Air compressors are, needless to say, an essential item in anyone’s garage and I had my first compressor last me a good ten years or so. But all good things come to an end, so about a year ago it was time for me to switch, and start looking for the best air compressor out there to replace my old one.
Before jumping straight in and grabbing something that seemed like it would be the best air compressor, or something that simply looked good on the surface, I decided to talk to friends, look online, head to my cousin’s garage, and even bought a few air compressors myself to test them out over the course of a month each or so.
Ever since then, I’ve found myself filled with a ridiculous amount of information on air compressors – but, it isn’t wasted space, since I’ve got a pretty good idea of what’s good, what stands to be the best air compressor, and what should be avoided.
Take, for example, these two: the Makita MAC700, and the Senco PC1010. They’re both drastically different in a lot of regards – the PC1010 is a lot lighter, and sports a lower horsepower, whereas the MAC700 weighs more than double that and is build to be a lot more powerful. The price difference is also quite significant, and a big factor in which one you’d get, if indeed you’re getting either one of them. It’s hard not to; they’re popular, they’re both good quality, and they’re both candidates for being the best air compressor.
So, let’s tackle them separately and look into which one is better, and why.
The Makita MAC700 is the more expensive and bigger of our contenders today. But, the high-performance it touts isn’t the best part – to me, what makes the best air compressor is the low noise levels. There’s a few sounds I like to hear when I’m spending time outside, but an air compressor just isn’t one of them. That isn’t a big issue with the MAC700, however. I’ve had absolutely no problem whatsoever having a phone call with the compressor in the same room.
Setting it up is fairly straight forward, too.
- There are two plastic plugs on the machine – one of these is the air intake, and the other is the oil filler. Remove the plug on the oil filler and fuel the compressor up until about halfway on the plastic indicator, then plug it with the provided non-disposable plug.
- On the other side, it’s just a matter of screwing on the air intake. Then, open up the air valve near the bottom of the machine, and let it have a dry run, just to break it in. Basic stuff, all in all – the only thing you’d really have to think about twice is the price tag. I suppose it’s a bit on the heavy side, but it comes with a handle on so you’re not going to have too much trouble, unless 50+ pounds is beyond the limits of your strength.
The Senco PC1010, on the other hand, is the cheaper and lighter alternative. If you’re willing to go for less horsepower and air volume, you’ll be getting some neat things in return – including my favorite aspect about lighter air compressors like the PC1010 – the fact that they’re electric. I don’t do too much work with the air compressor outside the house. In fact, barely any.
Thus, with an extension cable, I don’t really have to worry about the extra cost of fuel for keeping it running, nor the mess oil can leave behind, or the constant rechecking of the oil levels.
20 pounds is also a lot lighter than the heavyweight MAC700 – but then again, you’re looking at a much smaller product. With much lower performance. My cousin works a lot more with air compressors, and he’s told me that it really only gets you that far before needing a while to refill on air – meaning you’ll be taking a lot of breaks if you’re planning on pumping a hundred or so nails into the wall.
The idea is simple.
If you’re looking for the best air compressor overall, with heavy-duty quality at a heavy-duty price, and you’re looking for a sturdy go-to air compressor that’ll last you a hell of a long time, go and grab yourself the MAC700. But, if you’re not using your air compressor all that much, then it just makes more sense to halve your expense and go for the PC1010, instead.
Beyond that, regarding air compressor purchasing, you do NEED to read this post about “best air compressor for the money” since it will help you save a ton of money I’m sure.