A 30-gallon air compressor is a popular and pretty standard-sized air compressor. They are often used in home garages to inflate toys and car tires, but they can also be used to power some light tools.

Though the air compressors used at home are usually smaller than 30 gallons as they are more portable. When deciding which air compressor to purchase, it can become overwhelming as there are many different features and specifications available.

The best 30-gallon air compressor is Ingersoll Rand 30 Gallon Air Compressor. Because it has the highest PSI/CMF, it is cast iron and durable, one of the best brands in the industry, and a two-stage unit.

This would only be the best choice, however, if you can afford it at $2750. It is also the highest-priced unit of the six, and the Husky at $440 might do what you need just as well.

If you like to check out other top choices, please read on.

Top 30 Gallon Air Compressors

Product namePSICFMVoltsStagesHP
Ingersoll Rand 30-gallon 175241202 13.1
DeWalt DXCMLA1983012 15522120V213.1
Campbell Hausfeld 30 Gallon Portable 13510.22301 2.0
1 Industrial Air ILA1883054 1556.3120-240V1 7.1
Husky 30 Gallon Air Compressor1755.112015.0

1.Industrial Air ILA1883054 30-Gallon Belt-Driven

The Industrial Air ILA1883054 30 Gallon Belt-Driven air compressor is the best deal for the money. It offers top performance for your pneumatic tools and is incredibly reliable.

The Industrial Air 30 gallon compressor, delivering 5. 7 CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) at 90 PSI (Pound per Square Inch), was made for air tool performance.

The 1. 9 HP motor is wired for a 120-Volts outlet but is also convertible to 240-Volts applications. The compressor features a twin-cylinder pump made of cast iron and pre-attached pneumatic wheels for easy mobility.

Cast iron, twin-cylinder, an oil-lubricated shoe with belt drive technology 30-Gallon air compressor features one-piece cast iron crankcase, thermally stable cast iron cylinder body, aluminum head, and valve plate, automotive-style ball bearings, durable Swedish stainless steel reed valves, oil level sight glass, easily accessible oil fill and 12-Inch cast iron balanced flywheel.

Industrial Air ILA1883054 30-Gallon Belt Driven Air Compressor

The heavy-duty induction motor allows for maximum performance and efficiency, along with the 155 PSI max pressure for optimum tool performance.

30-Gallon ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) vertical portable tank has pre-attached pneumatic tires for maximum portability. Dual voltage motor is wired for a standard 120-Volt outlet and may also be converted for a 240-Volt application.

Shipped with synthetic oil for optimum performance and long life and equipped with a quick-set regulator, tank and working pressure gauges and on/off switch.Industrial Air ILA1883054 30-Gallon Belt Driven Air Compressor


What We Like

  • 155 PSI maximum pressure gives you maximum performance.
  • The dual voltage motor handles both 120 V and 240 V.
  • Durable and reliable – you will pay a lot less for this and get the same quality and performance as the high priced units.
  • Pressure gauges that are easy to read and convenient quick-set regulator.
  • Most important is the unique system it has for pumping. This pump is one of the best in any unit.
  • Belt drive technology gives this unit surpasses the mechanisms of the other units.
  • HP is one of the highest in this group at 13.1, a bargain for the money.

What We Didn’t Like 

  • It doesn’t have all the additional features of a unit like the Dewalt DXCMH1393075 Two-Stage has.
  • It’s cast iron isn’t as heavy-duty as the Dewalt’s cast iron.
  • HP is only 7.1

The best news when you compare the air compressors on our list is the price. The Industrial Air is not the cheapest, but its price tag of $595 compares favorably with the higher-priced DeWalt and Ingersoll Rand.

2.Husky 30 Gallon Air Compressor – Best 30 Gallon Air Compressors Under $500

On the other hand, if you are just looking for a high-quality air compressor for under $500, you can’t go wrong with the Husky 30 Gallon.

With its high-performance motor and pump, it can do whatever you need in the 30 gallons, 175 PSI (Pound per Square Inch) range.

The Husky 30 Gal. compressor features a high-performance pump and motor that delivers 175 max psi along with 5.1 SCFM (Standard Cubic Feet per Minute) at 90 PSI (Pound per Square Inch).

Higher PSI (Pound per Square Inch) equated to more extended air tool run times and increased project efficiency while the quiet operation at 78 dBA brings less noise to your work environment.

Husky 27 Gal. 200 PSI Oil Free Portable Vertical Electric Air Compressor

The Oil-free feature eliminates the need for oil separators in your air delivery system while conducting painting projects.

175 max psi in a 30 Gal. tank for 40% longer tool run times compared to typical 26 Gal. compressor at 150 max psi Quiet operation of 78 dBA brings less noise to your work environment equipped with a high flow regulator to ensure max airflow to your tools for peak performance.

