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10 Best Air Compressor For Framing Crew Review-Buyer’s Guide [2021]

Whether a person is working on a house or renovating one already built, they always want to have the best air compressor for the framing crew to ensure that they get their money’s worth.

After all, working on something as important as framing means that it is crucial to ensure both quality and safety, and a person can only get both if they invest in the best products that the market has to offer.

The market offers a wide variety of air compressors and they all differ according to price, noise, and efficiency, so we compiled a list of the best ones out there.

What is the best air compressor for the framing crew? The Metabo EC914S

Metabo HPT’s EC914S is a powerful, multifunctional, and high-capacity machine and it is the best air compressor for framing crew.

Specifically, we recommend the EC914S for the framing crew.

Why is The Metabo HPT EC914S the best brand for air compressor for framing crew?

Framing is a heavy job and requires plenty of horsepowers and air pressure to get it done right.

The machine also needs to be durable to withstand the rigors of such a heavy job.

Trying to do framing with weak, wrong, or incompatible machines may create undesired results such as machine failure, or incorrect placement of the nails.

When doing heavy-duty jobs like framing, it is best to invest in a machine that is capable of delivering high power consistently while also being easy to maintain.

This way, a user can do multiple framing jobs with minimal downtime in between breaks.

Metabo HPT’s EC914S delivers all these and more. It is the most powerful air compressor on this list and it delivers plenty of air and power at only 41 lbs.

With a maximum output of 200 PSI and allowing for multiple, simultaneous nailers to be attached to it, a crew can easily maximize the use of the machine to do framing jobs quickly and efficiently.

Additionally, it can carry up to 6 gallons of compressed air, making it efficient for sustained workloads.

Its weight of 44 lbs also makes it a reasonable choice, especially considering the amount of pressure it can deliver.

Most air compressors are designed for home or domestic use, but Metabo HPT’s EC914S was clearly designed for professional, heavyweight use.

Its construction design also offers plenty of protection to the machine, with all its outlasts being protected by metal handles allowing the EC914S to be taken and used even in extreme Jobsite conditions.

For that consideration, the EC914S is hard to beat.

Top 10 Best Air Compressor For Framing Crew Review

01. Campbell Hausfeld AC080510: Best budget portable air compressor

 

Key features:

  • 72 dbA sound level
  • Has oil-free and maintenance-free pump
  • Shroud design for protection during use
  • Wheel and handle placement allows portability
  • Maximum pressure of 8.6 bars
  • Airflow capacity of 2 cubic feet per minute

To start off the list, we have an air compressor from Campbell Hausfeld, a reputable brand when it comes to air power and air compression.

The AC080510 features durability, reliability, and portability, and it boasts an oil-free pump which allows the user to save money on maintenance.

Its best feature is its noise suppression, allowing it to be used even indoors because of how quiet it works without sacrificing quality.

Because of how portable it is, it can be used at home and brought to the workplace, which makes this a good pickup for those who are always on the go.

The product’s fully covered shroud design also protects the user during use so that people can focus only on the task at hand without needing to be mindful of dangerous moving parts.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Does not make much noise
  • Built to last
  • Easy to carry around

Cons:

  • May leak air

02. Makita MAC2400: The premium air compressor

 

Key features:

  • 79 dB noise level
  • Durable cast iron cylinder
  • Oil-lubricated pump
  • 130 PSI operating pressure
  • Rollbar handle
  • Finned discharge tubing

The Makita MAC2400 is a low-amperage compressor with multiple safety features built-in as well.

It has a twin stacked tank that can carry 4.2 gallons, and it can deliver up to 130 PSI of pressure between its two nailers.

Moreover, it also boasts a thermal overload to protect the motor as well.

Its oil-lubricated pump design allows the machine to continue operating at lower temperatures to prevent unnecessary overheating, and its construction design protects it from the environments of even the most extreme Jobsite.

Since its pump runs only at 1730 RPM, it is also a quiet air compressor and this low speed also helps contribute to the machine’s durability from wear and tear.

As for maintenance, this one has a lever handle ball valve tank drain valve for easier maintenance, and its finned discharge tubing allows it to release heat in a more efficient manner.

