Home Air Compressor Guide 7 Best Air Compressors for Home Use

7 Best Air Compressors for Home Use

There are a lot of great air compressors on the market, but smaller models designed strictly for home use is a nice introduction. Few of the units on this list will give you insane power, but a faster refill time and steady power flow make up for it. Even with a high PSI, when dealing with a home air compressor the max PSI is useless considering the time wasted standing around waiting for the unit to be ready again. A good portion of the machines on this list have at least an average refill time, so that’s more time for you to get what you need done. They are also, for the most part, acceptable for house projects and filling tires. Always check the manual and make sure that it can handle what you need it for. For the air compressors that come with a built-in gauge, the gauge can sometimes have issues with accuracy.

Luckily, this is easily resolved by simple trial and error, and if you have a smartphone you can use a free app to see just how off it is. Using a smartphone app to get the real PSI will give you a good idea of how to adjust the air compressor unit so that you don’t have to do any future guesswork. The power required by these units is reasonable and won’t cause a fuse to blow in your house like a larger air compressor might. Also don’t mistake these smaller units for being automatically quieter, as more often than not they are louder than machines twice their size due to the stress being put on the smaller form. By going through this list carefully, you can easily choose the best air compressor for your home, price and all, one of the top of them is BOSTITCH BTFP72665, so you can go for this one for your home use.

  • BOSTITCH BTFP72665
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 16.4 x 20.5 inches
  • Power Source: Not specified
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: 1 year limited manufacturers warranty
  • Campbell Hausfeld 120 Volt
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 6.2 x 5.8 inches
  • Power Source: Not specified
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: Not specified
  • PORTER-CABLE PCFP02003
  • Product Dimensions: 18.1 x 17.2 x 18.5 inches
  • Power Source: electric-powered
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: 1yr limited warranty on compressor components
  • PORTER-CABLE CMB15
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 13.2 x 20.5 inches
  • Power Source: gas-powered
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: 1 Year Warranty

BOSTITCH BTFP72665 1-Tool and Compressor Combo Kit

If looking for a premium high-priced air compressor for home use then the BOSTITCH BTFP72665 1-Tool and Compressor Combo Kit is a perfect fit for the first-time buyer. PSI is a max of 150 with a 6-gallon tank while 2.6 SCFM is delivered at 90 PSI. The unit is built for quick recovery and has an extremely long running tool time. It’s one of the quietest on the list at only 80 dBA, so if you’re looking for something that’s powerful yet quiet then this should be one of your first picks. A high-quality brad nailer gun is included with the package so you can get straight to work on your project. The included nailer handles 18GA nails ranging in size from 5/8 to 2 inches in length. For ease of use, the exhaust rotates 360 degrees and sports features such as tool-free depth adjustment.

Other notable features are an over molded no-mar pad, tool-free jam cleaning feature and, for added safety, a trigger lock-off system. This has everything that you would need right out of the box and is made from high quality materials. The unit can be used for interior trim, crown molding, base trim, shoe molding, and even cabinetry. The product weighs 41 pounds and is a solid and sturdy beast. There aren’t any extra attachments or universal attachments, so if you anything other than the brad nailer, an extra purchase is required. All of the controls are easy to access, so for tough jobs there will be minimal downtime while changing settings. The unit itself is a bit on the bulky side but still easy to store. The first air compressor on the list is also one of the best — this is a well-made unit and very much worth the money.

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Campbell Hausfeld 120 Volt Home Inflation System

On the lower end of the price range is the less complicated Campbell Hausfeld 120 Volt Home Inflation System, suitable for either the home or a workshop. Whether inside or outside the home, it works well for personal projects and cars and trucks. There is a tire pressure gauge built into the unit itself, and for power you can plug it into a standard 120-volt outlet. This is a portable unit and even has a carrying handle built into it. The best way to describe it would be an all-in-one system that will fit every job you need it to, or a basic jack-of-all-trades air compressor. A unique feature is the cooling fan that was implemented to extend the life of the unit and keep it going strong through heavy loads. Unlike the last item on the list, the inflation accessories included are the regular needle and a Presta-to-Schrader adapter for users that have other appliances with Presta valves.

