Kobalt Air Compressor Troubleshooting Problems, Possible Causes & Solutions

Published Categorized as Air Compressor Troubleshooting, Kobalt 48 Comments on Kobalt Air Compressor Troubleshooting Problems, Possible Causes & Solutions

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Kobalt air compressors are popular air compressors in today’s market as they’re Lowes’s in-house brand of compressors. One thing with Kobalt air compressors, like any compressor, they will require troubleshooting in order to diagnose & fix a problem.

This article will provide examples of troubleshooting tips, including the problems, possible causes, and solutions, for a Kobalt air compressor taken from an operator’s manual.

Table of Contents

Kobalt Air Compressor Troubleshooting

I have picked out this manual for a Kobalt air compressor which provides tips on solutions for various troubleshooting problems and possible causes.

Though these troubleshooting tips are specifically provided by Kobalt for one of their models of compressors, it is likely that you will be able to transfer this information and apply it to your Kobalt air compressor. However, I recommend reviewing your specific Kobalt air compressor’s owner’s manual to find the troubleshooting guide provided by them.

We will take a look at the possible causes, and the correct action to take for the following symptoms with tables to follow:

  • Low pressure
  • Motor will not run
  • Overheating
  • Motor stalls
  • Circuit breaker trips

Kobalt Air Compressor Low Pressure

Possible CausesCorrect Actions
Tank leaksImmediately replace the tank. DO NOT attempt to repair
Blown sealsReplace any faulty seals
Valve leaksReplace worn parts and reassemble them with new seals
Hole in the air hoseCheck and replace if necessary
Restricted check valveRemove and clean or replace
Kobalt Air Compressor Low Pressure Possible Causes and Correct Actions Table

Kobalt Air Compressor Motor Will Not Run

Possible CausesCorrect Actions
Tank pressure exceeds preset pressure switchThe motor will start automatically when tank pressure drops below the cut-in pressure
Motor overload protection has trippedLet the motor cool off and the overload switch will automatically reset
Check valve stuck openRemove and clean or replace
Possible defective motorHave the motor checked by an expert
Fuse has blown or circuit breaker trippedReplace blown fuse or reset circuit breaker
Loose electrical connectionsContact an expert
Kobalt Air Compressor Motor Will Not Run Possible Causes and Correct Actions Table

Kobalt Air Compressor Overheating

Possible CausesCorrect Actions
Poor ventilationRelocate the compressor to an area with cool, dry, and well-circulated air
Dirty cooling surfacesClean all cooling surfaces of pump and motor thoroughly
Leaking valveReplace worn parts and reassemble them with new seals
Kobalt Air Compressor Overheating Possible Causes and Correct Actions Table

Kobalt Air Compressor Motor Stalls

Possible CausesCorrect Actions
Low voltageFurnish adequate power
Defective pressure switch bleeder valveReplace pressure switch bleeder valve
Kobalt Air Compressor Motor Stalls Possible Causes and Correct Actions Table

Kobalt Air Compressor Circuit Breaker Trips

Possible CausesCorrect Actions
Low voltageFurnish adequate power. Do not use an extension cord
Restricted air passagesSeek professional advice
Backpressure in the pump headReplace the check valve and pressure switch
Excessive wire lengthConsult an electrician
Kobalt Air Compressor Circuit Breaker Trips Possible Causes and Correct Actions Table

For further troubleshooting information, visit our Air Compressor Troubleshooting, Solutions, Common Problems & Causes.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Why would my air compressor suddenly stopped working?

If your compressor is failing to work properly, it could be as simple as a nearly empty oil tank. It could, however, be a power switch failure due to a lack of contact between the pressure switch and inner circuitry.

Why does my air compressor not build pressure?

The most common reason an air compressor will not build pressure is due to a defective reed valve exhausting air from the inlet. Otherwise, it could be a pump pressure valve, compressor gasket, piston seal, or check valve failure.

Kobalt troubleshooting related pages:

Reader Questions & Responses

Kobalt Air Compressor Trips Reset Button


I have a 60-gallon Kobalt compressor about 4 years old. It will build pressure as it is supposed to but when it goes to shut off it starts shattering and then shuts off.

Kobalt 60 gallon air compressor
Kobalt 60 gallon air compressor

Once the pressure has dropped it will not start automatically,

I have to push the thermal reset button on the motor and it starts. Do this every time. I’ve checked the wiring and connections and everything looks ok. I have it wired to a 30 amp 220-volt breaker.

