Powermax plasma cutter preventive maintenance

Posted on 06/18/2020 in Setup and support, Plasma cutting

During this video we will outline the five different areas to check on your Powermax plasma cutter to optimize performance and help prevent future cutting problems.

The five topics include:

  • the torch body
  • torch lead
  • consumables
  • filter
  • inside of the plasma cutter

Before you start

When performing preventive maintenance checks on your plasma cutter, turn the power switch off, disconnect the power cord, and make sure the gas supply is disconnected before proceeding.

Inspecting the plasma torch body and lead (every 3 months)

  1. First remove the retaining cap and consumables, and set them aside.
  2. Examine the condition of the o-ring on the torch main body for rips, cracks or tears. If the o-ring appears dry, apply a small amount of Hypertherm lubricant. In the event the o-ring is broken, replace it with a new Hypertherm o-ring and apply a small amount of lubricant before continuing.
  3. Inspect the torch body for cracks and exposed wires.
  4. Inspect the brass threads of the torch body for any signs of damage. Replace any damaged parts.
  5. Rotate the torch and locate the electrode seat inside the main torch body. Examine the electrode seat for any pitting that may occur over time.
  6. The main torch body has three vent holes that may become blocked with slag or debris. These can be cleaned with clean compressed air.
  7. Inspect the safety trigger and confirm proper operation.
  8. Follow the torch lead from the base of the handle to the quick disconnect plug looking for any cuts or cracks. If any of the items mentioned are damaged or defective, contact your local Hypertherm distributor for the correct replacement parts.

Inspecting the consumables (daily)

  1. Start by checking the external retaining cap for burns or cracks from prolonged usage.
  2. The electrode and nozzle should be inspected as a pair because they wear evenly. Start by examining the back of the electrode for excessive pitting and the pit depth of the hafnium in the center of the electrode. The pit depth should be no greater than one point six millimeters or one-sixteenth of an inch. A non-round orifice on the nozzle will indicate excessive wear.
  3. The swirl ring surface should not show signs of excessive wear or cracks. Make sure the gas holes are not deformed or blocked.
  4. When assembling the torch components, the retaining cap should be finger tight only. Overtightening the retaining cap can damage the swirl ring by compressing it. If any of these conditions are found, replace the damaged parts with new genuine Hypertherm consumables. Refer to your Hypertherm Operator Manual for proper reinstallation of the consumable set.

Inspecting the filter and bowl

  1. Remove the filter and bowl. Depending on the machine you are using, the procedure may differ, but inspection of these components will remain the same. For further information on how to remove the filter and bowl for your machine, refer to the Hypertherm Operator Manual.
  2. After the filter and bowl are removed inspect the filter element for dirt, oil, or debris. Replace the filter if these contaminants are found.
  3. Wipe away any oil or condensation from the filter bowl with a clean dry towel.
  4. Inspect the o-ring at the top of the filter bowl. If the o-ring is cracked or torn, replace it with a new Hypertherm o-ring. Note: the size of the o-ring will differ depending on the type of filter bowl your machine is using. Consult your Hypertherm Operator Manual for o-ring replacement and filter bowl installation instructions.

Inspecting and cleaning the inside of the plasma cutter (every 6 months)

  1. To access the inside of the machine for the Powermax30, 30 XP, 45, and 45 XP, remove the two Phillips-head screws on each side of the handle. You may need to gently pull up on the handle to remove the screws. Gently tilt the tops of the front and rear panels away from the unit to pull the handle out. Slide the cover off.
  2. For the Powermax65, 85, 105, and 125, remove the torx screws from each side of the machine. After the screws have been removed the cover of the machine will slide straight up.
  3. Hypertherm Powermax systems are internally divided into two sides, “clean” and “dirty”. The dirty side of the machine may collect debris while in use. Use a vacuum to clean any dirt that may have collected and then compressed air to blow away remnants in a safe direction.
  4. After cleaning replace the cover, handle, and screws depending on the Powermax model you are using. Reconnect the input power, input gas line, and turn the power switch to the “on” position.
  5. You are now ready to cut!

For more how-to videos that can help you get more from your plasma system click here

Click here to find the digital copy of your system’s operator manual


If you are experiencing problems with your Powermax system, contact your Hypertherm distributor or authorized repair facility for assistance.





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