Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) machining requires a cooling system to avoid overheating. Coolant may be the most common solution, but in most machining situations, it just can’t compare with vortex tube compressed air when it comes to affordability, safety, and maintenance. 

At Arizona Vortex, we specialize in vortex tube compressed air technology cooling solutions. We want to help you understand how coolant compares to vortex compressed air so that you can choose the right machining cooling solution for your needs. 

Pros and Cons of CNC Machine Coolants

Straight oil coolants consist entirely of petroleum. 

  • Pros: Best coolant for lubrication and prevents rust.
  • Cons: Fire risk, poor cooling capability, and can result in a harmful mist.

Soluble oils are a mixture of petroleum oil, emulsifiers and other additives.

  • Pros: Leaves a protective coating on machine parts and offers rust protection.
  • Cons: Most difficult to clean and can create an unsafe work environment due to misting and slippery precipitation.

Synthetic fluids are a chemical cutting fluid that do not contain any petroleum or mineral oil.

  • Pros: Cleanest out of the four types of coolant and less toxic.
  • Cons: Prone to creating a mist that can negatively affect your health.

Semi-synthetic fluids are a chemical cutting fluid made from a combination of synthetics and soluble oils.

  • Pros: Easy to maintain and provides sufficient lubrication.
  • Cons: Can result in deposits of hard water scum and foam up easily. 

Is Coolant the Best Option for CNC Machining?

Coolants flood the work area of a CNC machine before draining into a sump at the bottom of the machine. After this process, the sump pumps out the coolant to recirculate through the machine again. While coolants offer lubrication, rust protection, and cooling solutions for CNC machines, they also come with many disadvantages. 

  • Coolants are toxic when inhaled, and can cause dermatitis on contact with skin.
  • Other machine fluids can easily contaminate it, making it useless.
  • Because coolants get recirculated, they need regular cleaning and can be expensive to maintain.
  • Because they are hazardous to the environment, disposing of coolants requires following some very strict guidelines.

Vortex Tube Compressed Air Solutions for CNC Machine Cooling

Vortex tube compressed air technology is a better cooling solution for CNC machine parts than coolants, because it offers the same benefits without all of the disadvantages. For example, compressed air doesn’t involve any moving parts, so there is no need for maintenance. Overall, compressed air is less expensive, less messy, and much safer than machine coolant.

CNC Machine Cooling in Arizona

While coolants are an effective cooling solution, they aren’t always the best option for CNC machining. Vortex Compressed air is a more cost-effective, environmentally friendly solution. At Arizona Vortex, we manufacture a variety of reliable compressed air products for various cooling applications. Call 928-684-5733 today to discuss the best cooling solution for your machinery.

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