Best Shop Air Compressor in 2019 Reviews | For Home – Garage & Workshop

If you ask any homeowner, DIY enthusiast, or tradesman, they will all tell you the same thing. Choosing the best shop air compressor is not an easy task. For starters, not all air compressors are made the same. Some are designed for heavy duty tasks specifically while others are aimed at versatility instead of power. Not only that, but the sheer number of reviews from the internet and a bunch of YouTube videos make selecting the best shop air compressor an even more daunting task.

Every handyman and their grandfather seem to have the best shop air compressor that matches their needs. It also tends to be the same air compressor that they swear by. There is a reason many people claim to have found the best shop air compressor for their projects. They have figured out their needs and have been able to match up their needs with a quality product that delivers. While there are so many factors to consider when finding the best shop air compressor for your garage, there is some good news. With the right information, you too can be on your way for finding the best shop air compressor for all your projects. Even better, our helpful review is here to guide you.

In our handy guide, we will help you narrow down the options by providing you with a list of the best shop air compressors on the market right now. We have done all the hard work for you in weeding out the products that stand out above the rest. Through countless reviews, and a close look at the different type of air compressors to choose from, this daunting task can soon be enjoyable.

Not only that but at the end our or list, we have got a helpful buyer’s guide for you to take a look at. Our buyer’s guide will go over everything you need to know in terms of what to look for when shopping for the best shop air compressor.  

You need to know the details of the products that you're buying from design to functionality. An air compressor cost lots of money. As a homeowner, you want to make sure that you're shelling your money on the best deal possible. By reading our review, you are on the right track to making the right choice when you purchase your air compressor. So, without further delay, let’s help you narrow down the list of the best shop air compressor to invest in today!

Best Shop Air Compressors Compared







30 Lbs


17.2 x 16.6 x 20.1

32.1 Lbs


19 x 19 x 18

20.4 Lbs


15.7 x 7.9 x 19.6

31.5 Lbs


17 x 17 x 19.2

2 Lbs


7 x 3 x 6.5

Best Shop Air Compressor 2018 Reviews

1. DEWALT DWFP55126 - 6 Gallon 165 PSI Pancake Compressor


This trusted brand is one of the best places to start if you are looking for the best shop air compressor on the market. The Dewalt 6 gallon pancake compressor is a standalone horsepower unit that is exceptionally priced compared to some of its competitors. Not only that but when you shop Dewalt, you know that you are getting a trusted brand that will be well worth the investment.  

This 6 gallon compressor comes with 165 max PSI 6 gallon tank. The high-efficiency universal motor will start up easily even in cold weather or when an extension cord is used. What is great about this unit is the fact that it also offers a low noise level when compared to other air compressors. The 75.5 dBA noise level makes for a decently quiet work setting. The noise level is manageable even when put on higher usage too. Also, the Dewalt air compressor has a high-flow regulator and couplers that you can use to make the most of the tools.

The construction of this unit is rather durable as well. It offers a removable cover console that protects its vital parts all while giving you all the access that you need when working. Its metallic leg has a rubber cover that protects your floor from damage too. The high flow regulator is something that you'll love with this compressor because it squeezes a lot of power making it work effectively. Overall, the Dewalt air compressor was built to withstand any heavy duty project.

2. PORTER-CABLE C2002 - Oil Free UMC Pancake Compressor

Oil Free UMC Pancake Compressor

Another one of the best shop air compressors to consider is the Porter Cable C2002. The C2002 compressor runs a 3.55 CFM faster with its 6-gallon tank. It features a replaceable brush that extends the motor and a run time of 150 PSl max pressure. Also, if there are large pressure drops, there is a high flow regulator to help correct it.

Together with its 6 gallon unit, you will find the air compressor versatile and able to work with two framing nailers. When it is time to refill the air compressor, you can do so quickly in 3 minutes. When it comes to this unit, the air tool includes a 13-piece accessory kit featuring a 25' nylon hose, blow gun and attachment, fire chuck, tire gauge, quick coupler, plugs, and Teflon tape.

When it comes to the overall design of this unit, you will be pleasantly surprised as well. Users will find the C2002 skillfully constructed with no pointing edges. Instead, it features a sleek, round, pancake design. This design allows it to be comfortable to use and easy to transport from one location to another.

Overall, this unit is the best shop air compressor if you are looking for a tool that delivers in terms of horsepower. Many who use this unit deem this to be one of the best tools in any cabinet. Not only for its power but for the fact that users will save lots of money on their energy bills because it runs on low amperage and requires a 120 Volt to operate.

