Best Portable Air Compressor for Car 2023

Selecting the right air compressor as per your needs is challenging as there are a ton of options in the market from different companies, we tried many options, and here is our list of the 10 best portable air compressors for the car/trucks.

Not to mention, a portable air compressor is the most beneficial tool. It is a versatile tool for powering and inflating the car’s tires—no need to worry when you have a flat tire in the middle of a journey. 

Best Portable Air Compressors for Car (Top 10 Picks):


Production Capacity (CFM)

Tank Size


BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor


6 gallon

PORTER-CABLE Air Compressor


6 gallon

California Air Tools 8010


8 gallon

Viair 00088 88P Portable Air Compressor


4.7 gallon

Makita MAC2400


4.2 gallon

Rolair AB5PLUS 1


1 gallon

DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor


6 gallon

Senco PC0968 Compressor


2.5 gallon

CRAFTSMAN Air Compressor


6 gallon

Senco PC1010


1 gallon

1. BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor

The first on our list is the BOSTITCH pancake air compressor. I received the package on time and in proper packaging. This unit is the most happening oil-free air compressor on our list. The 6-gallon tank can produce a maximum of 150 PSI. 

The performance of this product is relatively high, around 2.6 cubic feet per minute (CFM) at about 90-95 PSI. I am delighted that the corded motor does not create much noise and runs at 78.5 dB. The pancake air compressor is ideal as it is efficient enough to start up, regardless of the weather conditions. 

Highlighting features:

  • It is an oil-free compressor. 
  • The machine does not create noise while operating. 
  • No emissions are produced.
  • Quick start-up system. 

This compressor is also ideal for an indoor working environment. I liked the recovery timing; and the weight of this compressor. The cord is long enough and flexible as well. However, the only thing that I do not appreciate about this compressor is the unavailability of the hose.


  • The compressor produces 150 PSI
  • The starting process is quick
  • The motor does not make noise


  • It does not come with a hose

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

2. PORTER-CABLE Air Compressor

Next on our list is another happening product, Portable cable air compressor. The main feature that attracted me to purchase this unit; the unique pancake-style tank.

Well, the size of this portable compressor provides on-point and optimal stability. 

The induction motor is also powerful and works at 150 PSI tank pressure. This unit is indeed ideal for inflating the tires and nails.

The construction of this product is of high quality, with a shroud, and console cover. Not to mention, this product is fully protected and also covers the components.

Highlighting features:

  • It is an oil-free compressor.
  • The machine does not create noise while operating. 
  • No emissions are produced.
  • Quick start-up system. 

Most importantly, the pancake air compressor comes with a handle; it is easy to move it. It is a 13 piece kit with a hose, blow gun, tire gauge, and other miscellaneous accessories.

The setup process is also easy. However, I am not satisfied with the vibration of this product.


  • It is a compact pancake-style compressor
  • The compressor provides optimal stability
  • No emissions are produced


  • It creates a lot of vibration

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

3. California Air Tools 8010

California Air Tools 8010 is an 8-gallon air compressor that is highly efficient and puts out around 2.2 CFM at 95 PSI. Not to mention, this unit is also ideal for commercial projects. 

In addition to this, the motor is powerful enough to work efficiently, even in rough conditions. Most importantly, compared to Porter, the operation of the California air tool is quiet at 60 dB.

The filling operation is rapid; the construction is rust-free, and the tank will not drain at any point, at least it didn’t drain out for me. 

Highlighting features:

  • The PSI efficiency is 95.
  • The operation is relatively quiet. 
  • The filling procedure of the tank is rapid.
  • The construction is sturdy. 

This tool allows you to refill the air in less than 4 minutes. But, there is one thing that I don’t appreciate is; the stand and the base are not durable.


  • The compressor works Ill, even in rough conditions
  • The tank fills rapidly
  • The construction is rust free


  • The base is not Ill structured

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

4. Viair 00088 88P Portable Air Compressor

The next on our list is another powerful air compressor by Viair. As the name suggests, the air and the refill mechanism are rapid.

However, it is a relatively small air compressor compared to the other models. 

But, whether you are working in-house or on-road on the road, this is indeed a great tool that draws approximately 12V at 20 amps and delivers 120 PSI. The 1.47 CFM rating is quite suitable for such a small compressor. 

I am delighted with the build and weight of this tool. It can be triggered with the clamps that directly hook to the car’s battery. 

Highlighting features:

  • The PSI efficiency is 120.
  • The compressor draws 12V from 20 amps. 
  • The LED indicators provide the notification.
  • It comes with an air hose and an inflation kit.

The compressor has a LED indicator, an air hose, and an inflation kit. 


  • It is compact air compressor
  • It comes with an inflation kit
  • You can directly connect it with the car’s battery


  • The compressor creates noise

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

You might also like: Best Electric Pressure Washers

5. Makita MAC2400     

Makita MAC2400 is a vast but portable cylinder equipped with an engineered pump and cylinder. The piston of this unit is of high quality, and the overall performance is also satisfactory. 

