Types of Air Compressors


Air compressors offer their services to machinery, manufacturing processes and tools in a wide range of industries, such as automotive, home and office construction, sports and recreation, construction, commercial art, purification services, and marine safety.

Common automotive applications of industrial air compressors include surface finishing, airbrush painting, parts cleaning, and tire inflation. Their counterpart, gas stations, use air compressors to power gas pumps.

Home and Office Construction
Meanwhile, homes and offices alike may be painted using air compressor tools. Building-related projects, along with a number of surfaces, may also be serviced with power tools that use compressors, such as staplers, sandblasters, sanders, spray guns, nail guns, and drills.

Sports and Recreation
In the sports and recreation industry, air compressors power products like paintball gun canisters.

Heavy-duty construction activities may employ products like rock drills, needle scalers, air chisels, chipping hammers, tuggers/winches, jacklegs, and jackhammers. Power tools like these use either permanent or portable compressors.

Commercial Art
Commercial artists frequently require the air compression power channeled through airbrush tools.

Purification Services
Industrial air compressors supply air for atmosphere control systems such as blast forges, air purification systems, temperature control systems, and air lock systems. Air compressors used in air conditioning units are called air conditioning compressors.

Marine Safety
In the marine industry, air compressors allow for deep sea swimming and research by filling the oxygen tanks used by deep sea divers.


The usage of compressed air is not limited only to industries, but they are also used in manufacturing, welding, constructions, power plants, ships, automobile plants, painting shops, and for filling breathing apparatus too. Thus there are so many types of air compressors used specifically for the above purposes. Let us discuss on various types of air compressors.

Types of Air Compressors:

Under the classification of reciprocating compressors, we have

  1. In-line compressors,
  2. “V”-shaped compressors,
  3. Tandem Piston compressors.
  4. Single-acting compressors,
  5. Double-acting compressors,
  6. Diaphragm compressors.

The rotary compressors are divided into

  1. Screw compressors,
  2. Vane type compressors,
  3. Lobe and scroll compressors and other types.

Under the Roto-dynamic compressors, we have

  1. Centrifugal compressors, and the
  2. Axial flow compressors.

The compressors are also classified based on other aspects like

  1. Number of stages (single-stage, 2-stage and multi-stage),
  2. Cooling method and medium (Air cooled, water cooled and oil-cooled),
  3. Drive types ( Engine driven, Motor driven, Turbine driven, Belt, chain, gear or direct coupling drives),
  4. Lubrication method (Splash lubricated or forced lubrication or oil-free compressors).
  5. Service Pressure (Low, Medium, High)

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