A medical air compressor is a piece of machinery that is utilized in medical facilities and air plants. These are very different from other compressors that are available on the market.
The medical industry can be rather demanding, which is why these specific air compressors are designed to meet those demands.
Medical air compressors have to run continuously. They must also be built to ensure that they will never fail. These types of compressors emit nothing but clean air that can’t ever be contaminated.
The air used for medical air supply can’t come in any kind of contact with contaminants, according to the ISO and NFPA.
Experts have estimated that a hospital with 150 beds and five operating theatres must have a medical air system, laboratory air system, and pneumatic air systems. These systems usually use oil-less reciprocating air compressors as well as other top-quality equipment.
In this guide, we will review what medical air compressors are used for, the types of medical air systems, air filtration for medical air, and try to decide if it’s better to rent or buy a medical air compressor.
Important Note: We did not make any specific recommendation as Medical Air Compressor Selection is a serious matter. Please fill out the form below to get professional help.
Top 3 Medical Air Compressors
1.Allied Healthcare Timeter Aridyne 2000 – Best Allied Medical Air Compressor
The Allied Healthcare Timeter Aridyne 2000 is a bedside portable compressor. It offers a variety of features including quiet operation, elapsed time indicator, thermal overload protector, and more.
This particular medical air compressor is amongst one of the quietest on the market. It is able to be so quiet due to its unique design. The internal chambers and pumps are suspended, which helps keep the noise to a minimum. Whether being used in the home of a patient or in a hospital room, noise control is a must.
Alarms & Safety
The Allied Healthcare Timeter Aridyne 2000 comes with multiple safety features. There are both visual and audible alarm systems that will activate when there are high temperatures or low-pressure changes within the system. These safety features allow the compressor to operate safely 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Optimal Air Pressure
Air that is received by the compressor goes through DISS air check valves at 50 PSI and flow rates of over 42 IPM. When the air is received by the compressor, it is compressed at 80 PSI and it then goes through cooling coils.
These cooling coils are throughout the machine and condense moisture. It is then trapped and drained out automatically. The air that is left will then be delivered at 50 PSI to whatever tools or devices are attached to the machine.
- Quiet operation
- Mobile or stationary
- Filters ideal air for patient needs
- Plenty of safety features
- Can run continuously 24/7
- 1-year warranty
2.Precision Medical PM15 EasyAir Compressor – Best Portable Medical Air Compressor
This high-performance air compressor isn’t only powerful, but also lightweight and portable. This is an affordable choice for any hospital or dental office. It has many unique features that make this compressor stand out from others.
Lightweight & Portable
The Precision Medical PM15 EasyAir Compressor is unbelievably lightweight. It’s 22% lighter than comparable compressors, which makes it much easier to transport when needed.
Its compact nature is the ideal piece of equipment for small patient rooms, operating rooms, and more. It weighs 20.4 pounds and has a convenient handle for carrying. Additionally, it’s 37% smaller than other units.
Powerful & Safe
This medical air compressor contains a powerful ⅕ horsepower high-performance motor. It delivers 13 L/min at 50 PSI at a minimum. Additionally, it is safe. It has an automatic resetting thermal limit switch. This keeps the unit from overheating.
Easy to Use
Lastly, this medical air compressor is very easy to use. It doesn’t require pressure/flow calculations thanks to its built-in flow gauge. There is a generous on/off switch for a pressure gauge with easy-to-read numbers on it. The filters that are required are simple to change as well.
- Large power switch
- Easy-to-read pressure gauge
- Handle for transportation
- Easy to use
- Louder than other comparable machines
3.California Air Tools SP Ultra Quiet Oil – Most Powerful Medical Air Compressor
California Air Tools is known for having some of the best and reliable air compressors in the industry. This particular air compressor is ideal for medical use since it has a low Decibel rating and high-performance quality.
This air compressor only has a 58 Decibel rating. This is much lower than other comparable air compressors on the market. It is equipped with a sound-proof cabinet. It’s ideal for indoor use where noise may be an issue, such as in a hospital or dental office.
The CAT SP Ultra Quiet compressor has a powerful 2-HP, 110V motor. It only spins at 1680 RPMs to create less noise and wear & tear. Additionally, it only draws 14 Amps and works on most standard outlets.
It consists of an oil-free dual-piston pump system. It can work in multiple temperatures and on uneven terrain. It puts out 6.4 CFM @ 40 PSI and 5.3 CFM @ 90 PSI with a maximum of 150 PSI. There is a 3000+ hour life cycle on the machine and it has a quick recovery time of just 260 seconds from empty to full.
