Central Pneumatic Air Compressors Guide

CHarbour Freight Tools first introduced these Central Pneumatic air compressors throughout the United States in 1982.

The need for good compressors was present for shop use, automotive and even for machinists, and seeing the huge demand in the market, Harbour Freight Tools wasted no time to tend to the people’s needs.

Harbour Freight Tools makes these compressors in Taiwan, and they are quite popular.

The Central Pneumatic Air Compressor Reviews come in thirty-five different products of air compressors that vary from 1/6 HP airbrush style to the 5 HP.

The type of compressor is commercial, and it comes in many sizes that include the 3 gallon, 4, 6, 8, 10, 21, 26 and 29-gallon air tank. Another model type is the gas powered wheelbarrow air compressor.

The operation of all air compressors is the same. The compressors utilize the air pump to collect and move air into the tank while it pressurizes it at the same time. All pneumatic tools are powered by the air pressure tools that are attached at the end of a compressor hose.

A certain amount of CFM is needed for each type of device for it to work.

Central Pneumatic Air Compressors by Harbour Freight Tools have expanded their market throughout the States, and it is continuing to grow.

It has a huge demand not only for its quality but also for its low price. For over 35 years, the company has produced a variety of hand tools, generators, air tools, power tools, shop equipment as well as automotive equipment.

Quick Comparison of our Top  Central Pneumatic Air Compressors Picks in 2022

ImageProduct NameRateing
Central Pneumatic 2 HP, 8 Gallon, 125 PSI Portable Air Compressor4.5/5
Central Pneumatic 2.5 Horsepower, 21 Gallon, 125 PSI Cast Iron Vertical Air Compressor4.2/5
1/3 Horsepower 3 Gallon 100 PSO Oilless Pancake Air Compressor by Central Pneumatic4.3/5
Central Pneumatic 1/3 Horsepower, 3 Gallon, 100 PSI Oilless Air Compressor4.6/5
1/5 HP 58 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor Kit from TNM by Central Pneumatic4.1/5

Why should you use a Central Pneumatic Air Compressor for?

The Central Pneumatic Air Compressor is often compared to the following brands: Husky, Kobalt, and Campbell. These brands are commonly available and are even cheaper. However, air compressors and tools by Harbour Freight Tools have better quality and higher customer satisfaction rate.

If you go on their website, you will be able to find many reviews that indicate honest and verified purchases by people. They share their experiences and what they see best about Central Pneumatic Air Compressors.

Compressors are products used to supply the air flow in all equipment in a system. So ultimately, the type of compressor you use matters a lot. Air compressors can be used for many purposes.

Whether you need to fill up your car tires, pump up your kid’s inflatable swimming pool or blow the dust off a large area, air compressors can come in real handy as they can save you both time and money. Central Pneumatic Air compressors are great for this sort of work.

If you are not sure what brand of air compressor to buy, then Harbour Freight Tool is an excellent brand to consider. If you are new to using air compressors, then also know that this company has basic designed features that provide a natural use for beginners.

The thing about Central Pneumatic Air compressors is that it is suitable for light use. But if you are purchasing it for heavy duty work, the compressor might take time because of long time consumption.

The flow of the compressor is pretty consistent and does not trouble users. In case of any fault or part replacement, Harbour Freight Tools will replace the product for you to your satisfaction. They have a variety of air compressor models that lets the person choose whatever they require for their tasks.

Harbour Freight’s popularity in the market:

If you are looking for cheaper tools, then you might as well consider Central Pneumatic Air compressors. They will be far less pricey than a Hilti and will give you exactly what you need. Harbour Freight Tools goes by the saying ‘you get what you pay for’ and if you walk into any of their shops their products will give you just that.

For Central Pneumatic Air compressors, you can start using these things right out of the box.

You do not need to worry about assembly, and you can start right away. The compressors manufactured by the company are mostly based on a compressed air technology which also certifies a cleaner usage. It makes them eco-friendly and does not require electricity either.

These are energy efficient and require minimal resources to perform tasks.

Harbour Freight Tools has an ever growing market in the United States and continues to make many sales throughout the country.

