What Size Air Compressor For Painting Cars

What Size Air Compressor For Painting Cars

An air compressor for your spray gun is among the many items you’ll need when painting your car, but it’s also one of the most crucial. This device pressurizes air so it can power shop equipment, such as a vehicle paint sprayer. Here it is important to know What size air compressor for painting cars should be.

Air compressors are commonly employed in the automotive industry to paint automobiles by forcing paint through a nozzle in a powerful yet even stream. In order to generate a thin mist of paint through a nozzle, an air compressor for painting cars uses pressurized air to break up paint. The paint is transformed into a fine, liquid particle by the air compressor used for auto painting, which is perfect for applying an even coat to the vehicle. In this blog we will discuss on What size air compressor for painting cars is better. So keep reading!

Factors Considering for Air Spray in Painting Cars

The following are the most crucial elements to take into account when choosing an air sprayer painting tool for cars:

For Paint Gun CFM

“Cubic Feet Per Metre” (CFM), denotes the amount of necessary air given at a specific pressure. Modern paint sprayers typically have high CFM ratings to produce superior paint finishes. Typically, you should use sprayers with a value of 90 to 100 CFMs. Before painting an automobile, it is crucial to choose this factor.

Air Pressure

The PSI unit used to measure air pressure. Low PSI pressure is needed with the current HVLP spray guns to provide a smooth paint finish. For base coatings on an automobile, 15 PSI pressure is typically ideal. To choose the precise range, read the instruction manual at all times. Additionally, you are free to change the PSI level. The recommended PSI range for 100% clear coatings is 20–25.

Size of Tank

Without an air compressor, painting a car requires regular, continuous spraying, especially for cars. Therefore, it’s important to get the appropriate size paint compressor to finish the work in a timely manner. We advise choosing a compressor with a minimum capacity of 50 to 60 gallons.


A compressor’s horsepower (HP) rating indicates how much work it can accomplish. With a 5 HP motor compressor, you just cannot accomplish anything near to what you can with a 10 HP motor compressor.

Choose Paint Gun

When planning to use a paint gun to paint your car, that is the first thing you should consider. The amount of air consumed is determined by the paint gun. While some paint guns only require 5CFM, high-end experts may require two to three times that amount to properly paint your car.

What Size for Air Compressor Painting Cars?

Compressor requirements may vary depending on your operation’s size and the kinds of vehicle painting you’ll need to perform. The list that follows will take into account some of these more widespread applications with support of What size air compressor for painting cars :

Tank Size

When spray painting cars, the efficiency of the operation depends on the size of the air compressor’s tank. In larger jobs like covering an entire car, smaller tanks may need to be filled again, possibly multiple times. A tank capacity of 60 gallons or more will normally allow for the coating of a complete vehicle in a single pass without the need to refill, whereas tank sizes of 50 gallons or more are typically advised.

CFM Rating

In consideration of What size air compressor for painting cars, you must focus on CFM Rating. To break up paint into the tiny particles that enable spray painting of the vehicle, a greater CFM is needed. The key to ensuring that paint is applied uniformly and that the completed coat looks uniform is a large volume of air. For most auto paint jobs, a high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) compressor is adequate.


 A 10 HP compressor is often sufficient for auto painting. Higher HP compressors, however, might function more effectively and serve various purposes. Compressor with higher HP also clarifies What size air compressor for painting cars should be.

 Air Pressure

What size air compressor for painting cars ? When using an air compressor to paint cars, CFM is more crucial than PSI. The importance of getting a perfect atomization of the paint through high CFM outweighs the pressure rating, which specifies at what pressure the paint is delivered from the nozzle. Minimum of 15 PSI is recommended, with 20 or 25 PSI being preferable for some applications, such as clear coat.

What Size Air Compressor For Painting Cars
Photo by: alison.com

How to Use an Air Compressor for a Paint Car?

