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Piston / Reciprocating Air Compressors

The reciprocating piston compressor is the most commonly used as it is the cheaper option in terms of compressors. They are an industry staple due to their longevity and broad applications.

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ADVANTAGE Series Two Stage Piston Air Compressor by Champion

Improved Multi-Finned Pump Design with the addition of an Air-Cooled Aftercooler, Control Panel, Automatic Tank Drain, and Low-Oil Stop Control.

25 Configurations Available
Ready To Ship
25 hp20 hp15 hp5 hpPricefy10 hp2 Stage Air Compressors230 volt3 phase Air Compressors1 phase208 Volt3 phaseShopping Feed15 hp Piston Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors20 hp Piston Air Compressors25 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors20 CFM Air Compressors175 PSI Air Compressor7.5 hp
$3,999.00 – $13,579.00
View Details

AR Professional Tank Mounted Piston Air Compressor By Atlas Copco

5-7.5HP Aluminum Pump Piston Compressor with Magnetic Starter

8 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
175 PSI Air CompressorPSI 170-1807.5 hp5 hpPricefy10-15 CFM2 Stage Air Compressors20-30 CFM3 phase Air CompressorsOutdoor-UncoveredShopping FeedOutdoor-CoveredPiston230 volt1 phase460 volt3 phase5 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors15-20 CFM20 CFM Air Compressors
$1,870.00 – $3,635.00
View Details

CR Industrial Series Duplex Piston Compressor By Atlas Copco

5-10HP Cast Iron Duplex Piston Compressor: Options with TEFC Motor and NEMA4 Starter Box

16 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
30 CFM Air CompressorsFree Shipping175 PSI Air CompressorPSI 170-180Horizontal Piston Air Compressors5 hpPricefy10 hp2 Stage Air Compressors30-40 CFM3 phase Air Compressors40-50 CFMShopping Feed70-80 CFMOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredPiston460 volt3 phase5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors
$9,513.00 – $17,809.00
View Details

CR Industrial Two Stage Piston Compressor by Atlas Copco

5-15HP Cast Iron Piston Compressor: Options with TEFC Motor and NEMA4 Starter Box

20 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
10 hp Piston Air CompressorsFree Shipping7.5 hp Piston Air CompressorsPSI 170-18015-20 CFM10 hp20 CFM Air Compressors20-30 CFM30 CFM Air Compressors30-40 CFM80 Gallon Air Compressor40-50 CFM175 PSI Air CompressorOutdoor-Uncovered7.5 hpOutdoor-Covered15 hpPiston5hp230 voltPricefy1 phase2 Stage Air Compressors460 volt3 phase Air Compressors3 phaseShopping Feed15 hp Piston Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors
$4,575.00 – $10,156.00
View Details

Gas Power Series Piston Air Compressor By Atlas Copco

13-14HP Gas Powered Piston Compressors: Honda and Kohler Engines

3 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
PricefyFree Shipping2 Stage Air CompressorsPSI 170-180Shopping Feed10-15 CFM20-30 CFMOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredPiston15 hp Piston Air Compressors20 CFM Air Compressors175 PSI Air CompressorHorizontal Piston Air Compressors30 Gallon Air Compressor15 hp13 HP14 HP
$3,012.00 – $3,912.00
View Details
IronAir

IronAir Series Tank Mounted Cast Iron Reciprocating Air Compressor By Mark

Made To Last Workshops rarely offer ideal conditions for machinery. They can be dusty and dirty, which is why you
Ready To Ship
15 CFM Air CompressorsPSI 170-18020 CFM Air Compressors10-15 CFM80 Gallon Air CompressorOutdoor-Uncovered175 PSI Air CompressorOutdoor-CoveredPricefyPiston2 Stage Air CompressorsMark208 Volt230 voltShopping Feed1 phase460 volt3 phase15 hp Piston Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors20 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors
$3,104.80 – $10,080.00
View Details
Clean-Air-CNR75-base-mounted

Oil-Free Two Stage Reciprocating Air Compressor By Chicago Pneumatic

Advanced CleanAIR technology you can count on: Inside the CNR you will find the very best in oil-free compression technology
8 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
PSI 140-15020-30 CFM30-40 CFMOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredOil FreePiston230 volt460 volt3 phase20 CFM Air CompressorsPricefy2 Stage Air Compressors3 phase Air CompressorsShopping Feed
$10,155.00 – $16,137.00
View Details

Pressure Lubricated PL Series Piston Compressors

Designed for marine and automotive applications when your compressor could be unlevel. Loadless auto stop/start. Tank or Base Mounted

Some Models In Stock
230 volt1 phase460 volt3 phaseTri-volt (208/230/460)7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors20 CFM Air Compressors7.5 hpcfmPricefy2 Stage Air Compressors3 phase Air Compressors208 Volt575 VoltShopping Feed
$8,705.00$4,787.00
View Details
QP

QP Series Pressure Lubricated Reciprocating Compressor By Quincy

Designed for tougher 175 PSI applications where traditional splash lubrication won’t measure up.

