The best portable air compressors are one of the most versatile tools that any homeowner is dying to have in their toolbox, and that’s not an exaggeration at all!
Let’s imagine how frustrating it can be when having a flat tire and wondering where the hell all the mechanic shops are! From finishing the simplest tasks like inflating your car’s tires, balloons, or sports balls, to undertaking large-scale industrial home projects, air compressors have something for everyone!
These useful tools come in various shapes and sizes, but this exclusive list will focus on narrowing down the most suitable option for your needs. Also, don’t miss out on our tips and tricks right after the detailed review part to make your final call!
Without further ado, let’s get ready to wow your neighbourhoods with your awe-inspiring DIY projects!
Top 10 Best Portable Air Compressors
Top 5 Best Portable Air Compressors of 2020
1. DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor, 6 Gallon, 165 PSI (DWFP55126) – Best Value For Money
First up on our list of the Best Portable Air Compressors is this unique pancake-style product from DEWALT. Thanks to the 165 PSI 6.0-gallon tank, this air compressor has won us over with its long-lasting durability and quick recoverability ,not to mention the high-performance motor for a responsive start in cold weather. Besides, operated at only 75.5 decibels, the compressor definitely falls into the quieter category, making it suitable for indoor settings.
“What about portability? There’s no way I’ll drag a bulky and heavy machine along to my worksite!”
Relax, guys! That’s not gonna happen with this compact 30-pound device, a cord wrap attached, for effortless storage and transport. Also, two couplers allowing two users at a time and protective rubber legs minimizing damages result in exceptional work efficiency.
Don’t rejoice too soon as there are some downsides beneath this air compressor glamorous cover! Some customers reported air leakage through hose fittings after a period of use.
- Compact and lightweight design
- High-efficiency motor
- 2-user support mechanism
- Quiet operation at 75.5 decibels
- Quick start-up in cold temperatures
- Suitable for small daily tasks
- Air leakage through hose fittings
The DEWALT pancake-style air compressor offers a dominant performance at an affordable price, plus the incredible quietness during operation that even light sleepers can’t detect a thing!
2. Viair 00088 88P Portable Air Compressor – Best For A Tight Budget
Aren’t you ready to go bankrupt just for purchasing an air compressor? Luckily, Viair has listened to your prayers and come up with this reasonable-priced product for performing outdoor tasks.
Producing 120 PSI and 12 Volts at 12 amps and ranked 1.47 CFM, this guy stays no chance in beating other more powerful compressors, but its modest size and light construction have rarely failed to satisfy small-scale works, for instance, inflating 33-inch tires.
Additionally, this device is powered by hooking up alligator clamps to the car’s battery or via a power cable. What’s more can you get from its accessory kit? A LED indicator, 16-foot air hose, and inflation tip! Notably, a LED indicator is of great help in displaying the unit’s power, notifying you whether your device is operating at its maximum potential or not.
Unfortunately, this model and heavy-duty works requiring multiple tools are not a match made in heaven, making it the only drawback that can be upgraded by Viair in the future.
- Reasonable prices
- Portable design for easy transport and storage
- An attractive accessory kit
- Not ideal for big projects
The Viair 00088 88P is a must-have item for those on a tight budget and thinking about bringing it along on their work trips.
3. FORTEM Digital Tire Inflator for Car – Best For Design
Can the best portable air compressor appear in Vogue magazine? Everything is possible with this trendy Fortem Digital Tire Inflator!
Featuring a sleek design with a black-and-red coating (bringing out a “spider-man vibe, yayyy!), this 12 system is designed with your safety in mind – a built-in LED flashlight and a sharp LCD screen for nighttime emergencies, user-friendly control buttons, and wire storage on the back for neatly stacking those messy cords.
Apart from an air compressor, this product includes three nozzles, a convenient carrying case, and an extra fuse. Although these figures prove to be shorter than its rivals, the inflator weighs only 1.9 lbs, making it effortless to move around without breaking a sweat.
