Compressed Air Systems

Cascade Machinery is one of the longest and most trusted distributors of compressed air systems in the Northwest. Our air compressors are used in a wide range of commercial applications from industrial, construction, manufacturing, municipal and more.

While the multitude of products can be confusing, we can help you determine the best solution given your industry and operation size. Do you choose a rotary screw or piston compressors? How large should your compressor be to manage your operation?

Rotary screw compressors are the ideal choice for heavy industrial work when large amounts of high-pressure air are needed. They are quiet and only work when needed.

Air enters the screw compressor and is compressed by the screw element. Within the screw element, oil is injected generating various levels of pressure. The oil also mitigates heat generated through the compression process. Heat is absorbed by the oil and the oil is filtered before passing through the system once more. The oil is separated from the air before the air is released. Oil should be changed every 7000-8000 hours. Air Filters, on the other hand, should be cleaned weekly, especially if you are in a dusty facility. This will extend the life of the oil and compressor as well.

When you start the screw compressor, the pressure builds to your designated set point then shuts off until the pressure drops via usage. As demand increases, the compressor will turn back on to restore pressure.

Rotary Screw Compressors are primarily used for industrial application where continuous air pressure is needed. The main benefits are noise reduction and lower energy usage. Here are other benefits of the rotary screw:

  • Reduced weight compared to other compressors
  • Low maintenance because there are fewer parts to maintain and replace
  • Low oil consumption
  • Reliable in harsh environments
  • Easy and simple maintenance procedures
  • Low vibration
  • Less heat generation than other compressors

Depending on the size of your operation you may need a dryer to mitigate water from your compression systems. Compressed air systems thrive in dry environments. Water can be destructive and reduce the lifespan of your equipment, creating unnecessary repair and replacement expenses. Water damages electrical systems and is especially troublesome for those in the food and pharmaceutical industries.

What may seem like relatively dry air, once compressed, becomes very humid, and can lead to multiple problems for your systems. There are two types of dryers used commercially: hot air dryers and cold air dryers. Sometimes these are referred to as desiccant and refrigerated air dryers. We distribute both. Consideration of the ambient temperatures in your facility will determine whether you need a hot or cold dryer. Refrigerated air dryers in cold conditions tend to be too efficient and will freeze your equipment. The drain can even become blocked with ice which means water can not leave the system.

If you are a low dew point (arid) or below freezing environment you should consider a desiccant or heated drying system.

Many other industries we serve need a wide variety of air purification systems as well. As environmental concerns increase, oil-free options as well as water/oil separation systems may be worth exploring. If you don’t use a separator and dispose of the liquid into your water system, you could suddenly find yourself with issues from the EPA.

When thinking through all the options for compression air systems, the following questions help us determine the best solution for your business:

  • How much air will you use?
  • Will you need to dry the air? (wetter climates like the Northwest must factor humidity)
  • What are your expansion plans and future needs?
  • Where will the equipment be located?
  • What is the maximum pressure needed?
  • Are there specific electrical requirements (voltage/phase)?
  • How many people will be using air at any one time?
  • Will you need a stationary system or is a portable system sufficient for your operation?

Cascade Machinery & Electric are proud distributors of:

Our compressed air products include:

Rotary Screw Compressors Piston Compressors – one and two stage
Refrigerated Dryers
Oil-Free Compressors
Heatless Dryers
Oil & Water Separators
Air Filters – Portable & Stationary
CO2 Purification Systems

Give one of our Cascade professionals a call today to discuss the right compressed air system for you. We also service and repair every component we sell.


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