prove costly to the Navy. It also requires
more extensive repair to system components.
As a senior Utilitiesman, you must be able to
c o o r d i n a t e m a i n t e n a n c e e f f o r t s . An
understanding of the maintenance required for
each component will assist you in carrying out
this type of duty.
PRIME MOVER MAINTENANCE
Air compressors can be driven by diesel,
gasoline, and electrical prime movers. These
power-producing items of equipment require
the same maintenance as any prime mover
used to drive other equipment encountered by
Establish a definite lubrication schedule.
Normal oil levels in engines must be
maintained at all times, using lubricants
recommended by the manufacturer. The
frequency of oil changes depends on the
severity of service, atmospheric dust, and dirt.
These factors also affect the filter and in the
case of electrical motors, the need for regular
lubrication of bearings.
Daily operator maintenance prevents most
breakdownsm Following the suggested
maintenance requirements of the manufacturer
helps to reduce downtime caused by prime
AIR COMPRESSOR MAINTENANCE
Taking into consideration the many types
of air compressors the Utilitiesman may
encounter in the field, it is impossible to cover
all the maintenance requirements of air
compressors in this section. Several common
factors do apply to all compressors.
The establishment of a lubrication schedule
is at the top of the list for ensuring trouble-
free operation of compressors. A definite
schedule and assignment of responsibility for
maintenance personnel to follow are required.
The manufacturers manual establishes
minimum requirements that should be
Bearings, packing, seals, and clearances
between moving parts must be within the
manufacturers specifications and be included on
the maintenance schedule. Many compressors
allow for adjustment while others require
overhaul when clearances are exceeded.
Visual inspections for dust, dirt, or leaks
provide early detection of possible maintenance
requirements. Operator maintenance, when
conducted properly, can help you catch and
correct potential problems early. Ensure all of
your operators know how to operate the
equipment. In all cases, you should use the
manufacturers manual when making repairs or
All auxiliary equipment that services the air
compressor or is serviced by the compressor
requires periodic scheduled maintenance. Air
filters should be checked and cleaned at least
once a month. Silencers should be checked twice
a year for corrosion, paint, and gasket damage.
Intercoolers and aftercoolers must be inspected
for scale buildup in hub leaks and so forth. In
general, all auxiliary equipment must be placed on
a schedule for inspection and periodic
Distribution systems require a minimum of
maintenance. Checking valve operation, hose
connecters, draining condensation (manual or
automatic), protecting piping from damage, and
repairing leaks are the most common
considerations in a maintenance plan.
Procedures applicable to the preventive
maintenance inspections for compressed air plants
can be found in NAVFAC MO 209, Steam, Hot
Water, and Compressed Air and NAVFAC P-
717, Preventive/Recurring Maintenance
Handbook. For more involved technical
maintenance, such as overhauls, make sure
competent personnel are trained before they are
needed. Again, follow the manufacturers manual
to repair any air compressor component.