Many Air Compressors are not built to be run continuously and some need time to rest between uses.
The term Duty Cycle refers to the percentage of time an Air Compressor can run before needing time to cool down. The Duty Cycle of an Air Compressor is often expressed as a percentage of a certain amount of time, usually being 10 minute periods. That is, the Duty Cycle measures the proportion of time an Air Compressor can run against the amount of time needed for it to cool.
For example, the Firestone Super Heavy Duty Air Compressor has a 30% Duty Cycle and can be run for 3 minutes, it must then rest for 7 minutes. However, the Firestone Ultimate Duty Air Compressor has a 100% Duty Cycle and can be run continuously without a cool down time. These air compressors usually cost a little more but they are a time efficient alternative to lighter duty Air Compressors.
The Duty Cycle of an Air Compressor is calculated by dividing the total run time by the amount of time the compressor can run before resting. For example:
D = R / T with ‘D’ being Duty Cycle,‘R’ being run time before resting and ‘T’ being the total time.
30% Duty Cycle = 3 minutes run time / 10 minutes total – So an Air Compressor that can run for three minutes before needing to rest for 7 minutes has a 30% Duty Cycle.
Conversely, by knowing the Duty Cycle the run time can be determined by multiplying the Duty Cycle by the total time (usually 10 minutes). For example:
R = D x T
3 minute run time = 30%(.3) Duty Cycle x 10 minutes total – So an Air Compressor that has a Duty Cycle of 30% can run for 3 minutes before needing to cool for 7 minutes.
The below table is based on a 10 minute total time.
||Cool Down Time
||Standard Duty Air Compressor FIR9284
||Super Heavy Duty Air Compressor FIR9285
||Heavy Duty Air Compressor FIR9335
||High Duty Air Compressor FIR9270
||Ultimate Duty Air Compressor FIR9287