air compressors, offers an excellent array of extended warranty programs that cover an extensive range of parts and service repairs in the event of unexpected component failure. Let’s take a look at some of the unique features of our warranties to determine why a Quincy Compressor would make a great choice for your organization.


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Among The Strongest Extended Warranty Programs in the Industry

Quincy Compressor offers multiple extended warranty products to pair with our air compressors. They include:

  • Royal Blue Warranty: Available on our QSI and QGV models, this warranty offers 10 years for airends, five years of coverage for variable speed drives, five years for drive motors, five years for air/fluid receivers, five years for drive coupling and five years for coolers. No extra fees are necessary to enable this warranty — all you’ll need to do is register the unit and follow the Royal Blue Policy outlined in the warranty policies guide.
  • True Blue Warranty: This warranty covers our QGS and QGD packages, offering superb coverage. A couple of different options are available. The 5-Year QGS Extended Warranty offers one year of basic compressor coverage, five years for airends, five years for coolers, five years for air fluid receivers and five years for drive motors. Owners just need to register the unit upon startup, take a sample of the fluids, and use only Genuine Quincy parts for maintenance. An authorized start-up is required for this option.
  • No Bull Extended Warranty Option: To qualify for this warranty, you’ll need to buy a compressor, an extended warranty kit to double the package warranty to two years and pump warranty to three years. After doing this, you’ll benefit from coverage for basic regular maintenance for three years, and you will ensure proper maintenance by using the kit’s contents according to the compressor owner’s manual.
  • Blue Shield Extended Warranty: This warranty will allow you to extend your current factory warranty by an extra three or five years with the use of genuine Quincy parts and fluids specially formulated for use in all compressor applications. This warranty option is available with the purchase of Quincy rotary screw compressors at least five years old with operating pressures rated at 150 PSIG and lower.
  • 10-Year Heat Exchanger Warranty: This free warranty covers heat exchangers for 10 years on all Quincy cycling, non-cycling and high temperature Refrigerated Air Dryers.
  • QSV 10-Year Extended Warranty: This free warranty covers QGD and QGDV compressors for 10 years.

Quincy Compressors — Excellent Products, Great Warranties

Quincy Compressor’s warranties are some of the best in the air compressor industry. Now Quincy Compressor’s QGD and QGDV include the 5-year True Blue Extended warranty, while the QSI and QGV models come with a  Royal Blue 10-year extended warranty.

Contact us today to learn more about how our air compressor products can benefit your business.


Motors that power multiple applications are generally made to run at uniform speeds, regardless of the application in question. For any machine that runs on an AC motor, you can save money on energy costs with the use of a Variable Speed Drive (VSD), which adjusts the motor’s speed according to the needs of a given application.

With a variable speed drive, operations run smoothly and efficiently because processes move according to the demands of a given application. Therefore, you generally won’t find the following problems occurring at facilities where machines are VSD-equipped:

  • Slow operations that use too much energy. If the demands of an application are relatively non intensive, the machinery that provides power should adjust the speed, force and torque accordingly.
  • Variable applications run at breakneck speeds. On applications that involve a mix of fast and slow motions, the machinery in question must adjust to these needs — otherwise, products incur damage and energy goes to waste.

With variable speed drives, operators of air compressors and other industrial machinery can get precision speeds as necessary, but also enjoy significantly reduced operating costs.


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Variable Torque vs. Constant Torque

With industrial machinery, there are parts that require constant spinning and others that are best spun on a variable basis. In terms of torque — the force behind rotational speed — variable speed drives fall into two types of load categories:

types of variable drives

  • Variable torque: Applies to most HVAC applications, such as fans and air pumps.
  • Constant torque: Encompasses industrial tools and machinery, such as crushers and conveyors.

In most cases, loads in the first category are more energy efficient than those that employ constant torque. After all, not every application requires maximum or steady spinning speeds. With some machines and pneumatic tools, it’s best for the part in question to rotate at varying speeds throughout each cycle.