75 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
2 Stage Air CompressorsPSI 170-1803 phase Air Compressors5 hpShopping Feed10-15 CFMOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredPiston230 volt1 phase460 volt3 phase5 hp Piston Air Compressors20 CFM Air Compressors175 PSI Air CompressorHorizontal Piston Air CompressorsPricefy
$4,372.94 – $10,852.81
View Details
QT Duplex Series

QT Series Duplex Piston Air Compressor By Quincy

Powerful Performance The Quincy QT reciprocating piston air compressor is more than just your typical splash-lubricated two-stage. The highly efficient,
36 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
15 hpPSI 170-1805hp10 hpCFM 10-15Outdoor-UncoveredPricefyOutdoor-Covered2 Stage Air CompressorsPiston3 phase Air Compressors230 voltShopping Feed1 phase460 volt3 phase15 hp Piston Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors175 PSI Air Compressor7.5 hp
$7,646.15 – $20,093.77
View Details
QT Series

QT Series Two Stage Piston Air Compressor By Quincy

Designed for maximum productivity, reliable choice for light industrial applications.

99 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
175 PSI Air CompressorPSI 170-1807.5 hp10 hp15 hp10-15 CFM5hpOutdoor-UncoveredPricefyOutdoor-Covered2 Stage Air CompressorsPiston3 phase Air Compressors230 voltShopping Feed1 phase460 volt3 phase15 hp Piston Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors20 CFM Air Compressors
$3,446.37 – $9,242.06
View Details
R-Series

R-Series Piston Air Compressors By Champion – Simplex

Improved Multi-Finned Pump Design with the addition of an Intercooler, Oversized Main Bearings, etc. Does not include Aftercooler.

94 Configurations Available
Ready To Ship
20 CFM Air Compressors20 hp7.5 hp5 hp25 hp10 hp3 hp30 hp15 hp230 volt2 hp1 phase5hp460 volt2hp Piston Compressors3 phase3 hp Piston Air CompressorsTri-volt (208/230/460)30 HP Piston Compressor15 hp Piston Air Compressors2 Stage Air Compressors5 hp Piston Air Compressors3 phase Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors208 Volt20 hp Piston Air Compressors575 Volt25 hp Piston Air CompressorsShopping Feed7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors
$2,725.00 – $3,250.00
View Details

RCP-C Iron Series Duplex Two Stage Reciprocating Air Compressor By Chicago Pneumatic

10-20HP Cast Iron Duplex Piston Compressors

10 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
Tri-volt (208/230/460)Free Shipping15 hp Piston Air Compressors20 hp10 hp Piston Air CompressorsPSI 170-18020 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp20 CFM Air Compressors30-40 CFM175 PSI Air Compressor40-50 CFMHorizontal Piston Air Compressors50-60 CFM15 hp60-70 CFMChicago Pneumatic PistonsOutdoor-UncoveredPricefyOutdoor-Covered2 Stage Air CompressorsPiston3 phase Air Compressors230 volt208 Volt1 phaseShopping Feed460 volt3 phase
$7,837.00 – $10,578.00
View Details

RCP-C Iron Series Two Stage Gasoline Engine Reciprocating Air Compressor By Chicago Pneumatic

11-16HP Two Stage Gasoline Piston Compressor

4 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
Shopping FeedFree ShippingPSI 170-18010 hp20-30 CFM30-40 CFMOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredPiston20 CFM Air Compressors175 PSI Air CompressorHorizontal Piston Air Compressors30 Gallon Air CompressorChicago Pneumatic PistonsPricefy2 Stage Air Compressors
$3,981.00 – $5,596.00
View Details

RCP-C Iron Series Two Stage Reciprocating Air Compressor By Chicago Pneumatic

5-10HP Iron Piston Pumps | Assembed in USA

26 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
7.5 hp Piston Air CompressorsPSI 170-18015-20 CFM5 hp20 CFM Air Compressors10 hp30 CFM Air Compressors20-30 CFM175 PSI Air Compressor30-40 CFM7.5 hpOutdoor-UncoveredChicago Pneumatic PistonsOutdoor-CoveredPricefyPiston2 Stage Air Compressors230 volt3 phase Air Compressors1 phase208 Volt460 voltShopping Feed3 phaseTri-volt (208/230/460)5 hp Piston Air Compressors10 hp Piston Air Compressors
$3,298.00 – $6,257.00
View Details