3. Campbell Hausfeld FP209499AV - Air Compressor Kit

Air Compressor Kit

This next tool is perhaps the best shop air compressor to keep in the back of your trunk. This little known air compressor is perfect for firing the tires of vehicles, bikes, and outdoor sporting equipment. Because it only offers a 3 gallon tank, you will be limited in the type of projects you can use with it.

The horizontal tank provides users with .36 CFM at 90 PSI. The max PSI is 110 and can help you take on many at home DIY projects. The accessory portion of this set comes with 10 pieces. This includes a coiled hose, blow fun, inflation needles, and different fittings.

The Campell air compressor kit frees you up from maintenance because operates oil-free. It only weighs 21 pounds and is easy to carry around and move from one location to another. While it is very handy when it comes to tires, this unit can be used with ball inflations, air/brad nailers, and upholstery projects. Overall if you are looking for the best shop air compressor for on the go tasks this unit certainly delivers.

4. Bostitch BTFP0212 6 Gallon - 150 PSI Oil free Compressor

150 PSI Oil free Compressor

Some projects require the best shop air compressor that is also heavy duty. the Bostitch oil-free compressor is a bit heavy, but certainly delivers when it comes time to work. This unit runs on an 80 dBA and makes very little noise when it is in operation. Because of this, it is easily one of the best air compressors to use both at home and at work.

The Bostitch BTFP0212 comes equipped with a nifty control panel that has all the important components. With its minimalist design, the gauges and connectors are bumped and knock free. It is easy to use in whatever setting you are working in. Also, the two connectors are capable of driving multiple compressed air tools.

On the performance side, this machine takes 2 minutes and 30 seconds to reach the 150 PSI when placed on a light to medium-duty use. Thanks to its recovery time, you can fill it once the pressure drops below the 120 PSI and it takes only 5 seconds to fill.

The fascinating thing with this air compressor is that it has a 6 gallon tank and outperforms high pricey compressors in its class. This unit is also easy to transport and handle thanks to the large handle mounted on top of it.

The Bostitch BTFP02013 is a perfect example of the best shop air compressors tool that is designed for professionals and DIY medium-duty contractors. You can seamlessly complete large to medium-sized projects with this unit.

5. PIAS003 Premium - Auto Air Compressor

Digital Tire Inflator With Carry Case

The PIAS003 Digital Tire Inflator is one of the best shop air compressors for tires of all sorts. You can easily use this best shop air compressor to complete everyday tasks. The unit comes with a plethora of useful features that can handle various projects. For instance, it has a bright torch and flashing red warning light in case you are in an emergency situation.

On the performance side, this best shop air compressor is equipped with a powerful and efficient pump. This pump operates on a 12v DC current and is known for working at 22 liters per minute. On average it can inflate a typical flat tire up to 30 PSI in less than 4 minutes.

The extra-long cord attached to this pump is capable of covering a 10 foot radius. You'll find that the PIAS003 covers better mileage, keeping the tires in better operation and drivers safe at all times. An automatic safety feature is that the digital pressure immediately stops the pump once it reaches the desired pressure.

On the construction side, you'll find that this best shop air compressor is made out of a heavy-duty material that offers reliable long lasting performance. It offers excellent grip thanks to the rubber material. And best of all, it is small and compact that you can take it with you nearly everywhere you go.

The PIAS003 is a nice investment because it offers you a full set of adapters that fit ranging from sporting goods to inflatable items. Customers love it because of great features like tight-fitting valves which prevent air leakages during tire inflation. Overall, this is a great tool that any handyman or novice should have in the back of their trunk.

How To Choose Best Shop Air Compressors

Having the best shop air compressor handy is a great thing for any household. Compressors are a versatile tool that can handle many projects both at home and work. However, to get the best value for your money, you need to make sure you are buying the right type of air pressure for your home. Not all air compressors are made alike and knowing what to shop for will allow you to get the most out of your investment. Here is what you need to know before buying an air compressor guide:

Types of air compressor

An air compressor comes in different forms. Your choice of a compressor will depend on the capacity and the kind of work that you handle. There are heavy duty industrial grade air compressors and basic, easy to operate air compressors. Knowing what to shop for will keep you from overspending on the best shop air compressor.

Stationery air compressor

These are large air compressor designed to power large spaces like garages. They have a large tank and are capable of working for long hours. They are mostly used for industrial processes. They take up much space because of their vertical design. Aside from the fact that these are more industrial grade units, they will also be placed in one location not to be moved again.

