Ingersoll Rand Garage Mate Review [Portable Air Compressor]
The Ingersoll Rand P1.5IU-A9 Air Compressor, commonly known as the Garage Mate, is a high-end home compressor. A large-capacity tank and 2 horsepower motor provide all the continuous power needed for home projects and construction projects.
In the following review, we’re going to take a look at what makes this compressor the best in its class. We’re also taking a closer look at Ingersoll Rand (IR), discussing how their compressors stack up against the competition.
At the end, we’ll be answering some of the most frequently asked questions about IR, the Garage Mate, and what makes the best air compressor.
Ingersoll Rand: Brand Overview
Ingersoll Rand has been in business for over a century, producing high-quality industrial tools and components. Their line of powerful air compressors is not that new, but they still manage to innovate year after year.
This is a company that prides itself on the promotion of sustainable, environmentally sound practices.
In terms of air compressors, Ingersoll Rand makes some of the best. These are going to be considerably more expensive than comparably sized models by DeWalt or NorthStar.
However, the additional price is more than worth it for the added power and stronger construction.
This one of the best air compressors that you can buy, and we’re not being hyperbolic. The Garage Mate is a high-end single-stage compressor with a massive 20-gallon tank.
When paired with a 2 HP motor and a thick cast iron cylinder, you have one of the most well-built units on the market.
One of the most significant drawbacks to a compressor like this is the price. It is about twice as much as similarly sized models my other manufacturers.
In order to better understand the difference, let’s take a look at how the Garage Mate compares to a competing model.
Compressor Showdown: Ingersoll Rand 20 Gal Compressor vs. DeWalt 20 Gal Compressor
While the IR Garage Mate compressor is more expensive, it easily beats DeWalt in terms of horsepower. The Garage mate has a 2HP motor, whereas DeWalt tops out at 1.6 HP.
This is going to considerably affect the degree of continuous operation that is possible. In other words, the Garage Mate will be able to provide far more continuous air than DeWalt.
In addition to the HP differences, the wheels cannot quite compare. The wheels on the Garage Mate are larger and provide a smoother ride.
For transporting the compressor from room to room, this can be quite helpful.
Specs & Basics of the #P1.5IU-A9
- 2 horsepower compressor
- 135 PSI maximum
- 30-gallon tank
- Wheeled design for high portability
- Durable cast iron cylinder & frame construction
- Oiled belt drive makes for quiet operation
- 100% continuous duty application
- Pressure switch & pressure gauge
- Safety valve
- Manual drain
- 6-foot power cord
Who is the Garage Mate Air Compressor Really For?
The Garage Mate (#P1.5IU-A9) is for anyone who is looking for a quiet, continuous pressurized air supply.
With a 30 gallon tank, this compressor is a lot larger than entry-level home compressors. This increased size makes it ideal for small job sites and construction projects as well.
The wheeled construction and semi-pneumatic tires make for a smooth ride. This enhanced portability allows for the Garage Mate to be toted from room to room or job site with ease.
The durable cast iron construction means that this compressor is probably going to outlast the buyer. That is good news for individuals who are tired of buying low-grade compressors that don’t last.
What We Really Think
The Ingersoll Rand #P1.5IU-A9 Garage Mate Air Compressor is a fantastic unit for home use. However, it has plenty of power and portability for small job sites and construction projects. In other words, this is the best of the best for the home garage, a truly prosumer model.
Pros & Cons of the Ingersoll Rand Garage Mate #P1.5IU-A9
What We Like
- 2 HP engine allows for truly continuous operation
- Thick, durable cast iron construction for both the tank and frame
- The wheeled design makes them incredibly easy to transport
What We Dislike
- More expensive than DeWalt, NorthStar, or Craftsman
- Max PSI of 135 is lower than some competing air compressors
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many watts does the compressor run at?
A: If you assume an amperage of 15 (according to specs) then multiply that by 120 V to get the watts. In this case, the maximum draw would be 1900 watts.
You will still need to run this on a 15 A breaker so it doesn’t trip anything.
Q: How often do I need to change the oil on my air compressor?
A: This Ingersoll Rand air compressor operated best with synthetic lubricant. The manufacturer recommends their house brand All Season Select lubricant for this purpose.
According to the Garage Mate user’s manual, oil maintenance should occur every 12 months or 2,000 hours. Whichever comes first.
Simply drain the oil unit and then refill it with synthetic oil. It is also necessary to check the air inlet filters for blockage or deterioration.
Q: What is the duty cycle of this compressor?
A: The Garage Mate is rated for 100% continuous duty. This will prevent you from running out of compressed air when you’re using a lot of it.
One such instance would be with an air-powered sander, which operates more continuously than a nail gun. This continuous operation is one of the main selling points of the Garage Mate #P1.5IU-A9.
It is a result of the larger HP motor, and is also one of the reasons that it’s more expensive.
However, depending on what kind of air tools you will be using, you might need it.
Q: What is the air hose fitting size?
A: The Garage Mate is outfitted with a ¼ inch pipe thread. This is one of the most common sizes for air compressors.
Unless you are operating specialty industrial tools, you should probably have a ¼” air hose already set up. You may be interested in Ingersoll Rand T30.