Variable Torque at the Square of the Speed

The power used to keep machine parts spinning is similar yet different to the power that applies force. Speed, for instance, might be needed at different levels for applications that involve torque in one section and backward/forward movement in another. In variable torque loads, force requirements correlate with speed as follows:

  • Torque = square of the speed
  • Horsepower = cube of the speed

When running at half speed, variable torque applications use just one-fourth of the overall energy used at full speed. In a sense, it’s similar to how spinning objects generally move faster and for longer durations than objects made to roll on flat surfaces.

benefits of variable frequency drives

Relatively speaking, HVAC devices generally have low-speed load requirements. As such, operators can save money on energy when using variable speed drives for HVAC applications. In public buildings that rely on large HVAC systems to heat and cool hundreds of rooms up and down dozens of floors, landlords could reap huge savings month after month with VSD-controlled systems. All of this savings could be passed onto tenants and invested in renovations and expansions, which could in turn attract more renters and shoppers.

Superior Control of Processes With Variable Speed Drives

In comparison to other types of AC motor controllers, variable speed drives are the only kind that offer precise speeds at every level of operation. In factories with variable processes, the flexibility and precision of VSD-powered machinery is vital for low-cost, top-quality productions. For instance, if one application requires 840 rpm and another needs 1120 rpm, it would be wasteful and potentially damaging to have a drive that runs everything at 1400 rpm. These are just more of the reasons why variable speed drives are gaining ground on set-speed controllers.

By comparison, competing control methods such as full and soft starters have the following problems:

  • Full-voltage starters: Only offer maximum speeds, regardless of whether an application requires fast, medium or slow.
  • Soft starters: Whether regular or reduced voltage, these will only rev the motor to full speed and wind it down to a halt.

In contrast, a variable speed drive is made to deliver precise torque, just as needed, and to halt at specified moments. Granted, DC drives are also noted for precision, speed and high-powered torque, but AC motors are more long-lasting, widespread and reasonably priced, which has made AC controllers the preferred standard.

benefits of variable speed drives

Variable Speed Applications at Pressing Plants

When a motor is run by a single-speed controller, the speed simply catapults from zero to 100 in a split second. Consequently, motors can endure surges that often dangerously exceed load currents. In contrast, variable speed drives work up progressively to appropriate speeds, which spares the motor of undue stress. This, in turn, leads to fewer repairs, less need for maintenance and an overall longer life for the motor and load equipment.

In a factory environment with machines that rely on air compressors, the contrast between single speed and variable speed applications could make a huge difference in terms of the quality of a finished product. Envision the following two scenarios:

  •  Set-speed assembly: Wood panels are moved along an assembly line for slicing, sanding, spray-finishing and assembling. Each tool and function requires a different speed, pressure or torque, yet the system is run on set controls that fail to recognize these variables.
  • Variable-speed assembly: A similar set of processes could be applied, be it for wood or metal construction. Some tools require faster speeds than others, while certain applications call for a varied approach throughout. Thankfully, the system is built to understand these variables.

With little doubt, the second assembly plant would have the ability to turn out products of higher quality, all the while conserving energy and maximizing the longevity of every tool in use.

benefits of variable speed drives

Technical Aspects of Variable Frequency Drives

Generally, an open-loop VSD will be equipped to calculate its output current and approximate the disparity between speed and setpoint, to which the drive naturally aligns. The bulk of variable torque drives are compatible with proportional-integral-derivative controllers for applications that involve blowers and pressure functions.

Variations in assorted processes — pressure and liquid levels, air and liquid-flow rates — are read by a transmitter, which sends a signal to programmable logic controllers, which in turn act as the process/drive go-betweens. Based on this ongoing feedback, the VSD alters speeds on an as-needed basis.

Out in the field, the majority of drives are paired with Volts/Hertz controls, which work for most applications that run on variable speed drives.

When a motor first becomes energized, the inrush current is roughly 600% of what the regular current would be at full load. Though the current lowers as the motor reaches full speed, the system incurs voltage sag, which can lead to shock damage, motor wear and negative impacts on other loads. A full-voltage starter could also restrict the size-range of acceptable motors for certain load systems.

benefits of variable frequency drives

The Unique Benefits of Variable Frequency Drives

In the majority of motor-powered mechanical operations, variable speed drives offer precise, energy-efficient control of force and torque. On any given operation, the foremost benefit of a VSD is twofold:

Precise electrical control:

Motor speeds can be revved up, slowed down, sustained indefinitely or brought to sudden halts.