High-performance pump and the motor delivers higher psi and SCFM (Standard Cubic Feet per Minuet) to operate your tools at peak performance 9 in. Wheels for shop or garage portability 30 Gal.

ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers) certified tank meets all safety requirements Vertical design has a smaller footprint and takes up less space in your shop or garage Perfect for all inflation, finish nailing/stapling, hobby painting, bolting/fastening, and medium-duty framing/roofing, HVLP painting, cutting/drilling, and surface prep oil-free pump allows for spray painting without the need for oil separators in the air system

Husky 27 Gal. 200 PSI Oil Free Portable Vertical Electric Air Compressor


What We Like

  • A high-performance motor and pump give 175 maximum PSI and 5.1 CFM. This means this unit has more extended airtime than many others. Quiet unit with 78 DBA’s
  • The high flow regulator gives you just the right amount of air for the tool you are using to reach maximum performance.
  • This unit has 40% longer run times for your devices.
  • Small footprint takes up less space than others.

What We Didn’t Like 

  • Stainless steel rather than cast iron.
  • HP is only 5.0

3.Ingersoll Rand 30-gallon Air CompressorBest 30 Gallon 2 Stage Air Compressor

Ingersoll Rand is one of the major brands in this market, and the 30 gallon unit with two stages, though expensive, is one of their best. Made from the best materials, it is durable and innovative.

Portable Design: Heavy-duty, ergonomic handle and semi-pneumatic tires for secure handling, ideal for DIYers or professionals

User Friendly: A low 80 dBA noise level, an easily accessible side drain valve and an automatic start/stop pressure switch control provides a superior user experience

Maximum Power: 100% continuous duty, along with 30-gallon receiver tank for severe applications

Reliable Operation: All Season Select synthetic lubricant increases efficiency; with 2,000 hours of service between change-outs, it performs four times longer than petroleum-based lubricants

Long-Life: Durable cast iron cylinder and frame, protective enclosed belt guard and manual overload motor protection provide excellent longevity

What We Like

  • The engine made by Honda – one of the most reliable brands.
  • It doesn’t need as much maintenance as other brands.
  • This unit is a fuel saver and runs very quietly.
  • This air compressor, built in America, has a backup system to start the unit if there is a power failure.
  • Two-stage, 175 PSI, 24 CFM made of solid cast iron.
  • Reliable HP at 13.1.

What We Didn’t Like 

  • This unit is costly – over $2700 when you can buy an Industrial Air ILA1883054 30-Gallon Belt-Driven unit for a little under $600.

2475F13GH 13hp 30 gal Single-Stage Compressor (Gas)


4.DeWalt DXCMLA1983012 – 30-Gallon Oil Free Direct Drive Air Compressor 

Getting the right air compressor for your plasma cutter can be a challenge. Every plasma cutter is a little different, but they all need an air compressor with a PSI over 80 and pressure controls that can be adjusted.

You want an air compressor that is going to be very durable. Cast iron is a plus, and the three we considered are all cast iron.

We chose the DeWalt DXCMLA1983012 for these reasons:

  • It has a PSI of  155 and a CFM of 22, giving it one of the highest in the industry and more power than your plasma cutter will need. 
  • The DeWalt is one of the most durable of the 30 gallon cast iron units and will stand up to anything your plasma cutter can dish out.
  • Offers an Industry Leading 155-PSI Maximum Pressure with a Rate of 7. 7-CFM at 40-PSI or 6. 0-CFM at 90-PSI
  • Features Quick and Easy Use with Standard Outlet 120-Volt Plugs
  • Includes Automatic Thermal Overload Protection that Guards Against Low Voltage and Power Surges
  • Arrives Fully Assembled and Ready To Use
  • Includes Regulator, Tank and Tool Pressure Gauges, Quick Coupler, On/Off Switch, Wheels, and a Handle with Grip

DeWalt DXCMLA1983012 30-Gallon Oil Free Direct Drive Air Compressor


What We Like 

  • It is oil-free and low maintenance with a pump design that is obvious and has a two-piece cooling system. This is very helpful when the plasma cutter heats up.
  • The induction motor and the high flow regulator add to the unit’s ability to provide peak performance.
  • This peak performance is also enhanced by overload protection, extending the life of the pump.
  • The Horsepower is plenty for this application at 13.1.

What We Didn’t Like 

  • It’s a two-stage unit that is almost as expensive as the Ingersoll Rand unit.

5.Campbell Hausfeld 30 Gallon Portable – Best 30-gallon Air Compressor For Use With A Sandblaster

Much like using your air compressor for a plasma cutter, there are requirements for using your sandblaster as well. A PSI (Pound per Square Inch) of at least 90 is needed, and 100 is better.

The size of your nozzle is determined by the amount of CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) you have. The more CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute), the larger the nozzle should be.

If you can’t get a high enough CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) or SCFM (Standard Cubic Feet per Minute)in a portable unit, then you might have to consider a more robust industrial model.

