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5+Best Air Compressor Reviews 2017 & Ultimate Buying Guides

There are two types of pumps:

When buying air compressors we have to analyze well the options to take home a good product, since the choice is pretty wide. This article will show you some of the best air compressions.

This selection was made comparing the features and specifications of air compressors and analyzing the views of buyers to assess the level of satisfaction of purchase (delivery, technical assistance, etc.).

Here, we have compiled 5+ top rated air compressor covering the different uses and setups generally found.

Brief of 5 Best Air Compressor Reviews

best air compressor

Remember when we talked about the times where some users may have heavy usage for at home and/or commercial use? This is the air compressor that falls within that category.

The California Air Tools 5510SE Ultra Quiet and Oil-Free 1.0-HP 5.5-Gallon Steel Tank Air Compressor is an amazing option for having an alternative for at home usage


  • California Air Tools focused on creating an air compressor that is not only cost efficient, but eco-friendly as well. This air compressor boasts an amazing oil-free pump that allows for the user to enjoy cleaner air than your normal air compressor and better operation. With this feature pre-installed to the air compressor, it also boasts the capability of requiring less maintenance requirement, which will also save you money in the long road.
  • Many air compressors tend to be loud when in use and over time with consistent use. While this may not seem like the biggest benefit, imagine having to use an air compressor that is loud enough to cause a disturbance to your neighbors or those surrounding you. That could become a bit annoying with or without ear plugs. This air compressor allows for extremely quite use while simultaneously operating on 60 decibels. it is Ultra Quiet air compressor
  • The steel structure is important if you plan on having heavy use of an air compressor. It is recommended that you take very soft care of the air compressor. Nonetheless, it is understandable that you may have to maneuver it every now and then to different positions that could cause scratches/bumps.


  • It's big structure that we recommend you keep in a stationary area. It's structure may be difficult to travel with if you decide to. Physically carrying it and/or traveling with it in your car will definitely take up a lot of space. It could also leave imprints on soft surfaces as well (not stains, just imprints).

Are you searching for a new best portable air compressor that is quiet, cheap, oil-free, attached with a drain and suitable for light usage professional jobs (such as powering a nail gun or a stapler)?

The PORTER-CABLE C2002-WK oil-free UMC Portable Pancake Compressor could be a good choice for you.The PORTER-CABLE C2002-WK Oil-Free UMC Pancake Compressor weighs only 30 lbs, making it easy to carry with using the built in handle

This air compressor comes with 13 piece accessory kit that includes tire chuck with plug, tire gauge, blow gun with plug, 25′ x 1/4″ PVC air hose with coupler and plug assembled, three inflation adaptors, blow gun with OSHA safety nozzle and rubber tip..

The 120 volt, 0.8 HP motor, soft start motor fills the 6-gallon tank to a 150 psi (maximum) at a reasonable rate and provide an output of 2.6 SCFM at 90 psi. The motor also features a replaceable brush that ensures durability and longer life of the motor. The oil free feature ensures that oil does not seep from this compressor, which indicates no additional oil separator is needed.

The oil is sealed inside the unit for optimal use. This air compressor is suitable with most of the small air tools, which can make your entire tool collection more functional and useful.

This air compressor is pretty easy to maintain and less maintenance is needed, even if you use it often. special, it is a good small air compressor for your home

You need to only clean the exterior surface once in a week and check the safety relief valve once in a month.

The weight of this compressor is only 20 lbs. As a result, it is very easy to carry around within the job area.

The dimension of this compressor is 14 x 13 x 10 inches that indicate the small size of this compressor and a real bonus for those with limited shop space or when working in confined areas.

This air compressor uses a direct drive motor that provides a high effective operation for different types of jobs.​

This compressor is oil-free, which means that there is no need to checking and changing the oil.

This air compressor has one-gallon capacity and suitable for a range of remodeling, refurbishment, hobbies, and craft project.

The Makita MAC700 Big Bore 2.0 HP Air Compressor is a powerful and efficient air compressor that has been designed with a big bore pump and a cast iron cylinder that gives increased compression, faster recovery time and less noise.

The quality construction of this compressor also gives a great durability even under strenuous conditions.

The Makita MAC700 features a large, automotive style filter for better efficiency and increased air intake.

This air compressor comes with a 2.6-gallon tank which is able to sustain in 130 psi operating pressure.​

Not only this, it also has a low amp draw which will reduce instances of tripping circuit breakers and dropping of voltage that can cause premature failure of the motor.​

The Makita MAC700 is an oil-lubricated compressor means that it requires the regular oil change. Although its need to check the level of remaining oil before operating it, oil ensures longevity. Usually, oil lubricated air compressor have longer life spans than oil-less compressors.

From a full-time carpenter, a home shop owner, a weekend handyman to a remodeling contractor, all give positive comments and 5-star ratings to this air compressor.

They used this air compressor for filling tires, cleaning RC cars, pumping up a large inflatable pool, framing nailers and doing various other small projects.

The Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor is also beneficial for automotive purposes. If you know for a fact that your only use for an air compressor will be for emergencies regarding your car/vehicle, then this is the option for you.

This is the quintessential basic air compressor that is not too complicated to understand. It provides all of the basic necessities that you need including tank PSI and regulator PSI levels accurately.

The Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor is built with a compact structure that boasts portable usage. This is also a great starter air compressor for users that are investing in their first air compressor.​

With its small stature, you are able to station this virtually wherever you please without taking up too much space.

This air compressor can be kept in a small area within your garage or in the trunk of your car without weighing down most surfaces.

The pump that is pre-installed into the air compressor is oil-lubricated for the purpose of maintaining cool temperatures and preventing overheat during the time that you are using it.

As stated earlier, this is the air compressor that you can utilize for small tasks. While its capabilities are great for the size, you should not expect to complete major tasks with this air compressor.

We noted that the compact size is a benefit in regards to space and weight, however, this also means that you will have to pay close attention to maintenance.

It can easily become damaged or show signs of wear and tear if you handle it pretty roughly. It is in your best interest to take care of this air compressor with delicate hands because any wear and tear that does not fit within the manufacture’s warranty will become out-of-pocket repair expenses for you.

Types Of Air Compressors

Before buying an air compressor, it becomes mandatory to know about the numerous types of compressors available in the market as each has some important features that make every compressor different and suitable for meeting specific needs of the buyer. Following are some compressors

best small air compressor

  • An electric compressor is suitable for tasks that are performed inside, as they do not emit any exhaust. The voltage required for running them is the standard household capacity of either 110 or 120 volts. The main pros of this type are its suitability for indoor activities whereas its negative point is that it is not acceptable in places that have low voltage points.
  • The gas powered compressor is ideal for on-site jobs. The gas requirement is necessary for its running and as it emits fumes, it is precautionary to be using it as an outdoor application or at the worksite that has a well-ventilated option so that no harm occurs because of discharged fumes. The cons for such compressor are that it becomes impossible for using it in closed spaces.
  • The Oil-less compressor is low-maintenance devices that do not need oil for its running. Although these compressors are easily affordable because of low-expense but they have a low durability. Engines of such models are burned quickly, they are louder and their servicing is a bit difficult. Oil-free compressors are ideal for household use as they are cheaper and suitable for small applications.
  • Pancake compressor is for occasional use and that too on the small scale as it is very light and small, therefore easy to handle. Generally, such compressors have the low level of CFM, only a single tank and even the motor is comparatively less powerful. In most cases pancake compressor is best for household applications, for instance, inflating of sports equipment or tires. For limited space options, it is a boon come true and one of its important features is that it is electrically powered, making it ideal for indoor usage.
  • The portable compressor is mostly of non-stationary variety. Portability degree varies in every compressor from a range of ten to sixty lbs.
  • The single-stage compressor is in demand for applications needing low PSI. Its efficiency level is less as it has one piston that works in dual capacity of compressing and transferring air inside the tank. One of the negative aspects of such compressor is its efficiency level in comparison with a two-stage compressor as they are unable to achieve higher air pressures.
  • The two-stage compressor has dual pistons for air compressing and its transfer to the storage tank.

Air Compressor Buying Guides

Since the invention of air compressors, there is a rising demand for them for air compressors are faster, weigh less and are more powerful than traditional power tools. Because of their high demand the market is flooded with air compressors and they come in more than one variety.

Hence it becomes inevitable to keep certain points in mind before buying an air compressor. Here is a guideline:

Right Size

portable air compressor reviews

How long air tools can run before the compressor turns back on depends on the size of a compressor’s tank. Hence the size of a compressor’s tank is of utmost importance .Tank sizes are rated in gallons, and run from 1 gallon all the way up to 80 gallons

However bigger size means more money and added to it, portability is an issue. Air compressors with big tanks are generally stationary. Hence if you are looking for a portable air compressor, compressors with bigger sized tanks are not an option for you. In addition, to save money on bigger tanks power tools like nail or brad guns come handy.

These only use short bursts of air, and drain the tank very slowly which will save the recovery time for compressors. You should buy the biggest size tank you can afford. However, the most important thing to keep in mind while buying an air compressor is CFM and PSI which we will talk about later.

Right Power

small air compressor reviews

Another thing one should keep in mind is the power of the motor which is expressed in horsepower (HP). A standard compressor should provide 4 CFM at 100 psi per one horsepower.An air compressor’s horsepower rating matter as horsepower improves a compressor’s recovery time.

