rotary screw vs. reciprocating air compressor

The two most common types of air compressors in our industry are rotary screw compressors and reciprocating air compressors. The differences between the two can be a bit confusing so it is understandable that we run into many business owners who are aware of their need for an air compressor but unsure which would work best for their application. Our experts are here to break down the major differences between them.

Rotary Screw air compressors should only be utilized in applications that have a constant demand of air throughout the day.  Rotary Screw compressors are meant for a high duty cycle.  They will run loaded while building your air pressure to the preset pressure programmed into the controller when ordered.  Once that pressure is achieved it will unload until your demand increases and go through the load cycle again.  Rotary Screw units will run quieter than a reciprocating unit, but do require more maintenance over the life of the machine.

Reciprocating air compressors are to be used when there is not a constant demand for air throughout the day.  They feature pistons that compress air and are considered dependable because they tend to require less maintenance, are efficient in operation, and provide sufficient air flow for intermittent usage when sized properly with an air receiver. They are very flexible in the type of applications they are suited for, however we usually only recommend reciprocating compressors for applications that require less than 60% duty cycle. 

rotary screw compressor texas

Rotary Screw air compressors should only be utilized in applications that have a constant demand of air throughout the day.  Rotary Screw compressors are meant for a high duty cycle.  They will run loaded while building your air pressure to the preset pressure programmed into the controller when ordered.  Once that pressure is achieved it will unload until your demand increases and go through the load cycle again.  Rotary Screw units will run quieter than a reciprocating unit, but do require more maintenance over the life of the machine.

piston air compressor texas

Reciprocating air compressors are to be used when there is not a constant demand for air throughout the day.  They feature pistons that compress air and are considered dependable because they tend to require less maintenance, are efficient in operation, and provide sufficient air flow for intermittent usage when sized properly with an air receiver. They are very flexible in the type of applications they are suited for, however we usually only recommend reciprocating compressors for applications that require less than 60% duty cycle. 

As Texas’ most trusted air compressor experts, we are always ready to help you assess your business needs and recommend the perfect air compressor solutions. Give us a call for a free quote today! 

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