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Old 03-20-2013, 10:22 AM   #15
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What size compressor depends on who is doing the work.

If a shop is doing it, they charge by the hour. Obviously, the time should be kept to a reasonable limit.

On the other hand, someone that is doing it at home, and has tons of time, can use almost anything.

5 HP compressors down to bicycle tire pumps, all supply air.

There are 2 bottom lines.

1. Who is doing the work.

2. The end result, which is known when the water system is put back into service. Leaks or no leaks?

Andy
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:40 AM   #16
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The ones that have oil in them will last alot longer. They do contaminate the air with oil and they have oil separators you can put in the line but for blowing out your water lines a little oil won't hurt anything. The oil free compressors are for consumer use and will eventually wear out. They are considered disposable. I have seen brush motors on these oil free compressors and the brushes wear out as well.

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Does it matter if you use an oil less compressor or one that has a crankcase? The one I have needs to have the oil checked and added to now and then, must go somewhere. Seem to recall it wasn't a recommended compressor for painting for that reason. Have to wonder if it also puts a small amount of of compressor oil into the water lines??? Is there a filter that will trap the oil?
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Old 03-20-2013, 11:50 AM   #17
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I think you need to put anti freeze in the lines after you blow it out. I use one of the oil less compressors for everything in the shop. After 15 years it is still going fine and I paint some with it and run air tools.
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:40 PM   #18
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We burned one of the oil free ones out at the lab in a year. The motor died. It was some sort of brush motor similar to a vacuum cleaner motor. The brushes wore out or the armature shorted. If you use one everyday all day it will wear out. Most consumers don't put that kind of use on one. For about another $100 over the cheap ones you can get a cast iron two stage compressor. I have an old Sears 1HP cast iron compressor and it is probabably 30 yrs old. I had to replace the unloader valve once and the bearings in the electric motor once. The compressor I change the oil in in every few years.

The old cast iron compressor is A LOT quieter than the direct drive oil free jobs.

Perry
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Old 03-21-2013, 08:52 AM   #19
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This takes less than the 10 minutes the instructions on the inflator say is maximum run time.
I have no idea how you do this in ten minutes. I would love to watch sometime. I probably take half an hour. In part this is because I want to be absolutely certain I got the water out, and check every faucet multiple times.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:15 AM   #20
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I have no idea how you do this in ten minutes. I would love to watch sometime. I probably take half an hour. In part this is because I want to be absolutely certain I got the water out, and check every faucet multiple times.
Yep, me too, and I live in Texas.

Had an Argosy with copper tubing freeze once, and the repair was a real PITA, so guess now I'm if anything, too cautious.
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Old 03-21-2013, 09:49 AM   #21
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When I hook up the inflator, I let it run for three minutes or so before turning on faucets. It builds up to about ten pounds of pressure. I don't have a hot water tank bypass. If one is used, pressure would build much faster and one would have to be careful not to go over 40 pounds. That is where a more expensive air compressor with a pressure regulator would be an advantage.
The inflator doesn't have an air tank. The hot water tank serves as one and some pressue remains in the system after a faucet is run because of the volume of air in the hot water tank and the fact that not all that much escapes through each faucet. I turn off each faucet before turning on another, taking care to blow out the sprayers and hot and cold water on Moen single lever faucets.
When I start turning on faucets at first all I get is water and then water and air. I turn on each faucet multiple times until all I get is air, no bubbly sound indicating water in the pipes. When you get only air, how much more do you need to put through the system?
As I said in my original post, I would suggest rv anti freeze for copper lines. I don't put rv anti freeze in my fresh water system as I don't like its taste, smell or oily feel and I don't like the expense of the 3 or 4 gallons necessary.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:28 AM   #22
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I use a 5hp, 60 gal with an additional filter and regulator to clear my lines. I set the regulator to 60 psi. Almost didn't make it time this winter when we had a stretch of mid 20's. I also put RV anti-freeze in all the traps too.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:29 AM   #23
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When I start turning on faucets at first all I get is water and then water and air. I turn on each faucet multiple times until all I get is air, no bubbly sound indicating water in the pipes. When you get only air, how much more do you need to put through the system?
For me, this step takes a long time, and I start with the lowest things - the low-point drains, then the outside faucet, and so on. Maybe the plumbing in your trailer is just that much simpler or something - fewer elbows, that kind of thing. We also have a water filter with separate faucet at the sink, so there another place or two where water can get caught (the filter comes out to be replaced with a plug for that purpose, but it's still more connections that can trap water). Or maybe yet another flaw in Polybutelene is its resistance to being drained well.
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Old 03-21-2013, 08:01 PM   #24
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i do have a simple system. Small trailer, no outside faucet, no water filter, ect. When I had a 40 foot motorhome with lots of piping, filters and connections, I let the dealer do it.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:10 PM   #25
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Anyone ever try a leaf lower? Not a lot of pressure but the air moves fast. Just wondering.....
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Old 03-22-2013, 07:58 AM   #26
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Haven't tried one, and although a lot of pressure is not needed(compared to a compressor's capabilities), I don't think a leaf blower would have enough pressure. Just my opinion.
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Old 03-24-2013, 07:46 PM   #27
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i do have a simple system. Small trailer, no outside faucet, no water filter, ect. When I had a 40 foot motorhome with lots of piping, filters and connections, I let the dealer do it.
Yeah, and I gotta say, when I removed the plug in the water filter holder, a bunch of water came out. I was certain the lines were empty. Fortunately no harm done, I guess it didn't get cold enough and/or there wasn't enough water in there. My guess is that since I was winterizing in freezing weather, some ice formed before I got the lines clear. Next year I'll keep pressure or maybe even heat in there until I start winterizing (this time I think I drained the system then drove home for two hours, then started winterizing an hour or two later).
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