How To Pick The Perfect DC Air Compressor?

dc_compressor_1DC air compressors are units common among RV (recreational vehicle) owners, show cars, and race teams, and since these are hard-wired to the vehicle’s DC voltage system, they carry an increased amount of air and don’t demand for a lot of room unlike other compressors. These units can inflate tires that are measured 37-inches and larger, which is something the smaller units are unable to manage.

There are several DC air compressor units available in the form of a kit which includes the following accessories needed to install the dc compressor in your vehicle.

  • Hoses
  • Gauges
  • Cables
  • Controls

DC air compressors are mainly fashioned to inflate low-pressure items like air mattresses, emergency car tires, and also sports balls.

How to pick your DC air compressor

The process of choosing the best air compressor for your needs becomes simple when you have a better understanding about the basic attributes, when you are able to determine how you want to use the compressor, and when you decide which features are relevant to you.

    Compressors can be powered by either electricity or gasoline, for greater portability. The electric or gasoline motor on an air compressor is usually determined by the horsepower. For electric air compressors, you can select between standard 120-volt motors or the heavier-duty models which are usually 240-volt units.
    The small 12-volt DC electric air compressors that plug into the 12-volt power outlet of a vehicle are also available in the market. These small compressors are best for light applications such as inflating tires but are not compatible with air tools.
    Measured in pounds per square inch (PSI), the highest pressure rating shows the greatest pressure an air compressor can achieve. A lot of tools do not require more than 100psi, yet once you require higher performance from your tools, the ability to increase the pressure to 150psi is sufficiently convenient.
    For air volume, it is expressed in standard cubic feet per minute (SCFM) at a given pressure, and to explain this further, the water hose analogy will be used for this; If a regular water hose and a fire hose are equal in pressure, the fire hose is highly capable of greater volume or a higher SCFM figure, compared to the regular hose.Volume is essential for compressors that run several tools simultaneously, or when constantly using a tool like a dual-action sander over prolonged periods. Ensure that you check the air volume requisites of your tools, and adding for multiple tools used at the same time. Add 40-50% so you there will be some cushion between your air supply and the tools’ demand.
    With a heavier tank volume, it will allow heavy-duty use by allowing the air-line draw on a reservoir of compressed air, but despite the higher capacity, remember that a larger tank also decreases the portability of an air compressor.
    If you prefer a smaller tank for easier portability yet have heavy air volume requirements, you should find a compressor that is capable of a high SCFM figure that will allow the air compressor to refill the tank faster.

– Portable Units – air compressor generators that are gas-powered offer the maximum level of portability, but are also heavier and generally more expensive compared to electric units with similar specifications. For electric or gas compressors, ensure that the heavier units you opt for have wheels and a handle to make transporting the machine easier.

– Stationary Units – these are larger compressors such as those ones supplying compressed air for permanent lines in shops or garages. If moving your air compressor is not required for any of your applications, then you can opt for a larger tank without having to worry about portability.

    Air compressor tanks come in different shapes and sizes; upright tanks which take up the smallest amount of floor-space, while horizontal tanks are much easier to move and fit neatly in small spaces like under a workbench. When you have determined the required tank size for your job, it’s time to decide which type of tank will work best for your applications.


You are advised to do a thorough research about the product before choosing and buying an air compressor since different users have varying needs and requirements which may not be similar to yours. Follow the ways on how to choose your dc air compressor and soon you will find it easier to determine which exact unit will work best for you.

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