The 5 Best Air Compressors

An air compressor is a machine with a pump and a sealed container, which is intended for compressing air into a small space to use its energy for inflating tires or driving pneumatic tools. Air compressors range widely by size and area of use, and while some are huge, like the ones used for refilling truck tires, some can be extremely compact, and those can run from a car battery.

But another qualifier is the brand. While some brands make great tools, other prefer to save on materials and assembly technologies, leading to inferior machines, which soon become a waste of your time and money. So it is always best to buy a quality model to start with. However, for an unacquainted person it is not always easy to find a good model right off. So, to help potential buyers make a good choice and pick what is best in their particular case, we have put together a list of 5 best air compressors in their price range.

Place#
Product
Editor’s Rating
Editor’s Opinion
Works For Truck Tires
#1
PORTER-CABLE C2002
9.8
/
10
Editor’s Pick
#2
DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor
9.7
/
10
Customer's Choice
#3
CRAFTSMAN CMEC6150K
9.6
/
10
Most Reliable Brand
#4
Hitachi KNT50AB
9.4
/
10
Most Popular
#5
EPAuto Compressor Pump
9.5
/
10
Best Budget
PORTER-CABLE C2002
#1
Editor’s Pick
Editor’s Rating:
9.8
/
10

This model can hold air at a pressure up to 150 psi, so tools connected to it will work much longer. The compressor also recovers pressure quickly, and it has a SCFM of 2.6 at a pressure of 90 psi. The air is stored in a 23 liter pancake tank, which has a water drain valve and is supported on slide-proof rubber feet. The motor works on a current of 120 volts, and reliably starts even in cold weather. The pump works without oil, so it will be totally free of maintenance. For a small additional price it can be bought with a kit of hoses and adapters, needed to inflate tires.

The entire machine weighs only 30 pounds, and is easy to carry around.

Pros:

  • Not too heavy, and easy to grip and transport
  • The powerful engine generates a lot of vibrations, but all of them are nullified by the composite rubber feet
  • Built with great attention to quality, and will work for a very long time

Cons:

  • The motor is fairly loud, and it may disturb nearby people

DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor
#2
Customer's Choice
Editor’s Rating:
9.7
/
10

This model can force air into a pressure of 165 PSI, and hold it in a large, six-gallon tank. The 90 PSI pump delivers 2.6 SCFM. The noise level is never higher than 75 dB, so it will not strain your ears or anyone else’s for that matter.

The machine is built with precision, and it will work for a long time both because of the quality materials and because of the assembly. The device uses 120 volt input and the motor starts up in any weather, even if it is very cold. The pump does not need oil to function, and as such is very easy to maintain.

The cord wraps onto a convenient holder. The weight is only 30 pounds, which makes it easier to carry around. The rubber feet make it stick to the ground and also nullify vibrations.

Pros:

  • Comes with two different heads, so it is possible to easily switch between different kinds of equipment
  • Much lighter than comparable models of this power
  • Great price for a powerful, high-quality machine

Cons:

  • Inaccurate pressure meter

CRAFTSMAN CMEC6150K
#3
Most Reliable Brand
Editor’s Rating:
9.6
/
10

This model has a typical capacity of 6 gallons, and its maximum pressure is 150 PSI. The 2.6 SCFM pump gives out 90 PSI, and uses a voltage of 120 volts. There is an oil-free pump at its core that makes it maintenance-free, and much more reliable than oil-based analogues.

There is a complex kit of needful things that arrives with the device, and it consists of hoses, a blow gun and a tire gauge, among other useful things. The machine has a 1- year warranty from the manufacturer. The motor is durable, and its reliable make allows it to start up in cold weather. Its oil-free make allows it to work for a very long time.

As all machines of its capacity, it weighs 30 pounds.

Pros:

  • Fills up quickly and inflates entire tires in a matter of seconds
  • The weight makes it easy to carry around the house and use it for any purpose
  • The kit that comes with it is very useful

Cons:

  • A bit noisy, so it may alert neighbors or surrounding people

Hitachi KNT50AB
#4
Most Popular
Editor’s Rating:
9.4
/
10

This brand from Japan is well known for cutting-edge technology and flawless machines. This model comes with a kit full of needful things, among which you will find the 18-gauge brad nailer, that is a well balanced and maneuverable piece of equipment. The maximum pressure is 150 PSI.

The oil-less compressor holds 6 gallons of compressed air, and unlike many compressors of its class, it weighs 47 pounds – a bit more than the usual. But it makes up for the extra weight by being more reliable and sturdier.

The machine arrives equipped with a light ¼ inch hose and a tube of lubricant for air-driven tools. The hose is 25 inches long. The company offers a one year guarantee on this model.

Pros:

  • Excellent brand, known for quality – the reviews are almost all positive
  • The nailgun that comes with it is very good too
  • Quick on filling up and inflating tires

Cons:

  • Very expensive, but the quality and power are totally worth it

EPAuto Compressor Pump
#5
Best Budget
Editor’s Rating:
9.5
/
10

This is an unusually small model, which uses your on-board electric supply from the lighter socket in a car. The power it uses is 10 to 15 amperes, which gives it up to 180 watts of power. It is not possible to use it with 110 volt electricity. The model is powerful enough to inflate tires on most small cars with an engine volume under 3.5 liters. The universal connector is shipped with the machine. It is not possible to refill truck tires with this model. However a multitude of other objects, like inflatable boats and balls can be charged.

The device is equipped with an LCD screen that displays the pressure, and the body can be shipped in any of the four possible colors. The device is protected from overheating, so it turns off automatically when overheating is detected. The LCD screen has the ability to light up, so the numbers are visible at night. The screen can display both PSI and BAR.

Pros:

  • Screen with built-in light system
  • Convenient – small, light, portable and 12-Volt powered
  • Very sturdy, solid and tough design – is not going to break any time soon

Cons:

  • Takes a very long time to fill a tire, but eventually it always does – slow but sure