I have a 10 gallon portable air tank I use to inflate the tires on my
cars. For a long time, I went to my local garage and they filled it
for me (I've been a customer for 25 years and I know the owner, so
they wouldn't let me even fill it).
Then the owner retired and closed the garage and sold the property. So
to fill the tank, I bought a small electric compressor -- the oilless
kind that buzzes loudly when you run it. (I also found that the 10
gallon tank needed filling a lot more often than I thought it would).
The little compressor worked for a time, but last week I was filling
the tank and it started smoking. I shut it down, but it's broken and
no longer pumps air.
I went to Sears to get a replacement and bought what appears to be a
125 psi compressor of the same oilless type as I had before, although
maybe a little fancier.
However, for about a $12 difference I could have had an oil-type 1.5
hp cast iron electric pump mounted on a three gallon tank. complete
with hose, various fittings, etc.
On the way home, I started having a big case of buyers remorse over
the oilless "inflator" compressor I bought. Should I have gotten the
Now in case it isn't apparent, I know nothing, nada, zippo about air
compressors. All I want to do is inflate tires on my two cars and on
my various lawn tools. I want to avoid having to grub around in the
bay of the local gas station trying to make the hose fitting that has
been driven over several hundred times stay flat against a tire valve,
especially in the winter when the fitting is frozen. And I want to
avoid dragging the tank to the filling station every time I fill more
than two tires, or putting my snowblower or wheelbarrow into the trunk
of my car every season to take it to the filling station air pump.
I have no interest in air tools, paint sprayers, sand blasters, etc. I
woke up one day and for some reason was just plain too old and sore to
build or fix stuff anymore. And I'm not interested in spending more
than $100 which is the sale price of the cast iron pump.
I'm thinking of taking the small inflator back tomorrow and exchanging
it for the other, cast iron, one. Smart move or stupid overkill?
The little one is lightweight. It will no doubt work but takes a long
time to fill the tank. And it may burn out like the previous one did.
And the old one was really noisy in an irritating sort of way.
The cast iron pump is mildly heavy, although I can carry it without
any trouble. I'm not sure it has a fitting for a tire valve so I might
have to buy that separately. It has a longer hose. I guess I have to
put oil in it (what's the deal on that?). The tank is just three
gallons, so I guess I'd use it to fill my 10 gallon tank and use the
tank to fill the tires.
What say you all?