Pros:

  • Very quiet
  • Good for all-around use
  • Supplies plenty of air
  • Long-lasting

Cons:

  • Placement of oil drain plug risks damage during an oil change

03. Metabo HPT EC914S – Most Powerful

 

Key features:

  • Overload auto-shutoff circuit
  • 200 psi
  • 6-gallon tank
  • Can run different nailer configurations
  • 44 lbs
  • 4 CFM @ 90 PSI

The Metabo HPT EC914S is an industrial-grade stainless steel air compressor that gives up to 200 PSI, which is definitely convenient for heavier jobs.

Like most industrial compressors, it is an electric corded machine with no room for batteries.

With 4CFM @ 90 PSI, this compressor can handle multiple nailers and allows it to deliver more airflow than most other compressors on the market.

Despite all the power it packs, Metabo HPT’s EC914S is relatively lightweight at 41 lbs, whereas other compressors are at 70-80 lbs.

It also has an oil-free design for easier maintenance, and the fact that all of its outlasts have a metal handle allows it to withstand even the most extreme Jobsite conditions.

It is also relatively quiet at only 73 dB allowing plenty of flexibility in where it can be used.

Finally, it is a very versatile product; users can choose between running two framing nailers, two roofing nailers, two sliding nailers, three finish nailers, or even five brad nailers.

Given its flexibility, weight, power, and design, this one wins our pick for the best air compressor for framing crew.

Pros:

  • High-quality air fittings
  • Maintains pressure even if unused
  • Short recovery time
  • Startup from the cold in less than 5 minutes

Cons:

  • Cutter cycles frequently

04. Senco PC1010: Most affordable air compressor

 

Key features:

  • Pressurizes up to 125 psi
  • Portable air compressor
  • Maximum of 1 horsepower
  • Weight of 20 lbs

Weighing only 20 lbs, this is another addition to the portable lightweight entries on this list.

This compressor from Senco can carry one gallon but can operate at one horsepower when on-peak and at one-half horsepower when running.

The Senco PC1010’s air compressor is also designed to operate quietly at around 65-83 dB, so users will not have to worry about making a lot of noise in the house for everyday domestic work.

“However, its lightweight comes with a limited capacity, and thus, it may be better to limit this product only for light work, such as partitioning. It is not designed for big projects that involve mass nailings such as framing or roofing.”

Pros:

  • Light and well-built compressor
  • Good for light-duty work
  • Long-lasting

Cons:

  • Long recharge time

05. DEWALT DWFP55130

 

Key features:

  • Weight of 40 lbs
  • Runs on 120 volts
  • 1 Horsepower
  • 0SCFM @ 90 PSI
  • 2300 rpm pump speed
  • 71 dB

The DWFL55130 is a lightweight but strong compressor that works well for a wide variety of framing needs.

Its tank can carry 2 gallons, and it delivers 3.0 SCFM at 90 PSI.

Despite this power, it is a relatively quiet air compressor, operating only at around 71.5 dB.

It also has a low amp draw motor at only 12 amp, reducing the chances for the breaker to trip during startup.

This product is Dewalt’s delivery of portability, lightweight, quietness, and power all in one item.

“However, this product’s light design makes it prone to breakage. Its parts have been reported to be constantly failing after prolonged use or prolonged non-use and it has a tendency to shut off at a PSI lower than its rated maximum. It is also prone to air leakages after using it for a few months.”

 Pros:

  • Can be stored vertically or horizontally
  • Can be connected to two tools simultaneously
  • Holds pressure well
  • Easy to pack and move anywhere
  • Quiet operation

Cons:

  • Valve plate metal tabs are prone to metal fatigue

06. Craftsman Air Compressor CMXECXA0200341

 

Key features:

  • 36 lbs with a compact design
  • Oil-free and maintenance-free pump system
  • 125-155 PSI output pressure range
  • 3-gallon air storage tank
  • Steel housing structure

Portable and multifunctional, Craftsman’s air compressor is a high-capacity yet lightweight product that can carry up to 3 gallons while delivering 1.5 horsepower.

