The use of pancake air compressors has gained a lot of traction in the past few years. They are compact, portable, and offer incredible power. You can use them for different purposes from construction sites and pneumatic tools to filling up air in the tires of your car. The tank volume of pancake air compressors ranges from one to six gallons and the tank itself boasts a low-profile design.
There are countless models of pancake air compressors on the market, each claiming to be the best compared to the rest. Though this is great news for DIY aficionados, the range of choices makes it difficult to find one that suits your needs. We have reviewed the most popular pancake air compressors of 2022, so you can make the right purchase.
Many pancake air compressors may be found on the market, making it difficult to pick out the ideal one when searching. If you want to invest your hard-earned money in the right product but are still unsure how to pick one, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a buying guide we’ve put together to help you make a more informed decision.
Benefits of a Pancake Air Compressor:
There are a lot of tasks you can perform with a pancake air compressor. Filling bicycle tires, sporting equipment, and rafts is a breeze with these powerful yet handy tools. Moreover, you can fill the air in automobile tires and small air tools quickly without disturbing others because most pancake air compressors operate quietly.
A pancake air compressor is easy to transport because of its tiny size. To make lifting them easier, many come with a huge handle on top. You can also put them in your car’s trunk to take them with you on outdoor extrusions.
In general, pancake air compressors are easier to maintain and care for due to their simpler build-up. These compressors are ideal for the typical DIY homeowners since even the most inexperienced user can easily use them.
Types of Pancake Air Compressors:
Oil is used to lubricate the piston that pushes the air into the tank in a conventional air compressor. Periodic lubrication of the compressor's moving components is essential to its smooth operation. This isn’t necessary with an oil-free air compressor. The piston is lubricated with Teflon rather than oil by the manufacturer, and this permanent lubrication solution has been designed so that you don't have to worry about it.
Compressors make a lot of noise, which can be annoying to the people around you as well as to you. There isn't a pancake compressor that is completely silent. But some pancake air compressors make less noise that won’t annoy you or the people around. The decibel level of this equipment is lower than that of the conventional air compressors. Thus, these compressors are ideal if you live in a residential area or want to use your compressor in confined quarters.
The air tank of a conventional air compressor has a pancake-like shape, with the motor attached to the top. The design is both low-profile and user-friendly. To protect the motor and tank, rugged compressors will have a huge metal handle that rests near them. It lends the compressors a more box-like look. Rugged compressors are better suited for building sites and work sites because of the metal cage that protects and strengthens them.
Things To Consider While Purchasing a Pancake Air Compressor
The maximum PSI rating is the most critical factor to consider. A good-quality air compressor should have at least 90 PSI, which is suitable for household use. However, a greater PSI also implies that the tank drains quicker.
The tank volume of most air compressors is 6-gallons, but you can also get some with a one or two-gallon capacity. The bigger the tank capacity, the more air the compressor can store, which means that it will last longer. The larger tank capacity will also increase the surface area of the compressor, making it a bit bulky and heavier, but a bigger tank might be used to make up for a low PSI or CRM capacity.
The compressor's noise level is measured in decibels (dB). Despite their tiny size, certain pancake compressors are uncomfortably noisy. Air compressors often provide the noise level rating on their packaging. Look for decibel levels of less than 80. Machines with a lower decibel rating will be more discreet in their operation.
If you expect to use your compressor occasionally to fill car tires, then you’ll be good with practically any decently-sized pancake compressor. A sturdy design is necessary if you want to use it frequently for construction or heavy-duty purposes. The compressor will be better protected if it is encased in a metal cage.
Pancake compressors are quite portable. Look for a compressor with a large top handle if you want to take one with you to your construction site or on outdoor adventures. Moreover, the pancake compressor should have rubber paddings on the feet to prevent the floor from scratching. The rubberized feet also reduce any vibrations, adding to their sturdiness.
When the pancake compressor lets out the compressed air, it does so at high pressure. In metric units, it’s expressed as a pound-per-square inch. Of course, the greater the air compressor's rating, the more likely it is to be able to do more difficult jobs and, vice versa.
A reliable pancake air compressor supported by excellent after-sale service and guarantee is essential for your peace of mind. In the case of damage after use, the after-sale service ensures that you get any necessary professional technical help. The guarantee ensures that you get compensation for any financial damages, if applicable. Your air compressor should be backed by a warranty so that you can get it repaired if it malfunctions or stops working.
