If you use an air curtain in your business, as with any equipment, it will eventually need to be replaced. Air curtains can gather a lot of dirt, dust and gunk that can make it harder for it to function, and could eventually cause the air curtain to stop working altogether. You can, however, take some steps to extend the working life of your commercial air curtain.

Air curtains, also called air doors, are used most commonly on exterior commercial doorways in the food industry to create an invisible barrier of air between the inside and outside of a facility, to keep insects out and regulate temperature. Sometimes air curtains are required by regulation at loading docks. Specialized businesses like botanical gardens and aviaries may also use air curtains, usually paired with a commercial glass door or a “doorway” of thick, plastic strips. Whatever your reasons for installing one, you can get the most life out of your air curtain with a few simple commercial door maintenance routines:

  • Clean plastic strip doors and other equipment regularly. Different air curtains have different cleaning methods, so go according to manufacturer’s instructions. Some air curtain systems have air-cleaning filters that can be cleaned or replaced.
  • Wipe down your air curtain at least every 3 months:
    • Brush off air curtains and any plastic strips in the doorway.
    • Wipe down the air curtain unit’s interior workings.
    • Make sure never to use harsh chemicals or bleach when wiping down the air curtain.
  • Check the belt on belt-driven units regularly for degradation, stretching or tearing.
  • Check the connections periodically to ensure the air curtain mechanism is functioning properly and without any obstructions.

Clues of impending maintenance issues

Following these tips can also help you be aware of when it’s time to repair or replace your air curtain. The lifespan of an air curtain can vary widely, depending on the quality of the product, how it was installed, and how well it has been maintained. But here are some tell-tale signs that it may soon need repair:

Noise: Fans go out of balance and components can break. If you hear excessive noise from the fan, it may need replacement.

Airstream falters: If the air stream is inconsistent or gets weaker, it’s probably time to replace the unit.

Ceases operation: Depending on how old the unit is, if it quits working it may make more sense to replace it than to try to get it fixed.

Your local commercial door repair and installation company will know what to do. They’ll be able to diagnose the problem and tell you if it’s a simple repair or if your air curtain is a lost cause. Then they can perform the repair or replacement for you. And if you know you’ll slack on maintenancing your new air curtain? Contract the company for regular visits to ensure it stays working like new for as long as possible.