A greater amount of compressed air in the tank ensures more power, doesn’t it?
In order to have better air pressure, you need to have a high capacity air compressor. It not only increases the pressure of air in the tank but also increases fuel efficiency. This is why the choice of an air compressor is quite tricky.
Furthermore, an air compressor is also responsible for converting the power from the fuel into pressurized energy. So, you need to have a high-efficiency air compressor. Here is a comparison as well as reviews of the best portable air compressors to help you choose one.
- Best Portable Air Compressor Comparison Table
- Top 10 Best Portable Air Compressor In 2021 Reviews
- 1 DEWALT DCC2560T1 FLEXVOLT 60V MAX 2.5 Gallon
- 2 Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor
- 3 DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor
- 4 Ryobi P731 One+ 18v Dual Function Power Inflator
- 5 BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor
- 6 Senco PC1010 1-Horsepower Peak, 1/2 hp Running 1-Gallon Compressor
- 7 VIAIR 400P Portable Compressor
- 8 PORTER-CABLE C2002 Oil-Free UMC Pancake Compressor
- 9 Kensun AC/DC Digital Tire Inflator For Car 12V DC
- 10 California Air Tools CAT-1P1060S Light & Quiet
- Best Portable Air Compressor Buying Guide
Best Portable Air Compressor Comparison Table
|(4.4 / 5)|
|(4.6 / 5)|
DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor
|(5 / 5)|
|(4.5 / 5)|
BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor
|(4.6 / 5)|
|(4.4 / 5)|
VIAIR 400P Portable Compressor
|(4.5 / 5)|
|(4.5 / 5)|
|(4.3 / 5)|
|(4.6 / 5)|
Top 10 Best Portable Air Compressor In 2021 Reviews
1 DEWALT DCC2560T1 FLEXVOLT 60V MAX 2.5 Gallon
This is one of the best portable air compressor options that you will come across in the market. It has a very moderate voltage of 60 volts, which increases its energy efficiency. This puts a lesser burden on you and even consumes lesser fuel for greater distances.
In addition to this, the air compressor has a patented one turn regulator, which gives you accurate pressure adjustments. It has just one knob, which helps in faster and more reliable controls.
Furthermore, the compressor has a self-regulatory option as well, which helps in automatic regulation after PSI adjustments. It is great for those who want to untether the pneumatic from a power source.
Its compact construction with the dimensions of 15 x 12 x 18 inches helps a lot in this regard. This compact frame, along with the weight of only 21.5 pounds, makes it highly portable. You can carry it around anywhere without having any extra loads on your vehicle.
Another important detail about this air compressor is that it does not make use of any batteries. It helps in both increasing its portability and keeping the size to a minimum.
To top it all off, this DEWALT air compressor has a very quiet operation at only 79 dB. This does not cause any distractions while it runs, so people like it more because of this.
Its air capacity of 2.5 gallons is another win that generates better pressure and high power. So, if you can afford this unit, then there is no point in going for another one.
- Has a voltage of 60 volts.
- Creates minimum noise at 79 dB.
- Has a 2.5 gallon capacity.
- Gives up to 1220 nails in a charge.
- Compact construction with 15 x 12 x 18 inches.
- Weighs only 21.5 pounds.
- Does not use batteries.
- Quick and precise pressure adjustment.
- Takes several minutes to fill the tank.
2 Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor
The Makita MAC2400 big bore air compressor is a powerful option that offers a lot to its users. It has a large piston diameter, which provides a better recovery time. It also helps in increasing the rate of Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) performance.
This is backed with a cast iron pump that actively fights any kind of wear and tear. The pump also has reliable lubrication, which not only increases its durability but also helps in working at low temperatures.
As this air compressor has the dimensions of 20 x 18 x 18.8 inches, it has higher portability. It also gives more room to the air filter to take in a greater amount of air. And the 4.2-gallon tank capacity is just right for all the air that this air compressor accommodates inside.
Another great thing about this air compressor is that it has a cast iron construction. It helps the air compressor to work effectively even in harsh work conditions.
Moreover, it maintains a pressure of 130 PSI, which divides adequately to power two nailers. It also prevents any premature motor failures as it has a low AMP draw. It does not cause any uncalled for voltage drops or breaker tripping.
In addition, this air compressor does not use any batteries, so it keeps things simple. The warranty of 1 year on labor and parts further increases the trust in this compressor. So, it is worth an investment if you want something powerful and ultra-quiet.