There has to be an explanation of why people like it so much, right? Many companies only provide warranty for a year or two. However, this brand states that all hand tools have a lifetime warranty, and as previously mentioned, you can replace your product easily in case of any fault or problem.

You can find instruction manuals and guidance easily on their website for all their products.

Top 5 Central Pneumatic Air Compressor Reviews:

1.    Central Pneumatic 2 HP, 8 Gallon, 125 PSI Portable Air Compressor

This Central Pneumatic Air compressor is a horizontal compressor and has a capacity of 8 gallons with 125 PSI.

It is a small sized, portable air compressor that is best for light use and easy for beginners. It is an oil based compressor.

The product has thermal overload protection with a direct drive induction motor. Under the cylinder are two wheels for smooth mobility as well as a handle for easy carrying. For the user’s convenience, the product contains a transparent window to read the oil level.

The window’s function lets the person know when to refill the air compressor with oil. The product is 64.5 pounds, and its measurements are 27.5 x 24 x 12 inches.

Top Features:

The air compressor has a high Anti-Lock Braking system that provides maximum protection, and the product has a decibels level of 88 dB at 1 meter, which means that it delivers less noise than your typical air compressor. The Air compressor is portable and pneumatic powered. The air delivery that this compressor provides is 4.5 CFM at 90 PSI and 5.5 CFM at 40 PSI.


The Central Pneumatic Air Compressor is a portable sized product which makes it very handy. It is excellent for small projects around the house and is less noisy than most air compressors on the market. It is an excellent product to consider if you are a beginner.


Although the manual instructs to give a 30-minute break to the compressor, it takes almost a day to let it run smoothly again.

The most challenging thing about this compressor is that if any part breaks, you will not be able to find its replacement easily as Harbour Freight Tools no longer carries its parts.

Another con is that it does not help with more significant projects. Smaller jobs like tire filling, dust blowing, etc. are suitable for this product.

2.    Central Pneumatic 2.5 Horsepower, 21 Gallon, 125 PSI Cast Iron Vertical Air Compressor

Product Details:

Searching for a high quality air compressor? This 21 gallon air compressor is not just high capacity, but portable as well. The compressor is durable as it contains an oil pump system as well as a long lasting motor. As for the foot stabilizer, it reduces the vibration.

The compressor has an oil cooling system, which does not allow the engine or pump to overheat. Because of the reduced vibration system, the chance of part damage is less and also gives it a long life. A different touch of comfort is the oil meter level that lets the user determine the level of oil and refill it whenever needed.

Top Features:

Top features for the 21 gallon compressor are quite impressive. The compressor has a 2.5-hp motor that produces 125 psi of max pressure and increases the compressor’s efficiency. The air delivery that this compressor provides is 5.8 CFM at 40 psi & 4.7 CFM at 90 psi.


If you are looking for a high pressure air compressor, then this might be just for you. It is great for basic tasks around the house and is beginner friendly. The rubber foot stabilizers reduce vibrations in the compressor. This 21-gallon central pneumatic air compressor is readily available and is cheap.

The oil level indicator is an added feature for easy oil management. Being a compact and vertical design, the air compressor has an easy to carry system.


The 21 gallon air compressor supports only 120V and is also not suitable for heavy duty tasks. Besides, the vertical design will probably have space limitations.

3.    1/3 Horsepower 3 Gallon 100 PSO Oilless Pancake Air Compressor by Central Pneumatic

Product Details:

This Central Pneumatic air compressor is perfect for those who want to purchase a compact compressor that does not need a gas powered motor. It needs to be electrically powered. The compressor has a 3-gallon air tank that comes with a very convenient drain valve.

It also has built-in accessory storage. Furthermore, it has thermal overload protection. Its measurements are 15.5 x 15.2 x 14.7 inches, and it comes in a ‘Pancake’ shape.

Top Features:

The Central Pneumatic Air Compressor delivers a 100 PSI of maximum air pressure and compressed air of 0.6 CFM at 90 PSI & 1.0 CFM at 40 PSI; it also has 0.03 Horsepower.

