10 Best Air Compressors for Home Garage (December 2018)

Choosing the best air compressor for your home garage can be intimidating. There are many brands on the market and each brand has several compressor models. To make your search easier and less time consuming, we have to put together a list of top-rated air compressors that work so well to give you the biggest bangs for the bucks.

Best Pick: Quincy QT-54 Splash Lubricated Reciprocating Air Compressor

 

The Quick QT-5 Splash Lubricated Reciprocating Air Compressor is the overall best pick because it is well lubricated and it consumes less power. It is also a good option because it has up to 30,000 hours of pump life.

Quincy QT-54 Splash Lubricated Reciprocating Air Compressor

Design: 4.5/5                       Performance: 4.3/5                  Functionality: 4.1/5

Quincy QT-54 Reciprocating is a good option for people that have medium level tasks to complete on a daily basis.

Design

Quincy QT-54 Reciprocating has a 230-volt 5HP motor that powers the 60-gallon tanks to give you the pressure required for all your home garage projects. It is also equipped with an American Baldor that provides consistent performance.

Performance

QT-54 Splash is properly lubricated to consume the least power possible, so it requires the least maintenance and very few facilities to work well. Thermal overloads are quite common with air compressors. And the Quincy QT-54 is not an exception. Quincy has a built-in thermal load control to deal with this issue.

Since it is built to work well in lower temperature and lower RPM, this compressor unit can easily throw some decent amount of compressed air in a very short time. Also, it has 30,000 hours of pump life, which is very long compared to many options on the market today.

Pros

  • Quincy QT-54 has a perfect combination of a durable pump and a well-built motor
  • The tool has a lower RPM, which not only boosts performance but also ensures consistency in productivity
  • Quincy QT-54 also stands out because of the 30,000-hour pump
  • The warranty of this product is extendable

Cons

  • The drain system of the Quincy QT-54 is not automated.
  • Quincy QT-54 doesn’t have a low oil protection

Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 Portable Quiet Air Compressor

Design: 4.5/5                     Performance: 4.4/5                         Functionality: 4.1/5

Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 is one of the best choices for home garage owners who are looking for quiet air compressors.

Design

Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 has a 30-gallon capacity with a single stage 3.7 HP.  It is equipped with a powerful motor that provides 10.2 CFM at 90 PSI and 11.5 CFM at 40 PSI. This means it is possible to run different air tools and easily work on projects like tire changing and staining.

Performance

Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 is the quiet air compressor model that tops off a low car tire in less than a minute. It is known to run quite well for about an hour with the drain valve opened. While you may hear a slight rattle coming from the machine after some time, it is often nothing to worry about because the sound doesn’t affect performance.

Besides the reliability, flexibility, and consistency that this unit offers, its motor has up to 5,000-hour life, which is definitely promising.  Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 doesn’t create any noise during operation. So it is a good option for people that love to keep operational noise to a minimum.

Pros

  • Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 is reasonably priced
  • The 30-gallon tank ensures consistency and reliable performance
  • Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 can handle professional as well as Do-It-Yourself projects
  • Works well with a range of air tools
  • You get a 10.2 CFM at 40 PSI and 11.5 CFM at 90 PSI
  • The motor has a 5000-hour life
  • The portable wheels and a handle make Campbell Hausfeld DC080500 easy to move around

Cons

  • You will need to buy a filter if you plan to use this compressor for painting

 Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5 HP Air Compressor

Design: 4.2/5                                      Performance: 4.3/5                  Functionality: 4.1/5

Makita spent years to build a powerful brand that competition in the heavy-duty machinery can only admire. In fact, their MAC2400 Big Bore is one of the best air compressors for a home garage because it does more than just inflate tires.

Design

The MAC2400 features two nozzles, an automotive-style filter, a 4.2-gallon 130 PSI, and low amps that protect circuit breakers from tripping.

This is not an oil-less air compressor. It is designed to run on gasoline, so you will need oil to maintain it. You do not need a dipstick to check the color and level of the oil. The unit has a clear, easy-to-read glass part that lets so that.