- Cast iron pump for better recovery.
- Reduced wear with lubrication.
- 4.2 gallons tank capacity.
- Increased air intake with large filter.
- 79 dB noise generation level.
- Diameter piston is large.
- Greater CFM generation.
- 1-year warranty.
- Slightly heavy at 81 pounds.
- Needs frequent resetting.
3 DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor
DEWALT DWFP55126 is one of the highly recommended portable air compressors. Its most striking feature is its sleek construction. The dimensions of 17.2 x 16.6 x 20.1 inches make the air compressor stand out to us more. They make the compressor both small in appearance and easy to use.
The tank of this air compressor has an air intake capacity of 6 gallons. Moreover, it has a very low level of noise production at only 75.5 decibels.
Furthermore, its current requirement is quite apt at 10 amperes. It makes the air compressor great in terms of energy consumption as well. It has a high regulator flow as well, which lets in more air in lesser time.
This air compressor is also incredible because of its console wrap, which helps in protecting the frame from any damage. In addition, the valves allow for a quick deflation when the pressure inside gets a little too high.
- Tank has a 6-gallon capacity.
- Low noise level at 75.5 dB.
- Needs 10 amp power supply.
- Lightweight at 30 pounds.
- High flow regulator.
- Rerouted outlet tube.
- Easy storage with cord wrap.
- Can have minor leakages.
- Hose fittings need to be tighter.
4 Ryobi P731 One+ 18v Dual Function Power Inflator
Ryobi P731 is the smartest portable air compressor in this review. It has a size of only 6.7 x 10.5 x 7.9 inches.
It grabs our attention with its unique green and grey frame. The plastic frame makes it safe from any kind of rusting or weather damage. It also stays safe from water damage as well, making the construction quite reliable.
Other than the structure of the air compressor, its energy requirements are remarkable too. It operates on 18-volt batteries, which do not need much recharging. Also, it is easy to operate and carry around because of the cordless frame.
It also works as both an inflator and deflator, making it easier for you to control the air pressure in tires. This helps the users in maintaining the exact amount of air pressure that they want in the tires of their vehicles.
Since it has a lower tank capacity as compared to other air compressors, it is better for light-duty usage. So, it is better to get it for use at home and minor inflation and compression at work.
- Tapered adaptor for better flow control.
- Uses 18-volt batteries.
- Digital pressure read-out display.
- High volume hose included.
- Durable and reliable construction.
- Doesn’t overshoot very well.
5 BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor
BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor is another competitive and cost-effective portable air compressor on our list. It has a very powerful motor that does not need any pre-starting, even in cold weather.
It has reliable couplers in it as well, which increases the performance of the tools. Moreover, this air compressor has a smooth functioning, which generates lesser noise.
The sound level of 78.5 blends in with the background well and does not cause any obvious disturbances. This air compressor has a practical construction at 17 x 17 x 19.2 inches dimensions. What makes it even easier to carry around is that it weighs only 31 pounds.
It has a high air intake capacity as well. The 6-gallon tank capacity is safe as well as useful as it allows more room for air. It also prevents any mishaps even when the air expands in the tank due to high temperatures.
So, whether it is cold outside or too hot, the air compressor avoids causing any harm. The extension cord is also amazing, as it can be up to 50 feet long. So, even if you are away from the power socket, you can use and recharge the air compressor without any problems.
- Maximum PSI is 150.
- Heavy-duty 6 gallon tank.
- Maximized tool performance with couplers.
- Maintenance-free pump provides higher reliability.
- 78.5 dB noise production.
- Regulator needs modifications.
- Hose could be bigger.
6 Senco PC1010 1-Horsepower Peak, 1/2 hp Running 1-Gallon Compressor
This is one of the best portable air compressors that the market has at present. The best thing about it is the high energy efficiency and the power supply.
It runs on 1/2 horsepower supply, which does not strain the battery. This horsepower consumption goes well with a voltage of 115 volts. It runs on 4 amperes, so it needs minimal current to operate too.
In addition to the energy efficiency, it has a sleek construction at 14 x 13 x 10 inches. Its small size and the weight of merely 20 pounds make the air compressor highly portable.
Moreover, the compressor has a delivery of 20 to 40 drives per minute, which makes it super-fast. Its work efficiency also has a higher value because of its compatibility with most vehicles. It supports nailers as well, making it much more reliable.