As a portable unit it is extremely light weighing only 6 pounds in total.The air hose is 3 feet long while the power cord is about 10 feet. This is plenty of length for most projects, even inflating all 4 tires. For such a small unit it is very powerful, and you can expect long usage from it. When removing the connector, you don’t have to worry about losing a lot of excess air — a problem that plagues other units. The built-in gauge can be inaccurate, so some manual adjusting on the user’s end is required. For storage purposes, this was built to be tucked away quit easily, evident from the fact that you can wrap the cord around the base for storage. For the asking price, this is a decent air compressor for home use, but there are definitely better out there. If anything, look elsewhere on the list if you want a unit that will last for more than 2 years with heavy use.

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PORTER-CABLE PCFP02003 3.5-Gallon 135 PSI Pancake Compressor

This mid-priced air compressor from brand name Porter-Cable is a nice little portable unit that has a max of 135 PSI. Like a lot of portable units it is built for a quick recovery time and longer running sessions, and doesn’t disappoint with the 2.0 SCFM delivered at a 90-PSI pump. It’s a bit on the small side at 3.5 gallons, but that factors in to its 26-pound weight, which is the perfect middle ground between function and portability. The pump is oil-free so lasts for years without failure and little maintenance. The motor is pretty heavy duty and is rated as 120V, starting easily in all weather conditions. A built-in quick coupler gives access to regulated air and is easy to identify and use even without looking at the manual.

Decibel levels are pretty good at 82 dBA, and won’t be any louder than bigger units of the same power. Other features include 2 gauges and the ability to support multiple trim finish nailers. For those without any type of accessories, be wary that none are included with this unit, so that’s an automatic extra purchase if needed. Although the average noise level is not high, when it is under heavy periods of stress it does tend to go a bit above the range of 82 dBA. It also doesn’t stay steady on smooth surfaces, a problem that’s further compounded when it’s under heavy stress. There are a lot of jobs this portable air compressor can handle and a couple that you shouldn’t even attempt. For general home use it fits the bill and is a pretty good buy for the current price.

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PORTER-CABLE CMB15 150 PSI 1.5 Gallon Oil-Free Fully Shrouded Compressor

Hovering just below mid-price is the PORTER-CABLE CMB15 150 PSI 1.5 Gallon Oil-Free Fully Shrouded Compressor with quick recovery time. It’s 2.0 SCFM at 90 PSI is decent for a compressor of its size, and the small 1.5-gallon tank in the housing also has a water drain valve. The rubber feet are a great addition, meaning it stays steady on smooth surfaces even under high load. There is a 150 PSI limit so you can expect this little unit to last for a considerable amount of time. Like most models of its type, it has oil-free mechanics that require little to no maintenance over the life of the unit. The motor runs smooth at 120v and performs well in all weather conditions, even from a cold start.

This is one of the lightest units on the list at only 20 pounds, but without sacrificing too much power. The hose length is a plentiful 25 feet, so can work in many parts of the house without being moved around. And amazingly the sound level is only 79 dBA, one of the quietest on the list. The warranty covers some limited defects parts and the entire process from Porter-Cable is hassle-free and easy to manage. The are no extra attachments included with the original package, so be prepared to shell out extra cash for those if you need them. One thing that might be handy to pick up is a trigger nozzle, as that can be the difference between the unit doing an okay job and a spectacular job. This is a good buy and well worth a look if you’re using it for the home.

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VIAIR – 00093 – Viair 90P 12 Volt Portable Air Compressor Kit

The second to last unit on the list is the VIAIR 00093 90P 12 Volt Portable Air Compressor Kit, a mid-priced 12-volt option with a permanent magnetic motor. It functions well at 100 PSI with a max of 150 PSI while only drawing 14 amps. The entire kit is nice and professionally made, coming in at only 5.3 pounds total with the included carrying bag. The beauty of this compressor kit is that it gets its power from clamping to the leads on your battery. The air delivery hose included is an open-ended type that works well with the included pressure gauge, giving nearly accurate readings. This system has a standard oil-less design with a PTFE piston ring, stainless steel valves, gearless direct drive motor, and an anodized alloy cylinder making the system moisture and dust-resistant.

Key features and accessories include an automatic reset thermal overload protector, dual battery clamps with 30-amp inline fuse holder, 3-piece inflation tips kit, and a tire chuck with built-in bleeder valve. This is one of the most full-featured air compressors on the list and will last you for years. It even contains combinations of features and accessories that the other products on the list don’t. The manual is a bit confusing, but if you’ve ever dealt with an air compressor before, this one will be a breeze. The carrying bag is very good when it comes to quality and mirrors the excellent product it is tasked to hold. This is easily one of the best air compressors you can get and comes highly recommended. The only downside would be that it doesn’t use a traditional connection method, so please be aware that you can’t just plug this into a wall.

