What Is a Good Size Air Compressor for Home Use?

What is a good size air compressor for home use? What air compressor should I buy for home use? There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of what size air compressor is optimal for home use. The best air compressor depends on a number of factors, including how much power you need for your projects and how much space you have in your workshop. Some general guidelines for choosing an air compressor can help you select the model that best meets your needs.

For starters, it is important to consider the power requirements of the tools that you plan to run with the compressor. If you want to run high-power tools like nail guns and sprayers, then you will need an air compressor with a higher CFM rating.

Similarly, if you are working in a large space or planning on expanding your tool collection in the future, then a larger air compressor may be necessary.

At the same time, it is also important to consider your own needs when selecting an air compressor. Factors like noise levels, ease of transport, and cost will all play important roles in making your final decision.

Ultimately, the best thing to do is research different models and find one that suits both your needs and your budget. With some careful consideration, you can easily find an air compressor that will meet all of your home workshop needs.

For home use, you don’t need to buy an industrial-grade air compressor and just waste money. We don’t have heavy things to do at home like the garage or workshop owners. So, our choice for a home use air compressor should be as cheap as possible.

How long does the cheap air compressor last?

People often think that the cheap-priced air compressors are not good enough for home use. The reality is that if you are a heavy user, you should go for some other expensive products. But here we are talking about the compressor that will be used at home. At home, we hardly have heavy projects, so a cheap model will do more than enough.

Let’s identify first for which we need an air compressor at home.

  • To inflate tires
  • To blow dust
  • To use nail guns like brads or trim nailers
  • To pump inflatable items

These are the common types of applications for which we need air compressors for home use. To meet the demand for these types mentioned above, I would suggest buying a pancake or small hot-dog air compressor.

If the compressor is only for inflating tires, you can choose inflators. Remember, Inflators do not have a tank and are not applicable to power air tools like nail guns, blowers, etc.

Pancake Air Compressor

A pancake air compressor is a small, lightweight compressor that is easy to carry and can be used for a variety of applications. It is a good choice for people who need to move their compressor around often. It is ideal for small shops and businesses that do not require a lot of compressed air.

Pancake air compressors are also good for small jobs, such as filling up a bike tire or a car tire. They are also relatively affordable, making them a popular choice for home and small business owners.

There are many popular pancake air compressors in the market ranging from $100 to $200. The models include PORTER CABLE C2002 (price around $100), ‎CRAFTSMAN CMEC6150 (price around $150), and Makita MAC320Q (price around $250).  The cheap models are for home use. Professionals usually buy expensive ones.

The limitations of the pancake model air compressor

The pancake air compressor is a type of air compressor that is known for its small size and portability. They are relatively affordable, making them a popular choice for home use. So, you can use the unit only for light applications.

Pancake-style air compressors are usually available in a 6-gallon tank. With a 6-gallon tank, you cannot expect painting furniture or other kinds of stuff. You cannot even power tools like a sandblaster or impact wrench with pancake compressors. For light-duty applications in the home, pancake air compressors are ideal.

Hot Dog Air Compressors

For home use, we also recommend new users a 1-gallon or 2-gallon hot dog air compressors. Hot dog air compressors are not as cheap as pancake air compressors. At only $100, you will get the PORTER-CABLE 6-Gallon, pancake air compressor. The compressor has a 6-gallon tank and 150 PSI output pressure. At this price, there are no other products on the market.

On the contrary, the cheapest model of hot-dog air compressor come at around 150$ price tag. So, this is clear that when the air compressor is at a cheap price, pancake models are ideal.   

There are some hot dog models like Makita Mac 100Q, Makita Mac 210Q, and Senco PC1010 which are highly popular among homeowners.

From the list, Makita Mac210Q is a hot dog-style heavy-duty air compressor. The model is also highly favored by the carpenters. Though the unit comes with a high price tag, it will last longer than you expect. With quality material built, this compressor is perfect for tough jobs.

Makita Mac 100Q is the smaller version of the Makita Mac210Q. The unit is favored for small projects. This unit is so small that you can carry it in one hand. Being oil-free, users get rid of maintenance and oil change.

Senco PC1010 is the competitor of Makita Mac 100Q in the market. Both are available in the market almost at the same price tag. Senco PC1010 is a much older version in this segment and the unit has many happy customers available. The unit becomes so popular that the company launched another new model by the name Senco PC1010N.

Tank Size

When it comes to choosing an air compressor for home use, there are a number of factors to consider. The most important thing to consider is the size of the compressor’s tank. This determines how much air can be stored and discharged at any given time, and therefore affects both your ability to carry out a wide variety of projects as well as your overall efficiency.

Typically, an air compressor with a tank size of around 2-6 gallons will be ideal for most home users. Such compressors can hold enough compressed air for most common tasks, making them a great choice for everything from home use to DIY woodworking projects.

Additionally, smaller tanks are also typically cheaper and easier to transport than larger models, which makes them well suited not only to individual users but also small businesses that need portability as well as power. Whether you’re just getting started with power tools or looking for an upgrade, 2-6 gallons air compressor is sure to be the right fit.


Both pancake or hot-dog models can be a good size air compressor for home use. Now the choice between a pancake and a hot dog depends on the quality of the compressor. If you have a good budget and you want something that would be of good quality, we suggest you buy a hot dog model. When you hardly use an air compressor and just need one at home, pancake air compressors would be the best model for you.

Read More: What is the use of air compressors at home

Leave a Comment