Best 3 Gallon Air Compressors - Reviews and Buyer Guide

Air compressors are a great tool, and they can be used for various industrial purposes. It can perform medium to heavy-duty tasks, so it plays a significant role in many jobs. Nowadays, there are various kinds of air compressors available in the market.

Among these, choosing the right air compressors according to your job need is quite difficult. Most people prefer their air compressors should be definitive and durable. Air compressors come in various sizes, so one can pick up the right size which will be suitable for your workplace.

A 3-gallon air compressor is suitable for doing medium-duty tasks, but that doesn't require much power compared to other air compressors. Below are some of the best 3-gallon air compressors that can be easily portable and useful for professionals who need their air compressor to be small yet powerful.

The Best 3 Gallon Air Compressor Reviews

1. Excell L23HPE 3 Gallon Air Compressor

Excell L23HPE, a 3-gallon compressor, is suitable for people who have a smaller workplace. It delivers dynamic performance. Here the recovery time is less, and it runs with a CFM of 3.8 at 90 PSI. It weighs only 54 pounds which makes this air compressor the lightest one. It has a maximum of 135 PSI.

It contains a heavy-duty 1.5 RHP induction motor that provides durability and longer life. It can start easily, even in very cold temperatures (-20 degrees Centigrade). This air compressor provides some noise that can be bearable subject to the workplace.

This air compressor is the perfect unit for all your needs like blow cleaning, brand nailing, stapling, finish nailing and light-duty bolting and wrenching. It is cost-effective and definitely will not irritate the users.

This air compressor lacks some of the additional functionalities compared to other higher quality air compressors; still, it is one of the best air compressors on the list because of its impeccable performance that is suitable for your medium-duty workplace.


  • This is one of the well-built air compressors which can be easily configured by users.
  • It can be easily re-filled
  • It can be carried anywhere comfortably.
  • Noise levels are tolerable
  • A drain plug can be easily attainable


  • It cannot be used in certain cases as it's not an oil-free air compressor.
  • We couldn't see any hoses attached to this unit.

Bestseller (lists)

Excell L23HPE Excel Air Compressor Tools & Home Improvement

  • The Excell 3 gallon air compressor is equipped with a heavy-duty 1.5 RHP induction motor that provides durability and longer life.
  • The oil lubricated direct drive pump has an aluminum pump head to dissipate heat and a cast iron cylinder for long lasting operation.
  • The single hand operation quick connect allows you to quickly change applications.
  • The conveniently located control panel puts your gauges, regulator and quick connects right at your fingertips.
  • The ... Read More

2. Campbell Hausfeld FP209499AV 3 Gallon Air Compressor

Campbell Hausfeld air compressor ranks one of the best air compressors in the market. This air compressor looks good and small. It can be carried from one place to another place easily. It delivers a splendid performance. Even if its size looks smaller, it is one of the multi-tasking air compressors where airbrushing, nailing, stapling, and decking can be done.

It has 3 Gallon air tank in it, which can be used to store compressed air. This helps finish the project in a lesser time. A horizontally designed tank is used to avoid pulsations from the piston. It is more durable than the other air compressor discussed in the list.

It weighs only 21 pounds, so transportation becomes easier with these air compressors. This user-friendly designed air compressor can be handled with ease and doesn't require much effort. It comes with some useful accessories like a blowgun, 25 ft recoil hose, air chuck, and inflation needles.

It contains easy-to-read gauges for quick monitoring of air pressure. It has a maximum pressure of 110 PSI and also has airflow of 0.36 CFM at 90 PSI. So this is suitable for any medium-duty tasks or DIY projects. It also assures you the fastest recovery rate. This air compressor works well in a home-based workplace which requires only 120 volts, not more than that.

Controlling the air pressure is quite easy and manageable. It has an oil-free pump, so you don't need to spend much time maintaining this air compressor. It helps in achieving the tasks faster with less maintenance. Pressure gauges are placed in a suitable location so it's easily accessible.

Mainly this air compressor is budget-friendly and suitable for completing medium-duty tasks in a perfect manner. People who prefer their air compressor should be handy and need a better performance can definitely give it a try.


