Maintenance for Rotary Screw Compressors

Rotary screw compressors are usually quite easy to look after. Like any equipment though, you’ll need to ensure regular maintenance to get the best out of your gear.

Why is Maintenance for Rotary Screw Compressors Important?

If you want long-lasting, efficient performance, you’ll need to perform regular maintenance tasks. You can also save money by preventing larger issues and expensive repairs and ensuring maximum uptime. Protect the viability of your operations by performing regular preventative maintenance.

Rotary Screw Maintenance Tasks

While rotary screw compressors are designed for heavy duty use, it doesn’t mean they’re invincible. They have some key components that need to be checked regularly.


The airends are probably the most important component, so checking them regularly is strongly recommended. The airend is where the air pressurisation occurs, and you should check for the following issues during every inspection.

  • Overheating
  • Corrosion
  • Improper Lubrication
  • Too much pressure
  • Condensation
  • Vibrations and bearing noises
  • Oil seal leaks

Drive Train

The drive train basically guides all of the internal mechanisms, so it needs to be perfectly aligned in order to work correctly. If there’s a problem with your drive train, you’ll probably notice some of the following issues, so make sure you’re checking it regularly.

  • Out of alignment
  • Worn belt
  • Not enough lubrication
  • Incorrect belt tension


Needless to say, the motor is integral to a rotary screw air compressor. Most of all you can avoid issues by ensuring good ventilation and correct lubrication. Look for the following issues when you’re inspecting the motor.

  • Not enough grease/lubrication
  • Hardened grease
  • Melted grease
  • Incorrect or mixed grease
  • Too much grease/lubrication


Rotary screw air compressors have three main filters. There’s the air/oil separator, as well as the oil filter and inlet filter. If you don’t want contaminants through your system, you’ll want to check the inlet filters every 2000 hours and the fluid filters every 1000 hours. If there’s problems, here’s what you may notice:

  • Lower air quality
  • Contaminated components
  • Excessive airend wear
  • Oil contamination
  • Overheating system


The oil in a rotary screw air compressor needs to be the right consistency and free of contaminants. You’ll want to make sure the oil doesn’t become leaky, diluted, acidic, too runny or contaminated. Most importantly, don’t mix new and old oils. Clean them out before replacing to ensure proper system function.

How Often Do You Need Rotary Screw Compressor Maintenance?

Daily: At the end of each day, check the control panel displays to make sure all your readings are normal.

Weekly: Check the condensate drain and clean if required. Also keep a record of the readings for your motor, gearbox and compressor.

Quarterly/Bi-Annual: Depending on use, make sure you service all your filters every 1000-3000 hours of use.

Get Expert Advice on Rotary Screw Compressor Maintenance

Here at Airtools WA, we can provide specialist expert advice on rotary screw air compressor maintenance. To prevent costly issues and keep your system running efficiently, contact us today for a huge range of products, the best service, and the right advice every time.

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