Air compressors are a must-have and indispensable machinery for your workshop or garage. They are needed to operate other tools like sandblasters, pneumatic wrenches, air ratchets, tire inflators, and more.
Therefore, no matter what you need it for, it is important to get the right compressor. Today, 30-gallon air compressors are probably the most practical choice for multiple applications. With so many brands and models to choose from, however, it can be overwhelming to narrow down the best options, which is why we did it for you!
In this article, we will go through the top 4 best 30-gallon air compressor models and their specifications along with a comprehensive buying guide to help you make an informed decision before purchasing one. So, check out the next sections for more!
The Best 30-Gallon Air Compressor Reviews
As promised, here is a quick rundown of the top 4 best 30-gallon air compressor brands and models out in the market today. These were evaluated based on user ratings and the standards of the buying guide to be discussed later.
Hopefully, this can help you find the most suitable compressor for your needs!
First up, we have the Industrial Air ILA188354 which features an oil-lubricated pump and a cast iron twin cylinder body for durability and longevity. This vertical portable tank also comes with pressure gauges, an on/off switch, a quick-set regulator and pre-attached pneumatic tires.
One of the highlights of this product is that you can easily convert it from a 120-volt to a 240-volt operation and vice versa to allow for better performance and easier starts. It offers a maximum pressure of 155 PSI and a CFM of 5.7 at 90 PSI or 7.0 at 40 PSI.
You can also adjust and set the pressure in a snap with the quick-set regulator. Another good thing about this model is that it has a relatively quiet operation. While it struggles during cold and sub-freezing weather, it provides outstanding performance in most other temperatures and weather conditions.
It is also easy to use and transport. Because it is CSA- and UL-certified, you are also assured of quality and safety.
Efficient and powerful motor
Dual voltage feature
CSA and UL certified
Relatively quiet operation
Has a hard time performing well during cold weather
Package does not include electrical cord
Several reports of the auto shut-off function not working properly
If you are looking for a high-capacity portable air compressor, the Ingersoll-Rand SS3F2 Garage Mate Compressor might be your best option. Because it is relatively lightweight and mobile, you can easily transport it from place to place with less work restrictions.
Despite its 15 Amp and 2 Horsepower capability, it also operates very quietly, making it suitable for use in quiet home or workspace environments. Since it is electrically powered, it requires a reachable and reliable power supply.
This model also comes with an oil-free engine and a maximum pressure capacity of 135 PSI. Thanks to its cast iron frame, it is also long-lasting, strong, and durable no matter what conditions it will face in your work environment.
Great value for money
Portable and lightweight
Durable cast iron frame
Takes up quite a lot of space
Next, we have the Campbell Hausfeld VT6271 Single Stage Portable Air Compressor, which offers more than enough of what you need to get your job done. This neat air compressor is made portable through the inclusion of wheels so you can easily move it around.
The body is also compact lightweight at only 163 pounds, the lightest among all the products mentioned here. This makes it ideal for home environments or less spacious workspaces.
It has a 135 PSI maximum pressure capacity. However, it is electric and needs a power source so you might want to keep that in mind whenever you transport it from place to place. The frame is also made with cast iron material.
The oil-lubricated tank may require more maintenance but this allows optimum, full capacity performance.
Maximum of 135 PSI
Comes with an oil-free motor
Durable cast iron frame
Reasonable price range
Incompatible with a 240V circuit
Using a different brand of oil than the same brand which is sold separately and overpriced cancels the warranty
Last but not the least, the DeWalt DXCMH1393075 Two Stage Industrial Air Compressor uses an electric start Honda GX390 OHV gas engine that is designed for optimum reliability, efficiency, and power transfer. Aside from being CARB and EPA- approved, it also comes with an automatic shutdown feature whenever the oil levels become too low.
With an outstanding industrial performance, this compressor provides a maximum capacity of 22.0 CFM and 175 PSI, allowing you to power and operate more than one device or tool at the same time.
