Best Stationary Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air Compressor

Stationary air compressors may not have the portability of smaller options but they make up for it with more power. There are some that can even double that power in place of the loss in portability. With a stationary air compressor it isn’t about where it can go, it is about what it can do. And if you’ve got a big job to finish and very little time, there is no other air compressor that can handle it better than this type. Here are some of the top brands in the industry when it comes to stationary air compressors that get the job done.

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  • Industrial Air ILA3606056
  • Product Dimensions: 31 x 27 x 68 inches
  • Power Source: Electric-powered
  • Batteries Required? N/A
  • Warranty: 2-Year

Best Stationary Air Compressor
  • Craftsman 15362
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 21.1 x 9.3 inches
  • Power Source: ac/dc
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: Manufacturers

Best Stationary Air Compressor
  • NorthStar PK6060VNS
  • Product Dimensions: N/A
  • Power Source: N/A
  • Batteries Required? N/A
  • Warranty: Manufacturers

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  • Powermate Vx PLA4708065
  • Product Dimensions: 31.5 x 34.8 x 77 inches
  • Power Source: Electric-powered
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: Manufacturers

1. Industrial Air ILA3606056 60-Gallon Hi-Flo Single Stage Cast Iron Twin Cylinder Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorThe high priced unit from Industrial Air doesn’t try to hide the perks in its design. With a twin cylinder cast iron stand up design, it saves space both in storage and operation. This also makes it easy to move in any of the instances where it needs to be brought from point A-B. It’s not ideal, but still better than nothing. The pump is oil lubricated so that it doesn’t wear out quickly over time. Using a special set of lubrication methods this Industrial air model can go for years with low maintenance. With less money to spend on getting the small things repaired, the high price of the unit shouldn’t really factor in to the buying decision.

At 12 inches, the crankcase itself is quite impressive. The all in one piece design is simplistic but does not hide the advanced features when needed. That’s why the pressure gauge and on/off switch are easy to locate. All of the functions within the unit are up top and don’t require extensive manual reading. Familiar users can instantly use the unit without any sort of orientation, and the 240 volt induction motor will provide all the power necessary to get tasks done. This is pretty heavy duty, and is used for service trucks, mechanic shops and even livestock operation. To give buyers an idea of the type of quality that keeps the unit running, they even ship it with synthetic oil. Up to 155 PSI keeps this as one of the best on the list, and one worth checking out.

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2. Craftsman 3 Gallon Oil Lube 135psi Portable Air Compressor with 3 Piece Kit

Best Stationary Air CompressorThis is the first big brand unit on the list and is a bit of a hybrid compared to the others. Even though it is listed as portable, it has just enough power to sneak into the standings of stationary units. It has a 3 gallon capacity with a PSI of 135, so works wonders for small shops and home use. The handle at the top is perfect for moving it from one side of the space to another without straining your back. Unlike the first unit on the list, this one is not a stand up model. It sits low to the ground and is easy to transport short distances. Weight comes in at about 41 pounds so it is a suitable option for backup in bigger places that need an emergency air compressor.

Included with the manual is a 3 piece accessory kit that is a bit unusual for this setup, yet makes sense. Considering the unit itself is one of the lowest priced options on the list, including seal tape, a male plug and a ball tire chuck is cool beans. They may seem like throwaway items but if you don’t have any of them it makes a world of difference. Also included with the unit is a hose and a small bottle of oil. They included everything but the kitchen sink with the product. This is exactly why Craftsman is a notable brand name, and the main reason why it is one of the top units on the list. Even as a hybrid, this stationary air compressor is top 3 on the list.

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3. NorthStar 3 HP 230V Single Phase Electric Air Compressor with Vertical Tank

Best Stationary Air CompressorGetting back to one of the highest priced items, this Northstar model is notable for many things. It is a 3 horsepower 230v model that runs at an incredible 3450 RPM with its meticulously built electric motor. The single phase motor hums along at blazing speeds without any slowdowns and is made for multiple heavy duty tasks. Even the pump is high class and runs at 920 RPM with dual modes of either 90 PSI or 40 PSI. The pump is a single stage 2 cylinder champ that is protected by a cast iron housing. Built in after coolers help with heat dissipation so everything stays at an average temp while in operation. That’s probably the most important feature about this unit since it is so large.