How To Use a Pancake Air Compressor
If you don't know how to use your new pancake compressor but want to learn, watch this tutorial from Around the Home:
The Craftsman air compressor is clearly a fan favorite with 83% of its reviews being five stars. It features an oil-free pump that removes the need for regular maintenance and, as a result, saves your time. It also boasts a robust and durable construction, ensuring that it will serve your needs for a long period of time. This small air compressor has an extended tool-run time due to its impressive 150 PSI tank pressure that effectively accumulates more volume of air.
It has an incredibly lightweight design, weighing only 32.5 pounds. So, you can easily transport it from one place to another without needing an extra hand. Moreover, there is no risk of excessive wear and tear to the piston valves and rings which usually occurs when an air compressor runs low on oil. The sturdy design, powerful motor, and amazing performance of this product place it at the of top our list.
The Porter-Cable air compressor is one of the most durable air compressors you will ever come across. It is made from high-quality materials that make it durable and sturdy while staying lightweight. If you are an international buyer and are worried about it getting damaged during shipping, you’d be relieved to know that this product comes in sturdy eCommerce-friendly packaging that protects the air compressor for secure travel.
Featuring a 150-PSI max tank pressure and 2.6 SCFM at 90 PSI, this air compressor allows more air in the tank for longer runtimes and offers a quicker recovery time. The porter pancake air compressor not only features oil-free units for easy maintenance but also comes equipped with a drain valve for air, allowing you to empty water condensation out of the tank effortlessly.
The Dewalt pancake air compressor is an ideal choice for both professional builders and DIY renovators to carry out different types of jobs around your home. With a six-gallon capacity, the well-sized tank allows you to undertake any repair job without having to worry about stopping in between refilling the tank. Featuring a high-efficiency motor, you can easily start it up no matter how cold the weather is. Plus, you will love how neighborhood-friendly it is because of its quiet and efficient 78.5 dBA noise level.
It comes with an oil-free pump that makes it maintenance-free. You do not need to buy extra covers for it as it is shipped with a console cover to keep it protected. You can carry it anywhere as it weighs only 30 pounds.
Featuring an oil-free pump, this portable compressor does not require any maintenance and has a long service life. The compressor boasts a 6-gallon storage space and a maximum pressure of 150 PSI that delivers consistent air pressure for optimal performance. Moreover, the high-efficiency motor of this amazing air compressor starts without any hitches even at the coldest temperature.
There isn’t any risk of its valves and piston rings wearing out because there is no oil spillage on these essential parts. You can use it whenever you want without worrying about the noise because it works on a noise level of 78.5 dBA. Plus, it is super lightweight at only 29 pounds. The package comes with essential accessories, including a 50-inch air hose, a blowgun, and a ten-piece inflation accessory kit.
If you want something heavy-duty, then there’s no better option than this air compressor. It offers more pressure than other compressors at 200 PSI which is 25% greater than basic air compressors. You will also get 30% more airflow as it boasts 4 CFM at 90 PSI, which allows you to use multiple large body nailers on a single compressor.
You will surely love the versatility it offers. You can run two roofing nailers, two framing nailers, or five brad nailers, all at the same time. Moreover, it doesn’t hold back and lets the user drive nails flush instantly. The metal handle offers added durability and the oil-free design requires no maintenance.
No downtime while driving nail flush
Durable handle for maneuverability
Rolls down easily on uneven surfaces
Noisier compared to other options
People Also Asked
Q: Should I look for a bigger or smaller tank when it comes to air compressors?
A: Pancake air compressors with bigger tanks often have higher power and may last for longer periods without needing to be refilled. However, having a bigger tank also means more surface area and the compressor may be hard to move around.
Q: Are pancake air compressors a good investment?
A: Their small size and portability make them ideal for jobs where you need to transport the compressor with you. There are different models that cater to the needs of DIY enthusiasts and professional builders.
Q: Is 150 PSI air compressor good?
A: It depends on the type of project you work on and the pressure you need. A pancake air compressor with 150 PSI is ideal for personal use to fill the air in tires or power up pneumatic tools. You need a compressor with a higher pressure rating for heavy-duty or industrial tasks.
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