Performance

Thanks to the roll-cage like design made of pure iron, the MAC2400 model can withstand damages often caused by accidental jostling and unexpected movements. You will notice that Makita MAC2400 has two tanks and two nozzles, so it should be possible to run two machines at the same time.

With a 2.5-horsepower motor, which gives it a mid-range power rating, the MAC2400 model is good enough for most home garage projects. This one works well for a workshop that has a grease gun and an air-powered nailer working at the same time.  Makita  MAC2400 is a less volume air tank, so it can’t fill up tractor-trailer rigs

Pros

  • It is sturdy and solid because it is made of iron
  • Good for regular duty because its air pressure is steady
  • It has a maximum of 130 PSI, so you can use it for the likes of 110 PSI RV tires
  • Makita MAC2400 can run steadily at half the RPMs

Cons

  • It doesn’t work well on heavyweight residential or commercial use
  • It doesn’t have wheels and it is definitely not portable

 California Air Tools 10020C Ultra Quiet Oil-Free and Powerful Air Compressor

Design: 4.5/5                          Performance: 4.3/5                       Functionality: 4.1/5

If you are in the market for a home air compressor that can start in hot or cold temperature, then California Air Tools 10020C is a good choice for you.

Design

This one has a 10-gallon tank and it is quite heavy. It has smooth wheels for easy movement. It is designed in such a way that it can start in low voltage and produce 6.4 cubic feet per minute of air (CFM) at 40 pounds per square inch (PSI).

Performance

Obviously, the first thing that makes this air compressor to stand out is the size of the tank. With a total holding capacity of 10 gallons, California Air Tools 10020C is one of the biggest models on this list. With the 10-gallon tank and operation at 40 PSI, you get more convenience and flexibility for small as well as big projects.

The second thing that makes the California Air Tools 10020C to stand out is the fact that it is easy to move around. It is not lightweight. So lifting and moving it around isn’t going to be easy. However, it has smooth wheels that make movement easier. So you can move it from one point of your home garage to another with just a simple push.

Pros

  • California Air Tools 10020C has highs Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM)
  • Has two wheels for easy portability
  • It operates at 70 decibels so it is very quiet
  • At 10 gallons in capacity, the tank is quite large

Cons

  • Quite expensive

 Rolair JC10 Oil-less compressor

Design: 4.5/5                                           Performance: 4.3/5                          Functionality: 4.1/5

Rolair JC10 Oil-Less Compressor may not handle heavy-tasks efficiently, but it is still good enough for domestic purposes.

Design

With a 2.5-gallon tank, the Rolair JC10 is definitely not a big air compressor. The unit has a 1725-RPM motor and it can produce 2.35 CFM at 90 PSI. It is small, powerful, and it can handle tire inflation and trim installation quite well.  JC10 is lightweight; it weighs not more than 40lbs.

Performance

Unlike Makita MCA2400 model, the JC10 can only handle small, non-intensive jobs. One of the things that you will love about this air compressor is that it is built to work quietly. So it won’t create noise even after months of use.

Thanks to its size, quietness, and portability, you can use the unit anywhere you want.

One of the most common problems with Rolair JC10 is the oily stains that the legs leave on the floor. This is not often an issue for some people, but it can be quite annoying especially if you frequently have to clean things up. To get around this, put a piece of cloth underneath the compressor. This should prevent the oil from staining the floor, so you won’t have to worry about cleaning up any mess.

Pros

  • It is one of the most lightweight one on the market
  • The unit is very easy to use
  • It is oil-less, so it is easy to maintain
  • It doesn’t make a lot of noise

Cons

  • It is fit only for lightweight and small jobs

 Porter-Cable PCFP02003

Design: 4.5/5                     Performance: 3.8/5                      Functionality: 3.6/5

With a 3.5-gallon tank and up to 135-PSI, the Porter-Cable PCFP02003 can give you the flexibility and convenience you need for both far quicker recovery and longer run.