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Primefit CM00301 125 PSI Home Workshop Air Compressor

Next on the list is the definition of portable, with a mid-range price that should make most people happy. It has an innovative pump design to output higher pressure at 125 PSI, which is hugely impressive considering its size.

And despite being one of the smallest on the list, it’s still acceptable to use with brad nailers, blow guns, and other tools of comparable size. Storing this unit is easy not only because of the size, but how light it is. The easy-to-use control panel with a built-in air regulator and gauges is one of the best on the market and quite easy to use. The 1-gallon tank may be a bit small for some, but the output more than makes up for it.

A 1-year limited warranty is included with the purchase and should cover the most important parts. The unit weights 11 pounds — so low that it can be safely placed on a sturdy shelf for storage. With a self-coiling air hose, this is surprisingly one of the better air compressors on the list for home use. With all of the extra features and praise, this is still one of the loudest units on the list. You will definitely hear it if you’re in another room, and it fills the tank at an average speed. However, there is still a lot to love about this package, and other than a slow refill time it’s more than capable for home use. It’s highly recommended and the price is the icing on the cake.

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Motor Trend (CPM-0610) 120V AC Home Air Compressor With Gauge

Meant specifically for home use, the Motor Trend (CPM-0610) 120V AC Home Air Compressor With Gauge is a low-priced solution for those that don’t need heavy power. In 4.5 minutes it can inflate a 195/70/r14 tire from 0 to 32. It has a 3-pronged power plug with a UL-approved motor running at 120v. Though a digital gauge would’ve been preferred, the analog does a decent enough job of determining pressure. The power cord is 6 foot long and is coupled with a 26.7-foot air hose with quick lock connector. There’s no need to go shopping for extra parts as the unit comes with ball and raft adapters that also fit neatly into the unit itself when not in use. All of this comes in at under 6 pounds, so it’s a real bargain if you don’t need a lot of power.

There are some specs buried deep in the manual that are worth keeping in mind. The release valve in the unit limits it to 72 PSI, so once again this is not a powerhouse machine. It is not meant to handle heavier loads and will fail when trying to. This is possibly the weakest unit on the list when it comes to power, even if some of its specs match up to others. The included parts are cheap and flimsy plastic, but that should be expected from the asking price. The compact size also doesn’t help with noise, as it’s one of the nosiest air compressors on the list. If you’re not looking for a lot of power this is a good unit, but for general household use it will be lacking.

PSI

PSI, or pounds per square inch, gives you great insight into how powerful the compressor you’re purchasing is. But with home compressors, try not to focus too much on that number and instead look at included accessories, features, and size. A strong compressor for the home isn’t meant to take the place of a big-project air compressor, so it’s better not to get too wrapped up with the PSI. You’ll also notice that most of the units on the list are in the same range — 120–150 — so not that big of a difference. Even when you get one on the list that is rated 150, you may pay for it with another feature, like refill time.

Portability

All of the units on the list are portable. Portability isn’t just about weight or handles, but also how well it can be carried from one location to the next and if it’s easy to store. Some of the units have such a great form factor that they can be stored on a shelf without worry of falling, while other smaller units are either too heavy or too bulky to comfortably put on a shelf.

Take into consideration where you will store it and how big the area is that you want to use it in. The length of the hose isn’t going to differ much between units, but just be wary that some units do have a shorter 11-foot hose, and others can reach up to 20 feet or longer. Anything under 20 should be considered average, especially when dealing with home air compressors.

Noise Level

Quiet air compressors are big in the market right now and it’s best just to ignore it. Air compressors are loud — very loud. There are some that aren’t that loud, but they still emit enough sound to disturb whoever is within a room of it. While it’s true you can talk on the phone and be near it while it’s running, the fact is you won’t actually want to. The only totally silent air compressor for the home is one that isn’t working.

Summary

Choosing the correct air compressor for the home doesn’t have to be difficult, you just have to know what you want. A good portable unit with a good warranty and low refill time should be the aim, without a focus on maxing out the PSI. All of the units are acceptably priced, and as the home compressor market goes, those prices won’t ever be on the far end of the scale. The home compressor market is still young and very strong, so take advantage of it while it’s still blooming.

A home air compressor is not only useful for the home, but around the house as well. If you get a good enough home air compressor, it could serve universal uses, even on trips. Don’t forget that they are portable and very easy to setup and use. The deal gets even better if you’re already an air compressor owner, as you’ll already be in the know. The extra accessories add up and in the end you’ll get an even better deal than your first unit.