Electrical Troubleshooting Compressors – Community Support & Information

Published Categorized as Air Compressor Troubleshooting, Air Compressor Wiring Issues 8 Comments on Electrical Troubleshooting Compressors – Community Support & Information

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Performing electrical troubleshooting on air compressors can be complex.

Even though for well over a decade now I, and many contributors to this site, have been helping folks size their air compressors, guiding the installation of compressed air plumbing, help them understand SCFM and provide guidance as to how their air system works I am leery of providing electrical advice.

Through this website I get tons of requests for information on electrical troubleshooting air compressors. I am not an electrician. I understand how compressors work, and the interface between electrical power supply, the pressure switch and the electric compressor motor. I have no problem electrically troubleshooting my own air compressors for if I err, I will pay the consequences.

Electrical troubleshooting compressors - compressor pressure switch
Even wiring a simple pressure switch can be hazardous if you aren’t careful.

Where possible, I will be happy to provide information about my experiences with electrical troubleshooting compressors, but mostly I hope that expert visitors, with their greater experience in the electrical side of things, will contribute to help those folks in need of some air compressor guidance.

If you have a compressor electrical problem you would like help with, please use the form. If you can offer advice to those seeking information, even if that advice is that it is time to take your air compressor motor to the shop, or some such, then please, click on the comments below and add your advice for those folks that have already posted.

For your support over the years, I thank you.

Additional Troubleshooting Pages

Air Compressor Types Troubleshooting

Air Compressor Part Specific Troubleshooting

Existing Electrical Troubleshooting Compressors questions:

Air compressor wiring – 110 or 220 – If I have a air compressor that gives me the option to wire it either 220 or 110 volt what is the difference

Heard a spark and compressor won’t start – I tried to plug it in when the on switch was turned. I heard a spark and that was it. No nothing.

Wattage for a 3.5 HP compressor – I have a 3 1/2 horsepower 10 gallon tank and was wondering what size generator ill need to have it run properly

Converting compressor motor voltage – I just bought a 30 gal Kobalt from Lowes that came wired for 110 with a 110 cord installed.

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Dayton Speedaire kids pulled apart without taking picture first? “Trying to help”🤷🏼‍♂️🤦🏼‍♂️🤣! I need help putting it back together, cant any seem to get the wiring exactly right! Nothing to reference, please help if you can? Thanks ✌🏻

They took the motor apart?
Or just the wiring external to it?
The first is somewhat difficult, the send usually pretty easy.
Any idea why they took whatever it was apart?

Pulled line from power cord to motor and when I tried to figure out where the three went on motor the black lines coming from inside to the prongs on the front inside panel 2 of them were just dangling there

You’re looking inside the pressure switch, if I’m guessing right. The three wires from the power cord are probably black, white and green. The black and white should be power (either 120 or 240V depending on the plug), and go to the terminals on the switch near where they come into the box. The green should be connected to a ground screw in the box. There are usually two black wires from the motor. They should be connected to the set of terminals directly across from the set the black and white wires from the cord are connected. Note that… Read more »

Hi, my 27gallon compressor trips it’s circuit breaker as soon as power is applied. The motor runs normally when the switch is bypassed. A new switch did not change this condition. Am I overlooking something about the switch? Thanks in advance for your response.

First, make and model?

“compressor trips it’s circuit breaker as soon as power is applied.” Do you mean the motor overload here?

“The motor runs normally when the switch is bypassed.” What switch?

Hi Doug, thanks for getting back to me. The Compressor is a Coleman Powermate. The model # is VLO502710. When the pressure detector switch is bypassed the motor runs. When power is applied through the four terminals of the switch the circuit breaker tripe instantly. Pete

OK. It’s not a VLO502710, it’s a VL0502710. You didn’t say, but I gather that when you operate the pressure switch to “ON” or “AUTO” (as the case may be), the circuit breaker for the *outlet* trips, right? If that’s the case, then either the pressure switch has an internal sort to ground or is wired incorrectly. Most likely it’s wired wrong. Send pix of the switch with wiring attached, and we’ll see if we can figure it out. (We can!) If you can’t send pix, then look up your pressure switch part number and we can do it that… Read more »