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Air Compressor Repair – DIY Repair or Replace?

Published Categorized as Air Compressor Troubleshooting No Comments on Air Compressor Repair – DIY Repair or Replace?

Compressed air systems are the backbone of many industrial applications. They provide consistent responsive power to end-use applications.

It’s one thing being dependent on compressed air, but the fear of replacement costs drives many companies and individuals to invest in repairs that may prove costlier in the long run.

Here’s our guide on when to either repair or replace an air compressor system!

Table of Contents

Fix or Replace an Air Compressor

With so many variables at play within compressed air systems, it is very easy for them to become damaged and need fixing or replacing. Due to this complex nature, assessing the problems may be a confusing process.

The best way to gauge whether your problem requires the air compressor system to be replaced or repaired is by expressing it as a mathematical problem, at what point does the money saved from a new air compressor system offset the cost of purchasing it?

If you were to have an air compressor for 10 years, it’s predicted that the initial cost of purchasing the air compressor only accounts for 10-15% of the overall costs in that time frame. It’s thereafter predicted that a whopping 75% of your costs of owning a compressed air system comes in the form of electricity bills.

When assessing the value of your air compressor, and whether you should fix or replace it. You must keep the total cost of ownership in mind, not just the initial cost, I’m talking about every kWh that’s being paid for in order to power your system.

Though the cost of repairing an air compressor may be less than buying a replacement, you must ponder whether you’re keeping a system working that will actually cost you MORE in the long run as it’ll operate far less efficiently.

As compressors age, the cost of repairs simultaneously increases. You should heavily consider any repair costs that cost over 50% of the cost of a comparable replacement.

Considering the operational inefficiencies and thereafter costs of older air compressors, you may be wasting as much money on energy inefficiency costs as you would on buying a replacement air compressor.

Some air compressors, like rotary screw compressors, may be more difficult to fix than others due to their complex design.

Air Compressor Troubleshooting

While there are many good reasons to forego a costly repair and instead opt for a replacement, it’s important to start with troubleshooting. This can help you avoid the costs of repairing or replacing your air compressor.

Some general instructions on fixing will follow, please visit our Air Compressor Troubleshooting page to navigate all our existing problems, causes, and possible solutions readily available on our site!

General Instructions on Fixing

There tend to be, more often than not, three main DIY repairs that you should be able to repair yourself. These three repairs are based on the three core functions of an air compressor:

  • They need power
  • They must maintain air pressure
  • Control the flow of compressed air

If your repairs seem too complex, please leave it to a professional. You do not want to risk putting your equipment or yourself in danger.

Electrical Issues

If you’re having a problem with power, start with the most obvious check – is the compressor fully plugged in and the switch is turned on? If the air compressor still is not turning on, there should be a black or red reset button on the side of the motor that you can switch to reset the circuit breaker.

If this still does not restore power, check the power cord for any potential damage and ensure it is in good condition. If it checks out, try plugging the compressor into a different socket. Ensure to check if the circuit breaker is tripped for the plug that you’re currently using, flip it off, and then back on again.

If it still persists in not working, test the power outlet by plugging in another device and seeing if that works. If the plug works for that item, remove any extension cords that you’re using between the compressor and the plug (though, you should not be doing this!)

If none of these checks work, you should seek professional help! Please visit our Electrical Troubleshooting Compressors page for further troubleshooting aid.

Leaking Problems

If you’re certain you have a leak within your air compressor system, begin by unplugging all of your air tools and hoses connected to the system and then start the compressor.

Create a solution of soapy water and pour or spray it onto and around each and every fitting on the air compressor system. Look out for bubbles forming, if you have any then this is an indication of where your leak is.

To repair this, turn the compressor off and release it of all its air pressure in the tank. Remove the fittings where the bubbles are forming and apply PTFE tape or dope on the threads of the fittings.

Now, put the fittings back on and tighten them securely. Turn the compressor on and allow it to charge and build up air pressure. Use the soapy water to test the fitting again to check for any bubbles. If bubbles are still prevalent, discharge the air compressor and apply more PTFE tape or dope.

No Pressure Problems

There are a host of reasons as to why your air compressor won’t be building pressure. It could be down to any of the following reasons:

  • Compressor intake valve failing
  • Compressor pump pressure valve failing
  • Compressor gasket failure
  • Compressor piston seal failure
  • Tank check valve is compromised

For further information on why your air compressor is not building pressure and how to check if it is any of the above reasons please visit our troubleshooting page – Why An Air Compressor Won’t Build Pressure & How To Fix A Compressor Not Building Pressure

If you’re trying to increase your air pressure so that the air compressor kicks on sooner before the pressure drops too low. You can adjust the lower adjustment screw on the pressure switch by following these 4 simplified steps:

  1. Remove the plastic cover over the pressure limiter switch
  2. Locate the two limiter switch . Tun the upper limit adjustment screw to raise the limit
  3. Turn the compressor on and adjust the screw until you reach your desired pressure on the gauge. To maintain this pressure- turn the lower limiter adjustment screw clockwise to raise it so that the compressor kicks on sooner.
  4. Connect your tool and charge the compressor, test the limits you have set and make adjustments if necessary.