Reduced energy costs:

With speed levels delivered as-needed rather than at uniform, arbitrary rates, operators can slash energy costs by as much as 70% with variable speed drives.

Additionally, variable speed drives eliminate the need for various secondary mechanical components. Furthermore, a VSD can help you conserve space and reduce the maintenance costs that often accrue over time with motor loads:

Ability to control the starting current. In situations where an AC motor is initiated full-throttle, it requires up to eight times the current just to get the motor and load started. A much lower starting current is needed, however, with a variable speed drive, which ultimately gives the AC motor greater longevity. When you think of all the mechanisms that are powered by this startup current, the more crucial it becomes to ensure machines aren’t initiated with the bluntness that might occur with some of the worst set-speed controllers on the market.

Fewer power line issues. The power system linked to the motor can easily be drained by the following two causes:

  • AC-motor initiation across the line
  • Starting-current demand

Either problem can cause the power to sag, which could in turn affect other equipment linked to the distribution, including sensors, computers and anything else that’s sensitive to voltage levels. With a variable speed drive, however, you don’t have to worry about sagging power and the damage it can inflict on expensive machinery and electronics.

Reduced power usage on startup. With a variable speed drive, the startup of an AC motor requires less power. This is where some of the greatest savings come into play because set-speed drives are prone to use intense amounts of energy on startup. In many ways, it’s a lot like computer screens and light bulbs, where the more you turn them on and off, the quicker they burn out, which is due to the extra energy that activation requires. Likewise, startup is one of the most energy-intensive things a motor can perform, and the more energy that gets used during these moments, the sooner maintenance is likely to be necessary.

benefits of variable speed drives

Controlled speed-up process. An AC motor and all connected devices can experience a mechanical shock whenever startup is implemented across the line. Every time a shock like this occurs, each device is subject to a damaging impact. By contrast, variable speed drives slowly begin from nothing and gradually work up to higher speeds, all of which makes for a smoother startup process for full loads.

Modifiable speeds. With a variable speed drive, you can maximize applications and alter processes along the way. Depending on the needs of an application, you can also make the following adjustments:

  • Start at slower speeds than normal
  • Adjust speed remotely via process controller

For machines that need a bit of warm-up time upon startup, the former option could be the ideal setting. In this respect, some machines and applications are comparable to airplanes in that both need time to launch and soar to full-flight mode.

There are also certain machines that don’t need extra time to activate, but do require some human input due to the variable demands of a given application. Whether it’s an air-powered machine or pneumatic tool, it might need to be programmed remotely or handled manually. For applications like these, it’s best to have a variable-speed drive that can respond to changing needs in speed and torque.

Torque limit adjustability. With accurate control of torque throughout a given process, machinery and products are more fully protected by variable speed drives, which can be programmed to restrict torque and thereby keep the motor from surpassing this threshold. For tools and machines that only need moderate rotational power, the variable drive adjusts accordingly — saving energy in the process by holding back excess power that a set-speed controller would end up using wastefully.

benefits of variable frequency drives

Controlled stopping. Controlled stopping lowers the number of goods that end up ruined because of ruptures and mechanical deterioration caused by shocks and sudden disruptions. This way, there’s less risk of product loss from unexpected impacts that would otherwise be damaging to the mechanisms of a motor. In addition, considering that not all damage inflicted on machinery is caused externally and how damage to internal parts can often be costlier, machines that utilize variable speed drives are far safer with this feature.

Conservation of energy. Variable speed drives cut energy usage significantly in centrifugal load operations such as fans. For example, if a fan runs at only 50% of its normal speed, the horsepower needed to power the device is slashed by a factor of eight. When you factor the rate of energy that goes into a certain process and the amount it accounts for in monthly energy costs, the savings could be exponential, especially when consumption levels are halved.

Ability to operate in reverse. On motors equipped with variable speed drives, there’s no need for reverse starters because outputs can be switched electronically. Not only does this make reverse operations easier and less cumbersome, but it also cuts maintenance expenses and conserves room that might otherwise be consumed by a reversing starter.