Design

It is important to understand that Porter-Cable PCFP02003 is very basic. It is not so popular out there but it made it to our list because of its simplicity, size, and weight. Porter-Cable PCFP02003 has a very small tank. It also features a low amp motor of 120V.

Performance

The model is easy to move around because it weighs 26 points and it required little maintenance because its pump is 100% oil less. Porter-Cable does not have wheels, but that’s not exactly a deal breaker considering its weight.

The model is only suitable for small and lightweight jobs like finishing neiler, farming, roofing, inflation, and blowing. That’s because the tank is small and the 120V motor isn’t powerful enough to make this compressor handle heavy-duty projects.

Pros

  • It is both lightweight and compact
  • It has rubber feet so it won’t destroy your home garage’s floor
  • The design is well thought out

Cons

  • Some people find it difficult to hold
  • Cannot handle heavy-duty tasks.

California Air Tools 5510SE

Design: 4.5/5                                              Performance: 4.3/5                      Functionality: 4.1/5

 If you are looking for the best portable air compressor to use in your home garage, you should also try the 5510SE.

Design

California Air 5510SE is designed to operate at a very low sound output. At 60 decibel, it is definitely one of the quietest options on this list. The model also features durable, sturdy wheels, so you can bring it with you whenever you want to work with some air tools.

Performance

Made by the same company that built the 10020C Ultra Quite, the California Air, the 5510SE model is an easy to transport device with an impressive performance. It has a 3.1 CFM at 40 PSI. It also supports a maximum PSI output of 120.

Thanks to a low sound output, the 5510SE model is a good option to use if you hate noisy air compressors or if you live with and around people that hate noise.

If used at full output, which is at 120 PSI, the motor will drastically drop to 90 PSI and sometimes less. Another problem is with the air filter; it is not firmly attached and it can break off easily if a user is not very careful.

Pros

  • California Air Tools 5510SE is a heavy equipment, but its wheels make transportation from place to place easier
  • It operates at around 60 decibels, so it is quiet and comfortable to use
  • The air tank is not only well design but it also fills up quickly
  • It can provide enough power for most air tools because it has a maximum pressure of 120 PSI

Cons

  • Sometimes the pressure drops at maximum output

 Hitachi EC28M Ultra Quiet

Design: 4.5/5                     Performance: 4.3/5                Functionality: 4.1/5

 The Hitachi HC28M performs quite well. In fact, it is described as the best compressor for home garage owners who need reliability and longevity.

Design

Weighing just a little above 25 pounds, the Hitachi EC28M is the most lightweight one on this list. So even without the transportation wheels, you can still easily move this unit from one point to another in your home garage.  It is also designed with noise levels in mind because the sound output is at the 59 DB.

Performance

The model can run for hours without sacrificing performance. And the good thing is that you can move the unit around for as many times as possible without worrying about possible damages or possible disconnection of components. While a compressor like the California Air Tools works at 69 decibels, the noise level of the Hitachi EC28M never goes beyond the 59 decibels mark.

The performance of this unit is definitely promising because it has a 125-PSI output. However, there are times when it struggles to achieve a higher level of pressure. And there are also times when pressure fails to display correctly.

Pros

  • Hitachi EC28M  is an ultra-quiet machine because it is designed to operate at a 5-decibel sound output
  • It is an oil-free machine, so it should be easy to maintain
  • Built to operate at 59-decibel sound output, Hitachi EC28M is an ultra-quiet machine that you can use for a long time without getting uncomfortable
  • The rubber suction cups fitted at the base helps with stability

Cons

  • Doesn’t work well at maximum pressure output
  • Hitachi EC28M has just one-gallon tank

DEWALT DWFP55126

Design: 4.5/5                    Performance: 4.3/5                         Functionality: 4.1/5

DELWALT Pancake Compressor may not have transportation wheels, but it weighs only 35 lbs. so it should be easy to carry from place to place.