It’s crucial to utilize a little air compressor for painting cars if you are familiar with how it operates. Keep in mind that a single setting might have a negative impact on the quality of the paint on the entire vehicle. Here is the step-by-step process to start using a compressor and the appropriate settings:

Examine The Parts

Before you begin painting, you must comprehend each step in the instruction manual. Examine how each component functions and make a note of it.

Accurate Air Hose Measurement

Hose is crucial in establishing the proper pressure. It shouldn’t be excessively small or large. You will experience low air pressure if the air hose settings are lower, and vice versa. To ensure a smooth airflow without any obstructions, always balance the length of the tube, the internal diameter, and the air hose.

Lessen the use of quick disconnects

Rapid Disconnection Fittings, also referred to as QDs, must be placed in accordance with the volume and application-specific design. In this case, we advise selecting a QD with a small number and a high diameter. It enables accurate pressure measurement with little loss. For optimum performance and the least amount of restriction, take into account QDs’ huge diameter.

Air Controls

Air regulators are essential for additional adjustments and testing. Depending on requirements, you can select the wall-mounted regulars or the gun-mounted regulars.

Air Compressor For Home Car Painting

An air compressor is one of the most crucial parts of painting equipment. It can be challenging to choose the air compressor that will meet your needs out of the several models available on the market. To assist you in selecting the best air compressor for painting vehicles at home, below is a list of the many types of air compressors and their features.

Compressor with Pancake Style

Pancake compressors are portable due to their size and lightweight. They are perfect for simple jobs like putting air in tyres or running tiny tools. They lack the power necessary to efficiently operate the majority of paint guns, though.

Compressor with Twin Stack Style

The most powerful portable choices are dual stack compressors. if you are thinking about What size air compressor for painting cars. They are excellent for powering numerous paint guns or other powerful instruments. Before buying them, make sure your garage has a designated space for them because they are also rather heavy and tough to move about.

Compressor with Hot Dog Style

What size air compressor for painting cars? Despite being larger than pancake compressors, hot dog compressors are nonetheless transportable because of their wheeled base. They can handle the majority of paint guns because they have more power than pancake models. If you intend to do a lot of painting at home, they are a wise choice.

What Size Air Compressor For Painting Cars
Photo by: pittsburghsprayequip.com

Air Compressor For Auto Painting

The first step is to select the ideal air compressor for the task. If you want to paint a lot, you will require a more powerful unit than if you plan to only touch up a few spots here and there. When purchasing an air compressor, pay close attention to the CFM number since this will indicate how much air it can produce in a minute. Once you have your air compressor, place it away from any open flames in a space that is well-ventilated. Check for leaks and that the hose is attached correctly. For auto painting you must know What size air compressor for painting cars.

Harbor Freight Air Compressor For Painting Cars

The Harbour Freight air compressor is a fantastic alternative if you’re looking for an air compressor to use for painting cars. It is simple to utilize this compressor in your garage or shop because it is strong and portable. It is also incredibly inexpensive, making it a fantastic option for those on a tight budget. Additional information regarding the Harbour Freight air compressor is provided below: Maximum power output for the Harbour Freight air compressor is 1.5 horsepower. It is now sufficiently powerful to handle the majority of painting projects. This can be good for What size air compressor for painting cars!

Budget Air Compressor For Painting Cars

If you are thinking about What size air compressor for painting cars, we can say a good air compressor is one of the most essential pieces of equipment you will require when painting autos. For those who want to do the task without spending a lot of money, a cheap air compressor for painting vehicles can be a fantastic solution.

What Size Air Compressor For Painting Cars
Photo by: propaintersguide.com


In conclusion, an air compressor must be set up and available for use before painting an automobile if you have proper knowledge about What size air compressor for painting cars. When selecting the ideal air compressor for yourself, it is necessary to keep in mind the important considerations. We hope you will find this article on air compressors for painting cars to be useful. Hope this article will be helpful for you in choosing what size air compressor for painting cars.

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