Why does an Air Leakage occur?
Air leakages are one of the operating concerns of using compressed air systems. But timely leak tests and scheduled maintenance can help avoid compressed air leaks and ensure the longevity of your compressor. Here are some reasons why air leakages happen.
1. Moisture-laden air
Rich in moisture content, untreated/semi-treated air may enter the air network and begin damaging the internal parts of the pipes. This can cause air leaks.
Corrosion happens when semi treated air or untreated air laden with high level of moisture content and typical residual compressed air humidity of more than 50% enters the air network. This moisture laden air starts working on damaging the pipe internals becoming the primary reason for the leaks
2. Unfit material selection
A compressed air system is formed using the wrong material selection for piping, which is also a reason that leads to erosion of the pipes. For example, bare CS pipes can result in surface corrosion.
Sometimes, the wrong gasket size or material is installed. The wrong size should be fairly obvious during installation, and something that a trained boltup crew will immediately identify. The wrong material may not be apparent until corrosion or blowout damages the gasket.
3. Loose joints and sealings
Undersized pipes and loose joints can also generate a high velocity, leading to pipe corrosion and subsequent air leakage.
Pipe joints, fittings, valves, disconnects, and the like are typical problem areas. That being said, selection and proper installation of the air distribution piping is one of the key elements in preventing leaks.