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Small but Mighty! What are the different industrial applications of a portable air compressor

An air compressor is used to convert power from an electric, diesel or petrol motor into potential energy that is stored as pressurized air in a cylinder. The air can then be released in a controlled manner to power equipment. The ability to power tools via a diesel engine enables portable air compressors to be used just about anywhere – which makes them an ideal candidate for use in construction or on manufacturing sites spread across a large area. We take a look at portable industrial compressors, how and where they are used, and the best ways of financing them.

What kinds of applications can portable compressors be used for?

The primary use for portable industrial compressors is on-site, to run equipment or tools ranging from jackhammers through to handheld power tools. The main advantage of portable air compressors lies in their ability to deliver power to just about anywhere that it is needed.

Portable air compressors may also be the air compressor of choice either when a manufacturing site is very spread out and therefore an air compressor is needed to be mobile and used in different places on site intermittently. They are also a good solution when a business has more than one site, whereby portable compressors allow the flexibility to use equipment when and where it is required.

Finally, there is also the option to use a portable compressor as a backup-up for a stationary compressor to allow work to continue as normal whilst the usual air compressor receives maintenance.

What are the important elements of portable industrial air compressors?

A portable air compressor is usually used outside, and therefore has to be able to cope with extreme conditions. For example, compressed air is used to make snow for skiing, and so the portable air compressor used in that particular application must be able to cope with both high altitude and cold weather. A portable industrial compressor is often one of the first pieces of equipment on the scene to break earth on a building site or for road works, and therefore must be able to deal with both very wet weather as well as hot, dry weather; construction sites can be very dusty environments, so portable compressors must be fitted with high-quality air filters. Both the compressor and the engine powering it have to be high-quality builds so that they are robust, strong and reliable; the break-down of a portable air compressor could potentially stop a whole site from working, which would be extremely costly.

Some portable industrial compressors are used in specialised environments, such as oil or chemical refineries. In applications like this, because of the risk of flammable gases being present, both a spark arrestor and an intake shut-off valve may be required in order to eliminate the risk of fire and to protect the equipment.

Air compressor options

Glaston has a range of portable industrial compressors to meet every requirement. Ranging from small portable air compressors which are lightweight and easily mobile, they are often used for production jobs and maintenance – powerful enough to do just about any job to hand, whilst being cost-efficient and easy to manoeuvre. Diesel portable air compressors, however, are better suited to work outdoors; they provide much more power and can be used for bigger industrial projects where higher demand will be placed on the equipment.

Portable air compressors are available to hire from Glaston; we will work with you to ensure that you have the most effective portable compressor for the demand placed upon it, whilst being cost- and energy-efficient. If you are looking for a longer-term finance solution, we also offer portable industrial compressors on finance, with a range of options from using the energy savings to fund the payments, through to a deferred purchase hire.

Why not get in touch to discuss which portable compressor would be best suited to your requirements; we have a range of solutions that will work with your processing and production budget and can tailor a solution to your needs. Contact one of our expert portable air compressor engineers for a more in-depth discussion on 01695 51010 or email

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