Drain needed on compressed air line?

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Old 11-30-20, 08:34 PM
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Drain needed on compressed air line?

My 30 gallon compressor is located in the basement (conditioned space) and I'll be running an air line up to my garage 15 ft away and 8 ft above. I plan on installing a 1/4 turn ball valve as soon as the line enters the garage followed by a regulator/dryer followed by a 50 ft hose reel. Should I tee off the outlet of the regulator and install a valve and drain? I'll be using copper and the length of copper line inside the garage will only be about 3 feet.
 
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Old 11-30-20, 09:33 PM
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Well - I have a 5hp 60 gallon tank.
I replaced the bottom drain with a "T" fitting.
One side has HF auto moisture drain that "burps" the system automatically.
The OTHER side has a hose and a spray nozzle.
I find that just using the drain/spray nozzle works fine.
 
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Old 11-30-20, 09:39 PM
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If you pitch all your plumbing back towards the tank..... you just need to empty the tank.
I never had an auto-burper. Good idea if the tank is in a remote location.
 
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Old 11-30-20, 11:00 PM
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In an ideal situation the feed line is pitched back toward the tank but that doesn't always work so a line drain valve is installed at each point of use as well as just outside the compressor, usually where the regulator is located. This is in addition to the tank drain,
 
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Old 12-01-20, 03:30 AM
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There is a drain on the bottom of the tank, then I have a ball valve with drain shortly after the tank in the basement downstream of a regulator/dryer for my adjacent wood shop. I'll be teeing off upstream of that regulator with an 8ft vertical/15 ft horizontal copper line to the garage, which is not accessible from the same area. In other words, the compressor is located remotely and separated by a concrete wall. Thus, going down to the basement to drain the tank and feed line is what I'm trying to avoid.

I'm not sure I understand what purpose a drain would serve in the garage considering the line will only be 3 ft long with a regulator/filter/dryer on the end (IR 2000 series). Surely there won't be any condensation draining back through the coiled up 50' hose of my reel. Seems like a drain below the tee fitting in the basement would make the most sense? I'll follow up with a rough sketch later this morning.
 
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Old 12-01-20, 05:23 AM
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I'm not sure I understand what purpose a drain would serve in the garage considering the line will only be 3 ft long with a regulator/filter/dryer on the end (IR 2000 series).
In an ideal situation the feed line is pitched back toward the tank but that doesn't always work so a line drain valve is installed at each point of use
That's just best practice, if not needed, don't install but for the cost of a small valve you have that extra bit of serviceability! Since your compressor is inside you are eliminating a huge condensate source. I rarely see any condensate from the lines, 99% forms in the tank!
 
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Old 12-01-20, 06:45 AM
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The drain has to be at the lowest point, i.e. at the bottom of the air tank.

Little or no condensation will form in the air hose, although if the hose is attached to a port at the bottom of the air tank, accumulated condensate may get into the hose.
 
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Old 12-01-20, 03:31 PM
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I checked my tank just now and at least a gallon of rusty water came out . Guess I'll leave the valve open for a few days so it can dry out and keep a better eye on it from now on.

So, does most of the condensate typically come from the line or from the tank itself?
 

Last edited by mossman; 12-01-20 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 12-01-20, 07:04 PM
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Maybe I'll consider an automatic drain valve. Except I wouldn't want it activating every 45 minutes. Maybe once a day. I could bypass the timer and install my own perhaps.
 
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Old 12-01-20, 07:23 PM
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Repeating
Unscrew the old drain, add a "T" fitting.
Put a HF auto-drain valve on one side, and the cheapest hose and spray gun you can find on the other.
Problem solved.
 
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Old 12-02-20, 02:35 AM
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So, does most of the condensate typically come from the line or from the tank itself?
Actually it comes from the compressor itself, it just collects in the tank!

You dont need anything automatic for a simple set up, just get a small bottle/can that fits (hang onto it) and drain the tank once a month/ Again, with the compressor in a conditioned space you've eliminated 80% of the humid air so youve eliminated 80% of the condensate!
 
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Old 12-02-20, 08:43 AM
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The act of compressing the air wrings moisture out of it.

The interior of the tank remains wet during normal usage. Almost always, with the compressor fully pumped up, the air inside will be at 100% humidity. The exception would be if the room humidity were very low and/or the set pressure for the compressed air is not very high.

Although draining the compressor tank is part of normal maintenance, almost no one bothers to dry out the inside of the tank because doing so is a length cumbersome procedure, suitable only if the workshop is being closed down for vacation. You have to leave the drain valve open and, every few hours over the course of a work day, run the compressor for a few seconds to change the air inside the tank without developing pressure..
 

Last edited by AllanJ; 12-02-20 at 09:07 AM.
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Old 12-02-20, 09:43 AM
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You're squeezing the air down to 1/8 the volume, which increases the relative humidity well above the dew point.
That's why the "auto drain" is a nice "install and forget" feature.
 
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Old 12-04-20, 05:34 PM
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Any reason to put a quick connect coupling on the outlet of the regulator that feeds the whip to the reel? I can't see a reason too.

I bought a magnetic proximity switch, which I plan on attaching to the handle of the shut off valve in the garage so that the auto drain only cycles when the air is turned on. I already have a DC controlled AC outlet box, so this will make good use of it.
 

Last edited by mossman; 12-04-20 at 05:59 PM.
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Old 12-04-20, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by mossman
Maybe I'll consider an automatic drain valve. Except I wouldn't want it activating every 45 minutes. Maybe once a day. I could bypass the timer and install my own perhaps.
The HF auto drain I'm using burps the tank once the compressor reaches full PSI and shuts off.
You add a small brass "T" at the pressure regulator and a stiff plastic pressure line down to the bottom drain.
Fairly easy installation.
 
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Old 12-04-20, 07:10 PM
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The HF auto drain I'm using burps the tank once the compressor reaches full PSI and shuts off.
You add a small brass "T" at the pressure regulator and a stiff plastic pressure line down to the bottom drain.
Fairly easy installation.
Are you saying it only burps once or is it on a timer?
 
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Old 12-04-20, 08:49 PM
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Just realized I wouldn't be able to attach the whip without some sort of disconnect or swivel connector on the end, so I guess I'll be installing a coupler.
 
 

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