Gas vs Electric compressors – what’s right for you?

There are several brands of compressors that are either powered by gas or electricity available on the market. The source of a compressor’s power is an important factor that impacts its performance and it is important to note that both have advantages and disadvantages to each other.

While one type can function at top speed, the other might be better at harder tasks. In light of this, people are advised to choose compressor tools according to their preferences.

However it’s important to compare gas vs. electric compressors in order to draw conclusions as to which type is good for you depending on performance, portability, effectiveness and safety.

Gas vs Electric compressors

Gas compressors

As the name suggests, these are powered by gasoline meaning that they do not need cords and cables in order to function. With such compressor tools you do not have to worry about far corners as long as the tank is full. They are ideal for situations that demand continuous bursts of pressure owing to the pilot unloader valve which opens and closes in accordance to pressure inside the tank.

The biggest downside to gas powered compressors is that they release dangerous fumes not forgetting the fact that gasoline is highly flammable. Such compressors are therefore limited to outdoor use where gasoline fumes are not likely to suffocate the operator. Danger of fire can be easily averted with proper maintenance and care of the gasoline powered compressor.

These types of compressors are ideal for industrial use but that is often a drawback as their heavy duty design makes them difficult to transport. Gas powered compressor motors are very noisy while in action and besides that being annoying, it is a form of pollution that could have a negative impact on one’s hearing.

Electric compressors

The most desirable aspect of electric air compressors is that they do not release harmful fumes and can therefore be used indoors. They tend to be smaller and lighter than gas powered air compressors since they are often designed for use at home.

Electric air compressors are portable and owners do not have to worry about flames during transportation. They are very quiet making them ideal for use by people with children and neighbors they do not want to disturb.

Such compressors have automatic controls to start and stop them when pressure inside the tank reaches its limit. They are considered safer owing to this feature while some people prefer them for their versatility in shape, size and color. Electric compressors are highly recommended for simple tasks like in door repairs, finish and trim work.

Unfortunately, you have to rely on extension cords whenever you need to access far ends using an electric compressor. They are also useless without a power source and are not ideal for heavy duty industrial work.

The Verdict

If you are looking for a compressor to use around the home, it is better to go for the lighter, more attractive and portable electric powered types. This is especially important if you live with young children who could suffer from exposure to toxic fumes. The electric compressors are also easy to store compared to bulkier gas powered ones.

If on the other hand you need a tool for heavier jobs, you need to pick a gas powered one. As mentioned before, you will have to contend with the troubles of moving one about as they are usually very heavy.

It’s also advisable to be extra careful when choosing gas powered compressors to ensure that they were made in the strictest safety conditions to prevent dangers of fires.

Gas powered compressors do not need electricity to function, making them the top choice for use in remote areas where power is a concern.

If you choose a gas compressor tool, remember to wear ear plugs to shield your ear drums from the unbearable noise. In some applications you might need a gas mask to keep you from breathing in toxic fumes.

That said you should first analyze what you want to do with a compressor before making the purchase to make sure that the one you choose serves you best. This will prevent feelings of dissatisfaction and the hassle of replacing one.

Whatever your choice is, take proper care of the compressor to give it a long life and save your money in the long run.