6 Best Air Compressor for Framing Crew in 2022 (Buying Guide)

One of the most crucial elements for a framing crew is an air compressor. Not carrying this component when embedding nails can ultimately make your efforts go in vain, as a nail gun is unusable without it.

Therefore, it’s pivotal that you buy the best air compressor for framing crew for a smooth and efficient operation.

Air compressors are ideally costly. However, it is not necessarily true that the more expensive the product, the more effective performance it will provide. You need to understand the significance this tool plays in granting finesse to your framing. So, be sure to choose wisely and well!

What Size and Type of Air Compressor Do I Need for a Framing Crew?

There is no definite answer to the size or type that is best for an air compressor regarding framing. It depends on the type of your projects and how often you plan on using it.

For the safest bet, the best option is one that pairs well with a pneumatic framing nailer. These tools are normally required for jobs that demand high levels of power and constant transfer. Therefore, a framing crew will do well to get one that has a large storage capacity, high strength, and portability.

The next thing you need to do is understand the air pressure and HP ratio requirement of your nailer. This factor plays a pivotal role in determining the type of air compressor that will fit your needs the best.

To find out which one will go well with your framing nailer, find out the highest CFM rating and divide it by 1.5. The final result will be the average CFM that you must have for a smooth and consistent performance.

Now that we know the factors that are determinants to the type and size of the air compressor, it’s time to apply it. Once all the factors are combined, we have concluded that the best options are portable & pancake air compressors. Get either one, and you will be able to accomplish just about any framing task with ease.

6 Best Air Compressor for Framing Crew Reviews

Below are six top-notch air compressors for a framing crew. Read on to discover more about their features, benefits, and disadvantages to find the one that will suit your needs the best.

1. Editor’s Choice: Makita MAC5200 Big Bore 3.0 HP Air Compressor

Starting off the list is a solid contender for the best framing compressor title. The MAC5200 is an option that can easily fit into any construction zone with ease.

Makita MAC5200 Big Bore 3.0 HP Air Compressor

You can rest easy at night knowing that it can cater to all of your needs with its superb power. Its big bore cylinder and pump made from iron is a combination that has the strength to pull off big jobs easily.

Air compressors for framing crew tend to be quite bulky typically. Moving them around can be very tiresome, as it is an arduous task for just one man. You will need at least two to three people to tow them around conveniently.

However, Makita ensures that this unit will be different from its competitors in this regard. The manufacturer has attached two wheels to its base so that you can easily move it from one location to another quickly.

Versatility is of great importance when using an air compressor. Buying these products is a feat expensive enough to be considered an investment. Therefore, you need to find one with excellent value to make the most out of it.

The MAC5200 will not disappoint you in this regard. It features both 5.6 CFM and 6.9 CFM at 90PSI and 40PSI, respectively. So, you will be able to use it in tasks ranging from roofing to finesse.

Finally, the last thing that makes many consider this item to be the best compressor for framing is its efficient design. It has the capacity of carrying an air of 5.2 gallons. Thus, you will be able to use it for industrial purposes with ease and efficiency.


  • Combination of a massive cylinder and iron pump
  • Wheels for superior portability
  • Wide CFM range for versatile use
  • The total storage capacity of 5.2 gallons


  • The wheels are a bit warped
  • Requires dedicated circuit for energy supply

2. Budget Choice: BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor BTFP02012

There’s no doubt that buying an air compressor is no simple task. You will have to prepare for a much lighter wallet when trying to achieve this feat. However, you won’t have to worry too much if you need one such commodity at a low budget.

BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor BTFP02012

The BTFP02012 is relatively inexpensive compared to its competitors. However, it can perform as well as many of its competitors. The pricing doesn’t compromise its volume, because it features an impressive 6-gallon tank.

Drilling and framing can become relatively difficult to accomplish in cold weather. The chill air can badly affect the interior of the air compressor. This predicament can result in the device taking a relatively long time to start. 

BOSTITCH ensures you won’t face this problem with this unit, as its superior efficiency leads to an easy start-up in cold weather. Plug it into a direct power source with an extension cord, and you’ve got a strong candidate for the best compressor for framing nailer.

