Bendix's remanufactured BA-921 air compressors are now available for sale in the commercial vehicle aftermarket.  -  Photo: Bendix

Bendix's remanufactured BA-921 air compressors are now available for sale in the commercial vehicle aftermarket.

Photo: Bendix

Bendix's remanufactured BA-921 compressors for Detroit Diesel 2007 EPA and 2010 EPA DD13 and DD15 engines are now available for sale in the commercial vehicle aftermarket. Previously, the air compressor was only available through limited channels. 

“The BA-921 is one of the most popular compressors on the road today, and now it’s easier than ever to replace with a genuine Bendix remanufactured version, which means you’re getting original equipment manufacturer quality and reliability, along with a competitive price,” said Richard Nagel, Bendix director of marketing and customer solutions for the aftermarket and air supply, in a press release. “Factor in Bendix’s more than 45 years as a remanufacturing leader and 24-month warranty, and you’re looking at an incredibly dependable means of reducing replacement costs, extending vehicle life, and reducing total cost of ownership for fleets and owner-operators.”

Know Your Reman

A true remanufactured component must be rebuilt by an original equipment manufacturer, such as Bendix. The component incorporates a mix of internal parts and features inspected and refurbished for reuse by Bendix and brand-new parts from the very same suppliers the manufacturer uses for original equipment. Internal parts that exhibit high levels of wear during normal operation – gaskets and bushings, for example – must be replaced with original spec parts identical to the ones used in a brand-new product.

Pistons, connecting rods, bearings, and fasteners used in a truck’s air compressor undergo a great deal of stress, and the compressor’s head and unloading valves can experience carbon buildup. They remain potential failure points if they’re not replaced as part of the reman process.

“There are crucial differences between real reman components and those that are often labeled ‘rebuilt,’” Nagel said. “For instance, a rebuilt air compressor might be cheaper – but it also might just be cleaned and repainted, with wear parts that are either being reused or replaced with inferior versions. This means you can’t guarantee that the component will perform to the original manufacturer’s specifications, which can lead to failures or system damage down the road.”

OEM-level remanufacturers conduct the same post-production testing as performed on OEM components to ensure proper performance levels.

Commercial vehicles today are using compressed air for more non-braking functions, including automated manual transmissions and emissions controls. 

“A clean, dry air supply is essential for today’s trucks, and compressors should pass only a minimal amount of oil, which is needed to lubricate the piston rings,” Nagel said. “The BA-921 unit has always been known for low oil passing, and only genuine Bendix remanufactured compressors maintain that performance. One of the reasons is that we re-hone the piston bore and match the new bore diameter with a new and properly sized piston during remanufacturing.”

Over time, a compressor bore gets worn and scuffed, losing its precise original fit with the piston. Re-honing a piston restores that fit, which is key to ensuring the piston passes just the right amount of oil during operation. A small amount is necessary to lubricate the compressor, but too much oil passing risks contaminating the air supply – which can lead to significant problems.