Best Portable Air Compressor Reviews in 2018

(Last Updated On: February 16, 2018)

Welcome to Best Portable Air Compressor Reviews. Have you been looking for a portable air compressor but haven’t been able to find the right one? With so many brands, sizes, prices, and styles to choose from, how are you supposed to know which air compressors are going to be the right fit? This Buying Guide will definitely guide you in the right direction.

Air Compressor Comparison Chart

ImageBrand and Item ModelCapacityPSIPrice
Ingersoll-Rand SS3F2-GM30 gallons135 PSI
Powermate-CTA50904124 gallons155 PSI
NorthStar20 gallons135 PSI
California Air Tools 10020C10 gallons90 PSI
Makita MAC52005.2 gallons140 PSI
Rolair JC102.5-gallon90 PSI
DEWALT DWFP551302.5 gallon200 PSI
Senco PC11314.3-Gallon100 PSI
3.5-Gallon135 PSI

Best Portable Air Compressor Reviews  

1. Ingersoll-Rand SS3F2-GM

best small portable air compressor

  • 100% continuous duty for tough applications
  • Durable cast iron construction
  • 30-gallon horizontal tank
  • 5.7 acfm at 135 PSI
  • Equiped with wheels for easy transport

Pros: arrived in good condition, well made 30-gallon on large tank keeps pressure steady, enough air to handle all that you need, commercial quality air compressor for the home owner, no leaks, very quite operation, pumps up fast 

Cons: the compressor comes without oil so you should buy the ingersoll rand lube oil for it …

Highly Recommended!


2. Powermate-CTA5090412

best portable contractor air compressor

  • Low maintenance, oil free, direct drive pump, patented-two piece cooling system extends life of the pump
  • 5-horsepower Honda OHC/OHV premium residential gas engine
  • Max pressure of 155 PSI for optimum tool performance
  • Pontoon-style tank design with two 4-gallon tanks for job-site portability
  • Maximum CFM at 90 PSI of 5.0, CFM at 40 PSI of 6.9

Pros: great oilless compressor for the price, light weight compact and dependable, it does not take up much room, Honda 5 horse power motor that gives a great performance and functionality, 155 PSI to do most of what you needs, smooth running, it is built to last 

Cons: the Honda 5 hp engine is a little loud, it is a little heavy …

Highly Recommended !!!


3. ARB-CKMTA12 Air Compressor

arb twin compressor kit

  • Compact High Volume Air Source
  • Works With ARB’s Air Locker Differential Lock
  • Continuous Supply Of Air Power
  • Complete Wiring Harness
  • 2 Splash Resistant Washable Air Filters
  • Water Sealed, 100% Ball Bearing Equipped Motors
  • Quality Construction

Pros: great customer support, excellent air compressor, extremely well made, its powerfull, this is the perfect pump to do anything, this is the best on board air system, it works very well, easy to wire, easy to install 

Cons: it’s heavy …

Highly Recommended !!


4. NorthStar 20 gallon air compressor

northstar air compressor review

  • 2 HP 115V/230V 15/7.5 Amp dual voltage induction motor
  • 2-cylinder cast iron single-stage pump
  • Delivers 5.0 CFM @ 90 PSI; 6.0 CFM @ 40 PSI
  • Comes wired for 115V operation with a 6ft. cord and plug
  • Can be rewired for 230V by a qualified electrician

Pros: perfect choice for the homeowner, nice portable compressor, best compressor performance for the price, the parts are marked up super high, setup is relatively easy, it is well-built and quite capable, this runs fairly quiet, it will easily give you 7 CFM at 90 PSI for short run-times, its performance satisfies all of your needs.

Cons: the unit comes wired to operate on 110v …

Highly Recommended!!


5. California Air Compressor

california air tools 10020c reviews

  • Ultra Quiet only 70 Decibels
  • Oil-Free Pump for Less Maintenance & Costs
  • 10.0 Gallon Steel Tank with Wheels
  • Easy Start Valve, Allows for a no load start, for a low start up amp draw, Only 14-amps
  • Powerful 2.0 HP (Rated / Running) Motor

Pros: delivered on time, great price, friendly phone support, worth every penny, the fit and finish are good, it uses a very nice dual piston compressor, it is fast to reach max PSI and is quiet, this is the quietest, the 10 gallon tank big enough, no leaks, no oil on the floor and no racket, heavy enough to not walk around while running

Cons: handle a little low to the ground …

Highly Recommended!


6. Makita – Best Small Air Compressor

Makita's 3.0 HP Air Compressor

  • Power – 6.5 cfm @ 90psi; 6.9 cfm @ 40psi powerful enough to run two framing nailers
  • Performance – cast-iron cylinder with greater bore and stroke for maximum performance
  • Durability – 8″ pneumatic wheels make the compressor portable through any jobsite terrain
  • Convenience – oil drain and oil sight glass conveniently located for easy access and maintenance
  • Includes – oil and 1/4″ universal quick coupler

Pros: it came in perfect shape, this is a great little compressor, compact unit with nice features, worked well, cycles fast, recovery is very quick, pleasantly quiet, wheels were good and appeared upgraded and solid, it has wheels making it easy to transport, easy to use

Cons: it’s heavy so it isn’t very portable out of the box …

Highly Recommended!!


7. Rolair JC10 – Best Oilless Air Compressor

rolair jc10 1hp oil-less compressor

  • 2.35 CFM at 90 psi
  • 1725 RPM motor
  • Oil-less design reduces maintenance and downtime
  • 2.5 Gallon tank capacity
  • Cast Aluminum Cylinder

Pros: shipped promptly, nice compressor for cheap, this is a great one if you need a small compressor to do small jobs, small and lightweight, it takes up less floor space, small footprint, it runs well and provides a strong airflow, this compressor is quiet for sure, very little vibration, manageble, great recovery.