Its maximum PSI is 155 and it boasts a quick inflation speed which is a huge plus for those who value getting things done fast.

Its pump system also does not require any oil, so maintenance is easy.

This also makes the machine high-performance and durable.

The high psi combined with the inflation speed makes this machine a top product of choice for those who just want a general, jack-of-all-trades air compressor that can handle common projects from lightweight to heavy-duty.

True to its multifunctionality, the compressor can easily handle various projects ranging from light, home projects to heavy, industrial projects.

Pros:

  • Easy to move around
  • Delivers air quickly
  • Powerful and can handle big jobs

Cons:

  • Relatively high noise level

07. PORTER-CABLE CMB15 – Most Portable and Lightweight

 

Key features:

  • Weighs only 20 lbs
  • Runs on 79 dBs
  • 5-gallon air capacity
  • Fully shrouded design for protection
  • 25-feet hose

PORTER-CABLE’s contribution to this list has an emphasis on portability, weighing only 20 lbs, making it one of the two lightest entries on this list.

Because it can only deliver 2.0 SCFM at 90 psi, this makes recovery time fast, allowing continual work with minimal interruptions.

Similar to plenty of the other compressors, this one’s pump is also durable and oil-free making maintenance easy.

It also has a low amp draw motor of only 10 amps, so users will not have to be afraid of tripping the breakers in their house.

Pros:

  • Can be carried with one hand
  • No air leakages
  • High PSI and SCFM relative to its small size
  • Can be wall mounted

Cons:

  • Tends to fall over

08. Craftsman CMXECXA0201041

 

Key features:

  • Two sensitive gauge
  • Stable quick coupler
  • Safe valve
  • 8 horsepower
  • 63 lbs
  • Maximum PSI of 175

Craftsman’s second entry on this list features a bigger, more durable machine with higher horsepower and air carrying capacity.

For those who trust the Craftsman brand but want a more powerful compressor for heavier needs, this fits the bill.

The CMXECXA0201041 has a UMC motor that allows it to start at a low temperature, and even with 1.8 horsepower, the whole tank can be filled entirely in just under 70 seconds.

It is capable of running both 40 PSI for 5CFM, and up to 90 PSI for 4CFM.

With this much power and capacity comes weight, however, and this model is easily the heaviest one on the list.

However, it does come with a handlebar and two wheels so it can still be moved around from place to place without much effort.

It is also relatively quiet for its power, generating only 80 decibels during use, which is not much considering how much-pressured air it is capable of delivering.

Pros:

  • Can handle a wide range of jobs
  • Easy to store
  • High storage capacity
  • Powerful compressor

Cons:

  • Weak hose

09. Campbell Hausfeld DC040500

 

Key features:

  • 125 max PSI, 2.2 CFM @ 90 PSI & 3.2 @ 40 PSI
  • Weighs only 38 lbs
  • 68 dba sound level
  • Oil-free pump
  • Dual coupler

The DC040500 is part of Campbell Hausfeld’s Quiet Air Compressor Series, and it is a quiet, lightweight, and powerful air compressor with a respectable carrying capacity of 4.6 gallons.

True to its name, it is a really quiet air compressor, with its sound level measuring up to only 68 decibels when in use.

What makes it different from the other air compressors in this list is that it is powered through electric induction instead of the conventional electric cord.

It is also a long-lasting machine, with its core components lasting four times longer than most other air compressor components in the market.

To make maintenance easier, and adherent to the Campbell standard, its pump and induction motor are both oil-free.

Compared to other 1.0 horsepower compression air motors in the market, the DC040500 is easily capable of delivering 25% more air which allows it to be a competitive choice for many.

Pros:

  • Vertical configuration for easier carrying
  • Can hold air for months
  • Good for finish work
  • Good for professional and home use

Cons:

  • Hard to find replacement parts

10. BOSTITCH BTFP02012-WPK

 

Key features:

  • Oil-free pump
  • High-flow regulator
  • Hybrid polymer design air hose
  • Portable design with narrow tank diameter

The BOSTITCH BTFP02012-WPK is another lightweight air compressor weighing only 29 lbs, but despite this, it is still capable of carrying plenty of air at 6 gallons.

