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Compressed Air Safety

air compressor safety

15 Compressed Air Safety Tips

Compressed air should be treated with the same amount of care as other energy sources, as misuse or a lack of the proper precautions can present risks. It’s essential that all operators have the proper training, have read all instruction manuals thoroughly and understand how to mitigate compressed air safety risks and potential damage.

Manuals contain an abundance of valuable information and will tell you how to keep your compressors running for longer periods without damage and to ensure no injuries occur. This is all while keeping a compressor in great working condition.

What safety precautions should be adhered to when working with compressed air?

To help keep an air compressor in top shape, Airia have put together a list of common compressed air safety precautions to assist with compiling a regular maintenance schedule:

  1. Be careful when transporting the compressor to prevent tipping it over, which could cause injury to yourself and/or damage to the compressor unit, and may also spill compressor oil.
  2. Place the compressor in an ideal location that has clean, dry inlet air. Wet conditions can cause damage to an air compressor, as well as electrical issues.
  3. Perform a routine safety check before each use of the air compressor. Check hoses, ensure proper power supply, check oil level, etc.
  4. Always wear personal protective equipment for eyes and ears. Compressors produce noise levels in excess of 70dB(A) – and hearing protection when operating near an air compressor.
  5. Do not add or change the oil in a compressor while the unit is running or has recently been used. The compressor could potentially catch fire while doing so. 
  6. Metal parts will become quite hot during operation. Do not touch and/or perform any maintenance on these until the compressor has cooled down.
  7. Make sure the unit is correctly connected into the electrical outlet by a qualified electrician. If not, there is a high risk of potential damage to the electrical panel of the compressor and also fire.
  8. It is advised to get your compressor unit electrically tested annually, to ensure that it will pose no electrical risk during its operation.
  9. Check your hose fittings to ensure they are tight. Loose fittings can hinder the performance of a compressor and/or cause damage.
  10. Make sure a shutoff valve is installed & clearly visible and within reach while using compressed air.
  11. Don’t allow cords or hoses to be exposed in floors, aisles or low-hanging areas. This could cause a trip hazard or injury if a hose whips.
  12. Never apply compressed air to any part of the body or directly at another person. Even air pressure as low as 15 PSI can cause serious injury.
  13. Do not use air directly from a compressor for breathing purposes unless the system has been designed specifically for breathing air.
  14. If using an external pressure vessel (Air Receiver), only use those that are built to national or international standards.
  15. Never crimp, couple or uncouple pressurized hoses. Shut off the unit, valves and relieve any pressure before making or changing any hose connections.

Always exercise caution

This is not a complete list of compressed air safety procedures, always read the owner’s manual completely for all safety measures and proper operation of a compressor. For any questions on safety issues or technical questions with your machine, please contact Airia.

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