But horsepower will not make your compressor more powerful. Hence you should never go for more horsepower but less CFM.When checking a compressor’s horsepower, look at the “Running Horsepower” and not the “Peak Horsepower”.

Peak horsepower represents the surge of power a motor has when first starting and can be 1.5 to 3 times the amount of power generated during normal operation

Right Air Flow

best air compressor for home use

Via: www.wikihow.com

Compressors are measured in two main ways, PSI (pounds per square inch) and deliverable CFM (cubic feet per minute).The rate at which compressed air is delivered is measured in cubic feet per minute (CFM).While PSI or Pounds per Square Inch is a measurement of air pressure or force.

Hence these are the best indicators of air compressor power. If you will only be using one, the tool at a time uses the tool with the highest PSI and CFM requirement. If you need to run multiple tools at the same time, you will need to total the CFM‘s required by each tool.

For instance, if you need to run a 4 CFM @ 90-psi air gun and a 5 CFM @ 90-psi sander at the same time, then you need a compressor that produces at least 9 CFM @ 90 PSI. To save yourself from getting underpowered choose an air compressor that exceeds the PSI and CFM airflow requirements of your highest rated air tool.

However, most compressors will list their CFM at 90 psi or 120 psi.Some manufacturers use SCFM rather than CFM to establish consistent measurements since air expands and contracts at different temperatures. SCFM or Standard Cubic Feet per Minutes is a measurement of air volume over time at 60° Fahrenheit (15.6° Celsius).

Pump Type

best quiet air compressor

Via: ciasons.com

Single stage pumps are perfect for home use while two-stage pumps are best for industrial purpose.

Single-stage compressors are less efficient than two stage compressors at achieving higher pressures and are typically used for applications where a lower PSI is needed, (at or less than 120 PSI).

Oil-Lubricated and Oil-Free

best portable air compressor

Lastly, one should keep in mind if the air compressor needs oil lubrication.

Oil-free compressors are best for home use since they make the compressor portable while oil lubricated compressors are used in industries.

A List of Air Compressor brands

Air compressors are an important part of many mechanical processes including pump sets and ball mills. Hence they are a very common commodity that is required to purchase for large and small manufacturing and industrial units.

The market, however, is saturated with various brands providing their own specialty. Thus a clear analysis is required about the brands and what they offer. Also, note that the purpose you are buying for.

For example, if you are going to buy a compressor which you will use only sporadically, there is no need to get the top-of-the-line product. A simple reciprocating piston compressor would suffice for such cases. However, if you are purchasing for manufacturing needs, you may need to take a harder look at the brands and the type.

Ingersoll Rand Air Compressors

Ingersoll Rand Air Compressors

Via: www.ingersollrandproducts.com

Ingersoll Rand is a big brand manufacturer and a public company of not just air compressors but many other related tools such as blowers, electric tools, lifting tools, etc.

They are well known in the business for their quality products and great support. Ingersoll Rand is the best bet if you are purchasing for industrial needs and you don’t want to settle on something less. Apart from compressors they also provide solutions regarding residence, climate control and security along with specialization in refrigeration technologies.

Campbell Hausfeld Air Compressors

Campbell Hausfeld Air Compressors

Via: campbellhausfeld.com

It is a house hold name in the United States of America and is well known for their DIY and suitable for home products. You will find the perfect for-home tools and don’t cost a fortune and are perfect for your home or any kind of workshop. The oldest company from Ohio also manufactures and sells winches, generators, pressure washers and spray guns.

Dewalt Air Compressors

Dewalt Air Compressors

Via: www.dewalt.com

A part of Black & Decker, they manufacture compact air compressor units that use both of either diesel or electric motors. They provide compressors for contractor market which are portable in nature and thus are the perfect company from where you can hire compressors in case you need temporary access or have problems maintaining your own fleet of compressors.

Porter-Cable Air Compressors

Porter-Cable Air Compressors

Via: www.portercable.com

An American company, they are known to introduce many new power tools in the domain such as a helical-drive circular saw. Primarily being a manufacturer of power tools and under Black & Decker, you will get some quality products for your manufacturing units or workshops alike. Basically, they are the manufacturing/industrial domain counterpart of Dewalt under the same parents.

Makita Air Compressors

Makita Air Compressors

Via: www.makitatools.com

Makita is a top manufacturer of both professional and consumer power tools and based in Japan. They are famous for their line of high power generators of extreme robustness. Their air compressors are expected to feature extreme performance, reliability, and efficiency – a hallmark of all their products in general.

California Air Tools Air Compressors

California Air Tools  Air Compressors

Via: www.californiaairtools.com

They specialize in a particular set of air compressors i.e. oil-free, ultra quiet and lightweight compressors which are great for home and workshops as well. However, they also do have a line of oil lubricated compressor in case of need. Apart from this, they also sell all kinds of air tools and accessories – something which many big manufacturers skip in general.