Portable air compressor

These are the most common types of compressors. Unlike the stationary air compressor, a portable air compressor has a small storage tank. It will also come with a handle or a wheel that makes it easy for you to carry and move around. Here are the examples of portable air compressor:

  • Pancake air compressor - These are perfect for light application such as airbrushing and powering many types of nail guns. This type of air compressor is given the name “pancake” because the tank is shaped in a flat circular design. These types of compressors have no pointed corners that can hurt you while you work too.

  • Hot dog compressor - This type of air compressor is given the name “hotdog” because of its singular cylindrical tank. They tend to have bigger tanks than pancake air compressors yet they can perform many of the same tasks. These types of air compressors are also typically easy to maintain and do not produce much noise when in operation.

  • Twin-stack compressor - These type of air compressors are very similar to hotdog type compressors. The distinction is that they feature two tanks stacked on top of each other. What makes this type of compressor great is the fact that it offers users a larger capacity. They are also portable, however, they do weigh a lot more than hotdog compressors.

  • Pontoon compressor - Another type of air compressor that you can expect to come across is the pontoon air compressor. These compressors feature two horizontal tanks that sit at the base of the unit. Unsurprisingly, these units resemble pontoon boats. They offer users many of the features that twin stack compressors do. Pontoon compressors, although heavy, will usually be a bit easier to move around with because of the handles and wheels that some come with.

  • Inflators - These are small air compressors. They don't have a storage tank. But they have a continuous motor that runs to supply air. You can use inflators for inflating small floats, tires and sports gears. While they can not really handle heavy-duty tasks, they are the perfect type of units to carry around with you in your trunk.

Each type of portable air compressor is good for a specific type of task. Knowing the type you need for your job will allow you to narrow down your search for the best shop air compressor. Also, knowing what type to buy will keep you from spending unnecessary money on units that offer more power than you need.

Air Compressor Maintenance Tips

Now that you have bought the best shop air compressor; the next step is to learn how to maintain it. Knowing how to properly maintain your air compressor will allow it last you for a long time. Although most air compressors have little to no maintenance, it’s easy to let standard care and maintenance get away from you.  

When you learn how to maintain it for the long run, you keep from having to replace this investment over time. With that being said, here are some maintenance tips that you need to know.

Stick To The Compressor Manual

The manual comes with simple tips that can help you learn how to use it properly. The first step in long lasting performance is using the unit just as the manufacturer intended. If you follow the stipulated rules in the manual, you'll avoid common accidents such as leakages that could lead to long term damage.

Never Drain Moisture From The Tank

If you live in humid areas, you'll learn that the receiving tank collects moisture from the air. Most air compressor tanks have a valve that drains moisture. For that reason don't drain the moisture unless you empty the air pressure.

Cleaning The Fuel Tank

On a periodic basis, make sure that you clean the fuel tank for optimal performance and better working conditions. You can clean out your unit once a year to remove any residue build up from the fuel. Cleaning preserves the life span of the engine. Before you start cleaning your unit, be sure to check the manual to ensure you are cleaning it properly.

Replace The Oil

If you are using an air compressor that uses oil. Then you need to replace the oil on a regular basis. Typically, after every 500 to 1000 hrs of use, you will need to change the oil to prolong the performance of the air compressor. As with anything, be sure to check the manual to see exactly how and when you should be changing the oil in your unit.

Cleaning The Air Filter Intake

It is difficult for the air compressor to take in air if one of its filters is dirty or contaminated. A dirty air filter guarantees you less air per KW. To avoid this, it is important to clean the air filter and make sure that it is as dust-free as possible when you use it.

Replace The Separator Element

The purpose of the separator element is to prevent excessive use of oil. The separator element has to be replaced periodically. A good rule of thumb is to replace it after every 1000 hours of use. Be sure to check your manual as well to make sure you are replacing it correctly and in a timely fashion.

Final Thought on the Best Shop Air Compressor

Choosing the best shop air compressor is a science. The science stems from the fact that you need to evaluate your needs before you consider which is the best shop air compressor to invest in. 

Now that you have gone over our top picks of the best shop air compressors and have read through our handy buyer’s guide, you are one step closer to making the right choice for your projects.

Ed Franko

Ed is a family man first and attempts to be a writer second. He is a home expert and his passion for helping people in all aspects of home improvement.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments

Leave a Reply: