How To Select The Right Air Compressor for Your Auto Shop

Home / How To Select The Right Air Compressor for Your Auto Shop - September 15, 2018 , by admin

Air compressors are used in various industries including manufacturing, construction, agriculture, and automation. Their major task is to convert power into stored energy. This energy is converted into the pressurized air that is used to power machines and tools.

Here are some of the factors you need to look at when purchasing a compressor for your business.


Compare the performance of the air compressor against its cost and durability. A good compressor is one that holds enough air and pressure for your tasks.  Setting a cost limit ensures that you do not purchase a more powerful compressor than required.  In determining the cost, also consider any maintenance costs. Purchasing a high-quality system with low operating costs is better than a cheaper one that demands more in terms of operation and maintenance.


Purchasing an air compressor that does not produce enough power for your business means that you will not complete your assignments on time. A compressor that supplies a lot of power than you need will make you spend more on electricity. That is why you need, and air needs beforehand.  The power factor can also be defined in terms of electric supply.

Make sure that whatever machine you go for is compatible with your power supply. Experts have taken time to show here an example of a top air compressor.  Three-phase electricity is common in industrial companies. Most residential and commercial buildings have single-phase connections. Find out the type of connection you have then choose a compressor that has the right voltage for your system.

Tank Size

Figure out the size of the receiver tank you need. A large tank provides consistent pressurized air for your equipment. With a smaller tank, you will need more effort to get the same amount of air. If you need a large amount of air, consider getting a larger tank. One that holds at least 5 gallons per cfm is ideal for a small to medium business. Just ensure that you get a tank that meets your current as well as future needs.

You can also choose between a horizontal and a vertical tank. The option that’s best for you depends on the intended location of your air compressor and the space available in your facility. Vertical designs have a smaller footprint and work better if you have limited space.


You can determine your compressor’s horsepower through its amount of power and pressure. Horsepower refers to the amount of output that the compressor can produce at optimum operation levels. This factor is essential when determining the capability of a compressor. You also need to check the peak horsepower, which refers to the maximum output achieved when the machine starts to unwind. Peak horsepower may be over five times the normal or running horsepower since the output can be sustained for a long time. Other aspects that affect a compressor’s horsepower are the duty cycle and service factor. The cycle helps you find out whether the motor runs at continuous or intermittent intervals. The motor’s service factor refers to the percentage at which the horsepower can operate safely. A compressor that has a high service factor tends to survive harsh conditions such as low voltage without failure.

Compressor Type

Air compressors are in three types. The reciprocating compressor produces air at low volumes but high pressure. It is considered the most efficient, resulting in low operating and electricity costs. Most of these compressors are portable and can be used by people whose jobs involve moving around. Rotary Screw air compressors are easy to maintain. They utilize two helical screws to compress air and give you the opportunity to control the volume of air produced. The third type is the centrifugal compressor. It uses the dynamic displacement process to supply steady pressurized air. This type is best for high air pressures but requires high operation speeds than the other two compressors. You can control the capacity of air.

In Closing

When it comes to buying an air compressor, you have uncountable varieties to choose from. The difference in each variety is in terms of size, design and amount of air or pressure produced during operation. With all these options available, it is essential that you select one that is affordable and suits your preferences.