Air Compressor Maintenance Checklists

Catch air compressor problems before they impact operations with a mobile solution for air compressor maintenance

air compressor checks

Published 8 Sep 2022

What is Air Compressor Maintenance?

Air compressor maintenance is the routine servicing of industrial air compressors. Using a digital checklist, engineers and safety officers conduct air compressor preventive maintenance on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis to ensure the optimal operation of air compressors.

This article will discuss the following:

Why Conduct Air Compressor Maintenance?

All air compressors need preventative maintenance to facilitate efficient energy distribution. Failing to conduct air compressor maintenance can result in unusable equipment and unnecessary delays. Additionally, faulty air compressors are not safe to use and may even cause harm or injury to the workers.

1. Maintain efficiency

Air compressors are expected to operate at optimum levels within the expected run time. Scheduled air compressor maintenance by engineers can help catch issues that lead to inefficiencies, such as prolonged run time or lower compressor capacity caused by possible leakage from safety relief valves or suction valves.

2. Ensure safety

Depending on the air compressor type, unchecked air compressors can have condensed water buildup which can lead to internal corrosion and cause equipment to weaken and explode unexpectedly. Overheating of air compressors can be caused by clogged components or lack of ventilation. Conducting air compressor preventive maintenance checks can help safety officers proactively catch problems to avoid compromising the safety of workers.

3. Ensure compliance

International standards such as ISO 45001 for occupational health and safety, and OSHA standards for equipment require maintenance to ensure the safety of employees. Conducting regular preventive equipment maintenance inspections of air compressors and having proof through recordkeeping can help organizations stay compliant with international safety standards.

Perform maintenance inspections with this Air Compressor Maintenance Checklist. Download and customize for free: 

3 Air Compressor Maintenance Tips

Conducting air compressor maintenance, however, has some challenges and not doing it consistently will lead to costly breakdowns. The reliability of this task usually falls on the safety officers and technicians. Perform routine air compressor preventive maintenance or necessary predictive maintenance by following the tips below.

1. Read the air compressor manual

It’s important to read the air compressor manual first before doing anything to the machinery because it may have additional tips that can help solve the issue and can guide the maintenance process. Even if the air compressor will be serviced by someone else, it still helps to browse through the manual to get the most use out of the air compressor and retain its warranty.

2. Check and change the oil 

For air compressors that use oil, make sure that there’s an adequate lubrication before operating the device. This has to be performed daily since “fresh” oil is needed for the air compressor to work. Start by turning off the air compressor. Next, remove the fill cap and the drain plug. Place a container underneath to drain the oil. Attach the new drain plug and add in the new oil. Finally, attach the new fill cap.

3. Check and change the air filter

A clean air filter is crucial to the functioning of the air compressor e.g. a clean air conditioning system. While the air filter is designed to trap and hold impurities, if not inspected, it could cause the air compressor to produce less air and the compressed air that it does produce may even be contaminated. To make sure filtration process is clean, allow the compressor to get cooled off, check the air filter, loosen the top screw,  and remove the filter element. If it is full of dirt, put in a new one.

Other air compressor routine maintenance tips to follow:

  • Clean intake vents and heat exchangers
  • Drain tanks of moisture or condensate
  • Inspect safety shutdown system
  • Check belts, hoses, and bolts
  • Condition monitoring and set up regular preventive maintenance checks

A Digital Solution for Air Compressor Maintenance

Preventive maintenance checks of air compressors help keep them efficient and safe to operate. Proper recordkeeping of air compressor maintenance, however, is sometimes neglected or not completed regularly. iAuditor by SafetyCulture, the world’s most powerful inspection app and maintenance software, is a mobile solution that can help address these challenges and more:

Inspections Not Conducted

Air compressor maintenance work can be regarded as inconvenient and not given due priority because of other urgent daily tasks.

The iAuditor solution:

  • Real-time reporting feature encourages timely completion.
  • Mobile inspections are convenient to conduct anytime anywhere.

Lack of Scheduling

Routine daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly maintenance schedule and checks can be forgotten.

The iAuditor solution:

  • Air compressor preventive maintenance checks can be scheduled using iAuditor and the administrator will know if a scheduled task is past due.
  • iAuditor’s scheduling feature reminds engineers and safety officers when a preventive maintenance check is due and shows the time window for completion.

Overlooked Issues

Issues can stay unchecked and unreported.

The iAuditor solution:

No Recordkeeping

Daily maintenance checks are filed and forgotten, if they are even logged at all.

The iAuditor solution:

  • Maintenance reports are automatically saved in cloud storage for easy recordkeeping.
  • Easily share via weblink or PDF document viewable on a mobile device or desktop.

Get started for free with iAuditor today or download one of our featured air compressor maintenance checklist templates below.

SafetyCulture staff writer

SafetyCulture staff writer

Erick Brent Francisco

Erick Brent Francisco is a content writer and researcher for SafetyCulture since 2018. As a content specialist, he is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. His experience in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail helps enrich the quality of information in his articles.

Erick Brent Francisco is a content writer and researcher for SafetyCulture since 2018. As a content specialist, he is interested in learning and sharing how technology can improve work processes and workplace safety. His experience in logistics, banking and financial services, and retail helps enrich the quality of information in his articles.