Leave your compressor on?

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I got a weird letter from Eastwood telling me to turn my scroll compressor off whenever unattended --due fire risk.

I called them and got some of the back story, but I'm not curious how common it is for people to leave their shop compressor on overnight?

The tech support guy told me someone has a hose burst and the compressor ran non-stop until 'it filled the garage with smoke." I could see a compressor burning itself out, but wondering it the fire risk is a design flaw unique to this compressor, or would be true with any compressor that ran non-stop....?


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I don't have a scroll compressor, just a generic 80gal tank/motor on top type. I left it on one night and a coupling broke resulting in it running for at least 10 hours straight.

No smoke the next morning, but the shop smelled like hot oil for a couple of weeks. It definitely wasn't good for the compressor as I now have some oil seepage and need to do oil changes more frequently.


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I have Kaeser SM11 Rotary Screw Compressor & dryer, The compressor is 10HP.Kaeser is the Porsche of compressors and priced like a Porsche too! It's always turned off at night along with the dryer.No reason to have it run.It runs all my cnc VMC's and bead blaster & general line air with air to spare all with super dry air all day long.

I would shut off any machines at night if their not being run or used.I am in a commercial building so it's a bit different then a home shop.Being in Santa Clara the power can go off at any time which if I left something in the on position and the power came back on and I wasn't there, I am not sure I would want that.


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I had a big Craftsman compressor which did a great job for 30+ years. It could handle big power tools. I'd turn it off when not in use. I say more important is keeping the unit lubricated as well as the power tools. It finally pushed out a rod and locked-up.

I have a smaller Briggs & Stratton compressor today. It does a great job for everything except the big power tools. I turn it off when not using it as well. At my best time, I was only a shade-tree mechanic.

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Bill in Bama
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I have a 5 hp Kellog that I took home from my business, ex-service station unit. It's older than dirt and looks it, and knocks like crazy on start-up, but has been behaving that way since I've had it. I plug it in when I need it and leave the power off otherwise, as the pressure switch tends to stick if ileave it running. Gotta fix that some day! So there's no chance it will keep running, but if I ever fix the switch I'll keep it powered up so there's always 150 psi available.

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I turn mine off when not in use. I also have a valve to turn off the air supply. Forgot to turn it off one time and a few days later heard it running.


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