Pancake air compressors are designed for compact, portable use around the home and worksite. Although they are a highly professional tool, they are becoming ever more popular with keen DIY fans looking to upgrade their standard of work.
We have put together a list of six of the best pancake compressors you can buy in the US today, complete with a feature rundown and Amazon pricing details.
Pancake Compressors: Features to Look For
A good pancake air compressor makes a whole lot of things so much easier, especially if it includes at least some of the following features. When you look at pancake air compression reviews online, you notice the same few things stand out both in a positive and negative way.
- An oil-free design is meant to maximize air tool performance while reducing unnecessary mess. In our opinion, oil-free is the only option you should look at.
- Durable construction reduces the chance of air leaks and diminished performance.
- The maximum pressure dictates how quickly you can get a job done and how effective the task can be.
- Tank capacity matters, especially if you are working on a large-scale project.
- You should check what components are compatible. Check for add ons such as nail guns, air hoses, staplers, and much more.
6 of the Best Pancake Air Compressors
The best pancake air compressors for small jobs have a tank capacity of six gallons (just under one standard cubic foot) and operate on an oil-free basis, so we have chosen products that fit into that category. Here are our top picks for the best six pancake air compressors on offer in the US today.
Craftsman 6 Gallon Air Compressor Pancake Style
Our top pick pancake compressor is an American-made Craftsman air compressor with accessories. It is not only one of the best value for money machines, but it also has one of the most consistent performances across a range of different jobs.
All in all, this Craftsman small compressor delivers all the goods at a bargain price. Because of its oil-free design, there is no fuss and no maintenance involved. The recovery time on this machine is impressive- the tank fills with more air in less time, which is ideal for large-scale jobs. Rubber feet keep it steady and secure for easy working.
- With a comparatively low noise rating of 71 dB, this model is a good option for home projects or people who need to keep it down just a little.
- It reaches 150 PSI maximum.
- The horsepower is a standard 1.0, like most of the air compressors on our list.
- At only 32.5 pounds, no matter how much air is inside, it is a handy little machine to carry around.
DEWALT 6 Gallon Pancake Air Compressor
It is rare to find a list of any type of best DIY tools without finding the DEWALT brand. Well, today is no different thanks to the DEWALT air compressor. As a proud American-born and bred business, DEWALT knows how to deliver just what the people need.
Some of the standout features of this oil-free air compressor are the specialized ball drain valve for effective draining, the adaptable and highly efficient motor that starts effortlessly in cold weather, and the two universal couplers that hook up to an air hose, blow gun, nailers, and so much more to get the job done.
- The max PSI is 165 bars.
- It has a standard noise level of 78.5 dB, which is the top end of average compared to other compressors on this list.
- At only 30 pounds, the DEWALT pancake compressor is easy to work with and carry around.
- Standard one horsepower keeps this machine going.
Bostitch Air Compressor 6 Gallon Pancake
The ultra-lightweight Bostitch air compressor is a minimal maintenance, maximum performance machine. With a high flow regulator and oil-free motor, this small air compressor could not be easier to use or care for.
One of the biggest benefits of this particular model is the combo kit it comes with. Included in the agreed price are some portable compressors and pneumatic equipment.
- 150 is the max PSI on this pancake air compressor.
- The decibel rating is 78.5, which is fairly average for this type of tool.
- The air tank runs on one horsepower.
Porter-Cable C2002 6 Gallon Air Compressor
The Porter-Cable C2oo2 Porter cable air compressor is one of the top small compressors out there. It is also the best choice for anyone who often works in cold weather, thanks to its energy-efficient low voltage motor amp.
Because of the oil-free pump, it produces very little mess, although this particular build is rather noisy. Completed with a protective console cover to maximize the lifespan of the essential components, this Porter-Cable design is durable, practical, and has enough power for all your technical needs.
- It reaches a maximum PSI of 150, which is enough for most standard DIY projects.
- The whole thing weighs just under 32 pounds, which is ideal for carrying around a worksite.
- One horsepower is all these compact portable air compressors need to get the job done.
- With a decibel rating of 82, it has a higher noise level than most on this list, so it is not ideal for residential use.
Campbell Hausfeld Portable Quiet Air Compressor
Campbell Hausfeld is better known for its hot dog air compressor designs, but this pancake compressor is pretty impressive. This Campbell Hausfeld portable air compressor is loved for its quiet operation and lighter weight compared to many other models from this brand.
This is another model with a maintenance-free pump; therefore, this air compressor puts practicality first. The tire gauge, air pressure meter, and high flow regulators are all conveniently positioned, so you can always keep everything in check and under control.
- At 68 dB, this is the best pancake air compressor for use in the home or enclosed residential areas.
- The maximum PSI is 125.
- It is a reasonably heavy machine at 62 pounds, but the air tools performance more than justifies it.
- This compressor operates on one horsepower.
Metabo HPT "The Tank" Pancake Air Compressor
Know as “The Tank,” the Metabo HPT pancake compressor is a versatile and tough piece of equipment. The no-fuss oil-free pump design is all about ease of use, made even easier by the lightweight construction and heavy-duty handle design.
With the power to run all your pneumatic tools with ease and the flexibility to work with many different fixtures, the Metabo HPT “Tank” is a fan favorite for creative multi-taskers.
- The maximum air pressure (PSI) sits at 200 bars, which is 25% more than average pancake compressors on the market today.
- It weighs just 41 pounds, making it far easy to handle and maneuver than most similar machines.
- At 1.3 horsepower on full throttle, this is one powerful air tool.
- The noise rating sits at 73 dB.
All six of these air compressors are made by reputable and trusted brands with plenty of previous users to back up their quality. Still not sure what one to pick? Check out the thousands of pancake air compressors reviews to find out exactly what people think.
These oil-free pumps with six-liter tank capacity make your DIY life significantly easier and are a favorite with professionals across the country who want to ensure excellence in their work.