Pneumatic tools are often used in dirty places. Whether you're in a mechanic shop with an outdoor garage area, on a construction site, or part of a tech rescue crew, there are times where these air-powered systems are simply the best option. Unfortunately, a lot can go wrong if there's a lack of proper protection, maintenance, and training for users. Here are a few protective and preventative maintenance concepts that need to be understood by anyone who wants to bring air tools to a job site with dirt, sand, and other debris risks:

Air Compressor Clogging And Destruction Risks

The air compressor is the key to all pneumatic systems, and while there are quite a few air compressor systems designed for rugged jobs, that doesn't mean you can just throw them anywhere. Service warranties are available, but that's time and money lost while you wait.

The best place to station your air compressor is a platform with some protection from the ground or the elements. In fair weather with a lot of dirt, sand, or other debris that could be kicked around by workers, this can be as simple as putting the air compressor up on a pallet or a milk crate.

Even better, put a few boards around the compressor to stop kicked-up dust from getting into the filter. Give about a foot of clearance to make sure that the system is still able to bring in air.

In rainy conditions, make sure to keep the compressor under a shelter. This means leaving it in a truck or putting a canopy on the bed of a truck. If you need to take the air compressor to areas where vehicles can't reach, bring enough equipment to put together a tent and be sure to have some boards to keep the compressor away from possible flooding.

Protecting Hardware From Pneumatic Locks And Leaks

"Never drop the gear."

This phrase has been instilled in many companies, military groups, and international aid projects. Many companies, military groups, and international aid projects still have issues with workers dropping their hardware. Sometimes it's an issue of fatigue, but other times it's just about not caring.

While it's not a good idea to encourage people who simply don't care, you still need to protect your investment. To avoid damaged hoses, broken release valves, and cracked end pieces, you may want to place padded work mats. Such mats are usually made out of rubber and have rugged treading to reduce slippage on smooth, factory-quality cement floors.

Heavy duty air tool hose material can take a beating, but long-term storage and poor handling can ruin anything. Along with new, durable hoses, be sure to place mounting hooks or wrapping spools for your equipment to give workers a proper storage area.

Contact an air compressor tools and accessories professional to discuss other ways to implement quality and safety at a basic, passive level.