Are you looking for a new air compressor? There are all kinds of models available out there. First, however, you need to decide if you’re looking for a rotary screw air compressor or a reciprocating one.

Which should you buy? According to the experts at Hertz Kompressorean, the function should dictate form when you’re buying an air compressor. It’s easier to pick the right air compressor when you keep each kind’s efficiency of use and their compatibility with your operational needs and end goals in mind.

What’s the Difference Between Rotary Screw and Reciprocating Air Compressors?

Reciprocating air compressors have powerful pistons that move up and down to compress the air inside a cylinder for use. They’ve been around for ages in both factories and garages, so people tend to be most familiar with this kind of air compressor.

Rotary screw air compressors, in contrast, operate by means of two screws that turn in opposite directions, compressing the air between them. They come in both fixed and variable speed options to offer a better operational range of use.

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Reciprocating Air Compressor?

Reciprocating compressors enjoy a lot of favor among mechanics and other craftsmen because they’re relatively inexpensive to buy, simple to maintain, and capable of producing large bursts of high-pressure air with ease. 

The drawbacks to a reciprocating air compressor, however, can be daunting: Those pistons are quite loud, and the machines don’t really have much of a cooling system — which means they are prone to overheating. The air they produce can also be hot and oily, which makes it difficult to dry or clean. 

Reciprocating air compressors are great for intermittent use, but not continuous operation at a full load. They’re better suited for small businesses, workshops, and homeowners who like do-it-yourself projects where the air compressor is only sporadically needed. Frequent use is likely to cause a reciprocating air compressor to wear out, which means their performance will steadily decline over time.

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Rotary Screw Air Compressor?

Rotary screw air compressors do cost more to buy than reciprocating models. They make up for that initial investment, however, by allowing continuous operation without any worry about overheating. 

Their design keeps the internal rotors oiled and sealed, which prevents them from getting worn down, so you won’t lose performance with age — even with regular use. Plus, the air they produce is much cooler and cleaner, which is useful for many operations.

Rotary screw air compressors also offer the advantage of being lighter and quieter than their reciprocating counterparts, neither of which is an insignificant consideration when the machine will be in constant use. Rotary screw air compressors are well-suited for commercial and industrial use where there isn’t a lot of downtimes.

There are a lot of different factors that you should consider when choosing an air compressor, and it never hurts to contact a specialist in the field to learn more about the latest technological advances available.