Mechanical drive components not necessary. Thanks to the ability of a variable speed drive to adjust speeds as-needed for each application, there’s no need to include a speed-varying device within a mechanical-drive setup. Therefore, you don’t need to use a gearbox or deal with all the attendant issues, such as spacing and additional maintenance. Considering just how costly it can be to repair the complex mechanisms of a gearbox, the ability to cut that component from your arsenal could be one of the biggest benefits of variable speed drives.

Unique movement options. For even greater reductions in mechanical or power stress, a variable speed drive is also capable of controlling the motor in unique patterns. Case in point: The S-curve can be utilized on conveyors for easier speed up/slow down commands, which lessen the possibility of conveyor recoil that sometimes results from abrupt jumps and drops in speed.

The World Catches on to Variable Speed Drives

At most industrial plants, over 70% of a compressor’s lifetime cost is electricity. While a lot of newer facilities have stepped up efforts to slash these kinds of costs, the movement toward conservation has been largely a joint effort between manufacturers and the public that supports them. After all, efficiency relies just as heavily on energy awareness as it does on reductions in wasteful usage. At the center of these developments are technological innovations like variable frequency drives, which have made it possible to be more efficient.

benefits of variable speed drives

Significant amounts of money can be saved with the installation of air compressors that run on variable speed drives. As such, nations are promoting VSD compressors across the industrial sector in an effort to conserve energy and cut down on waste. In some countries, incentives in the form of loans and tax rebates are being offered by the government for companies to upgrade compressed-air systems.

Case in point: The U.K. relies on compressed air for much of the nation’s energy — trouble is, much of this energy goes to waste. As the adoption of variable-speed air compressors becomes more commonplace throughout the island nation, the British government hopes to reduce emissions and maximize savings among energy providers.

Are Variable Frequency Drives Right for Your System?

Despite their numerous benefits of variable frequency drives, VSD compressors are not the perfect match for every type of industrial application. For example, when a variable-speed compressor runs non-stop at maximum speed, a factory could end up consuming more energy than would otherwise be used with a fixed-compressor. This is due to switch losses of the VSD frequency converter.

If you’re wondering whether a variable frequency drive is the best option for your compressed-air operation, have an air audit performed at your facility. Professional audits are performed by compressed-air industry specialists who can determine whether variable speed is the best means of control for your system, or whether a different option would be a more suitable fit.

Quincy: The Leading Maker of Variable-Speed Drive Air Compressors

All across the world, there’s a growing movement among engineers and industrial operators to replace set-speed controllers with variable speed drives. In the industries that have already made this move, the up-sides have been substantial in terms of energy savings, machine life and product quality. Nonetheless, with every VSD-driven system that powers pneumatic tools and other forms of air-powered machinery, the success of each application relies foremost on high-quality air compressors.

benefits of variable frequency drives

Since the Roaring Twenties, the leading name in compressed-air machinery and innovation has been Quincy Compressor, makers of the finest air compressors and pneumatic tools for operations of all sizes. At domestic and foreign automotive assembly plants, Quincy compressors have powered the tools that turn car parts into beautiful, prestigious, highway-bound hot rods, compacts and vans. In factories that produce canned goods and furnishings, our machinery has given compressed-air power to assemblies that put food onto grocery aisles and make beds and sofas ready for home delivery.

Since the dawn of the 21st century, a new awareness has taken hold of the industrial sector. Gone are the days when manufacturers were happy just to maximize profits with the lowest possible overhead — today, all companies that thrive make eco-friendliness a central tenet of brand identity. As part of that goal, innovations in compressed-air technology have made the variable speed-driven air compressor into an industry standard among companies around the world. With one innovation after another, Quincy has led the way in making variable-speed driven air compressors more commonplace in all industries that rely on air power.

For a wide range of applications, the finest compressed-air systems are those that run on variable speed drives. Not only do VSD-driven units offer some of the greatest longevity and energy efficiency, but they also adjust to the variable speed and torque requirements of each application. For commercial, private and public uses alike, Quincy makes air compressors that are equipped with the latest variable-speed controllers. To find out more about our vast inventory of air compressors and related products, visit our sales and services page.

