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Three Tips For Identifying A Problem With Your Air Compressor's Belt Drive

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If you want to use a lot of tools like sand blasters and pneumatic drills for a DIY project, a good and powerful air compressor is essential. But if you suddenly start hearing noise coming from your air compressor's belt drive while it's running, it could be difficult to ascertain the problem. Since you'll need to identify what's wrong with the belt drive to prevent your whole air compressor from breaking, consider these three tips.

Note How Long It Takes For The Belt To Jam After You Push It

Your air compressor's belt should start jamming up as soon as you open the panel covering it and lightly tap it. If the belt takes a long time to jam up and seems to stick to the pulleys and surfaces around it, your problem is probably oil sludge. Sometimes, the oil you use to lubricate your machine migrates to areas like the belt drive where it shouldn't be and condenses into sludge.

Check every part of the belt's inward side for oil sludge buildup. If you find any, carefully clear it away with a thick wad of paper towels and wash the entire belt in soap and water.

Check For Dust Buildup On The Inward Facing Side Of The Belt

Although dust buildup isn't as serious of a threat to your whole air compressor than sludge buildup, it's still nonetheless capable of significantly slowing down and eventually stopping a belt drive. The easiest way to check for a thick dust layer is to blow air into your belt drive system as hard as you can. If lots of dust suddenly floats up from the belt and starts drifting around aimlessly, you know what your problem is. 

To clear dust, a simple napkin, paper towel, or handkerchief is sufficient. If you really want to be thorough, use a fan to blow air through your belt drive for a few minutes and wipe the dust off when it resettles on a more easy to access surface. 

Look Into The Pulleys Driving The Air Compressor's Belt

Your air compressor's belt drive could be making noise because its pulleys are operating inconsistently. If this is the case, it could either be because the pulleys haven't been oiled enough or because their internal parts are broken in some way.

To see what's the matter with a pulley, you'll have to remove the belt drive and look into your machine with a flashlight. If you see clearly broken parts in the pulley when you turn the air compressor on, you'll have no choice but to consult a technician with the proper repair tools.

If you let a problem with your air compressor's belt drive linger just because it's not critical, it'll only get worse and worse over time. Since you probably don't want to buy a completely new air compressor in the future, it's better to put forth some effort now. To learn more, contact Air Chief Inc