Air compressors are a great help in painting if you don’t have a budget for airless paint spray or an HVLP model. However, it is recommended that you have the one with impressive airflow and decent pressure.
These machines are compatible with all the paint sprayers and help you through the process. Thus, whether you are a hobbyist or a professional user, buying the right one is extremely important for a smooth and consistent process.
Still, finding the right one can be an uphill task considering how many options are in the market with endless features. To save your day, here is a detailed account of the best air compressors for paintings coupled with some popular reviews. So, dive right in and make the rational decision.
At a Glance:
6 Best Air Compressors For Painting
1. CRAFTSMAN Air Compressor 6 Gallon-Best for Painting
To begin with, this Craftsman air compressor is best known for its high pressure, sturdy construction, and affordable price range. If you are looking for an all-rounder compressor that can help you with smooth painting applications, I would undoubtedly recommend this one. Additionally, it comes with a compact size that helps you in keeping this device around.
Likewise, the first thing you will notice about this design is its cast iron construction and a carrying handle that provides you with convenience and durability. It is further equipped with
an oil-free pump and rubber feet that make it low maintenance and highly efficient. You will further be facilitated with two hoses and tools that help you with overall convenience.
In the end, when it comes to efficiency, this one has a pressure range of 90-150 psi that is absolutely remarkable for painting evenly. It can also get through reasonable air with a quick recovery that gives it an edge over others. The application has a total of 6 gallons capacity that is more than enough for painting. You can use this for bolting, framing nails, roof painting, and so on.
- Suitable pressure points.
- Portable and sturdy.
- Includes oil-free pump.
- Highly powerful inflation.
- Not for beginners.
If you are looking for something reliable with a reasonable price range, I would recommend you go for this Craftsman air compressor. It comes with a decent pressure range, a powerful motor, and an oil-free pump that helps you through the process.
The design further integrates a handle and rubber feet, not to mention the iron cast body that makes it highly durable and long-lasting.
2. DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor-Air Compressor Paint SprayerBest Pick
Dewalt is a big name when it comes to air compressors and related stuff. This pancake compressor from the manufacturers is one of the best for painting because of its perfectly suitable pressure range and tank capacity that serve you well.
This one also helps you with an exceptional power output without compromising on energy efficiency, so you won’t have to worry about the electricity bills. First of all, the compressor is made specifically for professionals as well as beginners who are looking for an easy and convenient machine.
Also, it comes with an automatic pump and a carrying bag that facilitates you throughout. Furthermore, for spray painting, the six-gallon capacity is absolutely perfect and helps you with up to 3000 working hours, making it an impressive alternative.
Lastly, it comes with a powerful motor with low power consumption and produces safe energy, all thanks to the 120V voltage and 8.5 amperage range. All in all, it provides you with improved airflow and high-flow regulation all along.
I also liked the fact that it comes with a 78dB sound, and the oil-free pump helps you with a quick recovery rate and noiseless operation throughout. Also, I didn’t feel any issue with the control through the process.
- Offers stability and control.
- Includes powerful motor.
- Comfortable and quiet.
- A lot of accessories included.
- It can be a bit expensive.
In essence, this Dewalt corded electric compressor is a great alternative for experienced users and beginners with long service life and consistent performance. It comes with a powerful motor, efficient speed range, and improved airflow that helps you all along.
Likewise, the oil-free pump and energy efficiency, not to mention the quick start instructions, make it of great value.
3. California Air Tools 8010-Compressor For Paint Gun
First of all, this California air compressor is specifically designed for beginners and experienced users with a decent tank capacity and a powerful motor. It is one of the most popular choices among users because of its durable construction and N.B. certification that helps you throughout.
Here, I absolutely loved the fact that it doesn’t make any noise and works without any lag. Secondly, the first thing you will notice about this device is its 1 H.P. powerful motor with an oil-free pump that provides you with a smooth painting process.
This motor operates on the regular 120V voltage with an 8.5 amperage range that provides you with safe and reliable energy with less than usual power consumption. Likewise, it makes only 60dB noise that is considered ultra-quiet, so you won’t’ be bothered by the unnecessary sound.
Lastly, it also has a large 8 gallons steel tank that helps you with a long process without worrying about durability. Throughout the process, with a 90 psi pressure range, this device will provide you with consistent performance all along.
Finally, it is worth mentioning that the drain value and quick-connect air regulator make the process even easier.
- It makes no sound.
- Durable and lightweight.
- Offers great safety.
- Quick recovery time.
- Leaking issues.
- Expensive than usual.
In the end, this one from California is a great choice for anyone looking for a safe and efficient option in the market. It comes with a powerful motor that integrates a suitable psi range and an oil-free pump that gives it an edge over others.
Likewise, the eight gallons capacity with a quick recovery rate and a thermal overload protection function facilitates you in the best manner.
