Compressed air systems are invaluable assets in a wide range of industries, and while it is often an unavoidable business expense, air leaks could be siphoning more money out of your pocket in energy consumption and maintenance costs. It is estimated that 10% of air demand is attributed to air leaks. Locating and repairing these leaks can result in savings for facilities of all sizes, for numerous reasons.
1) Reduce Energy Consumption
The first, and most obvious, way correcting air leaks will save your money is by the reduction in energy consumption.
For a compressed air system with a 15 percent loss of output due to leakage, consider the annual cost with a 200 HP system. If the compressor power has a total of 30 HP in leakage, it could result in an energy expense of $16,000 per year at 0.07 per KWh. As energy costs continue to rise, the expense of wasting money on repairable and avoidable air leaks becomes all the more important.
2) Reduce Wear & Necessary Maintenance on Equipment
Because leaks cause a higher demand for air power than what is typically needed, compressors need to cycle more frequently, which can result in a decreased lifespan of your compressed air system. This could be a very expensive investment, which can be avoided through routine maintenance and inspection so leaks are identified and repaired.
Air leaks not only reduce your compressor’s longevity by putting a higher demand on the system, but leaks also likely mean more frequent repairs and maintenance expenses than if the compressor were operating at peak performance and output.
3) Rebates Available
Energy companies have answered the call of addressing energy waste, and for that reason they offer great incentives to those aiding is reducing the waste. By way of example, DTE will pay you $35 for every CFM leak detected and fixed, associated with a Variable Speed compressor, and $20 for every CFM leak detected and fixed, associated with a Fixed Speed compressor.