Keeping up with preventative maintenance is a vital part of maintaining a compressor’s efficiency and lifespan. This requires periodic replacement of air compressor parts such as air filters, oil filters, and lubricants.
Pirate parts are reproduced from another manufacturer’s design without permission, for profit. Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts are manufactured specifically for the equipment for which they were designed.
Although pirate parts may come at a cheaper price upfront this is oftentimes at the sacrifice of performance. In some cases, pirate parts may cause a compressor to run less efficiently.
Fit, form, and function are three key aspects of any aftermarket part. They ensure that the compressed air system will continue to meet the requirements it was engineered to achieve. Replacement parts must fit the compressor correctly so that operation is flawless. Parts that are not fitted properly could even affect the function of the unit downstream.
Even if the pirate part fits properly, the end-user must be aware of the form of the part. This includes shape, size, and weight. Generally, pirated parts are made without regard to quality and often from the cheapest materials. Using aluminum for a part originally designed with stainless steel could result in a pirated part that has a much different weight and size in comparison to the OEM part.
The function of an OEM part is the most difficult aspect of the part for a pirate company to replicate. OEM parts go through specific quality testing to ensure that they will perform as designed under a defined set of conditions. Additionally, trusted vendors that are experts in producing their specific products manufacture OEM parts. Pirate parts show little consistency in quality as vendors change frequently to maintain the cheapest sourcing.
An air filter is a perfect example of the importance of correct fit, form, and function. An OEM air filter with a lower micron rating and a greater amount of pleats provides better filtration, as the increased surface area offers more protection against small particles that could make it past the filter. A pirate part that is manufactured to less stringent guidelines would have a higher micron rating and would lead to the introduction of larger particles to the machine, over time allowing wear to occur to compressor components.
Many OEM air compressor spare parts come with the added reassurance of warranty coverage in instances of malfunction, wear, or failure. Sellers of pirated parts are not held to these same higher accountability standards. These sellers are not interested in investing time and money into creating a quality product.
Ultimately, centrifugal air compressors are engineered machines that require periodical maintenance using specially designed and tested OEM parts.
Contact your authorized FS-Elliott channel partner or sales representative for more information on properly maintaining your centrifugal compressor with high quality and dependable OEM parts and services.