Rotating Equipment Repair: Valves And The Reciprocating Compressor
A reciprocating compressor is a type of rotating equipment. It has crankshaft driven pistons. Reciprocating compressors can generate high-discharge pressure, delivering what the chemical, oil and gas industries require to move various fluids with high reliability. However, no compressor is infallible. Rotating equipment repair is a normal part of operation costs. With reciprocating compressors, the components requiring attention with greater frequency are the valves.
The Problem with Valves
Valves are responsible for regulating the flow of pressurized air. In optimal condition, evenly operating valves function efficiently and effectively. However, if a valve ceases to perform in accordance with expectations, it negatively affects the productivity of the entire system. While maintenance may reduce the instances of issues, rotating equipment repair is generally inescapable when it comes to valves.
Valve damage, failure, or malfunctioning can be the result of two major factors: environmental and mechanical. Among the common environmental reasons are:
- Corrosive Contaminants
- Foreign Material
- Liquid Slugs/Plugs
- Improper Lubrication
Faulty actions of valves can also result from the stress resulting from various mechanical factors. Among these are:
High-Cycle Fatigue: Usually, as a result of running them for extensive periods at high cycle.
Improper Operation: This often happens when the compressor operates for other than its intended purpose
Spring Failure: If the valve works in conjunction with a spring, the wearing-down of the spring could result in valve malfunction
Irregular Interval Operation: If the system does not maintain at predictable levels the pressurization of air through the compressor, the valves cannot perform optimally
Rotating Equipment Repair
To ensure rotating equipment retains its integrity, it is important to inspect the valves. These are crucial in ensuring the operation of any such system. Hiring professionals to handle this and other aspects of rotating equipment repair is one important characteristic required to make certain an entire system continues to function optimally.