The pump also features a patented piston design and the cast iron cylinder head is precision bored with asymmetrical deep-groove cooling fins. This, along with a cast iron flywheel design, offers a cooler running pump.
This model is also engineered as an ASME-certified truck mount style unit. It comes with a metal belt guard that further improves the pump cooling by as much as 60℉ more than other belt guards. The pump is covered by a two-year warranty while all other parts are backed with a 1-year warranty.
- Extremely durable
- Able to operate for longer periods of time
- Optional removable tires for portability
- Suitable for multiple applications
- High pressure capacity and CFM
- Enhanced cooling system
- More expensive than most compressors
- Requires a bigger storage space
Best 30-Gallon Air Compressor Buying Guide
Aside from these product descriptions, advantages, and disadvantages, there are several other factors to consider before deciding to purchase a 30-gallon air compressor. Here are some of the most important considerations:
Ask yourself what purpose and function you will need an air compressor for. Based on your answer, you can estimate and project an expected workload for the compressor. Then, you can choose the appropriate horsepower, PSI capacity, and CFM you will need.
Generally, 30-gallon pumps require something like a 2 to 3 horsepower ratio for a majority of purposes. While this seems low, it is just right to get the job done. However, some higher end compressors can go up to 5 or 6 horsepower.
Many manufacturers indicate these information in the product descriptions.
The next question you ought to answer is, “Do I need my air compressor to be portable?”. If you will work in a limited workspace or share the compressor with other people, this is an important factor to consider.
If you need to move the compressor around quite often, choose a model that is lightweight and compact. Transport wheels and handles are also a plus.
Oil-Lubricated Vs Oil-free Tanks
Another important consideration is whether to go for an oil-lubricated or oil-free tank.
An oil free tank requires little to no maintenance, produces less noise and mess, is more adaptable and environment-friendly, and needs lower running costs. On the other hand, an oil-lubricated tank has a larger task capacity, provides more power, and is often more durable.
Many 30-gallon air compressors come with oil-free tanks because it allows for more favorable portability and maintenance levels. Since smaller air compressors are also used for smaller and lighter jobs, you really do not want any extra effort associated with your purchase. In this case, oil-free tanks are a much better option.
Just like any other tool or machinery, air compressors may require regular maintenance. Consider also if you need an oil-lubricated tank which entails extra cost for oil and maintenance. There are non-oil-lubricated tanks that offer the same performance but require minimal maintenance.
Air compressors are bound to be noisy so how much noise you can tolerate or allow is another factor to consider. However, some models come with noise-dampening attachments or features.
Some people also do not mind some noise while others can get distracted or annoyed very easily. This is why air compressors often come with decibel ratings that tell you how noisy or quiet the operation is. In general, around 70 to 80 decibels are just right while others have lower ratings depending on how the compressor was manufactured.
FAQs About the Best 30-Gallon Air Compressor
What is CFM?
CFM is a unit that means cubic feet per minute and is a term associated with air compressors. It describes the pace or rate at which the unit can supply air to operate or power a tool. It is important because some fast-paced work environments and projects require higher CFM ratings than others.
How do I maintain and clean a compressor?
To clean an air compressor tank, look for the release valve. Open this valve after using the machine and before packing or storing it away. This will allow all excess vapors and air to escape in order to leave behind just the right amount of pressure.
You can use a brush or some cleaning rags to remove dust from the machine. Avoid using oil since it can mix with the air and damage the pump.
For more details on how to maintain your air compressor, please watch this video:
The best 30-gallon air compressor is undoubtedly the Industrial Air ILA188354 Belt Driven Air Compressor. It is relatively cheap and lightweight yet delivers outstanding performance with a sufficient maximum pressure of 155 PSI. It is also portable and easy to operate. So, if you are looking for a compressor that offers all your basic needs, this is a good choice.
Whatever you choose from the four products listed here, I’m sure you will end up satisfied. So, if you liked this article, don’t forget to share it with your family and friends. For any of your questions, clarifications, or recommendations, feel free to leave a comment down below!