Furthermore, this air compressor has an aluminum construction that does not rust or corrode. This ensures a longer use of the compressor without any external repairs needed. The aluminum frame is also less prone to dents or other damages, making it even better.
Another cool thing is the ultra-quiet operation of its motor. No matter how fast your speed of air compression is, it does not create any noisy distractions.
- Runs on ½ horsepower.
- 1-year warranty on labor and parts.
- Delivery of 20 to 40 drives per minute.
- Ultra-quiet operation at high speeds too.
- Weighs only 20 pounds.
- Steel body prone to rusting.
- Takes too long to recharge.
7 VIAIR 400P Portable Compressor
The VIAIR 400P Portable Compressor catches our eye with its unparalleled list of offerings. To begin with, it has a smart construction at 13 x 11 x 9.5 inches. This helps in reducing the risk of any space-related issues in your vehicle.
The VIAIR 400P has higher portability than most other air compressors due to a low weight of 8.5 pounds. You can easily carry it without even having to drag it the extra mile.
Another great thing is energy efficiency, as it operates on a voltage of 12 volts. It leads to less frequent charging and builds a nice air pressure in lesser time.
Furthermore, the battery has dual clamps on it, which help in recharging it quickly. This makes it more useful for mechanics who need to be quick in pneumatic dealings. Its duty cycle of 33% is also impressive as it saves both money and time.
The next important feature is the oil-less design of this air compressor. It increases the overall life of the compressor while keeping the lubrication needs low.
This gets even better with the lever style air chuck. It is quite easy to handle even if its fitting can be somewhat loose.
Primarily, this is made for heavy-duty usage as the pump can work with even 31-inch wide tires. So, if you want to have more out of a compact portable air compressor, this is where you should invest.
- Efficient operation at 12 volts.
- Has a duty cycle of 33%.
- Dual battery clamps.
- Heavy-duty usage.
- Deluxe carry bag inclusive.
- Anti-vibration tray to minimize noise.
- Oil-less design has a longer life.
- Air chuck has a loose fitting.
- The unit heats up quickly.
8 PORTER-CABLE C2002 Oil-Free UMC Pancake Compressor
It is one of our favorite air compressors with its high work efficiency and ease of usage. This compressor has a heavy-duty construction, which allows for the intake of 6 gallons of air. This is quite surprising, considering the smallness of the compressor unit.
It is small and practical at 19 x 19 x 18 inches. This makes it easy to adjust the compressor in any vehicle without any space requirement issues.
It takes an air pressure of 90 PSI, which makes using it safer than other models in the market. It also reduces the amount of recovery time, increasing its efficiency even more.
In addition to this, the air compressor has an oil-free pump, which makes its handling cleaner. This makes the compressor last around for a longer time and needs no repairs.
Its maintenance needs are also very less, making it much more reliable. The oil-free frame also has the ability to work at very low temperatures where air pressure drops down.
Furthermore, the air compressor weighs only 30 pounds, which helps in moving the frame easily. It also has two air couplers, which increase the usability of the compressor. What’s even better is that the couplers are factory installed.
Also, it strikes a chord with us due to the additional protective features. The cord has a wrap on it, and the consoles are covered too.
- Quick and effective compressor recovery.
- Needs lesser maintenance.
- Oil-free pump increases its life.
- High tank capacity at 6 gallons.
- Low ampere requirements.
- Easy start in low-temperature settings too.
- Has a noisy operation.
- Creates strong vibrations.
- No specific break-in procedure.
9 Kensun AC/DC Digital Tire Inflator For Car 12V DC
This easy to use air compressor has a quick inflation capability which saves you a lot of time. It has the right size for all vehicles at the dimensions of 11.8 x 4.3 x 6.7 inches. This makes carrying it around quite easy as it does not take much space.
Another thing increasing its portability is the lightweight nature of the compressor. It has a weight of only 5 pounds, and that is almost nothing when compared to other air compressors.
Moreover, the air compressor has an LCD display, which helps the users in tracking the air pressure in it. It also lets you compare how much the pressure has raised as a result of the latest inflation.
Along with all these features, this air compressor has another impressive detail. It has an auto shut-off gauge in it, which helps in preventing leakages or extra pressure generation. This minimizes the risk of accidents and wearing of tires caused by excessive air pressure.
