Tips for Cold Weather Operation of Pneumatics

Frozen moisture in air lines is a major problem in many areas during the colder months, and can create problems for users of pneumatic vibrators.

The following suggestions can help with the problem:

  1. Use Alcohol:  When lines run from a heated building to an outdoor area, dew forms and can freeze. To help prevent this from happening, a small amount of alcohol can be added to the air stream. Install an extra lubricator (metal bowl) down stream from the present lubricator. Fill with alcohol and adjust the flow. All devices down stream (regulators, valves, etc.) will be aided in this manner.
  2. Light Oil: Oil used outside in low temperatures may be thinned with kerosene or light fuel oil. We recommend the use of light oil (10W) such as Marvel ®Mystery Oil, mixed half and half with a thinner. This mixture is good to -25°F, and helps to produce slush instead of hard ice.
  3. Prep Before Outdoor Use: When a pneumatic vibrator is operated outdoors, alcohol or kerosene can be
    squirted directly into the air hose along with equal amounts of lubricant
    before each use.
  4. In Cold Weather Use After Coolers: Properly sized and installed after coolers are highly recommended in very cold climates to dry the air stream.

Remember –All pneumatic piston vibrators, pneumatic ball vibrators, and pneumatic roller vibrators should be installed with proper air-preparation components, including a filter, a regulator, and a lubricator to insure that the vibrator is run on clean, lubricated air. This will extend the life of the vibrator, and will help the vibrator to operate more efficiently with less maintenance. For more information on proper vibrator installation, please contact the Houston Vibrator Sales Department at 800.320.4044, or