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air compressor problems

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  • air compressor problems

    I have a air compressor that will not shut off.
    It runs fine, it will reach 125 psi then the pressure releif valve
    opens and the compressor keeps on running. I have to manually turn off the switch to stop it. I know it has a cut on pressure and cut off pressure that should be preset from the factory but probably has to be adjusted? Does anyone know how to adjust the pressure switch to make it shut off before the pop off valve opens?

  • #2
    Re: air compressor problems

    First be sure the air compresser power cord is unplugged or power is off to the circuit powering it.

    Now try to remove the cover on the pressure switch. You should see 1 or 2 screws with springs, washers and hex nuts. If you turn the hex nut(s) CCW like you were removing them, but only by a few turns that should help. If there is just one screw with spring, washer and hex nut, that will change both the start and stop pressure. If there's two, the one that's longer sets the start pressure and the shorter one sets the stop pressure difference. Try first backing out the nut on the shorter screw and find out if it will then shut off. If not, leave it backed out but still on the screw a few turns and then back out the nut on the longer screw. You'll most likely need a 3/8" nut driver or deep wall socket for this. Be sure there is NO power at the pressure switch when making adjustments. If there is power and the tool slips you'll get a nasty arc. If your fingers slip you get zapped. You may have to try changing adjustments a few times to get it right. I normally make sure the start pressure it good and then work on the stop pressure. If you just can't get it to shut off, remove and replace the pressure switch.

    If you can wait a day or two, I'll try to post pictures here showing what I'm talking about. Please note that some pressure switches are made a bit different from others. It would not suprise me to see a NON adjustable one made so as to save a few cents in the price of the switch.

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    • #3
      Re: air compressor problems

      Thanks woussko,
      Earlier today I took the cover off of the pressure switch and it has only one spring, I did not try to mess with it just yet until I could find out more info on it first. I will attempt to adjust the spring in the morning when I get home. I am still not sure how one spring controls both cut on and cut off pressures with only one adjustment? If this does not work I will wait for your pictures to see if that will help me out more.

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      • #4
        Re: air compressor problems

        One spring is normal for a simple design pressure switch. Because there's a snap action there will be some difference from the start to the stop pressure. Here's something you can try. With valves closed run it until the gauge reads about 100 PSI and then unplug it. Now try to back out the nut so as to decompress the spring some. You should here it snap. At that point stop and try plugging it back in. The motor should not run. Then bleed out air and see if it starts up at some point. If not, you'll need to replace the pressure switch. Please post the results and remember to always think.

        SAFETY FIRST

        Jeff, Is this a new air compressor or one you pickup used or was it OK and then starting having the problem?
        Last edited by Woussko; 08-04-2007, 01:43 AM.

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        • #5
          Re: air compressor problems

          Good idea, I will try that.
          The compressor was used and my freind was throwing it out because the manifold that connects to regulator was broken and he did not want to mess with it. He said it ran fine until the manifold busted on him while it was fully pressured and scared the crap out of him. I fixed the manifold for $12.00
          (easy fix) It appears that the manifold was bumped or something fell on it to start a crack in it then when it pressured up it finished it off. The manifold is made out of alum. or pewter does not take to much to crack them.

          I will post the results.

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          • #6
            Re: air compressor problems

            Well I fixed one problem but I think I created another one.
            This may be a little lengthy so stick with me.
            I opened the pressure switch cover and made one adjustment and ran the compressor and it shut off and it looked like it was going to work with a few more adjustments. Mean while the guy from next door shows up and says he knows how to fix it so I went to my shed to get a couple of more tools when I returned he said he just touched it with a screwdriver and this spring popped out???? Then he says it is to hot out side and was going back home!!!! After looking for a while I figured that it was the spring that keeps the start- stop switch out. After trying to install it I realized that it could not be installed without taking the switch apart so after taking it apart and 2 hours later I had it back together and adjusted to where it would kick on at 85 and shut off just shy of 125 psi, perfect so I thought. It appears that whenever it shuts off the switch does not release the pressure and whenever it goes to start back up it bogs the motor down and would not let it get up to speed??? Every time I would turn the switch off manually it would release the pressure but it does not release the pressure whenever the pressure switch cuts it off? I am not sure what my next move will be?

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            • #7
              Re: air compressor problems

              Rather than to drive yourself crazy, I recommend replacing the pressure switch and be sure the new one has an unloader valve on it. You may end up having to do a little work with soft copper tubing and compression fittings to get things just right. Anyone that's a handyman or plumber should be able to help if needed with the plumbing part. The electricals are pretty basic, but be sure to connect up everything correctly. Here are some pressure switches that I think should work well, but be warned you may not like the cost of them very much. These come factory set for about 125 off and 90-95 on pressures. They are adjustable.

              Square D 9013FHG12J52M1X (Most basic with unloader and on/off)

              Square D 9013GHG2J53X (Heavy duty and has setable differential for start/stop settings - Comes set at 100 on and 125 off)

              I don't know if you can do business with WW Grainger through where you work, but in case you can their catalog numbers are 2FH23 for the good one and 3AY90 for the basic one.

              Good electrical suppliers and plumbing supply houses should be able to get them if they have an account with Square D or a master distributor for them. If you have trouble, I'm pretty sure I can post info of an industrial supply house that will sell to about anyone with a Mastercard or VISA credit card and will ship UPS to you. They aren't cheap but they do provide good customer service. I would try to find them locally first.
              Last edited by Woussko; 08-04-2007, 06:20 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: air compressor problems

                I don't remember if i mentioned this before but the compressor is a ridgid twin stack. I looked up the replacement pressure switch and it sells for about $30.00. I don't know if it has a unloader valve, it does not give to much info? In your opinion do you think this would be suitable?
                I was hoping not to spend to much on this compressor since I have a larger one in my shop that is not portable. I was just trying to fix this one up as a portable that I could take on the road with me.

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                • #9
                  Re: air compressor problems

                  If you can obtain the RIDGID replacement pressure switch that's the one to go for. You might keep working on the pressure switch you have now. You can test it by connecting it to the air hose on your shop compressor and make sure it breaks the contacts when pressurized to the desired stop pressure. I think you'll be better off just to replace it. Another thing you might think about would be to use the tanks of the Twin Stack as portable air tanks and charge them up from your shop compressor. That would be only for small jobs.

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                  • #10
                    Re: air compressor problems

                    I may play with the switch alittle more this week and see if I can find the problem with it. Very good idea to remove it and use the shop compressor to work on it.

                    If I cannot fix it I will probably just go ahead spend the $30.00 to replace it.

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                    • #11
                      Re: air compressor problems

                      Can you stand the noise of the Twin Stack running? Most portables run at very high speed and make loads of noise.

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                      • #12
                        Re: air compressor problems

                        It is very loud but for the price I paid for it (free) I think I will be able to put up with it for a while? I am hoping that I will not be using it too much and when I do it will more than likely be outdoors when I do, I imagine in a closed in shop, house etc. it would be a lot louder?

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                        • #13
                          Re: air compressor problems

                          Thats why they make long hoses, so you can move the source of the noise away from where you are working.
                          ---------------
                          Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                          ---------------
                          “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                          ---------
                          "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                          ---------
                          sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

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                          • #14
                            Re: air compressor problems

                            Long hoses and ear plugs LOL ... Both help

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