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How economical is your Air Compressor..?

In the modern age, with increasingly expensive electrical costs, the cost of ownership of a compressed air system needs to be looked at in detail. In terms of the whole life cycle costs and not just on the initial capital costs alone.

One way to look at the life cycle costs is to look at the specific power of the compressor – that is, how many kW to produce a set amount of air. The less the kW the more efficient the compressor is.

A very good analogy is to think of the specific power as the MPG (miles per gallon) of the air compressor. Whilst you could buy an uneconomical car with a low MPG you would find that paying a bit extra for car with a better MPG pays for itself very quickly.

As a rule, HPC Kaeser Compressors are 20% more efficient than like for like manufacturers. Even other major compressor manufacturers with large market shares have surprisingly poor efficiency levels.

Here at Glaston, we have the latest data logging equipment with power analysers and cutting edge thermal mass flow meters to accurately determine the efficiency of an air compressor. In one case, a major manufacture was found to have a specific power that was 20% less that its technical data purported it should have. This air compressor has now been replaced with a new HPC Kaeser Compressor CSD125 saving the customer £12,000 per annum.

As a rule when buying any air compressors you need to request the technical data sheets and if it isn’t expressly written on the technical data you should ask for the specific power of that compressor, which should be to ISO1217 Annex C – it’s the only way to compare air compressors.

Please contact Glaston for further information on how to determine the MPG of your compressors! Glaston are specialists in the design, supply, and installation of compressed air systems. We stock a full range of products and are an authorised UK distributor of HPC Kaeser Compressors.

Breaking News: Following on from the Chancellors December budget announcement there was some positive news around Capital Allowance benefits for UK businesses. In 2011/12 we saw the allowance cut from £100k to £25k, which in turn may have had an adverse impact on businesses appetite to purchase capital equipment, however, the allowance has now been increased to £250k until 2015. (

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