Any idea what may be causing this.


Brad, the shattering you refer to, is this sound coming from the pressure switch? If so, your pressure switch points may be worn out and it’s time for a new one of those.

As to having to push the reset to start the air compressor, that suggests that the motor is overly warm, assuming the reset you refer to is on the motor.

Why is the motor overly warm, if that’s the case? One thing is that your air compressor is taking longer to fill to cut out pressure than it used to, the motor is running longer as a result, and that’s overheating it a bit.

More likely though, the issue may be capacitor related. A weak or failing run cap would mean that the motor is running underpowered, and that leads to overheating.

So, check the pressure switch, and see the page on this site about how to check a capacitor.

Or is the whole air compressor shuddering, as in shaking a bunch? I’m not quite sure what you mean by shattering.

Maybe you can pop back here and add a comment with more info?

Kobalt Air Compressor Won’t Shut Off


Kobalt compressor doesn’t shut off when requested psi is reached.


Does it continue running until the PRV pops open, or does it stop automatically at a higher than expected point?

If it does stop automatically, but at a higher pressure than expected, does it stop at the same pressure point every time?

If it runs until the PRV pops open, don’t use it again until you replace the pressure switch, and the problem is gone.

If it’s stopping consistently at a higher pressure than expected, that might indicate nothing more than an air gauge that’s failing, or it might mean that the pressure switch is failing, or both.

Maybe let us know by posting a comment here?

Kobalt Air Compressor Motor Doesn’t Turn


I just buy a Kobalt 60 gal. I have power to the motor but doesn’t turn on any advice?


Hi Jesse,

If you have power to the motor, then the pressure switch has tripped to on and power is flowing through the pressure switch to the motor. Is this correct?

Is the power supply to the compressor the right voltage? Often a 60-gallon tank compressor will be powered by a 5 HP motor or more, and if so, it needs a 220 VAC power supply.

If the power supply to the compressor motor is the right voltage, and the power is getting to the motor for sure, and nothing is happening as to the motor starting, then I’d look to testing the start capacitor next on the motor next. Please see the page linked from the troubleshooting page on this site about testing capacitors.

Please let us know what your findings are.

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

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I have 80 gallon 5hp Kobalt air compressor, it tripped the breaker in electrical box, kicked red reset switch. I reset breaker and it started up and quit again. Now it will not do anything. Any ideas

You probably should start by checking the motor and capacitors. If you find bad ones, replace it/them first.
After that, check that power from the breaker is making it to the compressor. The breaker may have failed. Same for the red reset.
Good luck.
Oh, there’s info on checking capacitors here


Why does my kobalt quite tech 150 psi 26 gal compressor shut off at 90 psl and not 150 psi? Can I Aniston the tank pressure?

My guess would be it’s running too long, not building pressure, and the motor is overheating.
Ultimate problem probably a bad ring on either or both pump cylinders.

I have a 60 gal. Kobalt compressor and it bog down like it going to stop then picks back up several times before it gets full. whats going on

Have you done all the maintenance? How old is it? Model? Bought new?

We have a 26 gallon Kobalt. It will not turn on. It may be slightly under 3 years old. I have tried different plugs nut nothing.

It’d be helpful if you gave a model number. There are many possible reasons.
For starters, check the manual and follow the trouble shooting specified.
You can also click the logo at the top of the page and scroll down a bit to find a bunch of symptoms and possible causes.
Good luck.

I have a 60 gallon compressor, not a year old. Just stop working. Changed out pressure switch , no luck. What can be the problem??? Do not return to store

I have the 8 gallon portable. It fills to 150 the first time with no problem. However when the pressure lowers to the point of needing to turn on it bogs down and blows the breaker if I don’t catch it. So I have to manually switch it to fill but the press has to be lowered, sometimes to nearly 20 lbs to get it to kick on. If it’s a hot day it bogs down at 90-100 lbs. not very reliable.

I have a new colbalt 26 gallon ran when first plugged in then next day wont start

Pressure in 8 gal tank builds right but no tool pressure

Take a look here:

If that doesn’t get you to a fix, come back and tell us what you found.

Good luck.

I have an 8 gal Kobalt that will build pressure until the PRV opens and then continue to run without ever shutting off.

I can’t be terribly specific because you didn’t give a model, but you need a pressure switch…assuming it gets above the normal cut-off before the PRV blows.

