Pneumatic tools are valuable assets in many workplaces. For example, mechanics make use of pneumatic wrenches to quickly remove lugnuts and other hardware on an automobile. Construction workers use compressors to power jackhammers, drills, nail guns, paint guns, and other tools. When choosing an air compressor for your place of work, it is important to match the technology used in the compressor to your needs. You have two basic choices: the reciprocating compressor and the rotary-screw compressor. Each model has strengths and weaknesses that make it ideal for certain applications.
The Reciprocating Compressor and Continuous Flow
A reciprocating compressor uses a piston to compress air and force it into a holding tank. The operation of the piston in the compressor is similar to the function of a piston in an internal-combustion engine and similar to an engine, the compressor can run consistently for long periods of time and can be adjusted to provide a different level of outflow. The weaknesses of a reciprocating compressor are that they tend to be large in size and thus not easily portable. If you are looking for a shop compressor that you can use to power more than one tool at a time, a reciprocating compressor is a good way to go. You should be able to get a consistently high volume of air, but you don't have to worry about your compressor being too big or heavy to move around.
The Rotary-Screw Compressor and Portability
As the name implies, the rotary-screw compressor uses a rotating screw to force air into a holding tank. This design is more compact than the reciprocating piston used in other compressors; thus, rotary-screw compressors tend to be smaller in size than their counterparts. If you have to lug your compressor around a job site, you want a compressor that is small enough to be easily moved while still providing plenty of power. The mobility of the rotary-screw compressor makes it the choice for contractors working away from an established shop.
Do not assume that every compressor is equal in function in comparison to all other compressors. Even among a class of compressors, you will find different models capable of generating different amounts of outflow. Thus, you need to pay attention to manufacturer recommendations for compressor size for the tools you use and choose a compressor that will meet your needs. In general shop at places like Mac-Air Compressor Ltd for reciprocating compressors for your shop and rotary screw compressors for the field.