Why is it So Important to Select the Right Compressed Air Filter for an Air Compression System?

If you have any knowledge about compressed air systems and how they work, you are aware that compressed air may be harmful if inhaled. No matter how clean it might seem, the air let out by commercial compressed air systems may consist of several impurities, including oil vapors, aerosols and other particles that are potentially harmful. Depending upon the quality of the air required by your process or application, you should choose an appropriate air filter to ensure your process runs smoothly.

Determining the quality of air required for your application can be a challenge as not all applications require the same level of filtration. For example, compressed air filtration for pneumatic applications can frequently be addressed through the use of an industry standard dry particulate filter. Other applications requiring the removal of oil vapour from the application may require more robust filtering in the form of activated charcoal based filters.

Since every air compression system varies in its components and the technology involved, various levels of filtration are required for the air associated with different compressors. By determining the concentration of various contaminants in the compressed air, you can easily choose the most effective compressed air filters.

Many Industrial air compressor suppliers boast about the quality of air being produced by their products, but you need to be aware that, not all standards are alike. While particles like dust elements or small pieces of solid material can affect the quality of the air provided, contaminants like aerosols and vapors, can damage the air steam as well. Vapourization is the process of converting a liquid to a gaseous state. Within compressed air systems, the use of liquids such as lubricants can lead to vapours being created and entering the compressed air stream. It is worth taking a moment here to examine these potential contaminants more closely.

Oil Aerosols: Oil aerosol contamination arises when minute beads of liquid enter the compressed air system. Typically, these beads are found in systems that utilize oil-injection based air compressors. These compressors commonly utilize oil during compression as a lubricant, sealant, and coolant. During this process, small amounts of oil may escape from the system seals leading to contamination of the air stream.

Another source of oil aerosol contamination exists in the atmosphere. The air drawn into the compressed air system may contain minute measures of hydrocarbons. When these hydrocarbons begin to cool that can combine with other oil aerosols resulting in contamination of the compressed air.


Micro-Organisms: Most micro-organisms enter the compressed air system through the compressor air intake. Once inside the compressed air system, the various viruses and bacteria find themselves in a near perfect hot, moisture-rich environment for reproduction and growth. At issue with micro-organism contamination is the fact that it takes an incredibly small amount of contamination to get through the filtering system to potentially render your entire application unsterile. This is a major concern in hygiene necessary applications such as food and beverage processing

Water Aerosols: As water vapours enter the air steam its ability to retain the individual vapour droplets is largely determined by pressure and temperature. Essentially, the higher the temperature of the application the greater its ability to retain the vapour droplets. Conversely, the higher the pressure in use in the application the more vapour droplets are pushed out of the system.
It is the nature of compressed air systems to take in the air and pressurize it resulting in the increased temperature of the air. Later, when this same air leaves the system, it cools resulting in condensation and the creation of water vapour. The largest single vapour based contamination in compressed air systems is water based. Claims have been made that water-based vapour contamination accounts for over 99% of all such contamination.

Rust and Pipe scale:
Rust and pipe scale exists in compressed air systems without adequate purification. The issue with this form of contamination is that it builds on the inside of the pipe over time, eventually breaking away. These breakaway rust pieces can lead to damage or obstruction of the piping resulting in system downtime when not addressed promptly.

Particulates: Dry particulates can be removed from the compressed air system by techniques, like inertial impaction, diffusion, and an interception. Inertial impaction takes place when the particulates traveling within the air stream are captured by the fibers within the filter itself and held there.

Diffusion deals with the filtration of fine particles. Diffusion occurs when these fine particles combine with other articles within the compressed air stream. The newly combined particles move erratically as compared to the air stream resulting in an increased probability of the new particle becoming ensnared in the air filter.
Direct interception deals with the larger particles found within the compressed air. These particles are of sufficient size that they are more readily trapped and filtered by standard filter solutions.

At Seaway Fluid Power, we offer a wide range of products for you to choose from. If you are looking for a company that can help you get the right compressed air filter for your applications at competitive pricing, you are in the right place. A reliable name in the sphere of compressed air systems, hydraulic systems, hoses and fittings, instrumentation and steel fittings, Seaway Fluid Power is the right choice for you. Take a quick glance at all the amazing services being offered by us by visiting https://seawayfluidpowergroup.com/online-catalogues/.You can also reach out to us at 1-877-302-6283 (Toll-Free) or (905) 688-1243 (Telephone).

Seaway Fluid Power (SFP), was established in 1976. Based in St. Catherines, Ontario, SFPG provides its customers with quality fluid power products and services. SFPG carries an extensive parts inventory of fluid power products such as hydraulics, pneumatics, hose and fittings, stainless steel fittings, instrumentation and compressed air.

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Sea Way Fluid Power Group