Desiccant breathers remove moisture from the air taken in by machinery and equipment, helping to prevent the damage that can be caused by elevated humidity.
They are a small investment and one that should be made at the very start of a machine’s life span, to achieve the best possible impact and the maximum reduction in downtime over the years of use.
How to install desiccant breathers
To install a desiccant breather, use an appropriate mounting bracket to fit the breather securely to the transformer in need of protection.
For the best results, the desiccant breather should be installed directly to the transformer using the relevant bracket; however in confined spaces, it is sometimes possible to connect the two with a short length of pipe if direct mounting is impossible.
How to test desiccant breathers
Testing desiccant breathers is usually very easy, especially if the breather is installed in a position where you can inspect it visually.
A new desiccant breather should normally be a bright orange colour. Over time as the crystals absorb more moisture, this colour can fade to a pale yellow or, on some units, change to a dark green.
The colour chart attached to your desiccant breather should show the expected colour change, so that you can see exactly when the crystals need to be replaced.
Replacing desiccant breathers
When your crystals are ready for replacement, simply unscrew the charge and install a fresh charge.
The original charge should not be discarded, as it can be reactivated and used again. This takes a few hours and can be done using a breather dryer unit.