  • It contains an oil-free pump, so it needs only less maintenance
  • It has a maximum pressure of 110 PSI
  • Pressure gauges are easy to read
  • Affordable
  • It is equipped with 10 piece accessory kit


  • Noise level is the only drawback of this air compressor.

Bestseller (lists)

Campbell Hausfeld 3 gallon Air Compressor with Inflation Kit & Air Hose, 3 Gallon Portable w/Accessory Kit (DC030098) Everything Else

  • Versatile – the air compressor is ideal for quick and easy inflation of car tires, bikes tires, sports balls, air mattresses; also great for cleaning your workbench area and lawn equipment
  • User friendly design – easy to read gauges make for accurate pressure control while the oil free pump makes for maintenance free operation
  • Portable – weighing 20 pounds, The unit is easy to carry around from job to job
  • Accessory Kit Included - 25 ft. Recoil air hose, blow gun, ... Read More

3. Pro-Force VPF1080318 3 Gallon Air Compressor Kit

Designing of the Pro-Force VPF1080318 air compressor is impressive. It contains an oil-free pump, so the durability of the product lasts longer. It needs only less maintenance and is also cost-effective. It delivers a more powerful performance than any other air compressor.

This 3 Gallon air compressor is easily portable and can be it anywhere you go. This is a very light weighted air compressor that weighs only 36 pounds. Pro-force is designed so that lifting the product can be done easily without any discomfort.

It has a maximum pressure of 125 PSI which delivers impeccable performance. It is equipped with an accessory kit that includes a blowgun, inflation needle, adapter fitting, dual tire chuck, male and female thread connectors and a sealant.

These accessories are more than enough to perform many kinds of operations. Additionally, it is equipped with an ON or OFF switch which is easy to handle. It also contains a pressure gauge, pressure regulator and quick connects air outlet.

This air compressor comes with rubber feet, which are used to stabilize the compressor and also eliminate movement due to vibration. This can run with 120 Volts, so it is suitable for your household functions. It comes with One-year limited warranty.

Analyzing the customer reviews, this air compressor's performance is highly commendable and can be used in various applications like nail guns and inflating tires.


  • It contains an oil-free pump
  • It has a maximum pressure of 125 PSI.
  • Rubber feet help to keep the unit stable
  • Requires less maintenance
  • Equipped with accessory kits
  • Works well in 120 Volts


  • The noise level is a bit louder

Bestseller (lists)

Pro-Force VPF1080318 3-Gallon Oil Free Air Compressor with Kit

  • Oil free, low maintenance operation
  • Equipped with pressure regulator, pressure gauge, quick connect air outlet, on/off switch and built in-handle for easy lifting
  • 3-Gallon tank is lightweight and portable, goes most anywhere
  • Includes extra value kit - 25-Feet recoil air hose, blow gun with safety nozzle, inflation needle and adapter fitting, dual tire chuck, quick coupler,1/4-Inch NPT male and female thread connectors and thread sealant
  • Maximum pressure: 125 P... Read More

4. Craftsman 3 Gallon Air Compressor

Craftsman Air compressor is the best choice if you have home-based workshops or garages. It delivers a brilliant performance, and also it's cost-effective. It looks compact and smaller, but that doesn't affect the performance of the air compressor.

This air compressor is known for its durability and efficient performance among many users. It will last a longer period if you maintain it with good care. It has a maximum pressure of 135 PSI which is higher than any other air compressor on this list. It has the fastest recovery rate and also satisfies your requirements.

One unique feature this air compressor has is its sight glass. This is used to check the oil level of the air compressor. By using this sight glass, it's easy to regulate the oil level without any discomfort. This new technology is another main reason why many users prefer to have a Craftsman air compressor in their workplace. It contains a 1 HP motor which is a very powerful and oil-lubricated pump.

It is equipped with additional accessories like a ball tire chuck, male plug, and seal tape. Also, a tiny package of oil comes with this unit. This will be helpful to start your work efficiently.

This air compressor can be lifted easily, and transportation becomes easier because of its lighter weight. It weighs only 47 pounds. All handles in these air compressors are very well built, so you can shift this anywhere easily.