Easy to Use
The compressor is equipped with dual gauges so you can keep tabs on tank and tool pressure quickly and efficiently. There is a ¼” air outlet with a quick connector that allows you to change tools quickly. You can easily access the compressor through the two latching doors as well.
- Quiet operation
- Powerful airflow
- Dual gauges
- Easy to use
California Air Tools SP-9421 2.0HP Ultra Quiet and Oil-Free Air Compressor Motor
3 used from $247.24
- Ultra Quiet only 70 Decibels
- Oil-Free Pump for Less Maintenance & Costs
- 6.40 CFM at 40 PSI & 5.30 CFM at 90 PSI
- Maximum Pressure - 150 PSI
- Includes Capacitor & Air Filter
What Are Medical Air Compressors Used For?
Medical air compressors have a wide variety of uses. They can be used for the following:
Laboratory: The compressors power the equipment responsible for chiropractic tables, x-rays, the generation of oxygen, blood analyzing equipment, the generation of nitrogen, and more.
Breathing: Medical air compressors are responsible for bringing clean air to patients who are sedated or those who have issues breathing on their own and need the assistance of a respirator or other machinery.
The oxygen machine uses air compressors to thin the air and make it easier for the sedated patient to inhale.
Tools: As a regular compressor, a medical compressor is responsible for running power tools used in surgery. All life-support systems used during surgery rely on air compressors for their operation. Many surgical instruments also need compressed air to work.
This can include tools for puncturing, drilling, and more. Dentists also have a need for air compressors. However, they will require specific dental compressors.
Filtration: Medical air compressors are also responsible for the delivery of clean air in duct and filtration systems. All air that goes into a medical facility has to be pure and clean all of the time.
Equipment Sterilization: Power cleaning and systems meant for sterilization use medical air compressors as well.
Medical Air Compressor Price Rent vs Buy
If you’re in need of a medical air compressor, you’re probably also wondering whether you should buy it outright or rent it. The first consideration you should make would be based on your business.
Do you require the use of an air compressor all of the time or just once in a while? If you need it all of the time, it would be worth it just to buy it outright. If you are only using the compressor a couple of times over a short period of time, it would be worth it to rent the machine.
Additionally, what is your budget? This is ultimately what your decision may come down to. Do you have the funds to purchase the air compressor in full or are you short on cash and can only afford weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly payments? If you think that you may need multiple rentals in the future, it’s probably easier to purchase it in full and recover the cost over time.
What Is The Rental Cost?
The rental cost of a medical air compressor will all come down to the power or size of the compressor. If you are looking for a 50HP reciprocating air compressor, you are looking at around $50 per day to rent it.
If you need something more powerful, such as a 400HP rotary screw electric air compressor, you are looking at $1,000 per day. You can buy a small compressor for under $1,000 and you’ll have it forever. The larger units run upwards of $15,000, depending on the size and power of the machine.
Medical Air vs Oxygen
Medical air is different from oxygen and regular air. Medical air is ultra-clean, colorless, non-flammable, purified, and odorless. Hospitals utilize medical air for patients who are on ventilators and in incubators.
It is also used when a patient is under anesthesia. Medical air is one of the few gasses a facility can create right there. Medical air compressors are responsible for creating this air.
In order to make medical air, a high-quality compressed air filtration system is essential. This reduces the risk of contamination, which could lead to infections in patients, illness, and even death. 24/7 monitoring and regular testing procedures are necessary to ensure the medical air isn’t contaminated.
Oxygen is a gaseous component that is part of ordinary ait. It is generally delivered to a hospital as a liquid and stored in a tank on site. It is then used as needed, processed, and turned into gas.
When regular oxygen is combined with other gases, it creates a blend that patients can use. However, if it isn’t used properly, it can be dangerous. Both medical air and oxygen have different purposes when used in a medical setting.
Medical Air Compressor Suppliers
There are many different manufacturers of medical air compressors, some being more well-known than others. Here’s a breakdown of some of the most popular and reliable medical air compressor manufacturers:
Pattons Medical is a North Carolina medical air compressor manufacturer that has been in the industry for over 50 years. They offer a full line of high-quality, customizable medical air compressors with reciprocating, scroll, and rotary screw technology. They have a full team of trained medical gas consultants and medical system design engineers as well.
Werther International offers a line of medical air compressors with unbelievably high standards. Their air compressors have been constructed to meet the air quality demands of the medical field to keep instruments clean and patients safe. They are ideal for vet offices, hospitals, dentist offices, and more.
Tri-Tech Medical, Inc.