Construction areas can be a challenging place to work at. The chaos of the site mostly comes from the presence of construction tools. And the constant humming of power tools can affect one’s efficiency when handling these contraptions.

This scenario is a big no-no considering the dangers that might pose from inattentiveness. Well, you won’t have to worry about this issue with the BTFP02012, as it emits a minimal noise level of 78.5dBA. It is practically noiseless when you compare it to most of its competitors.

As a final touch, BOSTITCH has integrated a high flow regulator into this product. Having this feature ensures a spike in its efficiency. Even regulation of air allows you to complete tasks much faster and smoother than ever!


  • The large storage capacity of 6 gallons
  • Quickly becomes functional in cold weather
  • Minimal noise emission of 78.5dBA
  • High flow regulator for even air distribution


  • Hose and gun kit requires separate purchase
  • Air pressure gauge tends to inconveniently protrude

3. Best for Durability: DEWALT Air Compressor D55140

Using heavy machinery in a construction zone can be a risky task because of all the dangers involved. Therefore, you will do well to get options with ample protective measures to increase its durability.

DEWALT Air Compressor D55140

The same is applicable for air compressors, too. You will find the D55140 to easily fit the bill in this regard, as it features a protective roll cage. Furthermore, it also has a 1-gallon trim compressor, which has a substantially higher sturdiness than its competitors.

If you’re looking to buy the best air compressor for framing nailer, you will need to focus on its power. The greater the power it can produce, the more versatile its functions will be.

DEWALT seems to understand the importance of this factor and has gone all out with this unit. It packs a maximum psi level of 135, which combines with its 2.6-amp motor to make an impressive punch.

One of the features that you will do well to have in an air compressor for framing crew is low noise emissions. It will help you maintain focus and concentration when operating such dangerous equipment.

Furthermore, it will guarantee no noise complaints from your neighbors. The D55140 is the perfect candidate in this regard, as it has a minimal dB rating of 71 only. Therefore, you will be able to use it throughout the day without hampering the atmosphere.

Typically, air compressors tend to be very hefty. Therefore, moving them around can become a harrowing and time-consuming experience.

DEWALT has taken care of this problem in the case of this product. It features a minimal weight of 24 pounds only. Therefore, it has superb portability, and you can easily carry it around without any issues.


  • Roll cage for elevating durability
  • Powerful 135Psi and 2.6-amp motor combination
  • Minimal noise emission of 71dB
  • Total weight of 24 pounds


  • A low storage capacity of 1 gallon
  • Regulator leaks easily

4. Best for Noise Suppression: Makita MAC100Q Quiet Series

As the name dictates, this device is the best compressor for framing houses because of its extremely low noise emission. You will rarely find another such product like this one, which barely disrupts the environment when operating. It makes a total sound of 58 dB only.

Makita MAC100Q Quiet Series

Thus, you will be able to use it within your home without having to worry about your ears falling off. Be it inside the house or in a bustling work environment, it performs efficiently in both situations.

When looking to buy an air compressor, get one that is durable and can withstand rough use. Makita is well aware of this requirement and therefore chose to provide a roll-cage construction to the MAC100Q.

This exterior design ensures that it can hold its own in just about any operating zone. Furthermore, it will also not break apart when you transport it from one place to another or during storage.

One of the most problematic aspects of owning an air compressor is the upkeep. You will have a hard time keeping it clean in most cases, and maintenance costs will rack up substantially.

Thankfully, you won’t have to worry about this issue with this unit. It features dual-piston pumps, which do not require oil to function, therefore ensuring that it won’t require maintenance at all.

Finally, the reason why the MAC100Q can easily be the best portable air compressor for framing nailer is its body. This product is extremely lightweight, and you will be able to carry it anywhere with ease. Therefore, it can conveniently adapt from place to place.