The tough steel construction and dependable performance of this air compressor will surprise you. It can be used outdoors under any rigid conditions, and it lasts longer than you expected. It features a universal quick connect for faster connections and swaps between tools and projects.

It lacks air hoses and adapters, but that is completely fine when compared to its other benefits.


  • Endurance
  • Oil-sight glass
  • Universal quick connect
  • Compact and dependable structure
  • Light-weighted
  • Transportation is easier


  • A bit noisy for its size

Bestseller (lists)

Craftsman Air Compressor, 3 Gallon 1.5 HP Max 155 Psi Pressure Oil-Free Portable, Red- CMXECXA0200341 Tools & Home Improvement

  • PORTABLE: This 3 gallon air compressor’s compact design with light weight makes it extremely easy to transport from site to site
  • HIGH PERFORMANCE: With a 3 gallon tank and a 1. 5 HP UMC motor , the compressor provides adequate stored air power and dependable performance.
  • It boasts a maximum PSI of 155 and fast inflation speed to finish your projects with ease and efficiency
  • Durable: The oil free and maintenance free pump system is engineered for high performance and ... Read More

5. Briggs and Stratton Hotdog 3 Gallon Air Compressor

Briggs and Stratton air compressor never disappoints any user, and it can perform every other operation you expect. It has a maximum pressure of 100 PSI. Its airflow is at 0.7 cfm at 40 psi and 0.5 cfm at 90 psi. Briggs and Stratton air compressor comes with a very powerful engine that serves you for a longer period of time if operated decently.

This contains an oil-free pump that provides you best performance with less maintenance compared to other oil-lubricated compressors. It comprises of rubber covered feet and suction units that offer you ultimate stability.

It is light weighted air compressor with only 21 pounds and can be easily moved from one place to another when necessary. Many professionals use this as their backup compressor because of its reliable performance. The handles of this air compressor are designed in a unique way that makes lifting easier.

Briggs and Stratton air compressor is compact and handy equipment that can be used for both outdoor and indoor projects. It looks smaller, but that doesn't compromise its performance in any way.


  • It has a maximum pressure of 100 PSI
  • It can be easily lifted from place to place
  • It contains an oil-free pump
  • Suction cup foot mounts for increased stability.


  • Sometimes the quality becomes the main drawback of this air compressor.

Bestseller (lists)

Briggs & Stratton 3-Gallon Air Compressor, Hotdog 074015-00,Black Everything Else

  • 3-gallon air tank with 100 max PSI; 0.7 CFM at 40 PSI, 0.5 CFM at 90 PSI
  • 1/3 horsepower motor, oil free pump
  • Flip-up handle for easy carrying and storage
  • 3-gallon air tank with 100 max PSI; 0.7 CFM at 40 PSI, 0.5 CFM at 90 PSI
  • Suction cup foot mounts keep the air compressor stable during operation... Read More

How to Choose the Best Rated 3 Gallon Air Compressor

The following factor should be considered before choosing the 3 Gallon air compressor:

  • Motor
  • Ease of use
  • Portability
  • Cost


We have to make sure the quality of the motor should be good enough and long-lasting. So you can perform any tasks without any interruption as you expected.

Ease of use:

In any product you buy, if the handling is not easy, then that will cost your time and energy. So make sure how easily you can operate the air compressor. It should be user-friendly.


Users who shift their workplace often should definitely keep this in mind. Portability should be easy for any product so that you can move the product when necessary. The product should be light-weighted, which makes transportation easier. Also, the handling should be strong and sturdy.


Cost is the main factor that comes to mind when buying any products. In some cases, when you go for cheap air compressors for their price, that may affect the product's performance. You cannot meet the requirements when you always go for cheaper products. So, the product needs to be chosen carefully that should deliver a good performance at a reasonable price.

Buyer's Guide

Noise level

Considering all the available Air compressors in the market, finding a quiet air compressor is a little challenging factor. Air compressors contain many metal parts inside them, which makes noise when banging against each other. Some air compressors start making noises when used on a daily basis.