“A fashionable look must have sacrificed the quality, right?”
Worry not as this dude makes us fall head over hills with its premium construction made from super light and durable plastic, resulting in a high-pressure hose and allowing maximum airflow. All you need to do is plug it in your car outlet, attach the hose to flat tires, sports balls, air mattresses, or balloons, switch on, and everything’s ready to go!
But – there’s always a “but” here, sadly – despite the inflator’s pressure power of 150 PSI, it can only operate continuously for 8 minutes and need cooling off afterwards.
- Trendy design with black and red coating
- Compact and lightweight for active transport and storage
- Premium construction from high-quality plastic
- Full accessory kit included
- Easy to use
- Need cooling off after 8 minutes of use
Running around with a Fortem Inflator is going to feel like catwalking with a stunning Chanel handbag at a surprisingly affordable price. Grab this product and become the new trendsetter in no time!
4. VacLife Air Compressor Tire Inflator – Best For Speed
Fortem’s now facing its most prominent candidate for the title “Best for Design” – this smart-looking air compressor from VacLife!
This product has transformed itself into an eye-catching 12-Volt lighter-shaped device with incredible working speed compared to other portable tire inflators out there!
Imagine your miserable-looking flat tires are filled with air in just a matter of seconds by following these easy-peasy steps – switch the inflator on, set your desired pressure, let the unit perform its magic, and also auto shut off when reaching its limit. May your worries about over-inflating or low-pressure rest in peace as VacLife won’t sacrifice their customers’ satisfaction for a couple of dollars less!
Eager to know what’s even more impressive? The 13ft cable cord and the four extra nozzles not only allow you to get access to most types of tires, from cars, bicycles, to motorbikes and midsize Sedan SUVs but also eliminate the hassle of unplugging while moving from this tire to another. What about sports equipment? Inflatable adaptors come to the rescue, making them ideal for inflating air mattresses, sports balls, inflatable boats, and hundred other unnamed functions!
Not to mention the LED lighting is an indispensable companion for carrying out “secret missions” at night! Well, since it’s not a good feeling at all hearing your partner scolding 24/7 because of some deflated car tires, let’s amaze him/her with the “beautiful-as-new” ones and light the romantic fire between you two!
VacLife also ensures to provide its beloved customers with the best service ever! You are entitled to a full refund or a replacement FOR LIFE if some malfunctions occur during use.
However, some users expressed their anger and disappointment when witnessing their devices broke down after only several uses. If you’re unlucky enough to be in that shoe, contact the VacLife immediately for further support.
- Fast inflating speed and easy-to-use interface
- Multi-purpose with 4 additional nozzles
- LED flashlight and 13ft cable range
- Auto-shut off feature for safety
- Responsive service
- Encounter a breakdown after several uses
A VacLife Air Compressor Inflator can come in handy while you’re on the go thanks to its portable design and quick inflating speed!
5. AstroAI Air Compressor Tire Inflator – Best Overall
AstroAI, one of the most reputable manufacturers of the best portable air compressors on the market, has built its reputation around high-quality products, and this device is no exception. Let’s unveil the secret to the brand’s remarkable success!
Due to top-notch materials applied to this inflator, it can pump up your car’s tires up to 35 L/mins and reach 35 PSI in only 5 minutes! Quite an impressive number, isn’t it? In addition, you can have the programmed shut-off technology set your mind at ease by setting your desired pressure and letting the machine take care of the rest.
And many other highlights this air compressor can offer: alter pressure units via only one click, maintain high performance under low-light conditions with a large backlight LCD screen, alert emergencies with a built-in LED flashlight and switch control, the 12V 120W power cord for convenient use, and the list keeps going on forever!
The inflator also satisfies various demands, from inflating tires of cars, motorbikes, bicycles, SUVs, to stuffing balls, air pillows, mattresses, and cushions with air. One warning: it’s not advisable to utilize this unit for high-pressure and large-scale applications such as inflatable pools and boats.
