Welcome to the The Garage Journal Board forums.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   The Garage Journal Board > The Garage > General Garage Discussion

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-18-2006, 10:35 PM   #1
rworkman98
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 24
Default Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

I was looking at Air Compressors at Sears, and almost all of their units are oil-less. They had only one < 60 gallon oiled compressor. I’m looking at getting a ~ 30 gal compressor, and wanted people’s opinions here. Two different sales associates told me they’re getting away from oiled compressors, and that they are a PITA to keep running. For anyone that has this type of compressor, how often do you have to check the oil? How long does it take?

I would be only using this occasionally (probably < once a month) and can only spend < $500 including initial air tools. I need to spend < $400 on the compressor. I was considering either this one: http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...seBVCookie=Yes which often goes on sale to include an air ratchet, air hammer, and impact wrench. If it’s really that much better, I can go up to this one: http://www.sears.com/sr/javasr/produ...seBVCookie=Yes because the oilfree ones are quite loud, and I’d prefer not having to wear ear protection.

What are your thoughts between these two tools, or are there any others at the same or lower price you’d recommend?
rworkman98 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-18-2006, 11:48 PM   #2
screwTheMan
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC
Posts: 33
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

I have the 33 gal 6HP Craftsman (seems like a lot of people do). It is oil-less and single stage. It is also VERY LOUD. The oiled 2 stage jobbies are usually bigger, quieter and provide much more CFM. They're also usually 220V.

I like my compressor fine. It keeps up with the usual tools- but you'll always wished you went bigger. So my advice is buy the biggest you can afford and just the air tools you NEED for immediate use. Then add air tools later as the jobs require them.
__________________
I was tired of working for The Man. Screw'em.
http://www.screwtheman.com
screwTheMan is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)
Old 11-18-2006, 11:59 PM   #3
wantedabiggergarage
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Independence, MO, USA.
Posts: 3,526
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Sears deals with a lot of NEW diyers. You wouldn't believe the stories (friend who works at Sears on another board). Lot's get returned, DOA, because they didn't put the oil in it to begin with.
Now the one disadvantage of an oil one, they have oilless ones that can be operated in either vertical or horizontal.
Otherwise, oil lubed ones can last longer (with maintence), and tend to be a bit quieter (although not really much, with all the aluminum and high speed motors on these).
wantedabiggergarage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 03:58 AM   #4
srosa707
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Orcutt, CA.
Posts: 112
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Get the black one. My work has the red one and its loud as shit! I got the black one and it kicks ass. Remember, its 400+tax+warranty. I spent $600 after all was said and done and i didnt get any tools! I got a hose and some couplers and little things. It adds up quick!
srosa707 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 05:55 AM   #5
oldgoat
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Wichita Kansas
Posts: 2,803
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

I'll throw my .02 in for the fun of it. From what I have heard the oiless ones are usually louder so I like the oil ones myself. I also like the vertical ones since they take up less room unless you are planning on puting under a bench out of the way. I have a 2hp HF oil one with about a 10 gal tank for my single car garage for about three years now with no trouble. When I built the double car garage I bought a 3hp HF oil one vertical with I believe a 21 gal tank on it. The cylinders have iron liners to them. So far it has been working fine for me.
oldgoat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 06:43 AM   #6
RonBou
Yet another Garage Guy!
 
RonBou's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Farmington, CT
Posts: 224
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

My oilless one is very loud. When using it extensively I put on my shooters ear muffler whicj works fine. I have the sears 120V two stage. Works great when doing extensive air tool use.
__________________
RonBou
RonBou is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 08:31 AM   #7
rworkman98
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 24
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by wantedabiggergarage
Otherwise, oil lubed ones can last longer (with maintence),
How frequent is the maintence required? If I only use the compressor once a month, is adding oil once a year sufficient? Do you just check a dipstick, or is checking the oil more involved than that?
rworkman98 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 09:55 AM   #8
mike944
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Vernon, CT
Posts: 337
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

i've used both oil and oil-less. The oilless ones are VERY loud. It's also an incredibly annoying loud.

