Hot Tip #2 - Air Compressors

Compressed air leaks are costly. Do you know how much of your compressed air is wasted?

Air compressors are frequently the largest motor drive machine within a laundry. They are among the first machines to be turned on and the last to be turned off each day. A fifty-horsepower compressor will cost approximately $5.00 per hour to run!

To measure the amount of leakage in your system, the following procedure can be used.

  1. When the laundry is shut down and not using air, turn on the compressor.
  2.  Once the system is pressurized and the “unloading valve” closes, start a stopwatch.
  3. When the “unloading valve” opens, record the unloaded time. This is the unloaded time
  4. Continue measuring the time until the “unloading valve” closes again. This is a complete cycle, which is the sum of the unload time & the load time.
  5. Leakage is equal to compressor horsepower multiplied by (load time / total time).
  6. Example:  50 HP X (90 seconds / 170 seconds) = 26.5 HP or 53% or total compressor output!

Don’t be surprised if a third or more of your air is wasted. Even new facilities, with all new equipment, frequently have 20% or more!

Hot Tip #1 - Feed Temperature

Monitor your boiler feed water temperature. Is it too hot? Too cold?

Temperatures below 180° F. can cause excessive oxygen to enter your boiler and cause premature tube failure. Oxygen is about 6% soluble at 150 F, and about 2% at 210 F.

Why is your return temperature this low? Is all available condensate getting returned?
Or, more likely, is the feed tank too hot, (above 250F.) venting excessive return steam energy? If so, it’s time to perform steam trap maintenance!

If your facility occasionally operates with only 100% condensate return machines on line; such as ironers, garment presses, steam-heated coils, etc. It is very likely that your return system can exceed 250 F. Time to install a vent condenser!

Vent condenser should be mounted above your boiler feed water tank. (Tank vent piping should enter & exit this condenser. Condensed steam then falls back into feed water tank. Do NOT confuse this with a condensate cooler!