Recent problems with my compressor
Three or four years ago my compressor developed a very slow leak so I bought a new pressure valve assembly off Ebay. When it arrived I took a good look at the compressor and decided that it looked like a big job so I decided to live with the leak. Come now to about a month ago and the compressor leaked as fast as it was pumping, the leak being under the pressure switch assy. so I assumed that the unload valve was leaking, well you would, wouldn't you. I dismantled the pressure switch and all it's connections and the unload tube but when I came to fit the new switch the tank thread was bigger than on the new switch. I managed to get an adapter locally and finished the installation, stood back proudly as I powered up the compressor, my jaw dropped as the symptoms were exactly the same!
It was now time for a Google search and I spent a couple of hours reading articles and forums which didn't help at all so I had a rest then went back to Google and altered the wording yet again and BINGO, the very first article gave a comprehensive description of how compressors work, the article also included a paragraph which read something like this: When air leaks as fast as it's being pumped, it is NEVER the pressure switch, it is always the check valve and went on to describe what is't for ( to release the pressure in the cylinder so that next time it switches on it isn't under load which could trip the circuit breaker or damage the motor) and to clean or replace it. Well, I couldn't get out to the shed to find where such a valve lived, I had never seen one. It turned out to be ar the rear of the compressor and I soon had it in pieces, it just consists of a thick rubber washer and a rather delicate spring. There was a deep groove just like one sees when replacing a leaking tap/faucet washer. Because I had the compressor for about 17 years I doubted that I'd easily get a replacement washer so I set it up in the metal lathe and held a piece of wood with abrasive paper glued to it against the rubber until the groove was gone. After re-assembly it all worked like a dream.
The above happened on a Friday and the following day my good friend John came round with a couple of bowl blanks for me and I happened to mention the drama I'd had with my compressor and he looked at me in amazement and told me he was having identical problems and had also replaced the pressure switch, but now had it ready to take to a repair shop! He couldn't get home fast enough to see if my fix would fix his. About a half hour later he phoned and sounded very excited because his compressor was now fully operational.
Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a friend. - Plautus