Furthermore, this air compressor is useful for a wide variety of users as it has multiple nozzles. This way, you can use it for vehicles as well as light-duty tasks at home.
This air compressor has a very powerful motor as well. It pumps air at the rate of 30 liters per minute. This, too, saves you time and effort. So, going for this air compressor will be a great decision.
- Digital gauge has an auto shut-off.
- High quality construction.
- Higher functionality with LCD display.
- Quick and thorough inflation.
- Multifunctional due to multiple nozzles.
- High portability with low weight.
- Needs frequent recharging.
- The cords need an extension.
10 California Air Tools CAT-1P1060S Light & Quiet
This portable air compressor by California Air Tools has high usability. It has an oil-based pump, which helps in keeping the maintenance costs to a minimum. It also helps in increasing the life of the compressor unit on the whole.
Other than the sturdy construction, its working is also quite impressive. The unit causes almost negligible noise generation at 56 decibels. This does not cause any discomfort even when you are using it for large tires. The production of 56 decibels of noise makes it ideal for use indoors where any noise is magnified.
The air compressor is also great due to its pressure build-up capacity of 150 PSI. It keeps the air pressure in a safe range and helps with most vehicles.
Moreover, it has a steel construction that comes with a promise of durability. This also makes it lightweight and highly portable. The compressor is easy to move due to its 29 pounds weight.
In addition, this air compressor has a tank capacity of 1 gallon. This tank capacity makes it more suited to light-duty usage. As it has a single-piston pump, it consumes lesser energy. This increases its efficiency and helps in using without recharging very frequently.
The presence of an oil-free pump makes this compressor easy to be used in low temperatures too. Lastly, this air compressor undergoes lesser wear with the help of 1680 RPM.
- Super quiet function at 56 dB.
- 29.5 pounds make it very lightweight.
- High portability with a simple design.
- Lesser maintenance cost with an oil pump.
- Works on 0.5 horsepower.
- Has a maximum pressure of 120 PSI.
- Air regulator diaphragm cracks easily.
- Regulator gauge gets very sticky.
Best Portable Air Compressor Buying Guide
Buying the right portable compressor is the key to a remarkable experience. So, you have to be careful while you are comparing some models before buying them. Here are the major aspects that you have to keep in mind to make a worthwhile purchase.
The size of a portable air compressor is of customary importance as it determines the ease of carrying it. It also affects the space that it occupies in your vehicle as there should be enough room for other equipment. So, you should go for an air compressor which has better functioning but a small frame.
Well, portable air compressors obviously need to be easy to carry around. They should have a compact construction as well as a lower weight. The lighter the weight of an air compressor, the easier it will be to transport it.
Now the tank capacity is something that should never undergo a compromise. The tank should be large enough to accommodate the amount of air that you require.
It should also have a capacity that is in line with the level of pressure that builds up inside the tank. This is to avoid any accidents or leakages in case of excess air accumulation.
Any unnecessary noise is a distraction, particularly when you are driving. This is why you have to go for an air compressor which produces minimum possible noise. The acceptable noise level for air compressors falls between 70 dB and 80 dB.
The overall construction of an air compressor is significant too. The body has to be strong enough to work under highly stressful conditions too. After all, nobody likes to have vehicle parts that give up on them when they are away from home.
You have to be mindful of the air filter that a portable air compressor has before buying it. The filter should be large so that there is a quick and sufficient amount of air intake. This will help in building up an appropriate amount of air pressure inside the tank.
The warranty for a portable air compressor is important to consider as well. It helps the buyers know if they can trust a certain product or not. In addition to the number of years, you have to be careful of the warranty policy in terms of what it covers too.
Another crucial consideration is the voltage that is mentioned on the air compressor. Normally, air compressors with a voltage around 100 volts are used. So, you have to choose an air compressor which is efficient when it comes to voltage as well.
Some of the air compressors use batteries, and some do not. While the presence of a battery helps with voltage efficiency, it hinders portability. So, if you can make it without a battery, then it is better as portability is a major priority.
Considering all the models in our review, DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor is the best portable air compressor. Everything from its voltage to portability and quiet working is commendable.
So, summing it all up, you need to have a high quality air compressor to help you with pneumatics. It has to have a high energy efficiency to help use lesser fuel. You need to be considerate of the major details of the structure and construction of these compressors as well.
Other than these details, we advise referring to our buying guide while comparing different portable air compressor options.