See here the list of Top 10 best portable air compressors. Read the buying guide and other important factors before making a selection for you or any of your dear ones

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It can be a real challenge to find the best compressor for a specific application. Before buying, you should not only be aware of the pros and cons of the various models, but also have to be concerned with criteria such as performance, design, size, pressure and boiler content, and of course the workmanship and price. However, this makes the search very complex. If you do not have the time and you would rather make a quick but good buying decision, we can help you, because we have already done the research for you. 

So we can give you the model ASI300 from Black + Decker highly recommended, because the compact model is operated on the 12V connection of the car, convinced by a good performance in conjunction with a solid workmanship at a fair price. Alternatively, the model R18I-0 by Ryobi is highly recommended, because it is compact, is connected to the 12V or sockets and offers a low price with a decent performance.

Portable compressors Purchase advice

The range of compressors for private use is now very large. Accordingly, it makes sense to deal with the topic a little more intensively before a price comparison. To find out if a cheap portable compressor is already adequate for your purposes, you should know the main advantages and disadvantages. In addition, you should know the key figures and also consider whether a simple model without boiler is sufficient. We can not pronounce a general recommendation because of the variety of models. However, you can see in our final leaderboard an overview of the best compressors of the year 2019, which we have identified in the test. This will certainly help you in your decision-making.

Advantages and disadvantages of portable compressors

Whether for your purposes a portable compressor is the best option, you should ask first. Whether the acquisition of a mobile model pays off for you, of course, depends on your requirements. So a portable model is very quickly ready for use, very easy to transport and stow away. This allows you to use it virtually anytime, anywhere. Especially for smaller tasks such as the filling of balls, bicycle hoses or to blow out dust on construction sites, small models are ideal.

However, those who rely on high pressure for demanding tasks will quickly reach their limits with a mobile compressor. Thus, impact wrenches can not be operated well with a portable compressor due to the low power. Here you need a larger boiler, which you have to do without due to the compact design of a mobile model. Also, the air delivery is usually not sufficient to operate compressed air tools with full force. You should therefore not expect a mobile compressor to inflate wheel nuts or inflate truck tires.

The most important key figures for comparison

Mass:

Of course, a mobile compressor should be much lighter than conventional compressors as upright units. Therefore, pay particular attention to the total weight if you want to transport the device more frequently and use it more mobile. Anything over 20 kilograms may not be as good as a compact mobile device.

Construction:

Mobility does not have to go hand in hand with simple processing. There are mobile compressors that are quite solid and durable. However, high-quality workmanship with lots of metal and sturdy construction is often associated with a heavier weight. A good middle ground is therefore ideal for many.

Volume:

Of course, depending on the location also the volume plays a role. Most models are at a level between about 45 to 100 dB. The bandwidth is so very big here. If volume plays a role in the use, then pay attention to it.

Boiler capacity:

The larger the boiler is, the longer a certain pressure can be maintained and the better the device is possibly also suitable for use with compressed air tools. The boiler contents are given in liters and are usually between 2 and 8 liters for mobile devices.

Boiler pressure:

The maximum boiler pressure or the maximum pressure of a compressor without boiler is given in bar. It is usually between 4 and 10 bar for mobile compressors. This is absolutely sufficient for most of the work in and around the house.

Power output:

The output power is the amount of air that the compressor can deliver per minute. Especially when using tools that are operated with air pressure, this is of crucial importance. Ultimately, it also determines how quickly you can inflate certain things and how quickly the boiler is pumped out at full pressure if it is not refilled at the same time.

Oil Status:

There are compressors that work with oil as well as those that work without oil. Most mobile compressors work without oil and are therefore less maintenance intensive.

Suction:

The more the boiler can suck in air per minute, the faster the boiler can be filled. Only when the intake capacity is higher than the discharge capacity can the compressor run continuously and fill the boiler faster than it is pumped out.

Running smoothness:

Many compressors vibrate very hard and almost bounce around when operated. There is no key figure for this, so it pays to look at other buyers’ reviews.

With or without kettle?

Of course, as the best portable compressor for your purposes, only one model should fit your needs. A decisive criterion here is the question of the boiler. It is important to understand that the air pressure can only be regulated if a boiler is available. This is because a compressor with a boiler takes a little time to build the maximum possible pressure in the boiler. Only when this is reached, the corresponding pressure can also be accessed and used. Boiler compressors are larger, less mobile and heavier than a no-boiler compressor. 

Another disadvantage of a boiler-type compressor is the fact that every now and then the boiler must be freed from accumulating condensation, so that it does not rust and no water splashes from the valve. In contrast, a mobile compressor without a boiler is very small and handy, so it can be carried anywhere. The maximum air pressure is immediately available as no pressure has to be built up. However, the pressure can not be regulated accordingly, as is the case with the boiler. Since they are completely maintenance-free, they are very uncomplicated to use.

