Common Air Compressor Leak Problem Areas

Posted on: April 10, 2014

Air leaks are a significant source of wasted energy in a compressed air system, often wasting as much as 20-30% of the compressor’s output. Compressed air leaks can also contribute to problems with system operations, including:

  • Fluctuating system pressure, which can cause air tools and other air-operated equipment to function less efficiently, possibly affecting production
  • Excess compressor capacity, resulting in higher than necessary costs
  • Decreased service life and increased maintenance of supply equipment due to unnecessary cycling and increased run time

Proactive leak detection and repair can reduce leaks to less than 10% of compressor output. The most common leak problem areas are:

  • Couplings, hoses, tubes and fittings
  • Disconnects
  • Filters, regulators and lubricators
  • Open condensate traps
  • Pipe joints
  • Control and shut-off valves
  • Point of use devices
  • Flanges
  • Cylinder rod packing
  • Thread sealants

Once leaks have been repaired, the compressor control system should be re-evaluated to realize the total savings potential.  Quincy’s patented, Frost and Sullivan award-winning EQ process evaluates the overall efficiency of your compressed air system based on “Best Practices” solutions. Please visit for more information on our patented EQ process.

References: Improving Compressed Air System Performance: A Sourcebook for the Industry, Motor Challenge and Compressed Air Challenge, April 1998.