4. PORTER-CABLE-The Good One (Editor’s Pick)Staff Pick
This one from Porter-Cable is another best air compressor for painting for its high-capacity tank and durability that serve you all along the process. This red pancake compressor has a great recovery time and pressure range that provides you with a smooth and even paint application.
Additionally, the fact that it comes at a reasonable price range makes it one of my favorites. Speaking of the design, it comes with a cast iron body and rubber feet that protect your machine from potential physical damage.
It further integrates a water drain valve and oil-free pump that provide you with convenience and enhanced functionality. You are also getting a 13-piece accessory kit and a carrying bag that helps you with improved portability and allows you to carry it around.
Lastly, when it comes to performance, it is equipped with a powerful 120 V motor that works in extreme and harsh weather. Here, a large capacity of six gallons and a 90 psi pressure range makes it absolutely ideal for painting and drilling.
Finally, the inclusion of a soft-start motor function makes it perfectly suitable for household circuits with safe energy production.
- Portable and sturdy.
- Great value for money.
- Suitable psi range.
- A lot of accessories included.
- It can be a bit noisy.
- Compromised consistency.
Final thoughts, this one from Porter-Cable is a well-suited option for beginners looking for a reliable and safe option out there. It comes with a powerful 120V motor with a comfortable handle and iron-case construction that helps you throughout.
Furthermore, the package includes a 13-piece accessory set and an oil-free pump that provides you with a suitable pressure range and efficiency.
5. California Air Tools 10020C-Powerful Air Compressor
Here comes another quality air compressor from California Air, famous for its powerful motor and long-lasting battery life. I really like this one because of its improved airflow, long service life, and efficient drainage system that provides you with a smooth process.
Similarly, the oil-free pump and easy start valve operation make it one of the best air compressors for painting. Furthermore, the first thing you will notice about this small machine is its iron-cast construction, making it durable and long-lasting.
It comes with a 2.0 HP powerful motor with 1680 RPM that operates on the regular household voltage, providing you with safe energy with absolute power efficiency. Likewise, it makes only a 70dB sound that is minimal and doesn’t bother you through the process.
In the end, it offers you a long service working of 3000 hours with a six-gallon tank capacity that adds to the overall durability. You can use this for a number of purposes, from painting to drilling, mixing, and much more.
Additionally, it comes with easy start instructions and a simple power valve that makes the process even easier. Finally, you are getting all these things at an affordable price.
- Safe and effective energy.
- Even and smooth application.
- Easy and convenient.
- Large tank capacity.
- Wheel displacement might issue.
- The tank is a bit heavy.
Final thoughts, this California air compressor is a great choice for painting with a large tank capacity, powerful motor, and long working hours. It comes with a cast-iron construction and a quick start mechanism, not to mention the ideal speed range that helps you all along. In addition, the lightweight design and accessories included in the package make it of great value.
6. Makita MAC2400-Big Bore Air CompressorBudget Pick
Last but not least on my list of the best air compressors for painting is this one from Makita, popular for its decent tank capacity and a powerful motor. It is specifically designed for DIY projects and home users, and coming from a reputable brand makes it one of my favorites.
I also really like the overall quick start instructions and an efficient drain valve, not to mention the long service life that helps you throughout. Speaking of the design, this one comes with a thermal overload protection function and cast-iron construction that contributes to durability and long-lasting usage. It further
incorporates a Big Bore cylinder and lever handle that makes the process convenient and comfortable. Here, the roll cage also and petcock design adds to the protection. In the end, for painting, this one comes with a 2.5 HP powerful motor with a 90 psi pressure range that helps you with a smooth and consistent performance.
The motor operates on 1730 RPM and 79 dB value that helps you with noiseless operations and efficient processes. The only downside to this model is its oil-lubricated pump that would need constant monitoring and will provide you with compromised performance in cold weather.
- Includes a powerful motor.
- Durable and lightweight.
- Suitable speed and pressure.
- It makes minimal noise.
- Expensive than usual.
- Oil-lubricated pump.
In conclusion, this Makita MAC2400 Big is one of the best air compressors for painting with durable construction and ergonomics design. It integrates a powerful motor with a suitable speed and pressure range that helps you with a smooth and consistent performance.
Moreover, the thermal overload protection function and lightweight construction make it stand among others.
Everything You Need to Know: While Buying the Best Air Compressor
Air compressors are widely used among professionals and hobbyists with absolute efficiency and even distribution. These things used motors to compress the air and used the power to paint different surfaces.
The best air compressor for painting is the one that helps you in evenly distributing the paint on the surface with convenience, functionality, and comfort. If you are currently looking for one, here are some things you should look for;
Types of Air Compressors for Spray Painting
There are different types of air compressors you can find across the market. Here are some most commonly used air compressors for painting that can help you in choosing the right one;
Pancake Air Compressors are the most commonly used machines among beginners with absolute portability and small tank capacity. These are relatively stable and easy to control, all thanks to their lightweight and stable designs.
