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Almost all industrial businesses use air compressors because it is a safe way to transmit energy, so they can be relied upon. However, energy can be wasted if they are not looked after or used in an efficient way.

Is your air compressor using too much energy compared to your other pieces of equipment? Here are some ways to significantly reduce energy consumption and ensure that you are using compressed are in the most sustainable way.

Air Compressor Energy Saving Tips

1. Switch It Off When Not Being Used

Did you know that an idling compressor can still use 40% of its full load? This is why you should always switch it off when it is not being used. Something as simple as turning it off over the weekend and overnight, could save a considerable amount of energy.

2. Undertake Regular Air Compressor Maintenance

If your air compressor is in tip-top shape, then it will be performing to the best of its ability. By carrying out regular maintenance procedures, you can guarantee that your compressed air system will deliver the required pressure using a sustainable amount of energy.

This includes consistently changing filter elements and the oil, checking the condensate collection, and keeping the coils clean and cool. It’s easy to make sure your air compressor stays in good shape and you will save more energy in the long run!

3. Keep Your Air Compressor Clean

The dirtier your air compressor components are, the more energy they will need to use to perform regular tasks. Plus, if your environment is dirtier, you will need to clean your air compressor more frequently; ‘dirty’ air means the compressor has to work harder, therefore consuming more energy.

Cleaning the coolers, ventilation, and radiators will keep them clear and minimise power use. Also, by treating at the point of use rather than the entire supply, you will not waste the energy used when applying treatment.

4. Fix and Prevent Corrosion and Leaks

Leaks lead to your air compressor working harder, therefore consuming and wasting more energy. Make sure you listen out for leaks or hire an expert to detect them, in order to fix them as soon as possible and reduce energy consumption.

Also, be proactive by looking inside your pipes to check for signs that could lead to corrosion and leaks. By keeping your pipes clean and dry, you will reduce dust and sludge which normally leads to more leaks.

5. Lower the Air Compressor Pressure

By evaluating your systems requirements and reducing the pressure wherever you can, you can relieve the stress on the internal equipment, therefore reducing energy consumption. Determine the minimum system pressure and assess whether your tools can work with it.

Always check the minimum air pressure that your air tools and equipment need before adjusting; you still need to be able to use your equipment efficiently! Also, you could consider installing an automatic pressure controller that adapts to different pressure needs. That way, you will always have the most every saving air pressure setting.

6. Eliminate Inappropriate Use

Is compressed air the best power source for particular jobs? If you are using your compressed air system for something that can be done more efficiently by another method, you should always choose that more resourceful process, as this will use less energy.

Many businesses misuse compressed air for operations without realising the impact. Find more efficient alternatives and save both energy and money! Also, eliminate and redundant pipework or fit isolation valves instead as this extra, unused equipment will waste energy too.

7. Reduce the Size of Your Air Compressor

If you are using an air compressor that is too big for your requirements and it is compressing more air than you need, this can be both very expensive and energy consuming. If you only use small-scale applications, a portable air compressor may be better for you and the planet.

Or, instead of using one large air compressor for all operations for larger demand, you could use a system with separate units and fixed air line distribution pipework. This way, you have dedicated compressed air units for specific applications.

8. Recover Waste Heat to Save Energy

Thermal energy that is produced from air compressors during operation can be utilised rather than wasted. This excess heat can be reclaimed using an energy recovery system and applied to other applications like:

  • Heating your workspace
  • Keeping the air dry and reducing damp
  • Heating the water system
  • Producing steam for industrial processes 

9. Utilise Cooler Intake Air

An air compressor will run more efficiently if the intake air is a cooler temperature. Even a 5°C increase in air inlet temperature will lead to a reduction in your compressor’s performance, so it is better to draw air from the outside rather than the inside.

Air Compressor Servicing to Reduce Energy Consumption

At Air Power East, we offer air compressor servicing which could help you draw up a maintenance plan for your air compressor and keep it running energy efficiently. Contact us today on 01359 251180 or


9 Energy Saving Tips for Your Air Compressor

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