An Overview Of Reciprocating Air Compressors

reciprocating air compressor works on the idea of reciprocation, which is back and forth movement. Also called piston compressors, these machines are considered positive displacement hardware because they increase air pressure to create compression. Understanding the types of compressors and the design is critical to choosing the best model for your application.

Keep reading to learn more about reciprocating air compressors!

What is a Reciprocating Compressor?

Reciprocating compressors utilize cylinders containing pistons with each cylinder having a closed-end near the cylinder head and finished at the opposite end using a movable position. The cylinder valves can be found at the bottom of the compressor valve pockets. During the initial stage of compression, air shifts into the cylinder through a suction valve, which is triggered by the piston movement, which results in a vacuum. 

Then the piston reverses motion, fulfilling the reciprocating name, and simultaneously compresses the air. Once the interior pressure exceeds the discharge pipe pressure, the valves open thus evacuating air from the cylinder.

Reciprocating Air Compressor Uses

This type of technology is utilized across multiple industries and businesses, including recreational services, dental service, and auto service, for instance. Below are some of the most common uses for small-to-medium sized companies:

  • Air guns for equipment cleaning.
  • Dental and medical tools.
  • Manufacturing snow.
  • Pneumatic drills, hammers, and nail guns in construction.
  • Sandblasters.
  • Vehicle spray painting.
  • Wood an auto body sanding.

Within the agricultural industry, air compressors are used as follows:

  • Conveyors move grain or feed between silos.
  • Crop spraying of fertilizer or pesticides.
  • Powering various types of dairy machines.
  • Powering several types of material handling equipment.
  • Ventilation systems for hydroponic equipment and greenhouses.

This technology can be found within manufacturing for the following:

  • Air tools and automation.
  • Component ejection equipment from molds.
  • Feed and roller machines.
  • Molding gas tanks.
  • Pneumatic finishing and packaging devices.
  • Production monitoring devices.
  • Welding equipment.

Regarding daily applications, air compressors are more critical to human function than most realize. Freezers and refrigerators utilize air compressors to cool air and air conditioners use them as a primary cooling power source. For recreational applications, scuba diving and paintball also use air compression within their systems.

Air compressors are a critical part of many equipment types across countless industries. Therefore, you need to understand the general workings of an air compressor and your needs within specific industries before investing in this equipment type.

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