A few cons to mention are the PSI, which is a little lower than expected. This can impact performance for users that tend to push air compressors to their limits. For others this won’t be a big deal, but be wary if you tend to max out your old air compressor. Another con is that this is one of the heaviest air compressors on the list. Now since this is all about stationary air compressors that shouldn’t be a big deal. When it comes to actually moving this hulk of an air compressor to storage, it can be a deciding factor. It’s still an overall excellent unit despite the small cons. A 4 year warranty rounds out the good features of this Northstar offering and makes it a great choice for any buyer.

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4. Powermate Vx PLA4708065 80-Gallon Electric Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorFeature rich and high priced, the Powermate Vx has a lot of cool things included to get excited about. The 240v 15 amp motor keeps humming along great even with multiple users. Up to 4.7 HP is fantastic when it reaches its peak, which takes very little time when compared to the other units on the list. And they didn’t go light in the other areas of the unit, as it can be pushed to a maximum of 155 PSI. And when using with demanding tools the setting of 14 CFM at 90 PSI can help your tools run a longer time. So in many ways this air compressor is futureproof for all of the upcoming tools coming out. Even if your new tools use double the amount of power, this unit will be able to handle it without a problem.

Built from steel, the 80 gallon tank is both durable and large for any type of job. It’s not too large to fit in certain storage spaces and is the right size for more than 90% of the jobs available. The oil lubricated pump is surrounded by a cast iron cylinder body that can take punishment from years of use. This isn’t an air compressor that will break down easily, and is backed by several five star reviews. All of the reviews point to the 3 cylinder design being what made their buying decision final. So is it really that big of a deal? Yes, when you compare it with the others on the list. As one of the leading brands in air compressors, this is one of their best from top to bottom.

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  • Porter Cable PXCMLC3706056
  • Product Dimensions: 30 x 24 x 68 inches
  • Power Source: N/A
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: Manufacturers

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  • Ingersoll Rand 32334005
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 23 x 66 inches
  • Power Source: Electric-powered
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: 1 year

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  • Emglo E8104V
  • Product Dimensions: 18 x 17 x 16.8 inches
  • Power Source: AC
  • Batteries Required? No
  • Warranty: 1 Year

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  • Ingersoll Rand 45464922
  • Product Dimensions: 72 x 30 x 24 inches
  • Power Source: Electric-powered
  • Batteries Required? N/A
  • Warranty: Manufacturers

5. Porter Cable PXCMLC3706056 60-Gallon Single Stage Stationary Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorHalf through the list is this Porter Cable model that isn’t anything revolutionary, but is just a straight up hard working air compressor. It is an above average model that is medium to high priced with all of the features one would need to get started. At 40 PSI and 90 Psi it offers pretty solid CFM, with a consistency that’s hard to find in lesser models. Horsepower is huge, and one of the better solids on the list at 3.7 HP. A good bulk of the weight went into making this one of the more powerful units on the list and it shows when you first power it on. The pressure gauge and on/off switch are in the correct places so you don’t have to constantly wonder where the controls are.

Even though the pressure gauge seems simplistic, it is accurate. Even the higher brands may be a bit off if not adjusted over the years, which is a con that this model doesn’t seem to suffer from. It’s rock solid, and comes with the support of a toll free customer service line. However, that help line won’t need to be called upon at all since this air compressor is built a lot better than the others. Pay close attention to the synthetic oil they package with the unit, as it is the one you will want to use for the lifetime of the product to guarantee long hassle free life. On the downside, it is a bit hefty at almost 250 pounds. With a 60 gallon capacity, just shy of 200 pounds would have been perfect. Even with that minor flaw, this is about as consistent an air compressor that you could ever hope for, and a buy that you won’t regret.

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6. Ingersoll Rand SS3L3 3-Horsepower 230-Volt 60-Gallon Vertical Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorThe Ingersoll Rand SS3L3 is a bit of a controversial pick for many reasons, and is considered to be the most polarizing pick on the list. There are people who love it, and there are people who absolutely hate it. Even with all of those personal reviews, there are many professionals that swear by this model, so all of it can be dizzying for anyone considering buying this model. The high priced 3 HP single phase motor is fantastic, and comes standard with manual reset and overload protection. That’s a great option for advanced users that have dealt with air compressors that lock up with heavy use. If you’re looking for a model that can be fixed by hand rather than waiting on a replacement, this is the most compatible air compressor for that.

The construction of the unit is cast iron and it is built with components inside and out that were engineered towards quality. To keep it short, there are no shortcuts that were taken in building this unit to perfection. It’s a professional looking unit from top to bottom, and is one of the more impressive air compressors on the list when it comes to design. Because of this, 100% continuous duty is not a problem when needed. And if you need to drain the unit, it uses a manual system which is better by default. When in operation it isn’t ultra-quiet, but compared to the other air compressors on the list its beats them pretty substantially. A dark horse in this contest, the SS3L3 is a top 3 pick.

