An air compressor is an important tool. The portable air compressor tends to be lighter than the stationary air compressor but, in many instances, still delivers the same operating capacity and functionality. The portable air compressors can power a wide variety of pneumatic tools including nailing and riveting guns, chipping hammers, drills, jacks, and wrenches. In this review, we’ve included a variety of both stationary and portable air compressors.
Best Air Compressor
- Top Pick: DeWalt 80-Gallon Stationary Air Compressor
- Runner Up: Craftsman 10 Gallon Air Compressor
- Best Value: DEWALT 20V Cordless Tire Inflator
DeWalt 80-Gallon Stationary Air Compressor
Top Pick: This Dewalt 80-gallon single-stage high-flow portable air compressor can operate multiple pneumatic tools. It has a 4.7HP 230V electric motor that delivers maximum performance and efficiency at 155 PSI. The cast iron, three-cylinder pumps and large intake filter provide consistent cooling and exceptional durability.
Craftsman 10 Gallon Air Compressor
Runner Up: Finish your projects easier and faster with this Craftsman portable air compressor. It is engineered for no maintenance, high output, and delivers industrial power and results with improved durability. The 10-gallon tank is complemented with a powerful 1.8 HP UMC motor that delivers lasting performance. It boasts a maximum PSI of 175 PSI that allows for super quick inflation. It is also super portable and easy to roll around thanks to two large wheels and a durable handle.
DEWALT 20V Cordless Tire Inflator
Best Value: This 20V cordless tire inflator is the perfect portable tire air compressor for high-volume inflation and deflation. It uses a high-pressure rubber hose for added durability. The digital gauge allows for quick and accurate inflation, and LED lighting provides great lighting in dark spaces.
CRAFTSMAN 20 Gallon Air Compressor
Like the CRAFTSMAN 10-gallon small portable air compressor, this 20-gallon compressor is made of stainless steel, rubber feet, and an oil-free pump for a long lifecycle and no maintenance. This compressor produces a maximum pressure of 175 PSI which is enough to power a variety of tools.
DEWALT 1-Gallon Air Compressor
This 1-gallon DEWALT portable air compressor is lightweight, sturdy and durable. It features a 2.6-amp motor that delivers up to 135 PSI, which is enough pressure to get a lot of tasks done. This machine produces just about 69 dBA, so you don’t have to worry about causing noise disturbance. The oil-free operation makes it easy to use and maintain.
Milwaukee 12V Portable Cordless Compact Inflator
This Milwaukee portable air compressor delivers up to 120 PSI. The high-efficiency motor and pump allow this 12V portable air compressor to inflate car tires in under a minute. It also features a TrueFill auto shut technology that automatically senses the speed of fill to avoid overfill. The unit also comes with anti-vibration feet and a back-lit LCD for easy operation.
DEWALT 2.5 Gallon Air Compressor
This Dewalt portable air compressor features a 2.5-gallon tank and a maximum pressure of 200 PSI for quick operations. It has a 12 amp draw motor for easy starts and an oil-free pump that delivers 3.0SCFM at 90PSI for long tool runtime and quick recovery.
Campbell Hausfeld 60 Gallon Stationary Air Compressor
The Campbell Hausfeld 60 Gallon is ideal for small shops, automotive enthusiasts, or serious DIY users. This ASME certified, 60-gallon stationary air compressor uses a tank uses a vertical design that allows for maximum space saving. This compressor has a high air flow of 10.2 CFM at 90 PSI, which is enough to power a wide variety of air tools for grinding, sanding, or painting.
CRAFTSMAN 6-Gallon Air Compressor
This 6-gallon portable air compressor provides a maximum pressure of 150 PSI, which is enough pressure for a wide variety of applications. The oil-free pump allows for little to no maintenance. 2.6 SCFM at 90 PSI allows for quick compressor recovery time
Makita 2-Gallon Air Compressor
This Makira air compressor features a ‘Quiet Series’ design that combines strong performance with lower noise levels that allow for operator comfort. This compressor runs at lower RPMs which results in longer pump and motor life. The oil-free dual-piston pump allows for maintenance-free operation.
What to Look for When Buying an Air Compressor
Whether you are looking for a portable air compressor or a stationary air compressor, there are certain standard things that you need to consider so to get the best compressor for your needs. This includes:
- Horsepower: This indicates the amount of power that the machine produces to turn on the pump.
- Duty cycle: Like horsepower, you need to know the duty cycle of the compressor, which is basically the number of minutes the compressor is allowed to function every 10 minutes. Most industrial compressors will have a duty cycle of between 75% and 100%, which allows them to work continuously.
- Power Source: Air compressors are either powered by gas or electricity. Electric compressors work great when you have an electric power source while gas compressors tend to be good choices for outdoor use.
- Life Expectancy: It is important to understand the compressor’s life expectancy before buying. Choosing a high-quality air compressor may be expensive in the short term, but it will save you a lot of money and time that you would otherwise spend on repair and replacement costs.
- Installations: Portable air compressors tend to be small and light while most stationary compressors tend to be industrial grade. They are usually large and have much more horsepower and a larger capacity for uninterrupted usage.
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