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Additional Guidance for Pneumatic Air Treatment
One can understand the need for pneumatic air treatment devices by considering what properties compressed air should possess when in use in a pneumatic system.
As the first step in air treatment, it is important to remove dirty particulates from an airline, as to not damage components in the system and keep the system running smoothly. Particulates can result in 'sticky' actuation, jam spools, and cause seals to prematurely extrude.
Compressed air can be filtered using a standalone 'Pneumatic Filter', a 'Filter Regulator', or a 'Filter, Regulator, Lubricator' (FRL). Broadly, there are two ways to evaluate a pneumatic filter. One can judge a filter by its ability to filter out particulates of a certain size. For example, in pneumatics, the common standards are to filter out particulates larger than 20 microns or 5 microns. Secondly, filters can be judged by its effectiveness to do so (i.e. 99% or 99.99% or 99.999%). For more information on choosing a pneumatic filter, see our "What Kind of Pneumatic Filter Do I Need?" guide.
The pressure of compressed air must usuaully be regulated, not only following the receiver tank (or air compressor), but at various points within the pneumatic line. This is because it may be that each device requires a different operating pressure. In order to regulate pressure, 'Pressure Regulators' or 'Filter Regulators' are required. The latter performs two functions, to both regulate pressure and filter air out of particulates.
Compressed air often needs to be lubricated with aerolised oil in order to keep many of the moving parts in pneumatic systems running smoothly.
Air Dryers are used when the air contains more humidity than desired for use within a pneumatic system.