I have a 60 gallon 3 hp it builds pressure but when I’m using it when you pull the trigger the pressure is good then is the pressure go away

The pressure to the tool, or the pressure in the tank?
If the tank pressure mostly stays, but the hose pressure drops way off, your regulator is sick/bad. Replace it.

My Kobalt portable compressor Model F15DKL needs a manifold assembly regulator, part #E101627 but I can’t find a source.

Yeah, cheap junk and they’re out of them.
Unless you can find another unit with the unbroken part, your options are junk it, or if you’re a bit inventive, fashion a functional equivalent with a regulator and some pipe fittings.

Good luck. And if you succeed, send pix. Please.

I have a kobalt 15gal compressor model 215902 when u turn switch nothing happens

Please start with this:

Let us know what you find.

On my Kolbalt 8 gal compressor, I cannot adjust the PSI pressure setting. I turn it from Max to Min and it stay at 30 PSI.The tank does not go any higher that 30 psi and that is also where the pressure stays at. Any thoughts?

Dave, are you saying you are adjusting the pressure regulator from min to max and there’s no change in the pressure going out the air line? Please respond with a photo of the air compressor so we can see exactly which model you have. Thanks.

“The tank does not go any higher that 30 psi” means there is something wrong with the pump (or very rarely, the gauge itself). Max to Min on the knob has nothing to do with the tank pressure, other than it can’t make the pressure go *higher* than the tank, only lower.

The pressure gauge stays at 30 PSI and the compressor gauge stays at 30 PSI. The compressor does not shut off either. When I shut it off, the compressor maintains the 30 PSI in the tank.
Attached is a picture of the compressor as you requested.

Sometimes my Kobalt compressor will build up pressure and not start compressing air after using for a few minutes.

Could you give us a clue of what you have? Like a model number or even a few pix?

8 gal., 1.8 hp, about 5 to 7 years old, used sparingly.

Last edited 2 years ago by Bubbajoe Martin

That’s something, but not “a model number or even a few pix?”

How to release pressure when finished

Not certain what you’re asking –
But typically you’d want to drain the tank of both air and water before storing your compressor. Usually there is a drain valve near the bottom to the tank.
If that’s not your question, please clarify and give your make/model or send a couple of pix.

hello, i have a 30 gallon oil bathed compressor, was working great but now it turns on, motor will spins a few turns and then stops.
I have release some air below cut off psi and same results, any ideas?? thank you

I have a 60 gallon cobalt air compressor and the air compressor pulley keep coming off

A model number might be helpful.
How long have you had it? Have you checked the tension on the belt (should move about 1/2 inch with moderate finger pressure, probably).
Are the pulleys secure and aligned?
If all that is good, have you tried a new belt?

I have a kobalt 8 Gal. That will not turn on . It has only 5 working hours! Is there a reset switch or something?

5 hours running? Continuous? Maybe burnt out.
Read the manual and give your model number, please.

If you can’t locate the manual or model, at least send a couple pix of it.

Compressor leaks while Compressing and after it. Does not hold pressure in tank after turned off.

Howdy, and please let us know, where is it leaking from?

i have a 60galon kobalt air compressor, will not turn on, even if you hit the reset switch nothing, and has full power going to the tank. worked one day and next day nothing, any ideas ?

I suspect you mean that you have full power going to the pressure switch, yes? If so, on the motor side of the switch, with the tank empty of air, is there power? Please advise.

I have a kobalt 60 gal it run pumps air to 30-40 psi then the motor shuts off kicks breaker any idea

Sure, that’s covered on the pages on linked from the troubleshooting page on this site. Have a look, do the checks, and advise if you still need help.

I have a 60 gal Kobalt it will not produce any air at all. It runs but no air is built up in the tank. I am new to these. I am assuming it might be a seal somewhere

Good assumption. This page, on this site, has links to lots of information about what to do when an air compressor runs but won’t build pressure: https://about-air-compressors.com/troubleshooting-your-compressor/

Maybe have a look and come back with what you found on your compressor when you did the checks. Cheers.

I have a small 8 gal air compressor #0470442 it will not pump up over 55 psi it keeps running but will not get any higher

Sure Fred, lots of help for you here on about-air-compressors.com. Start here and let us know what you found, OK?


I have a brand new cobalt 26 gal .Ran when first plugged in went back out next day wont come in