When disassembling a damaged compressor, identify the parts as they are removed so that when they are to be examined, their relative positions within the machine can be determined. For permanency, mark the parts with either a metal scribe or permanent magic marker-to prevent slugging when handled.

The above image – Using a numbering system to identify rod assemblies will indicate from which cylinder an assembly was removed and whether the cylinder is unloading or non-unloading.

lf, for this example; it is found that damage is confined to non-unloading cylinders only, the difficulty may have occurred while the compressor was fully unloaded.

This is the type of information that is helpful when reconstructing the conditions that led up to the failure. In addition to identifying parts that are removed, look at the general condition of each part in the compressor.

  • Are certain parts clean and undamaged ?

(If so, make notes of this)

  • If the general condition Is dirty, what type of contamination are you looking at ?

Much can be determined at this point if you can identify soot, varnish, hard carbon, sludge, copper plating, rust, or powdered contaminants such as aluminium or flaked or rolled bits or metal and relate these findings to areas of the compressor or individual parts.

  • Are the valves broken; If so, where and how ?

Even If extensive cleaning is needed to view the damage, the information obtained may be of extreme value when making the final analysis.