However, for the most sandblasting job, a PSI (Pound per Square Inch) of over 100 and a CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) of over ten should do the job. In this category, we chose the Campbell Hausfeld 30 Gallon Portable.

  • The air compressor features an Oil-Lubricated, two-stage pump to increase the compressor’s longevity
  • The air compressor is made to tackle a wide variety of jobs, from small projects and upholstery to heavy-duty nailing
  • The dual voltage motor allows the unit to be run on the household 120V or 240V for the professional or contractor
  • The fully enclosed metal belt guard offers protection from the air compressor’s moving parts
  • 4. 1 SCFM @ 90 PSI and 3. 9 SCFM @ 175 PSI

Campbell Hausfeld 30 Gallon Vertical Portable Air Compressor (XC302100)



  • PSI is 135.
  • CMF is 10.2
  • They are designed to handle a variety of tasks, from minor painting to nail upholstery to sandblasting.
  • Durable and made of cast iron, unlike the Industrial Air or Power-mate units.
  • Enough power for professionals and easy enough for a DYI user.
  • Its two-cylinder pump is oiled and quiet.


  • Most expensive unit in the group.
  • Horsepower is 2.0, which is low but enough to get the job done.

Campbell Hausfeld 30 Gallon Vertical Portable Air Compressor (XC302100)

Frequently Asked Questions 

How much Horsepower Does a 30-Gallon Air Compressor Need?

The Horsepower required for an air compressor varies from model to model. In general, an air compressor with a 30-gallon pump will only need around a two-horsepower ratio to function correctly.

Though this seems quite low, it is perfectly adequate and will more than complete the job that you bought the air compressor for in the first place.

Some air compressors will go up to 5/6 horsepower; however, that is at the higher end of the scale. The majority will function around 2/3 and sometimes four.

Most manufacturers will provide all the information you need about the related horsepower requirements and capacities in their product information either online or with the product itself after purchase.

How do you Drain a 30-Gallon Air Compressor?

Because it is essential to drain and maintain your oil-lubricated tank in your air compressor, you should probably know how to do it properly to avoid breaking your product.

Each manufacturer will have different suggestions, and you should read them carefully, whichever brand you decide to go with.

1. Turn it off.
2. Reduce the pressure right down.
3. Find the drain valve.
4. Open up the valve (tilt the tank if necessary).
5. Close up the drain valve.

How Do I Properly Store And Drain My Air Compressor?

It’s important to properly drain and store your air compressor because if you don’t, it could rust or be damaged in some way.

Here are the steps to taking care of your air compressor when you want to store it for a while.

  • Make sure you have a clean, dry space to store your air compressor. Make sure it is a location without moisture and condensation. The best place is up off the floor on a pallet and out of the line of direct sunlight.
  • Unplug it from the outlet. Never leave your air compressor plugged in.
  • Turn the air pressure outlet to zero.
  • Remove all the attachments and tools. Don’t leave anything on the compressor.
  • Place a drain pan at the valve. Tilt the compressor and open the valve until
    all water is unloaded from the unit. Be careful as the pressurized air will come out first, fast, and furious. The condensation and fluid will follow.
  • Close the valve and place your unit on the pallet in the storage area.

If you follow this procedure, your air compressor will last for many, many years.

Will A 30-gallon Air Compressor Paint A Car?

For the most part, the answer is yes. If you use the small spray gun with the smaller nozzle, it can be done. However, there are other compressors that are better fit to paint a car

It is not recommended, however, because you probably cannot paint the entire car in one continuous motion. Your tank could easily run out before you are finished.

Then you will have to stop and start again after you tank refills, which could be as much as 40 minutes later. In these circumstances, it is highly probable that you will not get a smooth, consistent paint job.

What Are The Typical Uses For 30-gallon Air Compressors?

The 30-gallon air compressor is usually a beautiful, smaller, portable unit, although there are exceptions to every rule. A 30-gallon air compressor is well suited to inflating tires of all sorts.

It is excellent for running pneumatic power tools in your garage or shop. We have already seen that is can work with both plasma cutters and sandblasters.

The 30-gallon air compressors are a good starting point for anyone with a lot of home projects or a small shop.


How much Horsepower do you need in a 30-gallon air compressor to complete the things you want to accomplish? What is the minimum amount of HP that will let you compressor put out enough power, PSI, and CFM for your needs?

The amount of HP can vary from model to model, but the very least would be 2 HP for a 30-gallon tank, Of our models only the Campbell Hausfeld is 2.0 horsepower and the Husky is at 5.0.

All the others run from 7.1 to 13.1. therefore, it means that all of these 30-gallon models will meet the requirements of 2.0, but if you are painting a large car, I will not settle for that. 

You might consider your plasma cutting needs and take a look at the Porter-Cable Portable Belt Drive Air Compressor, 30-gallon unit. Either of these might meet your needs along with several others.