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Thread: Compressor issue confusing me.

  1. #1

    Compressor issue confusing me.

    Ingersoll 5HP compressor about 15 yrs old.

    Last summer I found it running away – smoke was everywhere, the compressor hot enough to boil water. Shut it down, took to compressor repair shop, they said the unloader valve failed. They replaced regulator and it ran fine for about 6 months.

    A couple weeks ago it wouldn't turn on until I pressed the reset button on the motor. Today was the second time, when I hit reset button on motor, it started up, & seemed to run fine and made pressure, except it wouldn’t turn off.

    What got my attention was I heard air leaking while it was running. I found it was coming from the unloader valve. When I shut it off, the unloader valve closed after a few seconds like normal.

    I should mention about 2 months I replaced regulator because the on-off lever broke. It was running ok at the time. I replaced it with the same model the comp shop used.

    I will say the regulator is a Pumptrol, not an IR original, but I figured the comp shop knew what they were doing. The cutoff pressure is 150.
    Last edited by Robert Engel; 11-27-2020 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #2
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    What pressure was the tank reading when it did not turn off?
    Is the compressor worn and not making enough pressure to achieve shutoff setting?
    Unloader valve should not be active until pressure switch shuts off.
    Might try adjusting high end pressure downward
    good luck
    Ron

  3. #3
    It was at 125 when I shut it off.

  4. #4
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    why 150? I would set it for 120 or less and re-pulley for more air flow. Does it have a pressure switch or just an unloader. Why did shop replace regulator.. How often have you changed the oil.
    If you have a pressure switch you need to have a separate motor contactor to handle the current.
    Bil lD
    Last edited by Bill Dufour; 11-27-2020 at 5:48 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Engel View Post
    It was at 125 when I shut it off.
    sounds like there is a mechanical problem with the compressor, might get lucky and a new set of valves would fix it.
    Right now it has to build pressure above nominal 150(155-160 actual) to shutoff

    Ron

  6. #6
    Update: I checked the regulator and found out its only rated for 20A.

    Sorry, the cut off is 125, not 150. I did notice one of the capacitors was much, much hotter than the other.

    Is there a start and run capacitor? How hot should they get?

    So it looks like the compressor shop put the wrong regulator on it, and so did I when I assumed they were right. Could have been a simple mistake pulling it off the shelf.

    Anyway LSS I've ordered an OE Ingersoll regulator.

    Now I'm wondering about the capacitor. Easy and cheap enough to replace so I think I'll do that, too.

  7. #7
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    You have me confused. regulators are rated at CFM not amps. Unloaders are mainly for engine powered compressors and really big motor powered ones like 100 horsepower and more.
    Bil lD

  8. #8
    I am not that knowledgeable, but since there is current flowing, it makes sense to me. I just know the motor is overheating, and I think it’s because the regulator isn’t working correctly.

    There may be another reason, but I haven’t gotten enough feedback so I’m going to put the OE regulator back on and see what happens.

    On the inside of the regulator cap-BABDC5D2-3359-454B-9FE6-9473DC9B59FF.jpg

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Dufour View Post
    You have me confused. regulators are rated at CFM not amps. Unloaders are mainly for engine powered compressors and really big motor powered ones like 100 horsepower and more.
    Bil lD
    My 5 HP has unloader so does my 2hp portable

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Engel View Post
    I am not that knowledgeable, but since there is current flowing, it makes sense to me. I just know the motor is overheating, and I think itís because the regulator isnít working correctly.

    There may be another reason, but I havenít gotten enough feedback so Iím going to put the OE regulator back on and see what happens.

    On the inside of the regulator cap-BABDC5D2-3359-454B-9FE6-9473DC9B59FF.jpg
    This is not a regulator. It is the pressure cutoff. It disconnects power from the motor at 125 psi. There should be an adjustment nut to set the ON pressure.

    There should also be a small tubing connection that vents the pressure from the compressor when it shuts off at 125 psi.

    A regulator maintains a constant downstream pressure as long as the upstream pressure is higher and the regulator flow rating is not exceeded.

  11. #11
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    Notice that the pressure switch is rated for only two horsepower at 240 volts, single phase. Unless this the control switch for a contactor designed for five horsepower it is likely the points have either burned or welded shut. I would guess welded shut in your case since the motor never shut off.
    Bil lD

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerome Stanek View Post
    My 5 HP has unloader so does my 2hp portable
    An unloader built into a little 2hp pump seems expensive. Does it really save any thing on the 5hp over a pressure switch? It does reduce the number of starts on the motor which will reduce motor wear I suppose. Does the 5hp have an oil pump and filter?
    Bil lD

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Dufour View Post
    An unloader built into a little 2hp pump seems expensive. Does it really save any thing on the 5hp over a pressure switch? It does reduce the number of starts on the motor which will reduce motor wear I suppose. Does the 5hp have an oil pump and filter?
    Bil lD
    I believe there are two different parts with the same name being used and confused in this thread.
    Engine driven compressors bleed off air above set point to keep air pressure regulated
    Electric compressors bleed air off of cylinders when pressure switch is open so that the compressor starts unloaded.
    Ron

  14. #14
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    Ron I think you are right. I now think he means the little pop valve on the pressure switch but he never said pressure switch.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Dufour View Post
    Notice that the pressure switch is rated for only two horsepower at 240 volts, single phase. Unless this the control switch for a contactor designed for five horsepower it is likely the points have either burned or welded shut. I would guess welded shut in your case since the motor never shut off.
    Bil lD
    Sorry for the mistake in terminology. Yes I’ll talking about a pressure switch, not regulator.

    What do you think about the capacitor getting so hot? Is that normal?

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