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7. Emglo E810-4V 4-Gallon Heavy-Duty Oil-Lube Stacked Tank Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorLike the other hybrid air compressor on the list, the Emglo E810-4V is portable without losing too much power. This low priced unit can work just as good as any stationary option on the list, and has a few surprises underneath all the mechanics. Emglo is promising 1500 running life hours for heavy users and an oil lubricated pump that works in tandem with the cast iron cylinders. Everything is heavy duty under the hood which is why 125 PSI is a real rated number. It sustains power great and runs through recovery quickly due to the size of the tank.  But the size of the tank is only 4 gallons, which is a big problem for a stationary option unless it is used for emergency.

And that’s where opinions are going to differ about the product, in how it is used by the end user. With only 4 gallons to work with, as powerful as it is, that really isn’t enough to handle nearly half of the things that the big boys on the list can. As a backup emergency option it is perfect, but beyond a backup, recommending the E810-4V as a full time unit for any professional just wouldn’t work. Now for a garage user, this is an awesome stationary unit. So maybe this hybrid option is meant for residential users more than professionals. Either way, Emglo has half a century in the business so they stand firmly behind their products. If tank size isn’t a main concern for you then consider this air compressor, as it has all the goods and then some.

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8. Ingersoll Rand Type-30 Reciprocating Air Compressor

Best Stationary Air CompressorThe last item on the list is also the best, and also the most expensive. The Ingersoll Rand Type-30 Reciprocating Air Compressor was a concept from the company that led to an impressive finished product within a couple of years. The vertical tank can hold 60 gallons and has an incredible PSI of 175. That’s the highest on the list, and one of the many reasons it got perfect ratings across the board from several customers. This is the most powerful air compressor on the list by a lot, which is why the markup for it is so high. A finned copper intercooler is so complex in its construction that it’s patented, and the in and out 100% cast iron construction is made to impress.

Durability won’t be a concern for any buyer, and they even sell a special maintenance kit to service the unit. If you opt to use the kit, then you can close in on an extended 2 year warranty on the pump alone. That by itself is worth the price of the kit, and guarantees long life of the unit. The initial life expectancy of the pump is 10,000 hours, so even on continuous use it is made to be a bit of a beast. Type-30 air compressors have been around for years and tend to last longer than any other models. Be prepared for the weight to almost come out to half a ton. It’s heavy, makes up for it by being the best choice on the list.

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Type-30 VS The Others

When money is no object then going with Ingersoll Rand Type-30 Reciprocating Air Compressor is the best fit. But money is always going to factor into the buying decision, and for anyone that needs multiple air compressor, dropping over 2 thousand to get them is a big deal. And for those that just want to have one around for medium to light use, getting the best of the best might be overkill. At that point a hybrid would work wonders for both home and away use. But what about the heavy use customers that want to go all out?

This is when decision time comes into play for the customer, since anything than a Type-30 is still a great buy. There are small differences between the air compressors on the list, and if it comes down to brand, then so be it. Purchase what is good for your home, office, work and even hobbies. And if that turns out to be a Type-30, then go ahead and make the purchase official. No, you don’t need a Ferrari to get to and from work. But it’s a lot of fun to buy one if you have the money!

Are Hybrids Worth It?

Yes and no. There are two hybrids on the list, and they both function better as emergency backups for anyone looking at a full time stationary air compressor. The second one on the list could actually do a pretty good job as a stationary air compressor rather than a backup, yet it still pales in comparison to the others on the list. It’s a good option but not the best when it comes to one thing. In other words, it is a jack of all trades and a master of none.

The thought of tying yourself to a stationary air compressor if you move a lot while working might seem odd. That just means you might not need a stationary air compressor at all, and should look into bigger ones with wheels. A hybrid is the best of both worlds so that you can still maintain some of the power that makes stationary air compressors worth the buy. Where you will run into problems is if you’re a heavy user that tends to tax your units to the limit. Hybrids aren’t made for that type of workload, and that will always be a con of the design. So they’re worth the buy, but only if you understand their limitations as a main unit.

Summary

Stationary air compressors are powerful beasts that get the job done. Seeing a couple of hybrids on the list is a good thing, and shows that the technology is progressing. No matter how you use stationary air compressors, you’re guaranteed solid units that will last you years of hard work.