It is difficult to work with much noisy air compressors. If the air compressor is for industrial purposes and placed in an outdoor environment, it's not a big deal, and we can manage the noise. But when it places indoors, like a house workspace or garage, one should get a less noisy air compressor.

3-gallon air compressors are mainly made for heavy-duty handling applications, so they may not be quiet as you expected. So, we have to choose the best one with less noise so that would make your work environment more peaceful. By reading consumer testimonials, one can easily find noise-free air compressors.


Horsepower (hp) is a measurement of mechanical energy an air compressor uses to complete its task of compressing air. It can range from 1.5 HP to 6.5 HP for consumer-grade air compressors. But some industrial-grade air compressors have the higher horsepower. Higher HP means that the compressor can store more air in the tank, allowing you to operate air tools longer. It is considered to be an essential factor in air compressors.

Air Pressure

PSI stands for Pounds per Square Inch used to measure the amount of pressure placed on a square inch of space. It can range from 90 PSI to 150 PSI. Most air compressors have around 115 PSI. PSI is important to have your air tools work at peak capability when any of the air compressors have higher PSI which means that more air can be compressed in the tank.


The durability of the air compressor varies from one product to another. It mainly depends on what are all the products used in their formulation. Cast iron and aluminum are the two major products we could see in any air compressor. Comparing these two materials, cast iron is on the heavier side, and also its endurance is high, which is used mostly in hard conditions. While aluminum is known for its lightweight and it is suitable for producing lightweight air compressors that make transportation easier.

Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM)

Cubic Feet per Minute is the measurement of air volume released by the compressor in a minute. The effectiveness of the compressor is mainly calculated by the measure of CFM. Higher CFM is needed if you use a particular tool for a more extended period. For example, a framing nailer needs 2.8 CFM and rotating smoother needs 8 CFM. So, one should consider the CFM rating before choosing any air compressor.


Warranty is the most important thing you look for when buying any product. If the product has more years of warranty, then one should not worry about the repairs caused in that particular time because you can get free service before the warranty expires. In some cases, the complete replacement of the product is possible during the warranty period. So, make sure of the warranty period before choosing compressors.

Size of the tank

The tank acts as a storage vessel to provide sufficient air supply to the tools you are using, which helps the air compressor works smoothly without any fluctuations. There are no recommended tank sizes available for the specific tools, so the best thing to do is you can buy the giant tank possible but make sure that should not affect your PSI and CFM requirements.

Voltage source

The voltage source is important for air compressors to work efficiently. 3-gallon air compressors need higher voltage than 30 and 60-gallon air compressors. A compressor with more than 3 Horsepower requires more power than the standard outlet can provide. So, make sure the voltage source is sufficient in your workspace before buying an air compressor.

Cold weather

The weather conditions of the place where you stay play an important role for the air compressor to work. Because some air compressors cannot work in cold environments, if you live in a very cold place, you must choose the air compressor with cold-resistant technology.

Why you should buy an 3-gallon Compressor

Some of the exciting factors for choosing 3-Gallon Compressor are discussed below:

They provide value for money

Compared to 30- and 60-Gallon compressors, the 3-gallon compressor is on the expensive side. But it's totally worth it when considering the higher-end products used in these air compressors. It contains some of the unique features, which include overload protection, automatic drains, and security components.


3-gallon air compressors have a higher air volume capacity than the other air compressors.


3-gallon air compressors are mostly made up of casted iron material that makes them durable and also heavier. So, transportation is lesser that extends the serviceability of the product. They don't require a frequent refill and work efficiently for longer periods. 3-gallon air compressors have a sturdy build and will serve you for many years. They are also attached to the ground, thus limiting the possibility of accidents.


The power and airflow of the 3-gallon air compressor are higher than the other air compressors, which makes it unique. You can use this air compressor for both DIY tasks and industrial applications. It performs various functions, including airbrushing, painting, and cutting.


All the above-discussed air compressors have a 3-gallon tank size. Each product contains its own advantages and disadvantages, and the performance also varies from one product to another. So we have to choose the best air compressor according to our needs and requirements. But here, on the basis of its powerful and efficient performing capability Excel L23HPE 3 Gallon Air Compressor is highly recommendable.

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