The aluminum-cylindered oil ones, aren't nearly as quiet as the cast iron ones, bt they're considerably cheaper. You don't have to change the oil very often. I only do it every couple of years. I hardly ever check it, and never have to add.
__________________
Mike

'92 Porsche 968
'01 VW Jetta TDi
mike944 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 10:26 AM   #9
wantedabiggergarage
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Independence, MO, USA.
Posts: 3,526
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by rworkman98
How frequent is the maintence required? If I only use the compressor once a month, is adding oil once a year sufficient? Do you just check a dipstick, or is checking the oil more involved than that?
Normally there is either a site window, or a dipstick. Should be checked before each use (if you use it that infrequently), just as a precaution (takes less then a minute). If it doesn't need it, don't add it, but like a car that has been sitting, you will want to change the oil ocassionally (I get more use then that, and just because how cheap oil is, for the amount they take, I change mine once in spring, and once in fall). Once you get it, you may find yourself using it more then you think.
wantedabiggergarage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 10:44 AM   #10
wythors
Red Foreman is my idol.
 
wythors's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 1,086
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

I recently got rid of my 33 gallon oil-less and got a 30 gallon, vertical oiled one. It may have been on close out, since I don't see it on the Craftsman site anymore. It's identical to the 60 gallon unit, just half the height and with wheels. It is easily half as loud as the oil-less unit it replaced.
__________________
The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low cost is forgotten.
Click here for pictures of my garage!
Original GarageJunkies.net member #329
wythors is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-19-2006, 01:15 PM   #11
mikeyr
Senior Member
 
mikeyr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posts: 1,883
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

get a real compressor...the airless compressors ...oops oilless...are super noisy and super unreliable if you are going to actually use them. I started with a 3hp (I think) 30gal airless, it broke 2 days into using it, I purchased a 5hp 60gal airless as a replacement, they made me a deal since the one I was returning was only 2 days old and seized up. The bigger compressor lasted about 2 weeks before it started giving me trouble and besides the thing was SUPER noisy.

I gave it away to a guy about a month later and bought a 80gal 5hp Champion and never looked back. True 5hp not SEARS 5hp which is more like 2 or 3, ever wonder why SEARS 5 HP only needs 15 amps when other manufacturers 5HP need 30 amps ? because they cheat and their airless compressors are worthless.

The only issue with a reliable oiled compressor is that as they wear you may get oil in the air and that will mess up your paint job,there are separators for that. I had a oiled SEARS compressor for 27 years with no trouble and nothing but trouble with their airless ones, oh yeah they also put out very little air compared to others.
mikeyr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2007, 02:27 AM   #12
PatrickM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 14
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

I will agree with all of the guys that have posted, avoid the oil-less ones. Like mentioned, too loud, too cheap. My father in law works at a Sears refurb center and they get the oil-less ones back all of the time to fix and resell. He wouldn't let me buy one. It had to be an oil cooled compressor. Both my dad and my father in law's compressors are 20 plus years old......before oil-less was even invented.
PatrickM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2007, 04:24 PM   #13
kartracer55
Senior Member
 
kartracer55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: NJ
Posts: 5,317
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Stay far away from them.
__________________
Add yourself to the official Garage Junkies map!

http://www.frappr.com/garagejunkies
kartracer55 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2007, 04:28 PM   #14
pl_silverado
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: West Bradford, PA
Posts: 1,695
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Oiled is the only way to go.
pl_silverado is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2007, 06:39 PM   #15
TNToy
Senior Member
 
TNToy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: West Tennessee
Posts: 1,356
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

If you're going to spend $400, you can get a lot more compressor by staying away from the overpriced Craftsman units...


$399


http://www.homedepot.com/prel80/HDUS...p?pn=100083906
TNToy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2007, 07:04 PM   #16
SteveU
Senior Member
 
SteveU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 1,243
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

[QUOTE=rworkman98]I was looking at Air Compressors at Sears, and almost all of their units are oil-less. They had only one < 60 gallon oiled compressor. I’m looking at getting a ~ 30 gal compressor, and wanted people’s opinions here. Two different sales associates told me they’re getting away from oiled compressors, and that they are a PITA to keep running. For anyone that has this type of compressor, how often do you have to check the oil? How long does it take?

