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Air compressors are one of the most useful tools to have. With the sheer number of accessories available for air compressors, just about every job is made easier.

Before deciding on what air compressor to buy first you should assess your needs.

How much are you looking to spend? Keep in mind that in this day in age, for the most part you get what you pay for. If you are looking on the more frugal end from a place like Harbor Freight then chances are it won’t last as long as a quality piece. On the flip side, there’s no sense in throwing money away if you are just planning to fill up the kids’ bicycles every once in awhile.

What jobs are you planning on doing with the druckluft kompressor? For small tasks around the house like spraying paint or caulking baseboards a compact pancake type compressor will do the job. For larger house tasks using impact wrenches or air hammers I’d recommend a single stage piston compressor. If you plan on doing more heavy duty work related tasks that require over 150psi then a dual stage piston is the way to go.

Calculate how big of a tank you will need based off of your air tools you will be using. Certain tools like belt sanders and impact wrenches require a larger amount of sustained air pressure. The best way to determine what’s size tank is by finding the tool that requires the highest CFM and PSI. Look at the CFM number then add 50% of that number and that CFM is the minimum CFM rating you should look for in an air compressor.

Decide how much horsepower you will need to operate your air tools. In the words of the Tim the tool man Taylor, you can never have enough power! The more hp the more PSI your air compressor can deliver. Most motors will typically range from 1.5 to 11 horsepower. Don’t get too hung up on HP as CFM is the more important figure.

Figure out if you will be moving this compressor around for your tasks. I ended up buying a portable air compressor but I made a permanent spot for it in my garage so I would have been better off with a stationary air compressor. Keep in mind the more CFM and PSI, the heavier and larger the air compressor will be! Also determine the source of power that best fits your needs. Larger electric air compressors require a higher voltage. Electric air compressors are typically more cost efficient and less maintenance while gas compressors are more portable.

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