If you're interested in finding the best air compressors on the market, you've come to the right place. Air compressors different uses in industrial, residential and personal home applications. You can use an air compressor for spray painting, and if you are a carpenter, it will come in handy when using pneumatic nailers. Keep reading to learn more about air compressors and which one might be right for your needs.
We have compiled this Product FAQ section to answer the most frequently asked questions about air compressors.
1. What Is an Air Compressor?
An air compressor is a machine that uses compressed air to convert electrical power into a more useful form of kinetic energy. This is due to the design of the air pressure. The air pressure releases air in quick bursts. During this process, it emits kinetic energy which is harnessed for a wide range of uses such as filling tires, cleaning purposes and pneumatic device activation.
Air Compressors are categories in three ways:
- Low-pressure compressors with a discharge capacity of 150 PSI
- Medium-pressure compressors with a discharge capacity of between 151 to 1,000 PSI
- High-pressure compressors with a discharge capacity of over 1,000 PSI
2. How to Choose an Air Compressor
If you use your air compressor for industrial use, such as corking large amounts of petroleum, then the best air compressor to have is a large capacity air pressure. If you prefer convenience, then a portable air compressor is best.
The best air compressor, in this case, is one that can pack more air. The more the pressure in an air tank, the more the air it has. This means it can be used for an extended period before it needs to be refilled.
The best air compressor is one that comes with an accessory kit. These kits give value for money as one does not have to buy all the tools required.
Professions such as carpentry will require one to have a portable air compressor. This is why one should find a device that balances between capacity and weight for portability.
Here, the best air compressor is one that is covered longer by a warranty. This will save you money as defective products will be repaired.
A dBA measurement indicates how loud an air compressor is when it is operated. You should always go for a device with the lowest dBA possible, especially if it is to be operated in a residential area.
3. Choosing a Home Based Air Compressor
Several factors are to be considered when choosing the best air compressor for residential use. These factors include portability, dBA, and capacity. Portability is important especially if older people will need to move it up and down stairs. A device with a lower dBA will not disturb your family as much during use.
Capacity is essential and will be determined entirely by the size of your house/ land and its application. If the house is small, then the best choice should be highly portable with low pressure. The bigger the house, the bigger the capacity needed.
4. Choosing a Work Based Air Compressor
Unlike choosing a home-based air compressor, choosing a work based air compressor is complicated and will mostly depend on the profession. If you are a contractor who moves from place to place in search of opportunities, then a portable air compressor may be best. The same applies for roofing work. If you are involved in large-scale renovations, then multiple smaller units would be ideal to compliment with a larger unit for bigger jobs.
5. Where to Buy Our Best Air Compressors?
All our best air compressors can be bought on Amazon prime. It's also possible to buy them in brick and morter stores such as Lowes or Home Depot.
How We Reviewed
The following products were reviewed based on the following parameters; features, pros, cons, price, where to buy, and the warranty offered with each product
Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)
Though higher priced products have more features such as accessory kits, this is not always the case. Some products may be cheaper because of discounts offered.
What We Reviewed
The following products made it to our top ten best air compressor list. They are:
- Makita MAC700 Big Bore 2.0 HP All In Compressor
- Dewalt DWFP55130 Heavy Duty 200 PSI
- Porter Cable PCFP02003 3.5 Gallon 135 PSI Pancake Compressor
- California Air Tools CAT – 10020
- Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 Portable Quiet Air Compressor
- Bostitch BTFP02012
- Industrial Air ILA3606056
- Viair 00088 88P Portable Air Compressor
- EPAuto AT-010-1Z
- Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor
Makita MAC700 Big Bore 2.0 HP All In Compressor
- Cast iron pump with big bore cylinder and piston, combined with greater bore and stroke, delivers maximum performance
- Substantially lower noise levels with a large 1,720 RPM pump, enabling greater displacement at lower RPM
- Low amp draw reduces incidences of tripped breakers and voltage drop that can cause premature motor failure
This is a powerful compressor with a 2.0 HP motor to power it. It boasts a low AMP draw, low noise, and fast recovery once the air inside is depleted. To ensure it is efficient, it has a large automotive filter which helps in increasing air intake. For convenience, it has an oil sight glass that makes it easy to maintain the device.
There is a one-year limited warranty offered with this product.
Dewalt DWFP55130 Heavy Duty 200 PSI
- 3.0 SCFM delivered at 90 PSI pump, 2.5 gallon tank and 200 max PSI ; Pump Speed 2,300 rpm
- Durable oil Free pump provides extended maintenance Free operation
- Low 71.5 dB allows for quieter operation;High flow regulator for increased Performance
It boasts of a capacity of 2.5 gallons and a maximum PSI of 200. Its noise level is around 75.1 dB, and its high-flow regulator enhances its performance. It is easy to start the device because of its 12 amp motor which helps in reducing breaker tripping. It is portable as it weighs around 36 lbs. It also has a compact design that makes it easy to carry.