This is a good example of sales people not having a clue what they're talking about. Oiled compressors are a lot more reliable, quieter, and more durable than the oiless ones. Oiless compressors have a few advantages such as being able to be used at an angle, no oil residue in the air for medical or scientific uses but for the average joe these don't come into play. Checking the oil on mine is done by glancing at the sight window in the pump everytime I use it. This takes less than a second and is by far quicker than checking the oil in my car. Changing the oil is quicker & easier than in the car also. My partner at work wore out & rebuilt his sears oiless compressor twice painting cars & running airtools at 75.00 or so each time. He then got an oiled compressor & hasn't had a problem since.
SteveU is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2007, 09:57 AM   #17
Rrumbler
Senior Member
 
Rrumbler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Posts: 367
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Just another nickel in favor of the oil lubed compressor. I bought a Craftsman oilless several years ago, because it was the only thing available at the time, and I was in a bind - needed a replacement quick; the tank on my 30 year old Speedaire blew out. The oilless is too noisy, gets really hot in long running situations, and, did somebody say something about the noise being annoying?? It'll drive you nuts.

An oil lubricated compressor will last almost indefinitely, if properly maintained. We used to change oil in our industrial units once a year, and did a regular maintenance check; out of hundreds of units in service, we might have to repair or replace one a year. Just check the oil every so often, most have a crankcase capacity of a quart or less, keep the intake air filtered, and the filter clean, and the unit in general; make sure the belt(s) tension is correct, and drain condensate regularly. A cast iron unit will be quieter than an aluminum cylindered one. If you are going to get a large unit, consider a two stage, with an oil pump instead of a splash lube system.
__________________
Rrumbler----I like loud pipes.
Banging, breaking, fixing, and wrenching on stuff for almost 70 years.
Tired, RE-tired, grouchy, broken but not dead - yet.
Rrumbler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2007, 10:31 AM   #18
Ryan Wilke
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Michigan
Posts: 70
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rrumbler
Just check the oil every so often,
most have a crankcase capacity of a quart or less,
keep the intake air filtered,
and the filter clean,
and the unit in general;
make sure the belt(s) tension is correct,
and drain condensate regularly.
EXCELLENT POINTS!!

Please allow me to emphasize the last point: I don't care what size or type of compressor you have - if you don't drain the condensate regularly (drain frequency is directly related to the amount of run time & the humidity level of the incoming air) it will lay in the bottom of your air storage tank and rust a hole in the bottom. Then you can replace the tank.

Yeah, some folks will weld a patch over the hole, but to do it legally (can you say 'law suit' in case it lets go and hurts someone someday?) any welding on a pressurized tank should be done by a certified welder. A friend of mine told me that before he assembled the piping on his compressor, he squirted in a ~1/4 cup of oil into the tank "To prevent it from rusting". Then I reminded him that the oil will simply float on top of any condensate water collected inside and STILL rust out the tank! AND that the oil will travel thru his hoses and he can expect it to foul up any spray painting and sand blasting!!

So when you decide on what air compressor to get, locate it & plumb it in so you can easily drain the condensate. If you only use it for 10 minutes at a time, once a month, you'd likely only need to drain the condensate every 6 months. Even if you only get out a 1/2 spoonful of water, that's enough to rust a hole in the bottom of the steel tank over time.

Good Luck!
RW
Ryan Wilke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2007, 03:32 PM   #19
Charles (in GA)
Senior Member
 
Charles (in GA)'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: 50 mi south of Atlanta
Posts: 12,486
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rrumbler
If you are going to get a large unit, consider a two stage, with an oil pump instead of a splash lube system.
Great idea, until you start comparing prices. My splashed lubed compressor (a 7.5 hp two stage/80 gal) will cost about $1700 now. There are several on the market that fall in this price range. To get an equal in a pressure lubed pump, will cost around $2500, possibly more. Indeed, the pump on the pressure lubed one will last longer, but my splash lubed pump is rated for 15,000 hrs. Its about here that reality sets in. I'm probably not going to ever run my compressor anywhere near 15,000 hrs. My heirs will get to enjoy it, or whoever buys it from them.

Charles
Charles (in GA) is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2017, 11:20 AM   #20
M_George
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Eastern Pa.
Posts: 380
Default Re: Oil-less vs. oiled air compressor

Is there any difference between using one or the other for fear of getting oil contamination in the air. Painting, sand blasting, etc?
M_George is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:11 AM.