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When designing the layout for your organization’s storage and production facilities, you’ll want to emphasize efficiency. Finding ways to save space can help make room for new equipment and materials and can help increase safety factors for your employees.

If you find that space in your organization’s facilities is beginning to shrink but you aren’t able to add any additional room to your existing areas, Quincy Compressor can help. Let’s take a look at a few ways you can alter your floor plan to maximize efficient use.

Assessing Inventory

It is important to make sure your warehouse is operating with a balanced inventory. Problems can arise when an abundance of items fill up space, creating safety hazards and limiting room for other products. There are a couple of different situations in which this can occur: when your organization orders a mass amount of product to keep up with customer demand or when there is a surplus of items that are not moving.

Work with your warehouse staff to find out which items among your inventory can be moved to free up space. You may need to institute a limited run on a certain in-demand product to avoid warehouse space issues, or you may need to slash prices on an item that isn’t moving to stimulate demand. You never know what kind of creative breakthrough may arise from being vigilant about your warehouse stock as well — a great new ad campaign, a fresh injection of cash flow or an increase in productivity resulting from the empowerment of your warehouse staff are all positive possible byproducts.


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Assessing Space Usage

In addition to regularly checking in with your warehouse staff to assess inventory levels, take the time to conduct a survey of how space is used throughout the facility. You may find that attention to material placement has been neglected as expansion has occurred, and as a result, space is not being optimized. Work with your staff to determine which arrangements have proven ineffective and to get a feel for their ideas about new layouts.

Reach out to Other Organizations

It’s possible that other organizations in your area are experiencing warehouse space usage issues of their own. Perhaps another business has excess room in their facility and would agree to house some of your products or materials in exchange for a nominal fee or cross-promotional advertising opportunities.

Alternatively, if you find that your warehouse has some extra room you aren’t using, reach out to other companies in your vicinity to assess their storage needs — it might be the start of a great partnership.

Quincy Compressor Can Help You Save Space

Quincy Compressor has long maintained a reputation for manufacturing industry-leading air compressor products for a variety of organizations. Our machines are built with space efficiency in mind — our newly introduced QSI and QGV models take up 30% less floor space than similar units.

If you’re in the market for air compressors that are durably built and use space efficiently, contact us today.


What do you value in a machine when you’re looking to procure air compressor equipment for your organization?

Do you look for strong build quality? An extensive warranty? Perhaps you prefer a unit with an efficient motor? If so, you’ve made a wise choice. Efficient motors are a great mechanism for you to save money and ensure long-lasting, durable operation.

Premium efficiency motors are an emerging trend in equipment engineering. They offer a wide range of benefits worth your consideration, especially in the realm of cost savings. Let’s take a look at premium efficiency motors to learn how they can help your organization with its air compressor needs.

Premium Efficiency: What Is It?

Motors rated at “premium” efficiency date back to the 1980s, a time when manufacturers sought to maximize energy usage in their products by using higher-quality components. In 1990, the National Electrical Manufacturers’ Association — also known as NEMA — put into effect MG 1-1987, a manufacturing standard that would pave the way for the EPAct, which by 1997, required a higher benchmark for motor assembly. In 2001, NEMA premium efficiency standards began to take effect for certain classes of motors.

NEMA projected that its premium motor standards would save 5,800 gigawatts of electric power over a ten-year period in addition to numerous environmental benefits. The organization offers membership for manufacturers seeking to upgrade the efficiency qualities of their products.

In the European Union, four classes of energy efficiency are used to distinguish between different motors, ranging from IE1, standard efficient, to IE4, above premium. IE3 is considered to be the class of premium efficiency.


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Why Premium Efficient Motors Are a Great Choice for Your Organization

Premium efficiency standards help motors generate energy in a cleaner, less wasteful manner. As they are built to attain a higher level of manufacturing excellence, they are likely to require less maintenance and repair during their life spans.

Don’t forget to take into consideration the formula for total life cycle cost during your air compressor purchase evaluations:

True Life Cycle Cost = Purchase Price + Energy Costs + Parts & Service + Additional Factors

Note that energy costs are an important variable that can help offset expenses in other areas. A unit with a higher purchase price may offer savings in the way of efficient energy usage. As energy prices are likely to fluctuate over the course of a machine’s service life, investing in an air compressor that offers efficient operation is a smart, forward-thinking choice.