However, they cannot withstand heavy inflating projects and don’t support a high volume. So, if you are into DIYs and home-based projects, I would recommend these alternatives.
Hot Dog Air Compressors are designed with large tanks and powerful motors. These are designed for relatively larger projects, having a high-speed range and decent pressure value.
I would recommend experienced users to go for these ones because they are focused on big inflating projects. However, they are not as durable as pancakes are and can be a bit difficult to control.
Pontoon Compressors are a combination of the previous two and look more like a pontoon boat. These are designed with a high psi range and powerful motor, having a high-speed range. These air tools are focused on professionals who are dealing with tough and lengthy painting projects.
These also integrate a number of accessories that help you in performing a number of tasks. However, these can be a bit heavy and include a much larger volume of air, so it becomes difficult to handle.
PSI and CFM Ratings
Power tools, specifically air compressors, are recognized by their speed and pressure range. Hence, if you are a professional or a beginner, it is recommended that you look into these for consistent performance. First of all, the thing you should consider is the pressure range that is measured in psi or pounds per square inch.
So, if you are a beginner, having a 30-40 psi range is more than enough for a smooth process. Likewise, in other devices, pressure is measured in CFM that is cubic feet per minute. For beginners, you should have a 6 CPM range. For professionals, having a 40 or above psi and 8 CFM range is considered effective for a smooth process.
Motor/ Horsepower H.P.
Another feature you should look into while buying the best air compressor for painting is the horsepower. For a hobbyist who wants the machine to do basic DIY projects, having a motor with 1 or 2 H.P. is more than enough.
In contrast to that, if you are looking for something more accurate and stable, I would recommend you go for a 2HP compressor with an 8 CFM range. So, you are provided with absolute control and stability all along.
Oil and Oil-Free Pump
Another thing many people get confused about is whether to look for an oil pump or an oil-free one. My personal preference here is an oil-free compressor because these offer great traction and work absolutely well in cold and harsh weather. Also, you don’t have to constantly lubricate them, saving you from a lot of struggle.
Oiled compressors, on the contrary, are a bit heavier and can be more expensive. However, they are more durable and don’t wear out easily. So, if you have time to monitor oil and lubrication, I would recommend you go for these ones.
Another advantage of oiled compressors is the low noise frequency that makes them noiseless with advanced technology.
Noise is another element you should be looking for in a quality air compressor. If you are a person who gets irritated by the noise easily or doing most of the work in closed areas, it is ideal that your machine has a small noise value.
It is measured in dB, and the value between 60 and 80 is considered low. In addition, for this, you can go for expansion chambers that can block the compressor sound and can help you in hindering the low frequencies.
Likewise, it is ideal that you go for an air compressor that is designed for a number of purposes. For this, many contemporary models come with a lot of accessories that can help you with different functions such as drilling, pumping, painting, spray painting, and much more.
Also, make sure that your air compressor can be used with other air tools such as guns, nails, and so on. Finally, based on these essential features and your individual requirements, you can choose the right one ideally.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best psi range for an air compressor?
The psi range of an air compressor totally depends on the nature of the project and your skillset. For instance, if you are a beginner, having a 1 or 2 H.P. motor with a 30-40 psi range is more than enough. On the contrary, if you are invested in heavy inflating projects, a 2 H.P. motor with 40 and above psi range will be a great choice for you.
What is the best air compressor for painting?
Craftsman air compressor is one of the best compressors when it comes to painting, with a large 6 gallons capacity and a powerful motor. It further comes with a number of accessories that maximize its utility. Likewise, the high-pressure range and cast-iron construction make it of great value.
What makes a quality air compressor for painting?
There are many things you should consider before buying an air compressor for painting. Here, the primary things you need to look into are the appropriate type of compressor, powerful motor, high psi range, and an oil-free pump. Once you are done, make sure that it is lightweight and sturdy so you are in control during the process.
Air compressors are a great help in painting if you don’t have a budget for airless paint spray or an HVLP model. So, if you are a hobbyist or an experienced user, it is ideal that you have an idea about how these works and what can suit you best. For this purpose, I have brought together this buying and review guide. Here are some of my favorites from the list;
Makita MAC2400 Big Bore Air Compressor is known for its durable construction, minimal noise, and suitable psi range.
California Air Tools 8010 Steel Tank Air Compressor is famous for its safety, large tank capacity, and quick recovery time.
CRAFTSMAN Air Compressor is one of the best with powerful motors, large tank capacity, and a suitable pressure range.
Finally, I hope that you soon will find the best air compressor for painting as per your requirements.