Everything You Need to Know Before Selecting an Air Compressor

A good air supply system is essential for all air suspension systems at Air spring systems usually consit of air springs, airlines, and a manifold. An air tank is another essential part. An air compressor is the most significant part of the system. Because it creates the pressurized air which is saved in tanks and sent to the airbags. A high-quality air compressor is essential to ensure that your air suspension works properly and doesn’t go stale. The air compressor from Vigorairride is one of the most popular in the air suspension industry.

In the suspension system, the electronic control unit (ECU) is the brain that manages the reactions of the system. The air compressor is the heart of the system. Yet, a compressor may not run continuously as a heart does. It will eventually stop working properly and cause the system to fail if something is wrong with the compressor. Because of that, the air compressor is a critical part of the air ride suspension system.

What is an air compressor?

An air compressor is simply a tiny onboard pump that sucks air into an air tank. It is usually powered by the vehicle’s 12v electric supply. The compressor’s motor inflates air into a tank that stores a reserve of pressurized air.

Normally, an air tank goes with an air compressor in the system. Why? What does an air tank do? Well, an air tank here supplies instant air for immediate use. That is to say, you don’t need to wait for the compressor to provide it. Due to the air tank, instant control of ride height is more possible at the touch of a control button.

How do air compressors work in an air suspension system?

The air suspension compressor supplies pressure to the system. It consists of an electric motor that drives the piston through a connecting rod. The ECU controls the relay that switches it on and off. The piston moves the piston to compress the air being sucked in. This compressed air is then sent through the valve block to the pressure reservoir or air springs.

A dryer/filter element is also a must in the compressor. This keeps debris out and absorbs moisture. The compressor heats the moisture temporarily and evaporates it. The water vapor is then let out of the outside.

Maintenance of air compressors

This component is generally maintenance-free. Compressors are designed to build up pressure for a short time. The compressor can be damaged if the temperature rises to 100 degrees Celsius.

This could be the result of a compressor running too frequently or constantly due to a leak. A pressure reservoir outside is usually installed to ensure that the system pressure is managed efficiently and reduces the compressor activation time.

Symptoms when a suspension compressor is malfunctioning

A failing compressor shows many symptoms.

  • Increased time that needs to adjust the vehicle’s ride height.
  • Continuously running or even worse, not functioning at all.
  • A few indicators that a compressor has failed are discoloration on the label, melted connectors or airlines, and/or a burning odor when the unit is disassembled.

Suggestion: Remember to replace the relay whenever you change a compressor. The relay will continue to turn on the compressor if there is a leak. This is not only harmful to the compressor but also to the relay. In the long run, the relay is most likely to fail soon enough.

Find the best aftermarket air compressor for your air spring suspension system

There are many internal differences, although most compressors look the same from the outside. Manufacturers can create compressors that are OEM compatible or even better than OEMs.

aftermarket air compressor kit

  • To prevent vibrations and premature wear of the piston rings or bearings, keep the balance between the rotor and the piston.
  • The electro-motor’s windings have a varnish coating that protects against heat damage and internal short circuits.
  • For smooth and proper operation, it is important to have high-quality carbon brushes and windings.
  • To avoid piston ring wear and tear, the ultra-smooth cylinder wall surface is completed using a CNC machine.
  • For right hardness, the aluminum is subject to a heat treatment.
  • In order to guarantee a tight fit, the surfaces of bearings and shafts are limited to a tolerance of 0,01 mm.

What aspects do you need to check when selecting an aftermarket compressor?

  1. An all-metal assembly is favorable. This makes its service time longer without frequent problems showing up.
  2. Braided leader hoses that stand heat created while operating for long hours.
  3. Check the maximum pressure it can reach. It is better if it can go up to 200 PSI.
  4. Duty recycle check: undoubtedly, one hundred percent of the duty cycle is the preferable and best option.
  5. Non-return valves are better for it to keep pressure in the air tank, avoiding air flowing back into the compressor.
  6. Aftermarket compressors meet or even surplus the quality of the OEMs.

Do I need an air compressor?

Air ride suspension systems need air to function. Some luxury vehicles have an OEM air suspension system in them. For modified air suspension systems, air compressors are the power supplier. That means it is dispensable.

Most air suspensions include On-Board Air (OBA) with a compressor. Air pressurized by air compressor then will stay in the air tank. As we’ve discussed at the beginning, the air tank uses it for immediate use when needed.

Find a reliable online retailer for the best air solutions 

For further information about aftermarket air ride kits and solutions, you should check out vigor air ride. Their website provides a high-quality air compressor with an OE-like fit. You can also find other components you need for an air spring suspension system.

The best components should be:

  • Meet identical and standardized specifications as the OEMs, in other words, a direct replacement without adjustment or modifications.
  • Ideal and durable construction with quality materials ensure long service time.
  • High quality at a reasonable price.
  • Needs not specialized tools for installation.

Enjoy your ride with an airbag suspension system!

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