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Kobalt Air Compressor Overheating

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An overheating Kobalt air compressor typically comes down to one of several factors. If a Kobalt air compressor is overheating, something is definitely not right, and you must diagnose and fix the problem pronto. This article will provide you with the reasons why your Kobalt air compressor is overheating, and what you can do to prevent this from occurring.

Table of Contents

Reasons Kobalt Air Compressor Overheats

If your Kobalt air compressor is experiencing overheating, it is likely due to any of the following reasons in the Table below, accompanied by tips:

  • Low suction pressure & excess discharge pressure
  • Insufficient or eroded oil
  • Old or clogged components
  • Defective thermal valve
  • Ambient temperature
  • Inadequate ventilation
  • Type of air compressor
  • Frequency of use

Low Suction Pressure & Excess Discharge Pressure

To keep suction pressure and discharge pressure levels under control, you must inspect components frequently for any signs of issues.

Insufficient or Eroded Oil

When oil becomes old it will typically begin to erode and harden, resulting in the interior parts of the compressor system moving without sufficient lubrication. This is the same if you have insufficient oil within the system.

Old or Clogged Components

Components of an air compressor will naturally wear down with age, forcing the system to work harder to complete its basic function of providing compressed air to your end-use. They need to be monitored and replaced when suitable.

Defective Thermal Valve

It’s recommended to have a replacement thermal valve on hand in case the preexisting valve on your machine needs to be changed out at any point, and also to act as a comparison to know when the other is faulty.

Ambient Temperature

If the air compressor is located within a warm area, the machine is liable to have far more difficulty adjusting to the incoming air at its desired levels of coolness.

Inadequate Ventilation

Is the air compressor able to sufficiently ventilate? If the air compressor is placed in such a way that the vents are facing against a wall directly, the air compressor should be turned or possibly moved to another area.

Type of Air Compressor

If you are running heavy-duty pneumatic tools for extended periods of use from a small air compressor, you will likely run into performance issues that will result in the air compressor overheating.

Frequency of Use

The frequency of use of the air compressor is going to contribute to the amount of wear and tear that an air compressor system experiences. The speed of the wear and tear depends on the length of time the compressor is operating at temperatures.

To be able to combat your Kobalt air compressor overheating, you should aim to:

  • Improve ventilation
  • Monitor ventilation
  • Inspect oil level and filters regularly
  • Replace parts when necessary

For more detailed information on an air compressor overheating and how to prevent it from occurring, visit our guide here!

Reader Questions & Responses

Kobalt Air Compressor Overheating – Kobalt 20 Gallon Air Compressor Problems


I have a Kobalt 20 gallon air compressor model #0332041.

It overheats quickly and takes several minutes to come back on. It has been doing that almost from the time I got it.

I should have returned it, but I didn’t so now the warranty is gone.

Kobalt 0332041 air compressor
Kobalt 0332041 air compressor

What might the problem be? This occurred during normal use. So far I’m very displeased with this compressor. Probably won’t buy or recommend a Kobalt compressor.


Hi Dan… would you please tell us the length of extension cord you are using, the HP of the compressor motor, and the amperage of the breaker supplying the socket into which you plug the compressor?

Questioner #2

I have an 8-gal compressor that stops running after a short time. Takes about 5 to 10 minutes and will come back on. Seems to be a common problem with Kobalt compressors as the web is full of comments concerning the same issues.

Questioner #3

The same old problem cuts out about 70 pounds. plugged right next to the breaker panel… don’t have time for junk tools 10 minute project took over an hour… won’t even fill to blow up tires… used it 3 times in 2 years.

Questioner #4

I have the same problem as soon as I bought it and I use it three or four times and it turns off just because it heats up, is an 8-gallon Kobalt.

I do not like it and I paid a lot of money for something that does not work.

If you have any questions regarding why your Kobalt air compressor overheats, please leave a comment below, with a photo if applicable, so that someone can help you!

By Bill Wade

About Air Compressors has been helping folks with their Air Compressor Problems since 2002 online. We're a community of DIY and Compressed Air professionals who are keen to support everyone across the globe with their air compressor issues and troubleshooting. Whether you're trying to identify an old air compressor, or troubleshoot an error code on a sophisticated new industrial air compressor - the community at About-Air-Compressors.com is here to help you

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