Should I Choose An Oil-Free Compressor?

Should I Choose An Oil-Free Compressor?

Oil-free screw compressor BOGE SO_480
Oil-Free Air Compressor MGF Dental Oil-Free Air  PureAir Open Frame with dryer 0.75 to 10kw
BAMBI Oil-Free Compressor range
Oil-free piston compressors PO-6-L-(vlp)
MGF Dental Oil-Free Compressor - PureAir Open-Frame 0.75 to 15k - WM-PF-OF1200-270-T3-270-100-TANDEM-PRIME-S
Oil-Free Air Compressor MGF Dental Oil-Free Air Compressor MGF Dental Oil-Free Air  PureAir Open Frame with dryer M-PR-OF100-024-M-Free Air  PureAir Open Frame with dryer M-PR-OF100-024-M
Oil-free screw compressor SO_61-2_FW
Oil-Free air compressor BOGE oil-free piston compressors K_8

Would an oil-free compressor be right for your business, and when is oil-free really oil-free?

What is an oil-free air compressor?

Like every other piece of mechanical equipment, air compressors need some form of lubrication to protect the moving parts. In most air compressors, oil performs that function but when a compressor is used in ‘clean’ environments (for example, for manufacturing food, drink or pharmaceuticals) you can’t use oil because of the risk of contamination.

That’s when an oil-free compressor can be essential.

How are oil-free compressors lubricated?

Without oil, the blades or pistons within the compressor are usually coated with a pre-lubricated material (such as Teflon).

Some oil-free compressors also use water as the lubricating ingredient.

Oil-Free Air Compressors - MGF Dental Oil-Free with Dryer Air - PureAir Open Frame 0.75 to 10kw
Reciprocating Air Compressors - High pressure, high durability & relatively low maintenance costs

Should I choose an oil-free compressor?

You’ll often find the question framed as ‘oil-free or oil-lubricated – which is better?’ but this rather misses the point. It’s true that oil-free compressors tend to be the better option in cold conditions (because there’s no oil to clag).

They are often lighter, quieter and more efficient. But they also tend to cost more and you’ll usually achieve higher pressure and greater air flow with an oiled compressor because they can generally operate at higher RPMs.

So the decision should be driven by the product you’re manufacturing. If it needs to be contaminant-free, then an oil-free compressor will be the only viable option. If not, then an oil-lubricated compressor should be a more cost effective solution.

Is oil-free entirely oil-free?

There’s a distinction to be made here between the description of the air compressor and the purity of the air it produces. Oil-free and oil-less are both descriptions of the compressor, but the purity of the air can vary. ISO Class 0 is the cleanest choice and delivers genuinely oil-free air.

ISO Class 1 delivers a lower class of ‘nearly-oil-free’ air. Often described as ‘technically oil-free’, this class may be suitable for some applications (paint spraying, for example), but would not be appropriate where your compressor needs to meet the highest standards of cleanliness.

Oil-Free Air Compressors - Algar Air

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BAMBI oil-free compressor BB24

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