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As the name implies, a compressed air dryer is a filter system which works to remove water vapour from compressed air. In air compressors, water formation is unavoidable as the process of compressing air raises the temperature, causing water vapour to form.
Excessive water in compressed air, in either liquid or vapour form, can cause a variety of operational problems for users of compressed air. This water must be removed as it can cause several ill effects, such as:
- Erosion in the compressor tank and piping.
- Strip essential lubricating oils from pneumatic tools.
- Mix with the lubricant used in cylinders.
- Cause damage to pneumatic machinery, air motors or valves.
As such, it’s crucial that you select the correct type of air dryer for your specific requirements. Your compressed air dryer as selection will largely depend on the precise air quality requirements and the moisture tolerance level of the machinery.
For example, most air compressors in the manufacturing or industrial productions will use a refrigerated air dryer, while machinery used in industries such as medicine or spray painting will use desiccant dryers ensure the air is clinically dry and clean.
Refrigerated Air Dryers
Refrigerated compressed air dryers are a reliable, simple solution to protect your air compressor from corrosion and wear and tear. There are two types of refrigerated air dryers – cycling and non-cycling. In a non-cycling dryer, the refrigerant compressor runs continuously, regardless of the actual compressed air flow rate or moisture content of the air. Cycling air dryers are often described as energy management dryers because their energy consumption fluctuates according to flow rate and moisture load in the compressed air system. With its compact design and plug-and-play concept, the refrigerated air dryer is an easy to install unit perfect in complimenting general air compressor use.
Desiccant Air Dryers
Desiccant compressed air dryers, also known as regenerative dryers, move compressed air through moisture absorbing ‘desiccant’ materials. These dryers alternate between two compartments, one to dry out the compressed air and the other which fills Desiccant air dryers are very effective at removing water from air compressors but can be expensive to own and run. They are often used for sensitive work or cold conditions where freezing is a risk.
Membrane Air Dryers
The membrane air dryer is a reliable, high-energy solution for your system. With a membrane air dryer, you can reduce the risk of corrosion and avoid expensive downtime by removing both contaminants and water vapour through a filtration system. Humid compressed air is passed through hollow fibres made from membranes specifically designed to attract water vapour. Membrane dryers can remove almost all moisture and filter out particles from an air compressor, use up very little space and have no need for an electrical supply. As such, they the perfect choice for environments where explosions are a risk.
- Super quiet operation.
- Very low operating costs.
- Robust design.
- Energy friendly operation.
- Minimal maintenance requirements.
- Made for Australian conditions.
There are a few key points to keep in mind when choosing an air dryer for your air compressor:
- The maximum pressure of your dryer must be the same, or higher than that of your compressor.
- The maximum airflow that can flow through your dryer (in litres/sec or cfpm) must be higher than what your compressor can deliver. If you choose too small of an air dryer, it will result in a big pressure drop.
- The maximum inlet temperature is exceeded, you can either damage parts of the dryer, or the dryer doesn’t have the capacity to reach the desired dew point.
- Find out what the maximum temperature is (in summer) in your air compressor location and make sure you choose a dryer which will be able to handle that heat.
Here at Express Australia we pride ourselves on customer experience and take the time to understand your business needs so we can supply the best compressed air machinery for you.