The journey to finding the 10 portable air compressors can be a bit confusing especially for first time buyers. You’ll come across terms such as hp, psi, cfm, db, gallon and much more all of which play a vital role in selecting the right compressor.
You’ll even be told that some of the terminologies are more important than others not forgetting that there are all kinds of brands in the market. Without proper information, you may end up making a wrong choice. The compressor may not be very portable, it won’t suit your needs, it may be costly, doesn’t last long and much more.
How Do You Choose A Good Type
- Portability: It should be light, compact and easy to carry around. This is influenced by its design, shape, shrouding and more.
- Cubic feet per minute (CFM): This is how fast it produces and pushes out the air. The range is usually from 0.6 to 2.8 cfm and the higher the number the faster it is.
- Tank: The common range is from 1 to 6 gallons and the larger the tank the more air it holds. It also means the motor works less.
- Noise Level: This is rated in decibels (dB) and ranges from 60 to 87 decibels. The lower the figure the less noise the compressor is. You need to note that a difference of just 10 decibels may make a compressor twice as noisy.
- Shrouding: These are the metal frames that protect the motor and tank from damage.
Other factors include PSI (pounds per square inch), design, corded or cordless, DC powered, cost, oil or oil-free, type of valve drain, and cord wrap.
Best Portable Air Compressors in 2020
10. DEWALT D55146 Air Compressor
DEWALT’s D55146 air compressor is not only portable but also very stylish courtesy of its vertical stand plus collapsible handle. It comes with a 4-1/2 gallon tank that can handle up to 200 PSI while the 90 PSI pump delivers up to 5.0 SCFM.
However the normal cycle is approximately 160 PSI and occurs at about 1750 RPM. With a 78 dBA noise level rating, the unit is relatively quiet. Some shoppers unfortunately find its price to be a bit costly than other top brands.
9. PORTER-CABLE Compressor
The portable compressor from PORTER-CABLE is rated at 2.0 SCFM at 90 PSI and is ideal for both indoors and outdoors. The low-amp unit is powered with an energy-efficient 120 volt motor and comes with a 1.5-gallon tank that can handle up to 150 psi.
The long-lasting pump doesn’t require any oil or maintenance and runs cool even in demanding situations. The air compressor sadly is a bit noisy especially in very quiet environments.
8. Makita MAC2400 2.5 HP Compressor
The Big Bore MAC2400 compressor is rated at 2.5 HP and comes with two stacked tanks with a combined 4.2 gallon capacity. It features a cast iron pump that provides better performance and is more durable while the roll-cage design protects the unit from the extreme environment.
It delivers up to 4.2 CFM at 150 psi while the tank can handle up to 150 psi. With a noise rating of 79 dB, the compressor is among the most silent. However, weighing approximately 81 pounds, it’s also among the heavy portable types.
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7. PORTER-CABLE PCFP02003 Pancake Compressor
The PCFP02003 pancake compressor by PORTER-CABLE has a maximum psi rating of 135 and comes with a 3.5-gallon tank. Delivering 2.0 SCFM at 90 PSI pump, the unit relies on a low amp oil-less and maintenance-free 120 V (AC) motor and comes in a small portable size and weighs only 26 pounds.
Unfortunately, producing 82 decibels (dB) of noise, this air compressor is not the most silent.
6. Senco PC1010 Compressor
You no longer need to struggle or walk around with a bulky air compressor. All you require is the lightweight, compact and easy to carry Senco PC1010 air compressor. It runs on 115 volts AC, has a peak horsepower of 0.5 (1 / 2) and maximum psi of 125. The 4-amp motor doesn’t require any oil and delivers air at the rate of 20 to 44 psi per minute.
The ultra-silent motor stores the air in 1 gallon air tank and also includes a regulator, 1 / 4-inch quick disconnect coupler, and individual gauges. However, it is not designed for 12 volts DC or 220 volts AC.
5. DEWALT DWFP55126 Pancake Compressor
Easily inflate your tires, inflatables or run a nail gun using the DWF55126 pancake compressor by DEWALF. Featuring sturdy construction, the portable compressor includes a 6-gallon (22.7-liter) tank, a nailer kit and is rated at 165 PSI.
It has a delivery rate of 2.6 CFM and comes with a highly-efficient motor that easily starts even in the cold weather. The low-noise unit (75.5dB) has a range of up to 15.2 m (50 feet) and features a high flow regulator. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with very -effective shrouding to protect it.
4. MAKITA MAC 700
The Makita brand normally appears in many reviews on the 10 portable air compressors in the market. This time round we are featuring the big bore MAC 700 that is constructed from cast iron and is rated at 2.0 HP. The relatively-silent unit (80 dB) comes with 0-130 psi operating pressure and includes a 2.6 gallon tank.
It delivers high performance (90 Psi) courtesy of the larger bore and stroke and the more efficient oil-lubricated pump. The 18 x 10 x 22 inch item is nonetheless a bit heavy and weighs 52 pounds.
3. Bostitch BTFP02012Pancake Compressor
Pump your tires, inflate your boat, spay your car from anywhere with the portable Bostitch BTFP02012 pancake compressor. It delivers up to 2.6 SCFM via the 90 PSI pump while the 6-gallon tank is rated at 150 psi.
The 29-pound oil- less unit comes with a narrow tank that makes storage and carrying easy and is also very silent (78.5 dBA). The only issue is that the Bostitch BTFP02012 is not suited for heavy-duty usage.
See also: Top 10 Best Tire Pressure Gauges in 2020
2. Campbell Hausfeld Portable Air Compressor
By: Campbell Hausfeld
The portable compressor by Campbell Hausfeld is powered via a 120 volt AC source and consists of a cool-running motor and 3-gallon tank. It is rated at 0.36 CFM and comes with a 0.33 HP motor that requires no oil.
For easy operation, it features a simple but user-friendly control panel and design and is more tolerant of piston vibrations. You may be a bit discouraged by its small tank.
1. PORTER-CABLE Pancake Compressor
The pancake-styled air compressor from PORTER-CABLE guarantees you of optimal efficiency and stability even in the rough terrains. It comes with a 6-gallon capacity tank that has maximum psi of 150 while the pump generates 2.6 SCFM at 90 psi.
To minimize inconvenience, prevent leaks and save on labor cost, it features factory-installed plug and air coupler. Although it meets the ISO1217 standards, the compressor is not the most silent.
The above compressors make up the list of the 10 most portable air compressors in the market in 2016. They are small, light and compact and easy to move with, produce adequate air within a short time courtesy of the good CFM and PSI, and also come with a size-able tank.
Users also appreciate the low noise level, good shrouding, design, valve drain and much more. By choosing the 10 portable air compressors 2020, you are assured of adequate and reliable air anywhere, anytime.