Portable compressor test winner – Top 5

There are many different applications for portable compressors. So you have the opportunity to mount impact wrench and other tools to do various jobs on the road, at home or in the workshop. Since the offer is at least as large as the application possibilities of the device, we examined the most popular products in the test and rated them in terms of price performance, processing and operability. The test winners can be found in the top 5 list of the best portable compressors of the year 2019.

1. Black + Decker ASI300

As the best portable compressor, the ASI300 from Black + Decker has prevailed. It is compact, easy to use and ideal for inflating tires or other objects. The built-in 12V cigarette plug allows you to use the model on the go. This allows you, for example, inflate your dinghy or air mattress directly to your parked car. Using digital pressure adjustment, you can set the target pressure accurately, so that the device shuts off automatically when it reaches it.

 Duck strengths up to 11 bar / 160 psi are possible. This is easily enough to even road tires, which are filled with about eight bar, fill without problems again with air. The pressure scale is illuminated so that you have optimal visibility and control even in the evening. With a weight of about 2.4 kilograms, the model is extremely light and can be stowed in any trunk. In terms of price, the compressor is in the midfield, so the overall price-performance ratio is very good.

2. Ryobi R18I-0

The R18I-0 by Ryobi is ideal for inflating inflatable boats, inflatable mattresses, balls and car tires. Thanks to the integrated accessory storage, you always have everything stored compactly and do not have to carry accessories, such as the ball needle, separately. Likewise, there is a hose storage option on the device, so that even this can always be rolled up in order, reducing the risk of cracks and damage. The digital LCD pressure display allows you to read the current pressure at any time and thus prevent the pumping of objects.  This is particularly important because some items such as balls or car tires can be irreversibly damaged by excessive pressure.

The model is supplied with power via an integrated rechargeable battery, so that it does not need to be connected to a 12 V power supply or the domestic power supply. This makes it highly flexible and universally applicable, making it a useful companion for events such as sports events or beach holidays. All in all, the R18I-0 is a mobile, good and above all cheaper portable compressor, which is ideally suited for mobile use. However, keep in mind that neither the charger nor the power adapter are included in the price, so you still need to buy these components. However, they are also compatible with other Ryobi devices.

3. Einhell TC-AC 190/8 Kit

The Einhell model works with a power of 1,100 watts and a suction capacity of 190 liters per minute, which allows it to reach a maximum pressure of eight bar. This makes it easy to inflate both car and bicycle tires. Also included in the set is a ball-shaped needle, an air mattress adapter and a blow-out gun, which can help remove dust and dirt from items such as keyboards or dashboards. This method is often used in interiors of cars, as it can also clean small upholstery crevices and corners, without having to reach them directly.

With a weight of around six kilograms, the compressor is not one of the lightest devices on the market, but due to the compact design and the size of about 38 x 15 x 40 centimeters still very good transport. Unfortunately, it can only be operated with 230 volts, making it unsuitable for use on the move. However, since he is more likely to work in and around the house, these disadvantages only have a negative effect on the overall rating. In particular, since both processing and the price-performance ratio are good overall.

4. Güde Airpower 180/08

The Airpower 180/08 by Güde is very compact and handy, but has to be connected to the 230-Volt network, so that it is only suitable for mobile use to a limited extent. The oil-free piston compressor creates a maximum pressure of eight bar, which is sufficient for most tasks. The air discharge rate of 140 liters per minute is also sufficient to use the model in Paintbrush and cleaning areas. However, with a sound power level of 97 dB, Güde’s product is more likely to be one of the noisy models on the market, which can be a major disadvantage when used indoors.

With a size of 16 x 34 x 31 centimeters and a weight of just under five kilograms, this compressor fits into any small workshop. In addition to a detailed instruction and warranty card, a large number of adapters are additionally available in the scope of delivery, which can be connected to the device by means of a quick-release coupling. The complete range of accessories can be comfortably stored in the small parts compartment so that everything can be stored and transported in an orderly manner with the device.

5. Mannesmann M01790

The miniature aluminum compressor of the company Mannesmann was able to shine in the test by a high performance despite very compact design. Since it can be operated via a 12V cigarette lighter connection, it is ideal for traveling. At a maximum pressure of ten and a working pressure of seven bar, a tire can be completely inflated in less than two minutes. The built-in pressure gauge always shows the current pressure. Four adapters, included in delivery, provide an extended working spectrum of the model. Thus, in addition to ball needle and a tire adapter reducers included in the scope of supply, for example, to be able to inflate air mattresses and swimming tires.

Unfortunately, the test has shown that at a pressure of 3 bar already has a current consumption of 20 amps, which shatters the fuses in the car. Anyone who does not want to do handicrafts contrary to the vehicle’s operating permit must therefore cope with a maximum output of 3 bar on the way. This makes the compressor for full use on the road, unfortunately, unsuitable. Nevertheless, workmanship, durability and, above all, the low volume speak for the device, so that a purchase depending on the field of application, despite this serious weakness still worthwhile.