Tri-Tech Medical is a company based out of Ohio and has been in the medical air supply industry since 1989. They are members of NFPA and MGPHO. They offer services and machinery that help reduce medical gas disruption, eliminate patient room disruption, and all of their parts are made in the USA.
Sauer Compressors USA
Saur Compressors USA is responsible for manufacturing some of the highest quality medical air compressors and accessories in the industry. All of their compressors are field-tested and extensively altered to provide unbeatable 24/7 reliability.
Quincy Compressor is a well-known company that has been manufacturing multiple types of medical compressors for various fields. They pay close attention to the demands of the medical field and create an air compressor that can stand up to the task. They equip their compressors with alarms, proper air cleanliness requirements, and more.
As mentioned above Quincy Compressor is the market leader in the field of air compressors for hospital use, including air purification systems, as well as compressors. Grainger, on the other hand, has specialized exclusively in the production of air compressors for laboratories.
Types Of Medical Air Compressors
1. Medical Air Compressor For Respiratory
When delivering compressed air for medical respiration assistance, it is very important that the pressure of the compressed air is strictly regulated.
Insufficient pressure can cause the breathing apparatus to fail to deliver the required levels of oxygen. Too much could lead to serious patient injury.
Respiratory medication devices are essential to individuals with chronic respiratory conditions that require regular, long-term treatment with inhaled aerosolized medications.
These devices are usually powered by high output air compressors with a minimum warranty of five years.
2. Laboratory Air Compressors
When a laboratory is attached to a hospital, it generally does not use the same air system as the medical air system. The lab’s air compressors supply air to the research and development areas only. oil-free and oil-lubricated compressors with proper filtration are the most suitable units for this purpose.
Grainger is one of the most reputable manufacturers of laboratory air compressors in the market today. Their laboratory air compressors specifically designed for laboratories and research facilities within the scientific, process, and medical industries.
These small laboratory air compressors are designed for use in dental, medical, or laboratory settings. They help to provide clean and reliable compressed air for various applications, such as medical instrumentation, diagnostics, and therapy.
Depending on their CFM at 90 PSI and their tank size, the price per unit ranges from over $1,700 to more than $12,000. The more expensive lab compressors have 10-gallon tanks and 6 CFM.
Medical Air Compressor Prices
Medical air compressors come with a CFM rating, which stands for cubic feet per minute. Air tools also have a CFM rating. When choosing your compressor, multiply your most powerful tool’s CFM by 1.5 to get the CFM rating you will need from the air compressor.
Cost of Compressed Air Per CFM
If you are running more than one tool from a single unit, you should add the CFM of the tool, and then multiply the total by 1.5. also, you should be looking for a machine with a psi between 125 and 150 PSI.
Finally, a tank capacity between ten and 30 gallons should be enough.
Medical compressor prices may vary widely depending on a number of factors. In general, the prices of portable compressors with about 130 psi, 4 HP and a CFM between 10 and 15 range between $800 and $1,400.
As a rule, the higher the CFM, the more the medical compressor will cost. Thus, a portable unit with around 170 psi, 7 HP, and a CFM of about 20 may cost over $2,000.
Stationary units are considerably pricier. A stationary medical compressor with a PSI up to 120 can have an engine that can deliver more than 70 HP and its CFM can exceed 180. Such a unit may cost anywhere between eleven and seventeen thousand dollars.
The most expensive stationary air compressors for hospital use have massive 500 HP engines, over 120 PSI and CFM of over 2,400! Their prices can reach over $95,000.
Medical Air Compressor Maintenance Checklist
When speaking of the maintenance of a medical air compressor, or set of units, it should first and foremost be emphasized that this is not one man’s job.
- A scroll compressor needs maintenance annually. A regular inspection of the unit includes:
- Change of the tension belts if worn out. Belts should also be tightened regularly.
- Tip seals should be changed after every 10,000 hours
- Bearings should be greased with quality grease type EP 3 to avoid overheating
- Replacement of tip seals – Tip seals should be regularly replaced since their faces and the elastic parts suffer damages that may go beyond repair.
- O-rings, seals and exhaust valve should be replaced, if necessary
- Pump must be inspected regularly to prevent failure and unexpected downtime.
- Change and tighten belts regularly
- Replace piston rings if worn out
3. Medical Air Compressor For Ventilators
These units deliver filtered and dried compressed air to patients in very serious, potentially life-threatening conditions, who have been connected to a ventilator for life support.
These compressors fall in the so-called Category 1 Care Devices, which includes systems that deliver compressed air in a capacity in which any interruption could cause harm to a patient, such as life-support systems or ventilators.
