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Top 10 Tips to Make Your Compressed Air System More Energy Efficient

May 16, 2022
Top 10 Tips to Make Your Compressed Air System More Energy Efficient

Compressed air accounts for a significant part of total energy costs for industrial manufacturers – typically about 12% and maybe as high as 40% in some facilities. This means that any compressed air energy savings that you can achieve will have a big impact on your factory’s total energy consumption and CO2 emissions.

  1. Reduce unloaded running hours.
    Air demand in an industrial compressed air system typically fluctuates. Using these patterns to reduce unloaded running hours is a first step to optimising energy efficiency. If compressors are left running unloaded after working hours, they still use as much as 25% of the energy consumed at full load. The shorter the production time, the more you can save by switching off compressors instead of letting them run unloaded.
  2. Eliminate air leaks.
    Leakages are the biggest source of energy waste in older compressed air systems. It is estimated that up to 20% of total compressed air consumption may be lost through leaks. Fixing air leaks will start to save you money immediately. We can come in and complete it without any interruption to your production and perform a leak detection on your system.⠀
  3. Reduce the pressure band.
    As a rule of thumb for most compressors, a reduction of 1 bar in pressure (14.5 psi) could lead to a 7% saving in electricity consumption. The pressure settings of the compressor should be adjusted until the lowest pressure can be reached and the pressure band reduced without affecting the applications.
  4. Turn compression heat into useful energy with heat recovery.
    One area that offers manufacturers a significant opportunity for savings is to recover the waste heat from air compressors. The amount of electrical energy that can be recovered depends on the size of the compressor and the running hours. Typical recoveries are between 70-94%. Recovering heat from compressed air reduces the need for purchasing energy, for example to heat hot water or using exhausted cooling air for space heating. It is this reduction that results in lower operating costs and CO2 emissions, also reducing your carbon footprint.
  5. Ensure the correct size of compressor is installed.
    Choosing the wrong size air compressor for your facility can lead to problems with production and or increased costs due to wasted energy. We can come in an assess you’re current system and figure out the best size compressor for your production.
  6. Ensure the correct type of compressor technology is installed.
    If oil-injected compressed air technology is your choice, the GA VSD and GA VSD+ rotary screw compressors offer an extremely energy efficient solution.
  7. Consider a Variable Speed Drive compressor.
    Most production processes require different levels of demand in different periods, which may mean that the compressor is running off-load or idle (not producing any compressed air) for long periods of time. Great savings can be made if a fixed speed compressor can be replaced by a variable speed drive unit as it only produces compressed air as and when required.
  8. Get an air audit.
    Compressed air consumption should never rely on guess work. In order to find out how to increase efficiency, the system needs an assessment or an audit.Companies may be reluctant to perform a full air audit due to costs associated with such services, but the final outcomes can far outweigh the initial investment. It is important to understand that the benefits from assessments and audits do not end only with lowering energy costs, but also improving the overall efficiency of your production, therefore positively affecting the bottom line.If this is some you are interested in having completed contact us on 0151 546 6689 or email sales@precisionpneumatics.co.uk.
  9. Reap the benefits of modern compressed air equipment.
    Air compressors are long term investments that will play a significant part of your business for years to come. The average factory changes air compressors every 7-10 years, meaning that the initial capital expenditure is only a fraction of how much your compressor will cost you in total. 70% or more of your air compressor’s lifecycle cost will come down to its energy usage. Switching or updating your compressed air installation to the latest technology can reduce energy consumption by up to a quarter. If you have an old or inefficient compressor, the cost to replace it with a new compressor is often less than the current running costs.
  10. Don’t forget the impact of regular maintenance.
    The best way of taking care of your compressed air availability is by taking the best care of your compressed air equipment. This means investing in regular preventative maintenance, which will sustain the efficiency that you have gained by purchasing a new compressor.
    We offer maintenance contracts that are customised fit your needs.

If you are interested in pursuing any of energy saving tips please get in contact with us at 0151 546 6689 or email sales@precisionpneumatics.co.uk

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