CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve bought an air compressor. It’s loud, full of air, and makes a cool “shhhhh” sound. But, how do you use it safely? Safety is always first, second, third, and fifth (fourth is to look up rules one through three). For the sake of your own and your employee’s safety lets go over a few things

First things first for safety: Do not wear jewelry or any loose-fitted clothing when operating your air compressor as they can become caught or entangled and cause injury. Use caution when wearing short-sleeve shirts or work trousers when working near your compressor and be sure to always wear sturdy shoes to protect your feet. The compressor motor can get very hot during use. We don’t want to accidentally burn ourselves or catch anything on fire. Compressors can also produce noise levels in excess of 70 decibels. Always ensure the operator of the compressor and humans working nearby use hearing protection. Not that it’s forgettable, but please keep your fingers away from any moving parts. Seriously, keep your fingers away from moving parts.

It is ALWAYS a great idea to read your operation and product manual thoroughly to ensure safe operation of your equipment. Make sure to place your air compressor on a completely flat surface such as a cement pad or a shop floor. Block the wheels with bricks or wood to ensure that the air compressor does not move around while you are using it, especially if the wheels do not have brakes fitted onto the casters. We recommend not operating the air compressor until you have checked, and triple checked that all hoses and fixtures are intact, and that each connection is properly and securely connected. Leaks and loose parts can cause serious injuries when you operate the compressor.

Air Compressor front view

That’s also why we say be careful when transporting them to prevent tipping it over, which could cause injury to yourself and/or damage to the compressor unit, and may also spill compressor oil (unless you have one of those oil-less ones). Speaking of oil: DO NOT neglect the oil that lubricates your air compressor's motor. The oil should be drained and replaced as often as needed (check the manual!). Just like when you change the oil in your car, you should also change the oil filter when you change the oil for your compressor's motor.

Keep office pets and other people away from your air compressor while it is in operation. Operating air compressors are loud and can damage your hearing, and they have a ton of moving parts that can cause injuries. Children and pets, especially, should be well out of the way before beginning operation. Also, the high velocity of air from an air compressor can very seriously damage skin, eyes, and ears. These injuries have the potential to be life threatening and are not to be taken lightly under any circumstances. I cannot say this enough: always make sure that kids and animals are kept at an adequate distance from the compressor and any air tool equipment attached to it. I mean , it’s “DAD 101”: keep the kids and animals safe when we’re playing with big toys.

There’re obviously more things to consider when operating an air compressor, but this is just the basics. Again, READ YOUR MANUAL. I cannot stress that enough. That will always be the first question techs ask if there is an issue.

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Steven De Hoff

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Steven has 10+ years of experience in the E-commerce space with an emphasis in storefronts and product listings. A classical connoisseur of the internet, Steven spends his free time staying away from it. Instead choosing to be a dad and disc golfer.

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