It is important to ensure you consult the manual provided by the manufacturer or contact them directly to find out what your upper-pressure limits are so that you do not exceed its safety limits.

Who Fixes Air Compressors

If you cannot troubleshoot and repair the air compressor yourself, then you should seek professional help! There are multiple air compressor repair shops located around the U.S. and Canada and these are (but are not limited to):


Arizona Air Compressor
W: www.arizonaaircompressor.com/

Piston Power
3358 S. Palo Verde,
Tucson, Arizona
T: (520) 571-8558
E: [email protected]
Parts and Repair on all sizes and types and manufacturers of compressors from handheld to stationary rotary driven units. Will do on-site field service repairs or maintenance for stationary units.


Arnel Compressor
114 North Sunset Avenue
City of Industry, CA 91744
T: (877) 968-3836
F: (877) 961-6181
E-mail: [email protected]
Arnel Compressor has performed facility care for companies such as yours since 1957. Pioneering the standardized service and later packaging it. We have performed this function with many of the Fortune 100 companies, the Hollywood studios, and theme parks, the vast California defense complex, and industries of all descriptions and size.

Air Vac Systems, Inc.
242 Denny Way
El Cajon, CA 92020, USA
T: (866) 924-7822
E: [email protected]
W: www.airvacinc.com
Repair and service piston compressors, rotary vane, and rotary screw air compressors. We also service and repair all make and types of vacuum pumps. We repair dryers as well. We perform scheduled service on complete systems.

CPR Industries
1501 North Peck Road
South El Monte, California, USA
T: 626-CPR-0470
E: [email protected]
W: www.cprindustries.com/
* We gladly service and rebuild all makes and models of air compressors. Please refer to the manufacturer list below for additional reference. * We can provide you and your company 24 hours around clock service and maintenance agreements from our home office * Our parts warehouse is promptly supplied for all makes and models of air compressors * We have a large rental fleet from air compressors and vacuum pumps to compressed air dryers * We have 2 locations for your convenience

Compression Source Inc.,
Contellation Road #970
Valencia, California
T: 661 257-8000
E: [email protected]
W: compressionsource.com
We buy and sell used air and gas compressors, engines, cylinders, frames. We have in stock most makes and models of compressors. Waukesha and Cat engines


B & G Rotating Equipment Service Company, Inc.
925 National Avenue
Addison, Il, 60101
T: (630) 620-RESCO (7372)
F: (630) 620-7335
Web: www.bandgresco.com

Armature Motor & Pump Company, Inc.
3011 N Main Street
East Peoria, IL 61611
T: 309-699-4267
F: 309-699-2965
Authorized Sales and repair for Rol-Air and Ingersoll-Rand compressors.

SPRING GROVE, Illinois On-Line Compressor, Inc.,
6110 Johnsburg Road,
Spring Grove
E:[email protected],
We repair reciprocating, rotary screw, and centrifugal air compressors in Northern Illinois and Southeast Wisconsin. Overhauls, Services calls, Parts and oil sales, new equipment, emergency services calls. Partnered with Almig compressors, Ingersoll Rand, and Boge air compressors. Full-service company.

Compressor Air
IL 60189 USA
Contact: Dan Storrer,
E:: [email protected]
We specialize in compressed air systems. We repair and supply parts for all makes and models of air compressors. We have hard to find parts for reciprocating, rotary screw, and centrifugal air compressors. Need an air dryer, receiver tank?


Eastside Industrial Machine
64 Stubblefield road,
Wingo, KY 42088
T: 270-328-8000
E:[email protected]
Cleaning, Testing, and Repairing of Centac, Joy, Clark, Atlas Copco, and Elliot, Intercoolers, after-coolers, and oil coolers. As well as many other types of heat exchangers. We provide services for air compressor service companies only, not the end-user. Give us a call today!!!


RHM fluid Power
5329 Clay Ave
Grand Rapids MI 49548
T: 616-530-6300
Offer 24 hours of full compressor repair and service. We currently have 2 service techs on duty.


Industrial Compressor Supplies
316 Fee Fee Road
St. Louis, MO 63043
Web: www.eaircompressorparts.com
We do field service in St. Louis and surrounding areas within a 200-mile radius. we also offer 24-hour repair. we sell all parts for any make or model of any type of compressor or dryer or filter or vacuum system. We sell Chicago Pneumatic, Champion, Boge, Puma, and Dekker compressors & vacuum systems. in shop repairs as well. Air end & piston pump rebuilding as well.


