How To Choose The Best Air Compressor

best air compressorPhoto by Laineema

You have probably come to this page because you are thinking of buying an air compressor. In this article, we will give you some tips on how to choose the best air compressor and also reveal some of the top picks.

There are so many different types of air compressors on the market with different specifications, sizes, portability, reliability and price points. Different air compressors will be suited to different types of jobs which is why it is important to choose the right air compressor to suit your particular needs.

How To Choose The Best Air Compressors To Suit Your Needs?

Project Requirements – You might be looking for an air compressor to inflate your car tyres, mattresses or pools in which case you will just need to buy a small air compressor with is not very powerful. On the other hand, if you are looking to undertake medium sized projects around the house and need to use it with power-nailers, brush kits, air tools or paint sprayers, then you will need to go for the larger air compressors with medium power. For commercial projects, you need to go with the very high end, larger high-powered air compressors to cater for more continuous compressed air supply.

Cost – Before you buy any air compressor, make sure that you go and have a look at one in store so that you can get a good look and feel of the product. Then the best place to compare prices and get the best price for any air compressor is online. You can check price comparison sites and Amazon and see which one has the best price and don’t forget to factor in delivery costs. You also need to bear in mind that you get what you pay for so if you are going for a dirt cheap air compressor, it is probably not going to be very reliable. You are better off going for a medium range air compressor which is for sale online which will cost you in the region of a few hundred dollars but will last you a lifetime.

Portability – This is usually a mini air compressor which comes with a smaller tank usually less than five gallons. A portable air compressor is easier to transport and handle so if you need to carry it frequently in the back of a truck and if you need quick and easy access, then this is the best choice. The stationary compressors are much larger and have larger tanks which can either be vertical or horizontal. They also tend to come with more powerful motors.

Voltage Requirements – Different air compressors will have different power needs. Therefore, you need to have the right power source and voltage required to operate your electric air compressor correctly. Make sure that you check the technical specifications of the air compressor for these power requirements. Most electric air compressors need a 110V source but some larger ones may need upto 240V.

Technical Specifications – Air compressor reviews around the internet confirm that there are two main things to consider here. First is the horsepower and second is the CFM rating of the air compressor. For most domestic projects, you will only require smaller air compressors with smaller horsepower. On the other hand, for commercial projects, you should be getting the highest horsepower specifications for maximum efficiency. Horsepower ranges from about 1.5 at the lower end to 6.5 at the top end for large scale projects. It is also important to find out how much volumetric flow of air your specific  tool requires which is the CFM rating so that you can choose an air compressor that can deliver at least that amount of compressed air. Therefore, make sure you check both the horsepower and the CFM rating of your air compressor before you buy it.

Maintenance – You need to have an idea of how often you will need to check and adjust basic components such as the oil levels, levels of air and safety valve operation in order to get a good idea of how much time and effort you are going to have to devote to maintenance. It is also a good idea to check how easy it is to get air compressor parts, tools, fittings and accessories for replacements, service and improvement and how much they cost so that you know exactly what your particular make and model of air compressor will cost to maintain and enhance.

Warranty – Depending on whether you are using your air compressor for domestic or commercial projects, you will need to decide what kind of warranty you require and check whether the air compressor you decide to buy offers your desired warranty.

Customer Reviews – Make sure that you check customer reviews online especially from trusted places such as Amazon before you buy an air compressor to confirm what other users think of it. This will give you the best indication of reliability and value for money.

Which Are The Best Air Compressors?

Our research and customer reviews have shown that the following are the best air compressors on the market:

Makita MAC5200 Big Bore 3.0 HP Air Compressor – This is the best overall portable air compressor which works well in diverse work conditions. It is reliable, efficient, quiet, has good build quality with high performance. This air compressor will work well for small domestic as well as large commercial projects. Click here to check the specifications, price and reviews on Amazon.

California Air Tools CAT-10020 2.0 HP – This is a slightly less powerful air compressor but it is very quiet and has an oil-free pump (requires less maintenance and costs). However, it is slightly heavier than the Makita compressor. Click here to check the specifications, price and reviews on Amazon.



How To Choose The Best Air Compressor was last modified: August 5th, 2015 by Jim Cross