Also, this shape and construction give it a narrow tank diameter, allowing for easy carrying and storage.

Its max air pressure is also high for its weight and size, clocking in at a maximum of 150 PSI.

It also happens to be the noisiest air compressor on this list, with its operational noise measuring at dbA.

For SCFM, its air consumption can be both 40 PSI and 90 PSI. BOSTITCH designed this compressor for professionals, and it made it with durability in mind.

Pros:

  • Good for roofing
  • Hose is easy to coil and doesn’t kink
  • Easily adjustable PSI with a dial
  • Quick cycles

Cons:

  • Louder than most pancake compressors

Best Air Compressor For Framing Crew: Buying Guide

An air compressor is a solid investment and picking the right one can save plenty of time, money, and effort in the long run.

It has plenty of uses for the house and for professional work, so it is very crucial that one buys only the best for them.

One of the utmost considerations when it comes to air compressors is efficiency, and that means asking one’s self what kind of air compressor will be the most efficient in performing the task at hand.

Knowing that there are plenty of air compressors available, there are plenty of factors that should be considered when it comes to choosing the best air compression for the framing crew.

Different people and different jobs have different needs, so the following factors should help a buyer decide on which air compressor he should be buying:

Power output

This decides from the start what kind of jobs the air compressor can handle.

For everyday domestic jobs, air compressors with a maximum output of 100-150 PSI may be enough, for those people who are looking to perform heavier jobs like roofing and framing, they will need a higher maximum PSI.

Performing heavy jobs with lower-capacity air compressors can risk the machine malfunctioning, or worse, the worker might do the job wrong, which can be critical if for those who are working on framing.

Carrying capacity

Working with air compressors for framing can be a long and tedious process, and this can be made even longer if there is a need to constantly replenish the air compressor’s supply.

For that reason, one of the important considerations when choosing an air compressor is how many gallons it can carry.

For lighter jobs, perhaps a capacity of 3-5 gallons may be enough, but for heavier jobs, at least 6 gallons of carrying capacity may be necessary to minimize downtime and to ensure that the job or jobs are finished as soon as possible.

Thus, convenience is also another factor to be considered when choosing based on carrying capacity.

Weight and portability

An air compressor that is unpleasant to move around and carry from site to site will be draggy before long.

That is why a compressor’s weight must also be considered when choosing an air compressor.

While most people are content to look at maximum power output, a compressor’s weight is one of the most underrated aspects.

For those who need to perform framing work on a large area, the weight and portability of an air compressor can decide if the work is fun or exhausting.

For workers who need to constantly perform many jobs over long periods of time, they will appreciate air compressors that can easily be carried around without having to sacrifice power or efficiency.

There are plenty of modern air compressors that have been built and constructed with this factor in mind, so there is no need to fear that choosing a light air compressor means that it is also a weak one.

Construction design

The construction design of an air compressor will determine its durability and safety.

One can have the most powerful air compressor in the market, but it will be useless if it breaks after a few months because it was not able to handle Jobsite conditions.

Different machines have different builds and configurations, and buyers must consider the environment that the air compressor can potentially be exposed to when choosing the right air compressor because sometimes, paying a premium to ensure durability can go a long way especially for heavier-duty workloads.

Sound level

Air compressors are noise-producing machines, and those who are planning to work with them in the house may want to choose one that is a little quieter to prevent disturbing family, friends, or even neighbors.

Air compressors vary in sound levels, and modern air compressors even tout quietness as one of their main selling points.

Nowadays, the strength and capacity of an air compressor no longer correlate to how loud it is, there are plenty of air compressors that can maintain quiet, while there are less strong compressors that can still be loud.

When choosing an air compressor, make sure to look at the product’s sound level before buying.

Ease of maintenance

An air compressor is meant to used for a long time, even though not continuously.

One of the biggest drawbacks a particular compressor could have is how much of an effort it would take to keep maintaining it for optimal use.

Modern air compressors advertise having oil-free pumps and various other features to ensure consistency in performance without having to go in for frequent tinkering and repairs.