Able Air Corporation
5 Elm Ave.
Hudson, NH. 03051
T: 1-800-462-0228
T: 603-424-6115
F: 603-424-3135
Sales and repair on all types of air compressors.

D & L Thomas Equipment Corp.
1453 Route 9 Spofford, NH 03462 USA
T: 603-363-4706
F: 603-363-4249
E: [email protected]
New and used air compressors and supplies, repairs, and hard-to-find parts. Gardner – Denver Compressor Parts. We ship worldwide.


Kinequip Inc.
365 Old Niagara Falls Blvd
Buffalo, NY 14228
T: (716) 694-5000
F: (716) 694-5097
T: (800) 982-8894
Web: www.kinequip.com
Service and Repair of all makes and models. Kinequip’s compressed air products are specifically designed to provide reliability, energy efficiency, performance, durability, and quality design, including rotary screw compressors, with both oil-cooled and oil-free models a large family of reciprocating compressors for most duties, including high pressure, oil-free, and vacuum.

Kinequip Inc.
300 White Spruce Blvd
Rochester, NY 14623
T: (585) 272-1590
F: (585) 272-7446

Kinequip Inc.
7340 Thompson Road
Syracuse, NY 13212
Phone:(315) 458-4115
Fax:(315) 458-3887
Web: www.kinequip.com


J & W Tools
1725 Carpenter Fletcher Road #312
Durham, NC 27713
T: 919.544.7317
Web: www.JandWTools.com

Payne’s Tool & Supply
5010 Hwy 55
Durham, NC 27713
T: 919-544-9134
T: 877-544-9134
F: 919-544-0474
Email:[email protected]

McGuire Air Compressors, Inc
729 East Elm Street
(mailing address) P.O. Box 1100
Graham NC 27253
T: 1-888-229-9999
T: 336-229-9999
Email: [email protected]
McGuire Air Compressors is located in a 10,000 square foot facility in the heart of Piedmont NC, since 1981. Their staff of Certified Service Technicians has worked with compressors from low horsepower to over 700 hp.

Advanced Compressor Technology
T: 866-719-0228
Email: [email protected]
Advanced Compressor Technology is a full-service air compressor sales and repair company. We sell after-market or OEM parts for all brands of air compressors as well as high-quality lubricants. We are unique because we can effectively work on all brands of air compressors and vacuum pumps as well as install air piping. We offer very competitive rates without compromising professionalism or quality. We look forward to hearing from you!

Payne’s Tool & Supply
4900 Thornton Rd.
Suite 101
Raleigh, NC 27616
T: 919-878-1190
F: 919-878-1102


Complete Air Service
1243 Chase Avenue
Cincinnati, Ohio
T: 513-542-1243
E-mail: [email protected]
Sales & Service to all makes and models of industrial and automotive air compressors from 1 horsepower to 300 horsepower in reciprocating and rotary screw, in the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky area.


Columbia Compressor Service
T: 503-754-8464
F: 503-477-6637

Portland Compressor
310 SE 12th Ave
Portland OR 97214
T: 503-235-0200
Email: [email protected]
Web: www.portlandcompressor.com
Portland Compressor Inc. Parts and Service for most major brands. Sales of Ingersoll-Rand, Jenny (Emglo), Rol-Air, Campbell Hausfeld, and more. Inside and outside service for Variable-Speed, Rotary Screw, Reciprocating, Gas, Electric, and more. Locally owned & operated, serving the NW since 1984. We are located in beautiful Portland Oregon at; 310 SE 12th Ave, Portland OR 97214


Quad-State Air Compressor Sales & Service
362 S. Carlisle St
Greencastle, PA 17225
T: 866-597-9150
F: 717-597-9153
Email: [email protected]
We service all makes of compressors, dryers, and related air equipment. Quad-State Air is a distributor of Kaeser rotary screw compressors, Champion, Saylor-Beall, Curtis, Puma, Bel-Air piston compressors. Quad-State Air also sells dryers from Kaeser, Curtis, Champion, Donaldson, Ultra Air, & SKF. Quad State also sells accessories from Dixon, Coilhose, Reelcraft, Tomco,& Jorc in MD, Panhandle of WVA, and VA.


Canyon Drive Sales, Inc.
Amarillo, Texas
T: 806-322-2222
E: [email protected]
We specialize in Sales, Service, and Rebuilding of Thomas Gardner Denver, GAST, DeVilbiss, and Fasco Piston Pumps. We have rebuild kits for DIY, Rebuilt Vacuum, and Compressor Pumps, and can locate hard-to-find cup seals and parts for most models.