In addition, there are many famous compressor brands such as:

BOSTITCH air compressor , Craftsman air compressor , Senco air compressor , Husky air compressor, Hitachi air compressor,central pneumatic air compressor, Industrial Air air compressor…

From the above analysis, if you have large scale needs and need the absolute best where cost is not the concern, Ingersoll Rand is probably the best bet. For anything else, weigh in your budgetary allocations and your exact needs.

Read on various types of air compressors and where to use what. You can also go through numerous reviews and ratings that you will find on several legitimate websites before deciding on the one. This will give you a clearer idea from where to buy your compressors!

How To Use An Air Compressor ?

An air compressor has a number of applications that we can use it for today. Depending on the type and amount of air pressure created, you can be sure that it will deliver on multiple uses in the end. 

When it comes to how to use an air compressor, it is not something that you can get to do it straight away. You have to go through several steps to ensure that your air compressor is working before applying it to various uses.

Initial Setup Stage

This is the most important part on how to use an air compressor. You would have to read the instruction manual to understand a few things about your air compressor. The product manual would have the important safety warnings you have to understand before you can even start using the air compressor.

It is during this stage that you have to check a few things on the air compressor too. Some of these things include:

How To Use An Air Compressor ?


  • check
    Checking the oil level
  • check
    Checking the air flow
  • check
    Connecting the compressor to the right power source

It is advisable to turn on your compressor and keep the compressor running for about 20 minutes to end up with a break-in with the air pump. It is during this part that your air compressor will build the air pressure to the cut-out pressure before it can automatically shut off.

Having the AUTO ON/OFF switch is important in making sure that you do not end up filling too much air pressure into the tank. Too much pressure could easily lead to the tank bursting.

Startup Stage

By now, your tank has air from the previous run, but still you have to be careful how you handle the air compressor. Before you can start up the compressor, you have to put the power switch in the OFF position. Proceed to place the compressor on a flat level surface. Carefully check the oil level and add new oil if it is necessary.

You will have to open the tank’s drain valve slowly to release the pressure from the system and in the process drain any moisture from the tank. It is time to close the drain valve if all the moisture is eliminated. You can now turn on the air compressor, especially after attaching all your accessories. Give it a few minutes to pressurize the air up to the cut-out pressure. This is the point where it goes off.

Shutdown And Storage Of The Air Compressor


Shutting down the air compressor is a simple method, but some people might end up doing it wrongly. There have been cases where the users simply unplug the air compressor directly from the power outlet. This could easily result in the damage of your compressor.

The simple process of turning off the compressor is by first switching it to the OFF position. You can now disconnect the power cord from your power outlet. Make sure that you disconnect by pulling the plug itself and not the cord. You can now turn the pressure regulator knob in the anticlockwise direction to a point that the pressure reads 0 PSI.

By now you can disconnect the air hose and other accessories making it ready to store your air compressor. Drain any moisture from the tank and close the drain valve later on securely. Wipe the compressor with a clean cloth and it should be ready for storage

Which is The Best Type Of Air Compressor?

best air compressor for your home

Via : amazon.com

It is not easy to choose the best type of air compressor amongst numerous models and brands that are accessible to the consumers. One has to go through its specifications involving durability, capability, and effectiveness. The requirements and variations may also help in making one choice suitable in comparison to other. Some important features of a compressor that make a difference are-

  • A compressor must include gauge and control panel that is properly located to provide quick accessibility and is well-protected
  • If electric motor is heavy-duty having manual reset it is a protection against overloading
  • If a compressor has an electric start system and includes pressure release, then chances of tripping circuits are less during start up.
  • It is important to choose double air outlets because it helps in dual-tool maneuver
  • Tank drains that have ball-valve allow training to become a simple process
  • It is very important for a buyer to know that maximum performance is achieved with compressors having features like the cast-iron cylinder, oil lubricated pump, and direct drive.
  • Features like an oil-lubricated pump, belt-drive, and the cast-iron cylinder are able to extend life and reduce levels of noise by operating at minimum RPM.
  • Fuel can be saved by Idol-control
  • In order to gain easy maneuvering, it is important to go for pneumatic tires
  • If one chooses features like oversized gallon tank, then the pump cycle becomes less.


Several Air compressors with various distinctive features are available in today’s market. It just needs a bit of patience and lots of knowledge to make a selection. At this point of time, one can realize the importance of Best Air compressor reviews as it has proved its worth by assisting to make choices and decisions. It is necessary to remember your own demands so that suitable selection is possible with a minimum of fuss and maximum expediency. One must always first visit the local dealer and after that check various other dealers so that best buy becomes possible. Be sure to ask for a demonstration to know about its performance and suitability.

Check out the following air compressor too!