Rotary Screw Compressor Buyer's Guide

How to Pick The Perfect Rotary Screw Compressor

By  | Air Compressor Product Expert

You work hard and expect the same from your tools and equipment.

When it comes to air compressors, nothing outworks a rotary screw compressor.

These workhorses are designed to run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year - for many years.

If you need more power and want a 60% or higher duty cycle, a rotary screw compressor is the right choice.

How It Works
Rotary Screw Rotors The rotary screw compressor gets its name from the way they are powered.

As air enters a sealed chamber, it is trapped and squeezed between two (helically-opposed) rotating screws. As the screws inter-mesh, they reduce the volume of trapped air and deliver it compressed, at the proper pressure level.

Energy Savings
Energy StarAlthough the upfront cost may be higher than reciprocating compressors, this is off-set by better efficiency, increased capabilities, and dependability that is a result of superior rotary screw technology.

With reciprocating (piston) type air compressors, the cost of energy required to run it can exceed the purchase price in one year, while rotary screw compressors will amount to roughly 70% of the purchase price in about 10 years!

Many of our rotary screw models are even Energy Star rated, using 20-30% less energy than federal standards.

Mobile Force
Towable Contractor Rotary Screw Air Compressor Rotary Compressors are tough and can run constantly for at least a decade. They are designed to handle the demands of the most professional garages, factories, and even the job site.

Because of their reliability and versatility, you'll find these rugged machines on oil rigs and even in amusement parks, powering roller coasters and fountains.

For some real muscle, contractors and demolition crews can hook-up a trailer-mounted rotary screw compressor from Sullair and tackle tough jobs like cutting off large rivet heads, breaking concrete, and heavy-duty chipping.

With 375 CFM of air at 100 PSI of pressure, these behemoth mobile workhorses and their tools are at-home in work environments such as: shipyard, bridge work, railroads, demolition, and steel building sites. If they can't get it done, nothing will.

Shop All Sullair Trailer-Mounted Rotary Screw Air Compressors

Clean, Fresh Air
Air Dryer InteriorWhen air is compressed the water vapor in that air gets concentrated. This process raises the dew point of the compressed air and forms condensation.

Water in compressed air can cause problems for the user. This includes freezing of outdoor air lines, corrosion of equipment, and fouling of precision work.

An air dryer can solve this problem by cooling and drying hot, wet air.

Oil and other particulates can infiltrate the air tank causing problems, but an air filter prevents this, maintaining a constant supply of clean, unadulterated compressed air.

Air Line Filters 101: What an Air Line Filter is and How it Works

Rotary Screw Compressor Considerations
Horsepower (HP) - One HP is the force needed to lift 550 lbs. one foot in one second.

Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) - CFM is the amount or volume of air velocity that passes through a medium. Think of a water hose where you can measure the quantity of water that is possible to pass through in one minute.

Pounds per Square Inch (PSI) - PSI is the measure of pressure that a compressor is able to produce, in pounds, per square inch of space. Going back to our water hose example, PSI would be the amount of pressure at which the water (or air) comes out of the hose. Without a nozzle, it may trickle out, while one with a fine tip can blast grime out of concrete.

If you ever had a kink in a line, then you would experience no CFM, while pressure behind the kink (PSI), would be building and possibly rupture the line.

It's important to pay attention to both CFM and PSI requirements of air equipment so you choose a powerful enough compressor for the job.

Electrical Phase - You need to choose single-phase or three-phase. Single-phase electricity is found in residential settings while three-phase electricity is most typically found in industrial locations & settings.

Consult with your electrician and local codes to determine which type you have.

NEXT: Shop All Rotary Screw Air Compressors

Virtual Air Treatment - How to Get Clean Treated Air
Virtual Air TreatmentLooking for ways to treat your compressed air? Whether you're using your compressor for applying a smooth coat of paint to an automobile or using it for powering air tools, air treatment is an important part of doing the job right.

Removing water and contaminants from your compressed air can prolong the life of your air tools and keep your paints clean and dry so they apply more smoothly.

Browse our virtual air treatment guide for ideas on how you can improve the quality of your compressed air.

View Our Virtual Air Treatment Guide


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