Test pressure tanks on air compressors?

HOW OFTEN IS IT REQUIRED TO HYDRO TEST A PRESSURE TANK ON A COMPRESSOR SYSTEM?


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Bill says...

I know of no regulation that pertains to the testing of a compressed air storage tank.

Compressor tanks usually fail via a leak in the tank caused by internal corrosion eating through the tank wall. This generally results in a leak, not a catastrophic failure.

Having said that, you probably want to talk to the government worker's health branch wherever you are to get their take on this.

Cheers,

Bill

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Drain plug problem

by Doug
(rogersville mo , usa )

Drain plug has rounded off on Campbell Hausfeld model #VT623301AJ

The drain plug on the bottom has rounded off , was wondering if I need to pull the Huge plug that has the brass plug in it. My model mumber is vt623301aj
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Doug, the manual shows that the tank drain on your compressor model is a petcock, a drain with a tee handle that you use to open and close the tank drain.

You must have an older model, I guess.

If the tank drain valve is a nut or knurled knob that cannot be opened, then yes, I would guess it is time to pull the assembly and replace it.

If you do, why not plumb it so that the drain valve protrudes out beside the tank to make it easier to drain? That works like a charm, and helps remind folks to drain the tank more often.

Cheers,

Bill

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Hole in my air tank.

by Brandon lee
(Arlington, TX, America)

there is a whole in the tank ! Wnat to weld it

im a welder still in high school and i was wondering what kind of meterial my air compressor is so i can set my settings on my welder ! its a single cylender air compressor model no. 106.171340 with 3/4 horsepower . a fairly old compressor! can u help me ????
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Brandon, I'm going to guess that it's likely mild steel, but no way to be sure without some sort of physical assessment.

Take a file to it and see what happens after a few strokes of the file on the metal. You should get a feeling for what it's made of that way.

Good luck on welding the tank, and please make sure it is vented when welding.

I also want to point out that the compressor manufacturers all state that if the tank gets a hole, you should discard the tank and replace it with a new one.

The one hole could be a symptom of a general weakening of the tank wall inside, because of rust.

Fixing the hole may not fix the problem. If a rusted out tank should undergo a catastrophic failure, then the results could be very bad, both for the compressor and any persons in the vicinity.

Cheers,

Bill

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Compressor tank blow out?


We've got an aluminum air tank, 9.75" diameter x 28.75" long.

The tank material is .125 5052 H32.

What is the force on the tank if the pressure is at 125 psi?

This being said, if the weld failed at any area of the weld, is the above answer enough force to rip the base material?

Thanks
Darrell







Bill answers...

Hi Darrell.

The way I figure it the total inside surface area of your tank is about 880 square inches, meaning that the total pressure trying to get out of your air tank is a total of: 880 x 125 PSI = 110,000 lbs. of force.

Let me also say that my math is always suspect, and I'd really prefer it if it were an engineer (which I'm not) responding to your question.

Each one square inch of surface will have the 125 PSI of force against it. The air pressure will press evenly throughout the tank, meaning that 125 PSI is exerted on every square inch of tank wall, on non-welded surfaces and of course, on every weldment too.

As mentioned, I'm not an engineer, and I'm sure not a metallurgist either, so you'll have to go to your metal source (or engineering group) to find out if 1/8" aluminum is of sufficient thickness to handle the force you are trying to contain.

I won't even guess.

It's my experience that the manufacturers of compressed air tanks make them from steel for a reason. And, even the small, non-repairable throw away air cylinders usually have a stainless steel barrel though the end caps are aluminum.

Good picture of the remnants of a tank. If it blew, I hope no one was in the way.

Cheers,

Bill




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