Catch Some Air: The Benefits of Air-Powered Tools

Posted by Penn Tool Co., Inc on 19th Sep 2022

Catch Some Air: The Benefits of Air-Powered Tools

In almost all machine shops you step into, you will hear the hissing of compressed air-powered tools. Tools like angle grinders, orbital sanders, and air blow guns are all essential staples in the modern world of manufacturing. There are many benefits to air-powered tools that you won’t want to miss.

The top benefit of air-powered tools is the lightweight and simple design. Because air-powered tools don’t have a motor, they are significantly lighter then electric tools with their bulky batteries or cumbersome cords. The simple design means there are less moving parts, which causes less breakdown, easier repairs, and gives the tool a longer life. Not only that, air-powered tools are also easy to install and simple to use.

Second, air-powered tools are low cost to use, especially for tools that run continuously. Tools like orbital sanders, blow guns, and die/angle grinders are shop staples that use a lot of energy. Switching to air-powered tools makes your energy costs more manageable.

Third, air-powered tools are a safer option. They can be used in a number of different environments that are dangerous for electric tools, such as damp or wet conditions or near flammable materials. Even if an air-powered tool isn’t connected correctly, it presents no risk of electrocution or short circuiting any systems. As with any tool, it's important to understand how the tool works and its intended function so you can keep yourself safe.

Fourth, the simple design makes them quick and easy to maintain in good condition for a long time. But the best way to prolong the life of your tools is some good old TLC.

The number one enemy of air-powered tools is moisture in the air, specifically humidity. Air that is compressed gets really hot, which keeps humidity in water-vapor form, but when air expands through air-powered tools, it cools down rapidly. This can cause freezing in the exhaust ports of your tool or other moisture related issues. It's worth noting that running air-powered tools with higher air inlet temperatures to combat this problem is not the best idea. Higher inlet temperatures can dry out lubricant and deteriorate O-rings and gaskets leading to a number of other problems.

Tips for maintaining your air-powered tools:

1. Operate air-powered tools at their rated pressure

The recommended air pressure for most air-powered tools is 90 to 100 psi. Running air-powered tools at a higher psi can cause damage to the tool or even dangerous accidents to the operator.

2. Proper lubrication

The lubrication of air-powered tools prevents the internal mechanisms from wearing down through surface-to-surface contact. It's a good idea to add a few drops of oil at the end of every day to prevent this and any residual moisture that may build up in the tool.

3. Service your tools at least once a year

Having your air-powered tools serviced on a regular basis can significantly prolong tool life, keep your tools working efficiently, and prevent any dangerous failures.

At Penn Tool Co., we want to help you gain the benefits from using air-powered tools in your shop. We make it easy to find what you need with our large selection of air-powered tools from the best brands. Click here to take a look or give us a call today and we'll help you find the best air-powered tools for you.