View Full Version : What to look for in buying a compressor

11-08-2011, 08:03 PM
what do u guys look for when buying an air compressor?...looks like there are a lot of used 185's out there for right around 5k i'm just not sure what makes each different...we have subbed all of our blowouts to another company in town and i have gone along with them to watch the process...i noticed on the compressor that they rented it doesn't have a pressure gauge or an hour meter, at least that i could see...isn't there a certain pressure setting needed for blowouts to not blow up the lines or blow the heads out of the ground?

i guess my main question is what would YOU look for in a compressor?

11-08-2011, 08:11 PM
You can always employ an end-of-hose pressure regulator, and leave the machine be

11-08-2011, 08:13 PM
Look for a blue one, they're the best. Maybe a white one, most definitely not a red one. :)

Look for CFM - 100-185. Pressure gauge isn't required, but preferred. Pressure regulator can be added. I'd look for a good maintained machine, even if it costs a little more. Don't buy an old beat up thing, and then need to put countless hours into it. Your time is too valuable. Check the tires, and how even they are wearing.

11-08-2011, 08:53 PM
Also, check the blinker fluid

11-08-2011, 10:29 PM
Run the machine , for at least 1 hour with the air running , look for oil in the air discharge
then let it sit , restart it . Then check the machine top to bottom . If you dont know equipment find someone that does it will save you money in the end . If they rent a compressor , and you are subbing to them and making money , maybe you should rent one and see what you want .

11-09-2011, 09:09 PM
i guess my main question is what would YOU look for in a compressor?

An hour meter, if it's missing or been dicked with, don't buy it. All tow behind compressors came with an hour meter.

11-09-2011, 09:20 PM
There is one thing I did with all three of my tow behinds. None of them had light - turn/brake/running lights. I added it to all three for safety. I don't think it is required due to how small or narrow or something like that. But it was something I wanted.

11-09-2011, 09:47 PM
ok, so today we rented a pressure regulator...what pressure do you guys usually blowout typical residential 1" lines at? we also have a few 1.5" and 2" lines... seems like some guys think a pressure regulator is important and some guys don't, some will just hook up and blowout and not pay attention to the pressure...we defnitely did blow a few heads out of the ground throughout the day yesterday without the regulator, didn't shoot them in the air but they did pop up out of the ground and will need to be replaced...is this normal or probably due to too much pressure?

once again i subbed the work out and am just observing, these are just questions that i have come up with...maybe i am making this more complicated than it needs to be i just want to make sure i know the proper way to winterize a system

11-09-2011, 10:14 PM
we defnitely did blow a few heads out of the ground throughout the day yesterday

once again i subbed the work out and am just observing


11-09-2011, 10:34 PM
You will get opinions all over the board with this question. There are guys using compressors from 9-185 cfm at rates of 40-120a psi. Seems to be very subjective. Mdirrigation had some good points on qualities to look for in a used compressor. My suggestion would be to have it checked out by a good mechanic who is familiar with that particular brand name. Make sure to purchase a compressor that is still being made. We use a kaiser rotary screw. It is a smaller unit but has done well for us to date. Good luck.
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11-09-2011, 11:26 PM
Why would anyone "rent a pressure regulator" when you can buy one for less than fifty bucks? Your standard off-the-shelf PRV for home use is perfect for winterizing, attached at the hose end. It comes preset to 45-50 psi.