This size is quite convenient for smaller tasks around your home. As the compressor has a 2.6 amp 120V motor, it does not require too much amperage to start up. It weighs only 21.2 lbs. And it is easy to carry and convenient to store item. The handle makes it even more portable.


Undoubtedly, the compressor is portable as it is lightweight and small. The motor provides good air pressure and compressed air for most tasks and air tools. As the engine is only 2.6 amp 120V, it can start without a problem even in cold weather. The best feature of this compressor is that it has an oil-free pump that successfully delivers clean air. The handle makes for easy travel.


The motor is 120V and so is not that powerful. It is a low capacity.

4.    Central Pneumatic 1/3 Horsepower, 3 Gallon, 100 PSI Oilless Air Compressor

This product is a lightweight, portable compressor and does not require oil for its use. It has quite a reasonable price and comes with an easy to carry handle. The net weight of this compressor is almost 19.5 pounds and has a measurement of 17.5 x 17 x 9.8 inches. The material is made of metal and is gas powered.

The product is a maintenance-free, oil-free pump which includes a fully enclosed motor.

Top Features:

This 3 gallon Central Pneumatic air compressor is mostly used for tasks around the house like inflating car/truck/motorcycle tires, airbrushing, stapling, brad nailing, etc. This portable air compressor comes with efficiency even in such a small size.

It has a gas powered motor which has the benefit of the user not needing to stay attached with a power supply. That means that you can take this wherever you need. Users should remain cautious while using this product as it emits gas fumes and should be kept away from fire and flammable materials.

The motor produces maximum pressure of 100 PSI of cut out force and 85 PSI of cut in pressure. Although this pressure is less than Central Pneumatics’ other products, it can be enough given its suitable size.


The compressor is exceptionally compact and light which makes it convenient for users to carry around.

As it has a gas-powered motor, it is electricity-free which does not force the user to stay in a specific place. For some uses and applications, the compressor provides enough pressure.

It is an excellent choice for an air tool. This particular product is cheap and commonly available in your nearby stores. Undoubtedly, it is an excellent choice for painters as it comes with an oil-free pump. Also, the convenience of the product can be felt through its handle; you can carry it around with ease.


It is not suitable for heavy tasks as it is of low capacity.

The compressor is gas powered, and so can be dangerous as it produces exhaust gas fumes.

5.    1/5 HP 58 PSI Oilless Airbrush Compressor Kit from TNM by Central Pneumatic

Product Details:

This compressor air set comes with all the things that you need for airbrushing, cleaning, etc. and is an all in one product. It’s easy to use, easy to change colors and easy to clean. You can use mediums such as oil paints, latex based paints and lacquers with this airbrush kit and airbrush compressor.

Things included in this kit are the compressor, airbrush, hose and storage case. It comes with thermal overload protection and has an automatic reset. Maximum air pressure delivered is 58 PSI. The total height is eight in., Length 9-1/2 in. And width 5-1/4 in.

Accessories included are anodized aluminum airbrush, 22cc glass jar assembly, 5cc metal cup and a metal hanging hook. It weighs almost 9.25 lbs.

Top Features:

This complete kit has further features that make the product even more convenient. It has an easy to read pressure gauge and integrated moisture trap. The feet of the compressor are made of rubber and are like suction cups that help it to stay fixed to the surface. This air compressor will meet your every airbrushing need. Purchasers have especially been buying this for painting model cars. The noise that the machine produces is also very low.


The product is useful if you are looking for a beginner experience. It does not produce excessive noise. Furthermore, it comes in quite a low price for such a set.


Not very suitable for professionals. There is no regulatory system with the compressor, and users find it difficult having to start on max pressure. The compressor itself is better than the airbrush system.

How to Use Central Pneumatic Air Compressor

Air compressors are handy machines and can bring ease to your work and save you money and time. However, if you are a beginner, then understanding how to use it will be no big deal and you will get the hang of it in no time.

Compressors are usually beginner friendly, and Central Pneumatic Air Compressors are no exception. Assembling one can be as simple as plugging in a hose or an electrical cord. You can monitor the attached gauge to determine the air pressure.

For each tool, the air pressure is supposed to be different and must be adjusted according to your needs. These necessary steps need to be kept in mind to stay cautious and efficient beforehand.

