Automotive IndustryIt can be difficult to choose the right equipment for your business. This is especially true when choosing an air compressor to help service vehicles. There are many air compressors that are not created for auto repair, and some are better suited for this type of work than others.

Air compressors are required for auto repair and auto body shops. You, of course, don’t want to choose a compressor that is specifically designed to work in the medical or restaurant industries. It is essential that the compressor you choose supplies the correct amount of compressed air at the appropriate pressure.

Knowledge Is Power

Intermittent compressed air is a common tool used by auto mechanics. This is because most mechanics don’t keep their fingers on the same tool for long periods of time. They take breaks and switch between tools depending on what the car needs.

Air compressors are measured by standard cubic feet per minute (SCFM). A typical mechanic in an auto shop uses approximately 5 SCFM. It can vary depending on the workload and the demands of the day.

If you want to know your peak usage requirements, calculate how many mechanics will be working simultaneously on your busiest days.

Collision repair shops might use even more compressed air. High-pressure activities such as grinding, sandblasting, and spray painting all require high levels. These activities require a greater amount of compressed air because they are continuous. The total SCFM for collision repair can range from 50 to 100 depending on the tools required.

You need to consider the pressure loss in your shop, regardless of whether you are involved in collision repair or auto assembly. This simply refers to the pressure loss that occurs between the compressor’s point of use and the compressor. A drop can be caused by piping, air dryers, filters, and other factors.

You Can’t Just Guess at Air Pressure

Your air compressor lines shouldn’t run higher than necessary. Higher pressure and air volume mean more heat and more energy. This will cause more wear to your already expensive investment.

The bottom line is that the best way to maintain optimal air pressure is by using the right equipment and maintaining it regularly.

The right compressor for your automotive business will maximize the return on investment. The right compressor can help you save money and maximize productivity.

Take a Look at Your Surroundings

You’ll get poor results if you put the best compressor into a bad environment. Make sure to consider your workplace when choosing an air compressor for auto repairs shops.

These aspects of your installation should be considered carefully:

  • Are your power sources accessible?
  • Do you have adequate ventilation?
  • What impact will this placement have on other areas of your business?

A complete loop of piping is more efficient than one line with dead ends. Knowing this will allow you to double the air capacity while reducing expenditure on the compressor.

The Right Plan to Meet Your Electrical Needs

Your shop’s largest energy user is likely to be the air compressor. Before you decide which industrial air compressor you want to purchase, make sure you know what electrical capabilities your shop has.

A compressor can use up to seven times its maximum load when it is starting. This means that an air compressor requires seven times the energy it uses to start up than it takes to run normal. It is important to ensure that the compressor you buy can work within the capabilities of the electrical system in your building. You may also consider retrofitting it.

Know How You’re Going to Use It

Your air compressor’s purpose may change depending on the day. This can make a big difference in choosing the right air compressor for auto repairs. A rotary screw compressor, or a reciprocating compressor, might work well for you if your needs are heavier than a mechanic’s needs. Based on your use, you can determine the size, horsepower and type of compressor that you need.

If you own a collision repair shop, however, you might need something that can handle continuous use. This may be met by rotary screw compressors. It is important to consider things such as how quiet the compressor should run and how clean the air you desire.

Spray paint, for example, requires clean compressed air. Clean compressed air is available for many rotary screw applications. You may also be able to install air filters or dryers to increase the cleanliness of the air for other applications.


This overview will provide basic guidelines on how to choose an air compressor for your auto repair shop. Be sure to consider your existing piping and electrical capabilities. It won’t be a good idea to just estimate a little on the high side. When searching for the right air compressor, you need to understand your usage.

Contact RapidAir Products today if you need help in finding the right compressor for your auto repair shop. We know what it takes for you to find the right air compressor for your company.

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