Shopping for a Portable Air Compressor

The first thing you should do is write down each tool that will work together. Next, you need to calculate the frequency of compressed air consumption and the volume of compressed air that the appliance will draw from the compressor storage tank. If this all sounds really confusing, don’t stress, it’s all revealed in this article.

Locating the perfect air compressor which will deal with the sort of jobs that you will be undertaking is often quite a tricky process. Having said that, with some standard information with respect to the way air compressors work, the terminology employed in the compressor market along with the difference between the sorts of compressors, it starts to get a whole lot easier to choose the top compressor for ones particular requirements.

Technological terms:

Being Familiar With all of the compressor technical terminology is critical when making your compressor purchase decision. Despite the fact that the quantity of compressor types is often overwhelming, selecting the right unit can be made easy by asking a few essential questions.

Performance Ratings:

Matching an air tool or tools Standard cubic feet per minute and PSI demands to an air compressors output capacity is vital. Standard cubic feet per minute or SCFM is the rate of how much air the compressor can produce in just a minute. All tools which are powered by using a compressor come with a SCFM value; this value will point out the air supply that is compulsory for optimum operation of the tool. Therefore, check the standard cubic feet per minute at 90 psi when matching your air compressor SCFM ratings.

Normal standard cubic feet per minute consumption

Air Filter Cleaner: 3

Air Hammer, light: 4

Air Hammer, heavy: 22

Air Hoist, 1000 lb: 5

Air Motor – 0.5 hp: 6 – 10

Air Motor – 1 hp: 12 – 15

The standard cubic feet per minute consumption of air tools can vary from tool to tool, several tools only have to use 1 or 2 SCFM whilst others will need 10 – 14 standard cubic feet per minute.

If you think there is the possibility that you’ll operate multiple tools at the same time, then it is evident that you’re going to really want way more power. In such a case, determine the lowest SCFM rate for your compressor by adding together the cumulative SCFM specifications for the equipment you will be operating simultaneously. To give a bit of a buffer to the calculations you will need to add an additional fifty percent on to the final number.

Air tool 1 = 2.0 SCFM + Air tool 2 = 1.0 SCFM add these together and the total is 3.0 SCFM, add the 50% buffer and we have a total of 4.5 SCFM (standard Cubic Feet Per Minute), and as a result you would be trying to locate a compressor with an SCFM rating of over 4.5 SCFM.

The smallest SCFM compressor rating can be determined by adding together the SCFM ratings of any compressed air tools which will be used at the same time. In the case when a single air tool is to be operated alone then you must go with the SCFM of the highest rated air tool.


Electric operated compressors commonly are powered by a typical 110-120V power supply. Although, air compressors that have a motor unit of more than 2 HP may have to have a 220-240V power supply. If you plan to work with your air compressor in a workshop, garage or any other confined place, you need an electric powered compressor.

Petrol operated air compressors do not rely upon electrical energy so therefore they are truly mobile. Though, there are numerous negatives with the gas powered compressors. The most important disadvantage is the fact that the petrol driven air compressors produce harmful gases and as such shouldn’t be run inside or even in any kind of confined work area. One another downside of these compressors is they need much more repairs and maintenance than their electric run counterparts.

Decibel Levels of a typical compressor:

Sound output is an important factor when purchasing an air compressor. Air compressors come with a sound levels listing within the makers specifications and if you are generally operating the device inside the house or in a small workshop you might want to decide upon a quiet machine instead of risking damage to your hearing by using a deafening air compressor. So you should find out the noise level before buying.