Steps to follow:

1: Does your compressor have oil insertion? If so, then check the oil pump level first before starting.

Most compressors come with an oil filling. Locate the insertion point at the bottom of the compressor’s end; pull it out and see if it needs oil. The oil should be filled to two-thirds of the stick level.

2: Attach the hose to the given regulator valve. Make sure that your compressor is on flat ground.

The regulator valve is usually next to the pressure gauge. Spot the round, open-mouthed, metal plug (usually copper-colored). The pointed edge of the hose should be inserted into the valve firmly.

3: Hold your power tool and hose in each hand and slide the two into each other. Twist the two together until the lock clicks into place, and the two pieces are firmly locked together. The same process applies if you are filling a tire. Just insert the hose into the tire’s valve and go to the next step.

4: Take your cord and plug it into a nearby power outlet. Compressors come with a three prong cord, which can be easily fit the electrical outlets in your home.

Attach the plug to the socket. Avoid using extension cords; if you can’t reach the nearby socket then directly attach another hose for length.

Extension cords can cause the compressor to overheat.

5: Before starting your compressor, make sure you are wearing your safety gadgets. Eye goggles, safety boots, ear muffs (as air compressors can be pretty noisy). For testing the compressor, pull on the safety valve near the hose line that is copper in color.

It will probably be tighter to pull. Tug on it, and you will hear the hissing of air. Make sure that you push it back in place tightly before starting the compressor

Start your Compressor:

Turn your compressor on and wait for it to reach its pressure. When the needle on the pressure gauge stops moving, then that means that the air pressure has reached its maximum level.

Adjust the required pressure you want for your power tool and determine its level from the pressure gauge.

The gauge will have numbers printed on it for you to see the minimum and maximum level of air. Once measured, your tool will be ready to use.

The pressure will drop as you use your device, but it will refill automatically. Keep checking the pressure gauge to make sure your air level remains the same.

Buying Guide for top centralized Pneumatic air compressors

Before buying an air compressor, some things need to be considered. First, you need to ask yourself why you need an air compressor in the first place. Your requirement will lead you to choose smartly.

No matter for what purpose you are buying an air compressor, you will quickly find a suitable tool and product for your needs.

Do you need them merely for pneumatic tools and inflating things around the house? If this is your necessity, then you need a consumer grade air compressor. If you need one for a more substantial job, then you will need a more powerful air compressor.

The compressors mentioned above are usually used for light tasks around the house and have a slightly smaller level of air pressure suitable for such applications.

When choosing the right compressor:

The following points can help you determine what compressor suits you the most and why. Note that all these products are for light task use.

  • Consider the size of your compressor. Do you want a larger one or a smaller one? Most of the products mentioned above are portable and small. You can easily travel with them and use them wherever you find convenient.

The 3 Gallon Oilless Pancake Air Compressor by Central Pneumatic; the 8 Gallon, 125 PSI Portable Air Compressor and the 3 Gallon, 100 PSI Oilless Air Compressor are all portable and easy to carry air compressors.

You can consider buying these as they are complete for light tasks as well.

  • When it comes to choosing between vertical and horizontal air compressors, neither of them are any different. The only thing is that the vertical one takes up less space than the horizontal one.
  • There are two types of air compressors: oiled and electric powered. It will be better to consider an electric one if you want to use it primarily for home use. The 3 Gallon Oilless Pancake Air Compressor and the 3 Gallon Oil-less Air Compressor are good choices for this.

Our pick: 3 Gallon 100 PSO Oil less by Central Pneumatic

For us, the best pick out of the above-mentioned Central Pneumatic Air Compressors has to be the 1/3 Horsepower 3 Gallon 100 PSO Oil less Pancake Air Compressor by Central Pneumatic. It is portable, light in weight and oil free.

The term oil-free means that it provides cleaner air and will also provide cleaner airbrushing for painters. It is electrically powered and will give better performance. Although it is only 120V, it can be enough for light tasks around the house.

The maximum air pressure is 100 PSI which can be suitable for airbrushing. The 120V also provides quick amperage and does not trouble users when starting even in cold weather!

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