Before buying an air compressor, make sure to choose one that is easy to maintain so that using it is always convenient and hassle-free.

(FAQ) On Best Air Compressor For Framing

What is an air compressor?

An air compressor is an electric- or battery-powered machine that takes air, pressurizes it, and allows the user to release the compressed or pressurized air.

It can be used for a variety of purposes, all depending on the user’s needs, such as cleaning, tire inflating, and operating various machinery such as heating, ventilating, and air conditioning.

How does an air compressor work?

An air compressor usually uses either a piston, a screw, a rotary vane, or a scroll element to pressurize air and then delivers the pressurized air through a hose after which it is ejected into the target surface.

All these methods involve placing air in a specific container and making the space containing the air smaller and smaller.

Once the air is released, its pressured state causes it to spread and flow as quickly as possible, and this movement has plenty of applications.

What are CFM and PSI?

CFM stands for cubic feet per minute, and it refers to the amount of air produced by the compressor.

On the other hand, PSI means pound per square inch, and it refers to the level of pressure at which the air is contained and eventually released.

In other terms, CFM refers to airflow, while PSI refers to pressure level.

Air compressors usually provide different PSI levels depending on the CFM, and different tools have different optimal levels of both CFM and PSI.

To avoid damage to the tools and even the compressor, the CFM and PSI levels must meet the minimum threshold and maximum capacity of the tools, which are usually designated on the nameplates.

If my air compressor needs an oil, how often should I have the oil replaced?

If an air compressor uses oil, then the frequency of the need to change an air compressor’s oil depends on two things: (1) the type of compressor; and (2) the frequency by which the air compressor is used.

If the machine uses a rotary screw, lubricated reciprocating, or rotary vane air compressor, then the oil may need to be changed every three months.

If the machine uses a rotary screw compressor, the frequency also depends on the type of oil used, but generally, every 4000-8000 hours is a good rule of thumb.

The best determiner of this frequency is usually provided by the manufacturer. Always check the instructions from the manufacturer for the optimal maintenance of the machine.

Do I need to “break-in” a new air compressor?

Generally, users do not need to “break-in” their newly purchased air compressors. Immediately after they are powered up, they are good to go.

Assuming there are no leaks or malfunctions at the initial operations, then there is no need to worry about breaking in a new compressor.

To check for possible leaks, power up the machine until the indicated cut-off pressure point.

What should the tank size of the compressor be?

This depends on the user’s needs and convenience. Smaller tanks are usually less expensive, but they come with the need to be regularly refilled, which causes more frequent start-stop cycles.

A bigger tank makes the need for this infrequent, but it comes with a bigger price. Choose whatever is convenient and affordable.

How much air pressure do I need?

This also depends on the tools that will be used, which in turn, will depend on the job to be done.

Certain tools, such as staplers and pneumatic nail guns need less air pressure, while on the other hand, sprayers and air grinders will need more air pressure.

Different tools have different ratings as to cubic feet per minute (CFM) consumption at a recommended PSI level, which can be usually found in the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Generally, most air tools will run just fine at around 80-100 PSI and may consume around 10 cubic feet per minute.

Can I store my air compressor anywhere?

While air compressors can be used outside or inside, it is best that air compressors are stored inside to avoid contact with the elements.

In case of cold weather, it is best to install necessary protection from the cold especially if the tanks still contain pressurized air.

What if my air compressor stores air at a higher pressure than what my tools require?

It may be required to buy a pressure regulator and add it to the line.

This allows the adjustment and lowering of the pressure from the level that the air compressor normally delivers it.

This is important to prevent unnecessary and unwanted damage to both the compressor and the tool.

It is advised not to use the compressor at a pressure level higher than the recommended level for the tools.

Final Words

After reading this article, we hope that readers have a better understanding of what air compressors are and how they work.

Air compressors are powerful tools, and when a particular variation meets the budget and all the specific needs of the user and the project, it is generally a good choice to get that one.

There are different kinds of air compressors that are able to meet different needs, and generally, the best air compressor for framing crew requires air compressors that are more capable of delivering higher pressures.

Thus, we hope that our list has been able to provide assistance in helping readers choose a good air compressor.