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3 Reasons to Replace Your Air Dryer

Approaching bus on

Many years ago, draining accumulated water from air tanks was a daily task. Thankfully, these days the water is absorbed by your air dryer, reducing its effect on system components. We would typically expect to see little-to-no water draining from your purge valve. If you are seeing water, then it could be a sign that you need to replace your air dryer.

It is common to see a little oil discharge pass through the purge valve. Oil gets into the air lines through normal operation. This only becomes an issue when the oil starts mixing with water vapor. The sticky result can:

  • Affect air discharge cycles
  • Block the purge valve causing a constant leak
  • Coat the air dryer media and reduce its effectiveness
  • Accumulate in air lines and valves reducing the life of system components

Air Dryer and Brake System

Many common problems with the air braking system can be managed with regular maintenance.

A little discharge from the purge valve is common but important to monitor, as too much can be a warning sign of a much larger issue. Below are Donaldson's top 3 reasons to replace your air dryer:

1. Avoid Brake Failure

Heavy-duty on-road trucks rely on compressed air to actuate braking systems and control the brake operation for the truck and trailer. The compressor takes air from the atmosphere which contains moisture that when compressed, may cause total brake system failure if the moisture is not removed.

2. Protect Your Equipment

The condensate that occurs when air is compressed can lead to equipment deterioration, corrosion and may even freeze. The air dryer removes water and other contaminants from the air to help improve the reliability of your equipment and protect your air system from becoming a safety hazard.

3. Extend the Life of Your Entire System

Contaminated air can affect the performance of your entire air system, which can lead to increased load and restriction overall. 

Did You Know?

Air contamination can cause the control valves of the driver’s seat to become blocked, leading to expensive repairs!

Check that the air dryer canister is in good condition and undamaged. Also check hoses for kinks, bends and damage that may restrict air flow to the air dryer or cause system failure.

Check that the air dryer purge value is functioning correctly; if this gets stuck in the open position, it can leave your system very sluggish and slow to build pressure.

Donaldson coalescing air dryers are designed to meet the specific needs of your application by removing oil and water from the air brake system. Stay on top of your air system and air dryer maintenance to keep you, your air compressor and braking system safe.

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