Compressed air leaks can lead to wasted energy and a compressed air system that is operating under optimal efficiency. Discovering these leaks can be tricky at times but fixing these can lead to better-operating conditions and can even extend the lifespan of tools and the system itself. Whether you're experiencing unusual pressure drops, your system is older, or you're constantly losing pressure even when not in use, it may be time to check for leaks. Discover how you can not only find and fix leaks but proactively prevent unplanned air leaks in your compressed air piping system today!
How To Find Compressed Air Leaks
Hearing The Leak
Since compressed air piping systems are pressurized, some leaks will be audible and often fairly loud. These leaks are generally substantial and will require immediate attention. Since you are able to hear the leak, they are pretty easy to locate. More often than not, compressed air leaks will be fairly quiet due to their small size.
Applying soapy water to the area in your system that is believed to have a leak is another detection method. When the soapy water is applied and there is a leak, bubbles will form. This method is effective however it can be time-consuming if you have a large system. Starting with joints and connections can reduce the time and energy required with this method as these places are where a lot of leaks occur.
Ultrasonic Leak Detection
Best practice and the industry standard is using ultrasonic leak detection equipment. This equipment is able to find the high-frequency noise created by air leaks that is inaudible to the human ear. This equipment allows users to find leaks in spaces that are difficult to access and even works in noisy environments. Ultrasonic equipment can save you a lot of time when locating leaks in your compressed air system.
How To Fix & Prevent Compressed Air Leaks
Joints and connections within the compressed air system are one of the most common places for leaks to occur. When this is the case, fixing the leak in your compressed air system may be as simple as tightening your connections! Tightening connections will seal off the leak allowing your system to return to normal (always follow assembly instructions by the manufacturer - some push to fit connections do not permit tightening).
Using High-Quality Equipment
Installing the system correctly with appropriate thread sealant will reduce the chance of leaks and matching this with the use of high-quality equipment will work to ensure a system that operates more effectively for longer. Skimping on equipment may save money up front, but in the long run will lead to degrading operations and a system that may not last. Be sure to select high-quality equipment such as Airnet quick drop fittings when planning your system. Other pieces of equipment in your compressed air piping system to pay close attention to are fittings, tubing, hoses, and disconnects (mainly anywhere there is a threaded connection).
Leak Prevention Program
Routine maintenance and setting up a program to search for and discover leaks will help to prevent small leaks from turning into a more significant issue. Finding and repairing leaks quickly will reduce the risk of damage to the rest of the system and will help to ensure your facility stays reliable and stable. Be proactive and discover leaks before there is a noticeable side effect that forces you to do so!
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