Auto Service World
Feature   October 1, 2000   by CARS Magazine

A Manufacturer’s View

Ed Eardley, tool designer (and former technician) with pneumatic tool heavyweight Ingersoll-Rand Company, knows how technician use, and sometimes abuse their air tools. " (It's about) care of the tool...


Ed Eardley, tool designer (and former technician) with pneumatic tool heavyweight Ingersoll-Rand Company, knows how technician use, and sometimes abuse their air tools. ” (It’s about) care of the tool: Some mechanics will roll their tools across the floor like they are balls, and throw them back in the box. Others will clean it, lubricate it, rebuild it once a year. If they get any chemicals on it, they make sure to clean it off. O-rings, anvils, that sort of thing. We always say to oil daily. We see a lot of tools that come for warranty and they’re all rusty inside. We sell tune-up kits, because the rotors in the motor wear.” Eardley sees an “all or nothing” approach to air tool purchase in the automotive trades: “There are two different kinds of mechanics. One who won’t think anything about spending 250 dollars on a ratchet wrench and he’ll keep it clean. But another guy will spend 50 bucks on it, and the second it goes bad, he’ll just chucks it in the garbage and goes and buys more. You don’t do much for servicing on those. Air is quite important. Not just water, but if he gets a lot of particles in there, it will wear your insides away in your cylinders, your rotors and your vanes. You get water that swells and breaks down the o-rings, and actually can rust part of the insides, especially if they aren’t used every day. Many tools have a steel screen on the inlet to keep out larger particles, and that’s something that should be looked at and possibly cleaned out. In some of the tools, they come with mufflers shoved up in the handles; they get clogged. We’ve got tools back with the mufflers soaked in grease and oil. It’s not going to allow exhaust and the tool will under perform. In the field, the mechanics aren’t educated to that. They are aware of the water in the lines, but above that, they’re not aware of the particles in the air. There’s a filter and stuff on the compressing units, but they’re changed every few years.”

A MANUFACTURER’S VIEW


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