Cons: the pressure guage faces out rather than up …

Highly Recommended!!


8. DEWALT – Best Mini Air Compressor

trim compressor reviews

  • 3.0 SCFM delivered at 90 PSI pump, 2.5-gallon tank and 200 max PSI
  • Durable oil free pump provides extended maintenance-free operation
  • Low 71.5 dB allows for quieter operation
  • Low 12 amp draw motor provides easy start-up and reduces breaker tripping
  • Lightweight (36 lbs), thin (12.5″) and compact design is easy to carry and store

Pros: arrived on time, packed very well, very nice air compressor at a great price, it does pump up to 200 psi, it’ll meet your needs for what you want it to do, compact and easy to use, it works like a dream, this compressor handled your job easily, not too heavey but kind of, fills up super fast, relatively quiet, you’ll very happy with this purchase

Cons: none …

Highly Recommended !!!


#9. Senco PC1131 Air Compressor

Senco PC1131

  • Direct Drive Motor
  • Cast Iron Sleeve / Cast Iron Head Cylinder
  • Twin Tank Configuration
  • Standard equipment includes 1/4″ universal coupler regulator, pressure gauge.
  • Delivers 4.3 cfm at 100psi

Pros: fast shipping, inexpensive for what you get, good build quality, it’s a quiet compressor with quick recharge, high performance at a great price, dependable and portable, holds pressure really well, overall a durable and dependable tool

Cons: not bad but it’s fairly heavy, no wheels …

Highly Recommended


#10. PORTER-CABLE Pancake – Best Cheap Air Compressor

porter cable 135 psi 15 gallon air compressor

  • 2.0 SCFM delivered @ 90 PSI pump, 3.5 gallon tank and 135 max PSI for longer run time and quicker recovery
  • Durable oil-free pump for long life and no maintenance
  • Low Amp 120V motor
  • Only 26 lbs. for easy portability

Pros: it arrived very quickly, very reasonable, no assembly required, great for small jobs, perfect family size compressor, it’s a good compressor for quick dusting or filling of small tires, nice small and portable compressor, its a small footprint, easy to carry handle, it’s exactly as advertised. 

Cons: works well but not for big jobs, it is a little noisy ….

High Recommended!!



Best Air Compressor For Home Garage

Those who are looking for a portable air compressor have different needs. Some use a portable air compressor for car, truck, home use, woodworking projects, art work, cleaning computers, air brushing, etc.

These types of activities don’t require much power, so a smaller compressor is ideal. For those who require a more powerful air compressor for major home improvement projects, you’ll no doubt require a larger compressor.

If you are looking for right or perfect wood lathe? this article will be best for you.

Should you Choose Cast Iron or Aluminum Units?

Most portable air compressors have either aluminum or cast iron cylinders. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

The biggest difference is that compressors with aluminum cylinders don’t require oil, so you won’t have to worry about all the messy maintenance. If you choose a compressor with cast iron cylinders, you will have to add oil.

Portable air compressors with aluminum cylinders are easy maintenance but don’t last as long as the cast iron. Also, when it comes time for repairs, it costs a lot more money to service a compressor with aluminum cylinders.

If you want a durable and long lasting compressor, you should choose cast iron. If you don’t want to spend much money, are not going to use your compressor frequently, and are looking for easy maintenance, the aluminum should be your choice.


The larger portable air compressors can weigh over 60 pounds. If you’re looking for power and versatility, you’ll need a heavier compressor. Some of the larger portable compressors we review on this site, even though heavy, are also very portable. That’s because they have wheels and comfortable handles for easy toting.


Obviously, the more power you need, the more expensive your air compressor will be. You’ll find prices on portable air compressors that range anywhere from 70 to close to 400 bucks. There are compressors that cost less than 60 but we don’t recommend them because everyone we investigated received horrible user reviews.


The brand name is very important when trying to find the right portable air compressor. The companies we’ve found to have the most reliable air compressors are Dewalt, Makita, and Senco.

Keep in mind that not all the portable air compressor from these companies will suit everyone’s needs. That’s why reading our reviews are so important.

How to Choose the Best Portable Air Compressor For Car

Thinking of buying a portable air compressor for the car? Good decision you have made…It is indeed a necessary tool you need to have in your car. It can make a huge difference especially when you are traveling.  

Well, when it comes to choosing the best one, of course, everybody finds it difficult to pick the one which will give the optimum performance.

You may consider few things in mind while you are buying a portable air compressor for your vehicle. Here are the points you may take under consideration before picking the portable air compressor for your car.

  • What is the maximum PSI you need for your car tires? Some portable air compressor may not be able to fill the tires properly as they can fill only to some level of PSI. Find out the maximum PSI required for your tires.
  • As some portable air inflators do not support the vehicle lighter plug-in system, you may want to choose the one which supports the cigarette lighter plug-in system the car if you find it a hassle to connect the power cord to the battery terminals every time you have to run the compressor. Also, some portable air compressors may just support the wall power socket. It may not be much sense to buy such since you may need the compressor when you are on the road on a journey.
  • Some air compressors come with really short power cables. Pick the one with long cable for power supply or compressor which has long enough hose pipe for easy filling.
  • Pick the one with the compact construction which is easily portable.
  • The compressor that comes with carrying case may be a good one for carrying around in your car.
  • And lastly, people tend to buy cheap air compressors and face the problems when used in actual need. Go for better quality brands which will be durable and reliable.


We worked really hard in gathering the most accurate information on actual customer reviews in order to provide you with the information you need to make the right decision in choosing among the Best Portable Air Compressor Review.