As it is a cordless device, this air compressor is able to operate 30 minutes continuously at a full charge and ensures an airflow of 35 litres per minute and 30 PSI. Remember not to try testing your product’s limit beyond this range for car tires when you won’t want to deal with all the hassle afterwards.
- Small and portable design
- Cordless unit for 30-minute continuous operation
- A wide range of applications
- Auto-shut off technology for extra durability and safety
- Built-in LED lighting and LCD screen for working under poor light conditions
- A 3-year warranty
- Not suitable for truck tires
AstroAI Air Compressor Inflator is an all-round product for coping with both indoor and outdoor DIY projects with no power sources in sight!
How to buy the best portable air compressors?
The top 5 best portable air compressors can be of great assistance, but knowing exactly what you are dealing with is even more essential to make the right decision!
Who wins the battle: Inflators vs Air Compressors?
Don’t confuse between these twos as they are actually the same. The only noticeable difference is the air compressor used for inflation isn’t equipped with a tank.
Since “portability” is a hard-to-define term, it’s always a good idea to shop around and figure out how you’ll be moving your air compressor. Consider a wheel-and-pulley system for transporting bulky devices and handles for small-size ones.
There are different styles that you may run into while shopping for your air compressor. The followings are the commonly found designs:
- Pancake: It’s flat and round, ideal for transport
- Hot dog: comes in cylindrical shape, quite compact and easy to bring along
- Twin: perfect for more significant projects with the support of 2 compressors
- Wheelbarrow: includes two cylindrical tanks attached to a “wheelbarrow”, popular among contractors
The majority of modern air compressors is powered by electricity, resulting in no emissions and quiet operation.
Apart from these guys, there are gas-powered ones that produce additional power, but some downsides are difficult to avoid. These gas units are deemed to be toxic, noisy, and illegal in some countries. Thus, pay attention to the power source while shopping.
PSI and Horsepower
Horsepower plays a crucial factor in measuring the pressure released by an air compressor. The more horsepower it receives, the more PSI the compressor generates.
Also, keep in mind that 90 PSI is enough to get most tools appropriately operated. Beyond that range, more PSI is required for more cumbersome tasks.
Single vs Two-stage engine
While single-engine falls into the 150 PSI generation category, the two-stage one can double that power. With that being said, the two-stage engine supports larger projects better.
Can’t really ignore this factor when purchasing our first-ever air compressor, can we? We tend to find these products belong to the expensive side, but since they are regarded as the “beating heart” of all your projects, paying some extra money to get the best deal is worth investing!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best portable air compressor?
Pave your way for the king of best portable air compressors today – the mighty AstroAI Air Compressor Tire Inflator! Mobile design for hassle-free transport and storage, unbelievable inflation speed, a surprising range of applications, and 3-year warranty from a prestigious brand in the field – what could you expect more from an air compressor?!
Anyway, whichever product you choose from our top 5 list promises to bring you the most satisfying performance. Thus, relying on your gut feelings and working purposes to pick out your dream one!
What is the lifespan of a portable air compressor?
Overall, air compressors are presumed to be long-lasting tools. For instance, people estimate their lifespan can reach up to 30 – 40 years of full-time operation, equivalent to 40.000 – 60.000 working hours.
How to maintain a portable air compressor?
In order to lengthen the lifespan of your air compressor, regular maintenance is necessary to have this machine performed at its fullest potential.
- Step 1: Renew the air compressor oil
- Step 2: Removing the air filter for daily weekly cleaning
- Step 3: Immediately replace any worn-out compressor belt for a new one
- Step 4: Keep the habit of routine maintenance
Phew! Finally, this lengthy but informative article has come to an end. Thanks for sticking with us until the last minute, and we do hope our top compressors can be your “light” at the end of the tunnel in your decision-making part.
Well then, hurry up and save these 5 Best Portable Air Compressors for later reference and stay tuned for our next exciting topics! Take care for now!