Design

The tank is 6 gallons, so it is quite big than many air compressors out there. DEWALT has equipped this unit with high quality, durable rubber fitting to protect the unit from scratching and the legs from bending due to regular movement from place to place. When it comes to sound level, DEWALT is louder than Hitachi EC28M as it operates at 75.5 decibels.

Performance

Many pancake air compressors have handles that are quite hard to grab. DEWALT DWFP55126 is different. The brand has made sure that the handle is easy to grab and carry, so there is no struggling here. When it comes to operation, the two horsepower motors are powerful enough to start up even in cold temperatures. The unit can deliver 2.6 CFM at 90 PSI, which is enough to provide the operator with sufficient turnover for smaller tools.

Pros

  • DELWALT paid close attention to details to design a powerful compressor that’s worth the asking price
  • It is a powerful one that gets the job done
  • It is not quiet, but at least it is less noisy compared to many other compressors

Cons

  • The air tank isn’t big enough
  • It is not suitable for heavy-duty jobs.

California Air Tools CAT-4620AC – Best Twin-Tank Garage Air Compressor

Design: 4.5/5                 Performance: 4.3/5                     Functionality: 4.1/5

If you are looking for an air compressor from a top brand, we recommend that you try California Air Tools CAT-4620AC. Although it is bulky and somewhat difficult to move around, this unit gets the job done.

Design

This model has a 4.6-gallon horizontal aluminum tank. It weighs around 70 pounds, so it is obviously not a lightweight air compressor for the home garage. Some people say that moving the unit from worksite to worksite won’t be a problem because the compressor is compact.

Performance                                                                                                                      

The noise level of this unit is quite impressive. With the sound not exceeding 70 decibels, CAT-4620AC is no doubt a quiet machine ideal for daily operation. CAT-4620AC can easily power tools like air drills and air ratchets because it has an extraordinarily fast turnover that many compressors don’t have. With a maximum pressure setting at 125 PSI and the ability to push 5 CFM at 90 PSI, this unit gives you the power, convenience, and flexibility for a variety of jobs. It is oil-free, so you don’t have to worry about checking oil levels or changing the oil.

Pros

  • You will love this device because it is very quiet
  • It has a very high delivery rate compared to similar compressors

Cons

  • This one is heavy and very difficult to move.

What to consider when buying an air compressor for home garage

Here are important factors to consider before you spend your hard-earned money on an air compressor for your home garage.

Horsepower

Choose an air compressor that has more horsepower. In fact, the more horsepower a compressor has the more likely it will perform better. Some compressors have horsepower that exceeds 6.5 horsepower, but these ones are often pricey. As a general rule, ignore anything that has a horsepower of less than 1.5.

Type of air compressor

There are four types of air compressors that you can choose from. It is up to you to decide which one you will choose, but first, learn what makes them different.

  • Wheelbarrow: These air compressors have two tanks and they are somehow portable. They have legs that provide sufficient stability and they have wheels that offer the convenience you need to move around.
  • Hot Dog: They feature a cylindrical design and some have wheels for easy portability. They also have a workhorse output.
  • Pancake: These ones don’t have a wheel, but they are still portable. They feature rubber capped feet and they are always pressed on wide-set legs.
  • Twin: If you are in the market for an air compressor that features a dual tank design, you should go for a twin stack type of compressor.

Power Style

When it comes to power style, you can go either with a gasoline or an electric air compressor. Electric compressors are quitter, so you can use them in an enclosed home garage. Gasoline compressors are cordless and they have a higher horsepower.

Cubic Feet per Minute

CFM affect the flow rate of the compressor and it varies depending on the device attached to your type of compressor. First, check the CFM requirement of your tools to know whether they will be compatible with the home garage compressor that you plan to purchase.

Final Thoughts

It can be a good investment for your home garage. So make sure you choose one that gives you the convenience and the flexibility that you need to do various jobs in your home garage.

 

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