It has a one-year warranty.
Porter Cable PCFP02003 3.5 Gallon 135 PSI Pancake Compressor
- 2.0 SCFM delivered @ 90 PSI pump, 3.5 gallon tank and 135 max PSI for longer run time and quicker recovery
- Durable oil-free pump for long life and no maintenance
- Low Amp 120V motor
This air compressor boasts a unique design that gives it portability. It is easy to carry and store because it weighs around 26 pounds. It uses an oil-free pump and a 120v motor that is not affected by cold weather. It has a tank capacity of 3.5 gallons and a maximum PSI of 135. It is suitable for home use because it has an 82 dBA sound rating.
There is a three-year limited warranty on this product.
California Air Tools CAT – 10020
This air compressor has a capacity of around 10 gallons and boast a 2HP motor. It is easy to transport because of the inbuilt wheels and is ideal for home use as it has a 70 dBA noise rating. It is fast to fill, taking less than 130 seconds to fill a 10-gallon tank. It is easy to maintain due to its oil-free pump.
Has a one-year limited warranty.
Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 Portable Quiet Air Compressor
- QUIET: The DC080500 air compressor is up to 50% quieter than comparable compressors, producing just 68 dBA which it...
- VERSATILE: This compressor is perfect for inflation, hobby painting, stapling, fastening, nailing, and bolting projects
- DURABLE: The compressor's key components last up to four times longer due to its oil-free, maintenace free, dual piston...
Unlike other best air compressors on this list, this only has an eight-gallon capacity. It is heavy to carry around as it weighs around 67 pounds. To help in portability, it has a rubberized steel handle and large inbuilt wheels. It is best for inflating, nailing projects, and painting, as it has a maximum pressure of 125 PSI.
Has a one-year warranty
- Note:Item does not includes hose or gun kit
- 150 max PSI 6.0 gallon tank (22.7 L) and 2.6 SCFM* delivered @ 90 PSI pump
- High efficiency motor for easy start up in cold weather
This unit has a pancake-style tank with a capacity of six gallons. This air compressor has a maximum pressure of 150 PSI. One unique feature is that it is an oil-free compressor, and this increases its lifespan. It is portable and weighs around 29lbs. It has a high-efficiency motor and a noise level of 78.5 dBA.
This unit has a one-year limited warranty
Industrial Air ILA3606056
- cast iron, twin cyclinder, oil lubricated pump
- one-piece cast iron crankcase and 12 inch caast iron crankcase
- 240 volt heavy duty induction motor
The Industrial Air has an impressive design with a cast iron pump and a maximum pressure of around 155 PSI. Unlike other best air compressors on this list, this one operates using oil, as it uses an oil lube pump. It has a capacity of 60 gallons and is powered by 240 volts. Other features associated with this pump include a toll-free customer helpline for instant assistance and an on/off pressure gauge switch.
This compressor comes with a two-year limited warranty.
Viair 00088 88P Portable Air Compressor
- 12 VOLT - 120PSI Max Working Pressure, engine must be running during use.
- 1.47CFM Free Flow @ 0 PSI.Max. Amp Draw: 20 Amps
- Portable air compressor powered via alligator clamps direct to battery.
Where portable compressors are needed, then the Viair is what you should consider. It is light and uses rechargeable batteries to operate. It is suitable for inflating tire wheels, as it has a maximum PSI of 120. It has accessories such as a 16-foot hose and an inflation kit. In case it runs out of power, it has two alligator clamps that one can use to connect to a car battery.
A one-year warranty comes with this compressor.
Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor
- Cast iron pump with Big Bore cylinder and piston is engineered to provide faster recovery time for improved performance
- Low AMP draw reduces incidences of tripped breakers at start up. The 4.2 gallon twin stacked tank sustains an operating...
- Pump is oil lubricated for cooler running temperatures and reduced wear. Built in thermal overload for additional motor...
This air compressor boasts of twin stacked tanks. It has a capacity of 4.2 gallons and a maximum pressure of 130 PSI. Unlike other compressors, it does not come with any accessory kit. The tanks fill up fast due to the bore and stroke design. It is made using a cast-iron cylinder and weights around 81 pounds.
This has a one-year limited warranty.
All our top ten best air compressors on this list are worth your time and money. However, the compressor will only be best for you if it solves your individual needs. If you are looking for a compressor that is best to use at home and is portable, then we recommend the Porter Cable PCFP02003.