RCP-QP Two Stage Quiet Enclosed Reciprocating Air Compressor By Chicago Pneumatic

5-7.5HP Quiet Enclosed Two Stage Piston Compressors

4 Configurations Available
Some Models In Stock
PricefyFree Shipping2 Stage Air CompressorsPSI 170-1803 phase Air Compressors20-30 CFMShopping FeedOutdoor-UncoveredOutdoor-CoveredPiston230 volt1 phase3 phase7.5 hp Piston Air Compressors15-20 CFM20 CFM Air Compressors80 Gallon Air Compressor175 PSI Air CompressorChicago Pneumatic Pistons
$5,427.00 – $5,944.00
View Details
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Piston/Reciprocating Air Compressors Available

The true workhorse of the compressed air industry is the reciprocating air compressor, also known as the piston compressor. These compressors rely on piston-driven crankshafts to pressurize the air and increase density while decreasing volume. Energy is stored in the air in the form of pressure and heat. 

Reciprocating air compressors can vary depending on the application and situational requirements. Oil-lubricated piston compressors are the most common in the 5-30 HP range. If you’d like to learn more about the types of different compressors, click here. If you are unaware of the differences and do not work in medical air or any other high-quality air application, oil-lubricated will most likely be the best fit.

Piston compressors were the industry staple for many years; in some industries, they still are. Typically, they are used with high compression ratios (discharge to suction pressure) without a high flow rate. This compressor works best for high-pressure, low-flow rate systems, which explains why it is the choice for 5-30 HP. These units move less air (CFM) than higher horsepower systems while keeping the air under similar pressure. 

 

The Basics of Reciprocating Air Compressors 

Before compression occurs, air must be transported into the chamber to be compressed and put under pressure. In reciprocating air compressors, this is done by the rotor spinning and pulling the piston down from the top. Suction is created from this motion, and air will fill the chamber until the piston reaches the farthest point from where the air entered.

As the rotor continues to spin and the piston head begins to move back up, the piston’s force closes the inlet. This allows the piston to do its job by compressing the entire chamber full of air into a much smaller space. This air would then exit the first stage and continue to the second chamber, which repeats the compression process in a smaller area to increase the overall PSI.

Not all piston compressors use multiple compression stages; only applications that need to achieve a higher PSI need dual-stage compression. Compressed air travels to the second compression stage and passes by an intercooler to reduce the temperature. This intercooler is necessary as compression drastically increases the temperature of the air. 

Heat results from compression, and if you compress the air again without cooling it, the temperature will reach extremes that your equipment cannot withstand. Any time you have multiple stages of compression, it is essential to have the proper steps in place to keep the air within a manageable temperature.

Whether the air goes through one stage of compression or two, the outcome after the final stage will be the compressed air being moved downstream to be treated for use. This air can go directly into storage, filtration, or another airline. Air has to keep moving so that the compressor can continue making compressed air to meet your demand. 

 

Reciprocating Piston Compressor Considerations

When choosing a compressor, the reciprocating compressor is going to be the cheapest initial investment, especially when looking at scrolls or variable-speed drives. Reciprocating air compressors have a simple construction and relatively easy maintenance. Even though these compressors may have more moving parts, those parts are relatively cheap due to the more traditional design.

These machines are the go-to for high-pressure, low-flow situations and systems that require intermittent use. Their relatively simple design makes maintenance easier to understand and perform. 

There are a few downsides to going with a reciprocating air compressor that we need to address because nothing is a perfect one-size-fits-all in this industry. Due to the nature of piston compressors, they are noisy and often require their own room or a sound-isolating box to keep the noise bearable. 

Not only are the machines loud, but the air they create holds a lot of heat and has oil emulsified into it. This can cause a high outlet temperature of the compressed air, and as we know, this can hurt your equipment. The pistons are oil-lubricated, so oil gets in the air as part of the process, and this can cause oil buildup in the piping over time, hurting the health of your equipment or causing unforeseen downtime.

Piston compressors can last years when used in the right environment. Overworking these compressors leads to early malfunctions and a decrease in lifetime. If you take care of your equipment, it will take care of your production for years.

To learn about our other compressor options: Shop Now

 

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