Most importantly, the motor of this air compressor is 2.5 HP and comes under the category of the industrial level. Not to mention, with such a powerful motor, the noise is not that much.

The oil-lubricated pumps run at a speed of 1730 RPM. The pumps’ durability is quite good, and the rubber feet also absorb the vibrations. 

The structure is made out of iron-cast; hence, it is durable enough to resist bumps and scrapes. The handle on the top of the compressor makes moving easy and It was easy for me to carry it around. 

Highlighting features:

  • The motor is 2.5 HP.
  • The structure of the compressor is made out of cast iron. 
  • The handle on the top enhances the stability.
  • Rubber feet absorb the vibration. 

However, I feel that it is a bit heavier. Although keeping the features in mind, I can compromise on the weight.


  • The piston is of high-quality
  • The compressor is made of iron cast
  • Zero vibration during operation


  • It is a bit heavier

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

6. Rolair AB5PLUS 1

Next on our list is Rolair AB5PLUS 1, a third-generation air compressor manufactured by a well-known company. It is indeed one of the most reliable compressors in the market. Well, I received it in a well-packed parcel. 

I appreciate the compact size of this compressor, as it is pretty easy to carry it around and store it as well.

Moreover, the steel roll cage protects from leakage, dropping, and bumps. There are two large gauges; easy to read. 

Not to mention, the piston pump refills the tanks real quick. I found this product excellent during the testing phase as well. 

Highlighting features:

  • The motor runs at 2.8 amps
  • It comes with a pressure switch and relief valve.
  • The power cord enhances the usage.
  • The pump can hold 1 gallon of air.

The operation of this portable air compressor is not very loud; not more than 70 dB.


  • The motor is of 2.8 amps
  • The relief valve works Ill
  • The roll cage is effective


  • None

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

7. DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor

When it comes to portable compressors, the DEWALT pancake air compressor is a hit in the world of compressors.

It is a professional-grade compressor; it works amazingly for first-timers. 

It is the most powerful unit on our list, featuring an approximately 6-gallon tank and a motor that delivers around 2.6 CFM at 90 PSI. The max rating is 165, used for professional activities as well. 

There are two couplers, and the top mount handle enhances the versatility of this unit. 

Highlighting features:

  • The motor delivers 2.6 CFM.
  • It features two universal couplers
  • The construction stands securely on an uneven base.
  • A professional-grade compressor.

Moreover, the power cord wrap is long enough, and the compressor is not that heavy. The rubber feet absorb the vibration.


  • The top mount handle is the most effective feature
  • It works at 90 PSI
  • The construction is sturdy


  • None

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

8. Senco PC0968 Compressor

Next on our list is Senco PC0968 Compressor. It is a mid-size compact air compressor with a capacity of 2.5 gallons.

Not to mention that it features two sides stacked air tanks and also a 1.5 HP motor induction pump. 

The pump’s performance is quite efficient, as it goes from zero to 140 PSI in less than 80 seconds. However, it draws only eight amps of electricity.

What I did not enjoy about this portable compressor was the tripping issue. 

The breaker keeps on tripping, which disturbs the overall focus. The top-mounted handle provides safety to the roll cage; and maintains balance. 

Highlighting features:

  • The motor delivers 2.6 CFM.
  • It features two universal couplers
  • The construction stands securely on an uneven base.
  • A professional-grade compressor.

The compressor is not heavy at all, and it is pretty easy to move it across and away.


  • It comes with two air tanks
  • It is an Ill-balanced compressor
  • The induction pump is efficient


  • The breaker trips time to time

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

9. CRAFTSMAN Air Compressor

The products of CRAFTSMAN hold a perfect place in the market. Everyone knows their compressors. The CMEC6150K air compressor by Craft is one of the best on our list. 

The unit comes with a complete 13 piece accessory kit including; tire gauge, blowgun, and inflation adapters. However, I was a bit reluctant about the air release valve; but it came in proper packaging, and no air was leaked. 

Highlighting features:

  • The motor delivers 2.6 CFM.
  • It features two universal couplers
  • The construction stands securely on an uneven base.
  • A professional-grade compressor.

However, the operating volume is the only thing I did not enjoy about the CRAFTSMAN air compressor. The 78.5 DB; is a bit irritating and above the standard volume. 


  • It comes with complete accessories
  • The motor is extremely efficient
  • It comes with standard couplers


  • The operational noise is too loud

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

10. Senco PC1010

The last on our list is Senco PC1010; it is more of a finish and trims portable air compressor. It is indeed easy to carry and lightweight.

I received the air compressor in proper packaging without any leakage. 

Most importantly, the operation of this air compressor is tranquil at around 68 DB. The construction is sturdy and robust, recommended for on-job activities as well.

We cannot count this portable air compressor in the category of professional level. 