Quincy Compressor: Efficient, Reliable Air Compressor Solutions

Quincy Compressor has long maintained a reputation for manufacturing industry-leading air compressors that combine long-lasting strength with efficient operation. Quincy’s new compressors are equipped with a NEMA Premium TEFC motor to ensure energy savings throughout their service life spans. Purchasing a Quincy Compressor is an investment in a machine that will provide you with years of reliable, excellent functionality.

Contact us today to learn more about our line of air compressor products.


How to Prepare Your Compressed Air System for Efficiency in Each Season

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  In order to keep your compressed air system fully operable and efficient year–round, it’s crucial to prepare your compressor for each season. As part of a process referred to as “weatherization”, experts on compressor maintenance suggest biannual inspections of various points along a compressed air system. When it comes to air compressors, weather extremes […]

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Taking Advantage of Available Energy Efficient Rebates

Posted on: February 26, 2020

Energy efficiency is a growing area of concern for manufacturers and consumers alike. Engineers are looking to improve machines’ ability to use energy. Those who are seeking to purchase equipment look to save money for their organizations via reduced energy bills. Both parties have an interest in encouraging the development of products that help reduce […]

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Controlling Leaks in Compressed Air Systems

Posted on: February 26, 2020

Leaks in a compressed air system cause more problems than are normally recognized.  For instance, the imbalance of pressure in most air systems is a function of the level of unregulated demand of which leaks are the greatest contributor.  The inability of the system to maintain consistent pressure throughout the header piping is also function […]

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How Quieter Compressors Benefit Your Workplace

Posted on: February 26, 2020

The modern workplace is full of noise. Whether you’re in a machine shop or office environment, loud sounds are everywhere, generated by a variety of machines that allow you the opportunity to carry out your work. While some loud sounds are unavoidable at work, many can be prevented through the use of noise reduction equipment […]

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A Guide to Using KPIs for Compressed Air Efficiency

Posted on: February 26, 2020

Considering how crucial compressed air systems are for the industrial sector, it is rather surprising that more companies aren’t keeping a closer eye on compressed air energy efficiency. In many shops and factories around the world, as long as the necessary level of pressure is maintained, managers and operators are satisfied. That’s where Key Performance […]

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Oil Consumption in Air Compressors: Helpful Facts

Posted on: February 26, 2020

Oil plays a crucial role in many mechanical and electric devices. It powers, lubricates and cools, keeping machines running smoothly. It is a precious resource, and conserving it helps preserve the environment and lower your operating expenses. Oil is also a very important component of your air compressor. It performs a number of critical functions, […]

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Air Compressor Warranty: What You Need To Know

Posted on: February 26, 2020

When you purchase new plant equipment, you’ll want to seek out products that a strong a warranty. Warranties are excellent insurance policies that protect your machines from unexpected component failure and help minimize your repair costs. Air compressors are one particular category of equipment purchase in which an extended warranty can prove especially helpful. They […]

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Benefits of Variable Speed Drives

Posted on: February 26, 2020

Motors that power multiple applications are generally made to run at uniform speeds, regardless of the application in question. For any machine that runs on an AC motor, you can save money on energy costs with the use of a Variable Speed Drive (VSD), which adjusts the motor’s speed according to the needs of a […]

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How to Make the Most out of Your Production Floor Space

Posted on: February 26, 2020

When designing the layout for your organization’s storage and production facilities, you’ll want to emphasize efficiency. Finding ways to save space can help make room for new equipment and materials and can help increase safety factors for your employees. If you find that space in your organization’s facilities is beginning to shrink but you aren’t […]

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Why You Should Choose A Premium Efficiency Motor

Posted on: February 26, 2020

What do you value in a machine when you’re looking to procure air compressor equipment for your organization? Do you look for strong build quality? An extensive warranty? Perhaps you prefer a unit with an efficient motor? If so, you’ve made a wise choice. Efficient motors are a great mechanism for you to save money […]

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