  • Average noise emission of 58dB
  • Roll-cage design for superior durability
  • Dual-piston pumps don’t require maintenance
  • Extremely lightweight body


  • Inconsistency in operation
  • Inconsistency in cycling nails

5. Best for Storage Capacity: Rolair VT25BIG

If you’re looking for an air compressor with a dependable performance that won’t break the bank, then the VT25BIG is the perfect pick for you.

Rolair VT25BIG

A fantastic device with a respectable performance, it is enjoyable to use. It features a 6.5CFM at 90psi, therefore granting sufficient strength. You will be able to use it for a wide variety of purposes with satisfactory results.

There are many drawbacks to buying inexpensive air compressors. Among them, the biggest issue happens to be the storage capacity, which is substantially lesser than their more expensive competitors.

Therefore, these options do not apply to larger projects. However, Rolair ensures that you won’t have to face this problem when using this item. It features a massive chamber of 5.3 gallons. This feature makes it an ideal air compressor for truck tires as well as nailing roofs.

Strength is crucial for an air compressor. It heavily contributes to the overall performance and consistency. You won’t have to worry about this factor when using the VT25BIG. A 3400 RPM motor provides power to it, thus ensuring that it can take on a lot of pressure during operation and work smoothly.

Last but not the least, you will love how durable this product is. Rolair fitted it with a cylinder made of cast iron, which ensures that it can sustain any accidents or falls.

At the same time, its longevity substantially increases due to the inclusion of splash lubrication. You can ceaselessly use it for a couple of years without having to look for replacements.


  • Respectable strength of 6.5 CFM at 90psi
  • 5.3-gallon storage capacity
  • Massive power generated from 3400 RPM motor
  • Significant longevity due to Splash Lubrication


  • Can’t run more than 1 nailer at a time
  • High chances of overheating

6. Best for Portability: California Air Tools 2010A

If you’re looking for an air compressor for car paintings, then this option is exactly what you need. It is very different from most of its competitors due to its extremely small size.

Therefore, you will be able to carry it around smoothly and not be burdened by any unnecessary weight. It features an aluminum tank with a storage capacity of 2 gallons, which makes it perfectly suitable for small tasks.

When looking to buy small air compressors, it is natural to look for one that provides as much value as possible. California Air Tools understands this notion and designed this unit accordingly.

The pump requires no oil to function, which therefore minimizes the requirement for maintenance. This perk further provides you with the benefit of a minimal additional service cost.

If your main concern regarding an air compressor is a small size, then it’s okay to assume that you will also want it to emit as little sound as possible. Tiny editions of this device are typically bought for indoor use and therefore need to be quiet.

You will be getting exactly that with the 2010A. It emits a minimal 60 decibels when operational, making it one of the most tranquil options available.

A surprising feature of this product happens to be its performance. Don’t let its small structure fool you; it’s packing a comparatively higher power than some of the more giant contraptions.

California Air Tools provided a motor with 1HP in the running state and 2HP at the peak stage. Therefore, it can function smoothly and consistently for a long time.


  • Incredibly strong motor
  • Minimal 2-gallon storage
  • Oil is not necessary to function
  • Noise emission doesn’t exceed 60 decibels


  • Susceptible to failing
  • High probability of leaks

Before You Buy What to Look for

Purchasing an air compressor for a framing crew can seem like an expensive and arduous task. Nevertheless, if you keep your eyes out for the following factors, then you will be able to find a suitable option at an affordable price.


You need to remember that air compressors for framing crew ideally are kept in environments that are quite chaotic. Therefore, you will need to buy one that doesn’t break apart quickly or get damaged at the slightest bump.

Air compressor is made of various components, with all of them playing an equally important role for it to function smoothly. Therefore, all of them need to be sturdy to avoid malfunctioning.

Although there are many options for build materials, the best one for this tool is cast iron, which substantially makes it harder.


It’s important to know how much air your air compressor will be able to store at a time. This knowledge will serve as an indicator of the scales of projects that it can handle. Therefore, it’s best to get one that can help you accomplish your tasks in one go.

There is no best air compressor from the perspective of storage capacity. It depends solely on your use. The big ones are normally used for construction purposes, while the smaller ones are best for personal use. On that basis, the ideal one for you can have a capacity of as little as 1 gallon or as much as 6 gallons.

