Cost of Running an Air Compressor

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Cost of compressed air is about 7 to 8 times more expensive than electricity. And this is something that you should remember any time you use compressed air for anything!

  • Electricity to operate

  • Maintenance

  • Equipment and installation

Annual Electricity Cost of Running an Air Compressor

4 Hours/Day 5 Hours/Day 6 Hours/Day 8 Hours/Day 12 Hours/Day
3 HP $384.04 $480.051 $576.06 $768.08 $1152.12
5 HP $640.06 $800.08 $960.10 $1280.13 $1920.20
7 HP $896.09 $1120.11 $1344.14 $1792.19 $2688.28
10 HP $1280.13 $1600.17 $1920.20 $2560.27 $3840.40
15 HP $1920.20 $2400.25 $2880.30 $3840.40 $5760.61
20 HP $2560.27 $3200.34 $3840.40 $5120.54 $7680.81
25 HP $3200.34 $4000.42 $4800.51 $6400.68 $9601.02

Assuming- Motor Efficiency: 0.80 | Electricity Rate $0.12/kWH 

Cost of Removing Moisture from Compressed Air

Dryer type Initial cost Additional Process Air Use Pressure/SFM Drop Additional Electricity Usage Operation Cost Annual Maintenance Costs
Compressor Controller Model R Low 0.5 – 1% None 0.01% (5W) None None
Deliquescent High 1% Low 0% High Moderate
Refrigeration High 5% Moderate 120..150% Medium Moderate
Membrane High 28% High 30% High High
Waste heat regenerative High 3 – 5% Moderate 60..75% Low Moderate
Desiccant heatless High 10 – 15 % Moderate 0% Medium Moderate
Desiccant heated or external blower High 8 – 12 % Moderate 50..70% Medium Hight
Exhaust Purge regenerative air dryers High 7 – 8% Moderate 80% Medium High

* Additional Electricity Usage is based from % of Air compressor or kW