Highlighting features:

  • The maximum pressure is 135 PSI.
  • The current and complete draw is four amps.
  • Recovery time is around 30 seconds.
  • The pump-up time is 125 seconds.

However, this unit is best for smaller jobs; the 1 gallon capacity at 90 PSI.


  • The pump up time is efficient
  • It is a light-Iight model without any leakage
  • The operational sound is low


  • It is quite a small model

Check Current Price and Rating on Amazon

Things to Consider before buying a portable air compressor:

Selecting and buying a portable air compressor is a painful process. Many options are available in the market, and it is pretty challenging to choose.

However, it would be best to consider some factors in whichever unit you are buying. To be on the safe side, keep on reading.

Power source:

The power source is an essential factor, and you must know the purpose of your purchase. The modern portable air compressors are electric, and they are handy. The gas-powered is a bit noisy on the other hand.

Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM):

The CFM is the amount of air that a tool can put out. It relates to PSI rating; focus on the CFM of the compressor to make an informed decision. A compressor with 90 PSI is a good rating.


Purchasing a portable air compressor is a significant decision. Make sure you buy a durable product that you can cherish for years.

Check the tank, fittings, and regulators. Not to mention, ensure and cross-check the size of the compressor. The handles should be ergonomic, and the rubber feet must protect the compressor. 

How I tested Portable Air Compressor for Car

Portable air compressors for cars are a great addition to any vehicle; they make it easier and faster to inflate your tires and give you peace of mind when on long road trips. They are small, lightweight, and easy to use.

The most important aspect of choosing the right portable air compressor for your car is determining the correct tire pressure. Overinflating can result in decreased fuel efficiency and an uncomfortable ride.

Once you’ve determined the proper tire pressure, it’s time to shop around for the best portable air compressor available. However, a variety is available, so it’s important to understand each model’s features and benefits before purchasing.

Different compressors may have different power levels and air flow rates, and some also feature an auto-shut-off function that stops the unit when it reaches the desired pressure level. I purchased a portable air compress sometime back and regretted buying that model. This time, I did some research to get the best.


I tested the CFM (cubic feet per minute) rating of the Portable Air Compressor for Car and found that it met our expectations. I conducted multiple tests, both empty and full, to ensure that the machine could deliver adequate air pressure in a range of scenarios.

The results confirmed that this compressor would be suitable for most automotive applications.

Testing Duration:

In addition to the CFM rating, I also tested the Portable Air Compressor for the Car’s ability to maintain constant air pressure over a prolonged period.

I timed how long it took for the compressor to fill up an empty 20 gallon tank and then monitored its performance after inflating tires and other automotive accessories. I found that it maintained a consistent air pressure for over an hour, which is more than adequate for most car needs.

Noise Level:

I tested the noise level of the Portable Air Compressor for Car to ensure that it was not too loud and intrusive when in use. I used a specialized noise meter to measure the decibel level of the machine at various stages during its operation.

I found that it was in line with other air compressors and provided a reasonable level of noise output when in use. This means it won’t be too disruptive when working on your car or inflating tires.

Power Source:

I tested the power source of the Portable Air Compressor for Car to ensure that it was reliable and safe. I put the machine through a series of tests using both AC and DC power sources, checking its ability to switch between them without any problems.

I found that it performed Ill in all conditions, meaning you can depend on it to provide a consistent experience no matter what type of power source you use.


What is a portable air compressor for car maintenance?

A portable air compressor is essential for maintaining your vehicle’s tires and other components that require regular inflation. It can be used to inflate tires, check tire pressure, and fill up sports balls and other inflatable objects. Portable air compressors are usually small and easy to store, making them great for anyone needing quick and easy air compressor access.

How do I use a portable car air compressor?

To use a portable car air compressor, first ensure the power switch is turned off. Connect the hose to your tire’s valve stem and then plug the compressor into an outlet. Select your desired settings, such as PSI or BAR, and turn the switch on to start inflating.

When the desired pressure is reached, turn off the switch and disconnect the hose from the tire’s valve stem. Unplug the compressor from the outlet, and your tire will be properly inflated.

What is the best portable air compressor for car maintenance?

The best portable air compressor for car maintenance will depend on your individual needs and preferences. Generally, it’s recommended to look at the size of the tank, power rating, weight, and noise level when choosing an air compressor. Make sure to read reviews from other customers who have purchased the same model to get a better idea of its performance.

Are portable air compressors safe to use?

Yes, portable air compressors are generally safe to use as long as they are operated properly and used according to the manufacturer’s guidelines. Make sure to read the manual thoroughly before operating your air compressor, and always follow safety instructions when inflating tires or other inflatable objects.

How often should I use my portable car air compressor?

It is recommended to check your tire pressure at least once a month and top off as needed. Additionally, you should use your air compressor to fill up sports balls and other inflatable objects before using them. This will help ensure that they are properly inflated and safe to use.

Leave a Comment