Speedy Air Repair
181 South Watson #302
Arlington, Texas
T: 8176331693
E: [email protected]
W: www.speedyairrepair.com
Portable compressor repair and Honda- Briggs engine repair.

Baker Ranch Outdoor Power Equipment
124 Foster Drive
Del Rio, Texas
T: 830-774-0423
Baker Ranch Outdoor Power Equipment is a small engine repair shop serving all of south-central Texas. Air compressors, generators, ATV’s, etc. Alvie Baker, Owner

Stark Industries
T: 713-592-0377
W: www.starkindustries.com
W: www.seismiccompressor.com
W: www.breathingaircompressor.com
We specialize in high-pressure reciprocating compressors up to 6,000 PSI and airflow from 3.5 CFM up to 2000 CFM. Rent, sell, & repair for diving, paintball, firefighting, and seismic exploration.
Thank you, Jess Stark

Productioneered Parts Corporation (PPC)
25531 Richards Rd
Spring, Texas 77386
T: 281-364-1086,
T: 1-800-363-0572
F: 281-298-2143
Productioneered Parts Corporation (PPC) was established to provide an array of compressor parts for the refining, gas processing, and gas transmission industries. PPC’s goal is to provide quality parts at competitive prices and timely deliveries. PPC began manufacturing quality sealing elements for compressor valves (ring plates and ported plates). Over time, PPC expanded the operation to include valve seats, guards, rods, rod packing, cases, pistons, and piston rings. The parts we fabricate can be replications of OEM parts, or a new design re-engineered to alleviate a particular problem.


Automotive Equipment Repair
3904 Jefferson Davis Hwy.
Richmond, Va. 23234
T: 804-467-1600
F: 804-716-1844


Wahlbergs Tool Repair
4347 South County Road E
South Range, Wisconsin 54874
T: 715-394-2516
C: 218-391-4706 mobile
Available: Afternoons, evenings, and weekends Quick Turn-Around Time Free Estimates

Here are a few more dotted around the US and Canada:

These are just but a few repair shops dotted around, all it takes is a quick internet search to find your nearest air compressor repair store!

Compressor Repair Shops

Do you own, run or work for a compressor repair shop? One anywhere in the world?

Some of the tens of thousands of visitors to About Air Compressors per month are looking for compressor repair information and might be looking for your services right now.

Post your contact and services provided details in the invitation below, to help folks find you when they need compressor repair.

You want to add the company name, address, contact information, and what services you provide, and where you provide those services.

Your posting will be added to the list above.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Can an air compressor be repaired?

Yes, and more often than not they tend to be rather simple. Depending on the damage/fault on the air compressor you should seek troubleshooting advice available on our site. If this doesn’t solve your problem, pop into an air compressor repair store and seek professional advice!

How much does it cost to fix an air compressor?

An air compressor repair can cost anything from $0 up to thousands! This completely depends on what needs repairing and how much labor time must be spent on the repair to fix it. You must heavily consider any repair costs that cost over 50% of the cost of a comparable replacement. Considering the operational inefficiencies and thereafter costs of older air compressors, you may be wasting as much money on energy inefficiency costs as you would on buying a replacement air compressor.

How do you troubleshoot an air compressor?

It’s actually not that difficult to repair air compressors. They have few moving parts and are very reliable. Parts are readily available for most compressors, and with some basic air compressor motor troubleshooting, you should be able to nail down what’s wrong on your own. Please visit our Air Compressor Troubleshooting, Solutions, Common Problems & Causes page for your specific issues!

How do I fix my electric air compressor?

If you’re having a problem with power – is the compressor fully plugged in and the switch is turned on?
If this still does not restore power, check the power cord for any potential damage and ensure it is in good operating condition. Try plugging the compressor into a different socket. If it still persists in not working, test the power outlet by plugging in another device and seeing if that works. Please visit our Electrical Troubleshooting Compressors page for further information on how to fix your electric air compressor!

Does your company perform Compressor Repair Services in the U.S.A.? Please leave your information below and it will be added to the appropriate list.

There is no obligation involved with posting your company information here if you repair compressors. Why not send it in?

By Aidan Weeks

A passionate Mechanical Engineer with endless enthusiasm for fluid power - building off the back of over 18 years of high quality contribution and discussion stimulated by Bill Wade here at About Air Compressors. With both practical and theoretical experience in pneumatics and hydraulics, I'm putting my knowledge to work - and working my grey-matter through my research, assistance and publishing work here at About Air Compressors. Feel free to reach out any time! P.S. A HUGE shout out to Doug who really offers such great value to all visitors to About Air Compressors - once again, feeling like I'm standing on the shoulders of GIANTS by getting to work alongside such a great community

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