Desiccant breathers are an essential part of proper lubrication storage. They maintain the efficiency of your machines by keeping contamination and moisture from entering your lubricants. But what do you look for when selecting one?

We’ve got you covered. Let’s take a closer look at what features to consider when selecting a desiccant breather. Looking for more information on automatic lubrication systems and accessories? Check out the LH Travis blog.

The Operating Environment
The first thing to consider is what the operating environment of the desiccant breather will look like. How high is the level of contamination in the surrounding area? For particularly high levels, look for breathers with check valves and washdown caps to provide an extra layer of protection.

The Application
What type of equipment you’re using and the work being done are also important to consider. Will you use heavy equipment? Will you have limited space? Extreme environments? High vibrations? Look for breather models made for these types of application categories. 

Airflow Rate
The size of your breather will be determined by the required cubic feet per minute of airflow. Be sure to pick a breather with a higher capacity than what you require to give you an appropriate buffer. 

Reservoir Capacity
The capacity of your reservoir will affect how quickly your desiccant becomes saturated, as well as affecting headspace fluctuation. Carefully research breather models to better understand the relationship between reservoir size and desiccant capacity. 

Flow Characteristics
Every desiccant breather is rated for either continuous or intermittent flow. Each has its own particular benefits. Do your research so you know what your particular job calls for.

  • Continuous flow: Continuous flow breathers create a constant exchange of air, which means a constant protective barrier against contaminants. In high backflow risk applications, they also typically include check valves that prevent contaminants from reentering the system. 
  • Intermittent flow: Intermittent flow breathers conserve desiccant life over inactive period through a variety of features. Because they adapt to a machine’s operational rhythm, they also improve energy efficiency. In addition, they’re designed to handle dynamic start-stop cycles, allowing them to accommodate the changing demands of your machinery. 

Selecting the Right Desiccant Breather is Essential
For the best performance, you need to select a desiccant breather that is properly suited to your application by considering things like the operating environment, specific application, and more. Want more guidance on automatic lubrication systems and accessories? Contact LH Travis today to talk to our experts.