Noise Emission

One of the key contributors to an air compressor’s performance is its noise emission. A noiseless option is bound to provide smoother results and a better user experience than the noisier ones.

When you’re buying an air compressor, it’s best to go for one that makes a minimal sound. Look for the ones that emit 60 decibels or less, as they tend to make for a better option for personal and indoor use.

Why You Need an Air Compressor for Framing Crew

Air compressors basically work as a catalyst for framing crews. It essentially affects the entire process without playing a direct role in it. Having one of these at hand will definitely yield better and efficient results.

The most attractive aspect of owning one of these is how much work you can get done with it. Air compressors accelerate the entire framing process, therefore saving a lot of time and effort. It will allow you to complete multiple tasks within a short timeframe, making it essential for professionals.

Having an air compressor at hand also means efficiency in work. It will substantially improve your work quality. There will be no inconsistency in your framing projects, and you will be able to complete them with wonderful accuracy.

Finally, the last reason for which you will need an air compressor is the convenience of maintenance. All you will have to do is use it periodically and clean it occasionally for it to serve you consistently over a long time.

How Air Compressor for Framing Crew Makes You a Better Worker

If you’re a professional handyman or a construction worker, then you will definitely want an air compressor for framing crew. Not only will it make your business substantially profitable but also it will solidify you as an efficient worker.

Air compressors help in getting work done faster than usual. It provides much-needed strength to the nailer, exponentially boosting its performance. Therefore, it will have an impact on your efficiency as a worker.

Another amazing perk of using an air compressor is the smoothness and consistency in performance. You will be able to accurately work your way through projects without any hitches. Having an air compressor will build your reputation as a worker who focuses a great deal on quality control.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will a pancake air compressor run a framing nailer?

A pancake air compressor will perform well on a framing nailer. The only drawback is to work for the small storage to fill up at intervals, which can affect your workflow.

What type of nail gun do I need for framing?

Ideally, the best nail gun for framing is the conventional framing nailer. However, if you’re going for industrial-grade activities, a pneumatic frame nailer will be more suitable.

Will a 3-gallon air compressor run a framing nailer?

A 3-gallon air compressor is more than adequate for operating a framing nailer. It is applicable on a wide variety of options ranging from brad nailer to floor nailer.

Should I use nails or screws for framing?

When it comes to framing, it’s better to go for nails instead of screws. Nails are ideal for structural constructions and hold up the projects well. On the other hand, screws won’t fare quite as well and might break apart.

How much PSI do you need for a finish nailer?

The PSI level for a finisher nailer depends on the material you will be applying it on. Considering the depth and density of the usual materials, it is safe to earmark the PSI levels from 80-100PSI.

How many CFM do I need for a framing nailer?

The average CFM requirement is 2.2 for a framing nailer. This amount may increase depending on how much you will be using the tool.

Do all nail guns require a compressor?

Nail guns can work without an air compressor. However, if you want to increase its efficiency & quality and save time, then it’s best to buy an air compressor.

How long is a 16d framing nail?

The total length of a 16d framing nail is 3 ½ inches. Ideally, this length is adequate to meet all your framing needs.

Final Words

Air compressors are an absolute necessity for getting the best results out of a framing crew. Now that you know how to get the best air compressor for framing crew, your productivity is bound to increase significantly.

Your professional career as a construction worker will now reach new heights due to this magical tool.

If you’re just a regular homeowner, having an air compressor is still a great investment. Now you can relax more and spend less time framing up roofs due to all the time that will be saved from using it. Construction jobs won’t be difficult now that you have this device at hand!



Shawkat is a passionate home and auto mechanic who enjoys sharing his knowledge with others. He has been working on cars and homes for over 9 years and has a wealth of experience to share. From indoor tools to outdoors, crafting to automotive, you will see his passion for tools. And he is not alone here, either. He collaborates with other users to give you the best possible tool experience. As the founder of Geartoolsbuddy, Shakat is always happy to help people with their queries and doubts about power and hand tools.