These compressors are also equipped with high temperature and low pressure audible and visual alarms. Almost all models deliver oil-free air. They have low noise levels and high flow output for demanding hospital environments.
The standby function guarantees that whenever the central gas supply is interrupted, the compressor will automatically start up and deliver compressed air as needed. The medical air compressors for ventilators must also have clear user interface, as well as bright indicator lamps for alarms, power and air source.
Another defining characteristic of the medical air compressors specifically manufactured for ventilators is their convenient maintenance, ensured by means of their modular design. Most of them require standard consumables and are also equipped with a working hours meter.
Frequently Asked Questions
In this section I am going to answer in great detail to some of the most common questions related to the use, operation and maintenance of medical air compressors.
What is Medical Air Used for in Hospitals?
Medical air is used for a variety of patient treatments. For example, many patients with extremely delicate respiratory systems rely on a pure, accurate concentration of medical air.
Such patients are the neonates, and those patients suffering from adult respiratory depression syndrome. Medical air is also used during anesthesia as a substitute for nitrous oxide to reduce the high concentration of oxygen exposure.
Intensive patient care requires ultra-clean, purified medical air delivered to operating theatres and hospital beds with absolute reliability.
The medical air supply in a hospital is a vital life-supporting service, maintaining respiration of the critically ill during mechanical ventilation. All medical air system compressors and dryers are specifically designed to meet these strict requirements. They guarantee an uninterrupted air supply 24/7.
Medical air is most often manufactured on-site. This is done by sucking outside air into a medical air compressor which is connected to the piping system of the hospital.
In extreme situations, when the quality ambient air is very poor, medical air can be produced from blending nitrogen and oxygen under high pressure in huge cylinders.
Which Medical Equipment Uses Compressed Medical Air?
Here we are talking about devices such as flowmeters, blenders, anesthesia machines, and critical care ventilators. The group also includes instruments that exhaust into the pharynx such as dental tools and pneumatically powered surgical tools.
Medical air should not be used for non-medical applications such as powering pneumatic operated doors, engineering, or maintenance needs.
Why is the air purification function important to a medical air system?
While it is clear that medical air needs to be pure, what is the best approach for ensuring medical-grade compressed air quality?
In all compressed air systems, ambient air is drawn into the compressor, and any contaminants present in the ambient air plus those introduced by the compressor itself will be present in the compressed outflow unless removed by a purification system. The most common contaminants are CO2, dust, oil and water vapor, microorganisms, aerosols, rust, etc.
Most medical air systems use both a particulate filter and a carbon filter to guarantee 100% purity of the outflow. This ensures that no contaminants over 0.01 microns are present in medical air.
Additionally, any lubricant vapors or odors will also be removed, further improving the air quality of the compressed air.
Do Air Compressors Come With a Warranty?
Most units come with a standard 5-year warranty, although its coverage may vary, depending on the manufacturer or the vendor. Separate warranties may apply on specific components of the unit.
These components include, but are not limited to the drive motor, air-ends, variable speed drive, gaskets and rings, suction/discharge valves, and air/fluid receivers.
Many manufacturers may also offer a service level agreement (sometimes abridged as SLA). These agreements extend beyond the standard warranty period and offer preventive maintenance services against a small fee. Most manufacturers offer SLAs with either an annual or monthly fee for their repair and maintenance services.
Some of the components that may need regular checkups and maintenance include air filters, electrical connections, valves, and traps. Belt tension should also be checked on a regular basis.
How To Prepare Medical Air Compressors For The Winter?
In cold weather, medical air compressors may experience slow startup and control line freezing. In addition, the condensed water ducts may also freeze. To tackle these issues, you may install several heat lamps close to the lines. to prevent freezing.
- Before the winter comes, make sure that the insulation of the units is intact. If not, repair it as needed.
- Inspect and seal air leaks around the movable unit
- Make sure that all condense water drains function as expected. Excess water in the compressor’s lines make freeze and crack them up.
- Inspect all air intake openings and make sure they are protected from rain and snow.
Medical Grade Compressed Air
Air compressors are widely used in hospitals, dental practices, and veterinary clinics. As we established above, not all units are the same. Some are designed for general applications in hospitals, while others are built to supply medical air to patients with severe respiratory issues.
Because of its healing qualities, medical air has actually been classified as a medicine. Its supply in large metal cylinders can be quite costly and therefore it is produced on-site with the help of special medical-grade air compressors.
There are two main categories of medical air compressors – reciprocating and scroll – and these fall into two sub-categories – portable, and stationary. As a rule, the higher the unit’s CFM is, the higher its price.