10 Best 20 Gallon Air Compressors of 2021 Compared & Reviewed

Best 20 Gallon Air Compressor
Photo: northerntool.com

Air compressors are very versatile pieces of equipment that can be used to inflate tires and pool toys, as well as power certain tools such as nail guns.

20-gallon air compressors are particularly quite popular because they are both powerful and easily portable, which means you can quickly move the unit to proximity to the required application area.

With that in mind, if you are looking for such a piece for your garage or workshop, this review covers 10 of the best 20-gallon air compressors that you should consider buying.

What To Check Before Buying Best 20-Gallon Air Compressor?

How to Buy the Best 20-Gallon Air Compressor
Photo: protoolreviews.com

1. Power

The most important thing that you need to check before buying a 20-gallon air compressor is its power requirements. Most of them feature 115-120V motors, which are only suitable to use in the US, Canada, and a few other countries in the American region.

If the electrical grid system in your country runs on 230-240V AC, then you need to buy a compressor with a dual voltage motor, which can be easily converted between 115-120V and 230-240V. For instance, the first 3 units in this review are good options to consider.

2. Max Pressure

Given in PSI, this value indicates the maximum level of air pressure that the compressor can release. Ultimately, the higher, the better because you will be able to use the unit to power multiple kinds of tools.

However, for the best results, check the amount of pressure required by your work tools beforehand then buy a compressor that is at par or exceeds that level.

3. Inflating Speed

This factor can also be called the flow rate, and it basically shows how fast the compressor will fill up your tires or any other inflatables. The higher the inflating speed, the better because you will get the job done in no time.

4. Construction

These pieces of equipment can either be vertical or horizontal. This layout has no effect on performance but rather, shows whether the tank is placed vertically or horizontally.

Vertical compressors have the benefit of consuming very little floor space while horizontal units have a large surface area at the top to place the controls optimally for easy reading.

Selection should be based on personal preference and the amount of floor space available in your garage.

5. Easy Operation

The ease-of-use factor is important to consider and with this, the best 20-gallon portable air compressors are the ones with oil-free pumps due to their little to no maintenance design.

6. Portability

20-gallon air compressors are mostly bought because of their portability factor. As such, you should ensure that the one you buy has a handle and large wheels for easy movement even on a rugged worksite.

10 Best 20-Gallon Air Compressors of 2021 Reviewed




DeWalt DXCMPA1982054

1. DeWalt DXCMPA1982054 (Best Horizontal)

  • 5.7 and 7 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • 155 PSI max pressure output
  • Dual voltage (120 and 240V) induction motor
  • Horizontal design with two wheels and a handle
Industrial Air IL1682066MN

2. Industrial Air IL1682066MN (V-Twin Cylinder Pump)

  • V-twin cylinder cast-iron oil-lubricated pump
  • Dual voltage (120 and 240V) induction motor
  • Vertical space-saving design
  • Multiple pressure gauges and a quick-set regulator
NorthStar 25653

3. NorthStar 25653 (Best Quiet)

  • Vertical design with 135 PSI max pressure
  • 5 and 6 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Dual crankshaft bearings
  • Quiet belt-driven V-twin cylinder pump
Wen 2202

4. Wen 2202 (Has Auto Shut-Off)

  • Automatic shut off at max pressure (135 PSI)
  • 3.8 and 5 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Quick drain valve and a 1/4-inch NPT quick coupler
  • Tank pressure and airflow rate gauges
Porter-Cable PXCMF220VW

5. Porter-Cable PXCMF220VW (Low Voltage Start-up)

  • Low voltage start-up
  • 150 PSI max pressure
  • 4 and 5 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Oil-free pump and motor
Briggs & Stratton 074064-00

6. Briggs & Stratton 074064-00 (Affordable)

  • Affordable
  • 3.7and 4.8 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Fully enclosed oil-free pump and motor
  • 150 PSI max pressure
Campbell Hausfeld DC200000

7. Campbell Hausfeld DC200000 (Easy to Use)

  • 4 CFM at 90 PSI
  • 150 PSI max pressure
  • Horizontal tank with optimally laid out gauges
  • Oil-free pump
Eagle EA-6500

8. Eagle EA-6500 (Powerful)

  • Powerful 2.5 peak horsepower motor
  • Oil-free double-piston pump
  • 6 and 7.9 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Low-amp-draw for increased lifespan
Husky C201H

9. Husky C201H (Fully Enclosed Components)

  • 175 max PSI with an airflow of 4 CFM at 90 PSI
  • Fully enclosed pump and motor
  • Oil-free pump
  • Vertical tank
Campbell Hausfeld HL433000DI

10. Campbell Hausfeld HL433000DI (Has a Direct Drive Motor)

  • 2 horsepower direct drive induction motor
  • 4.5 and 5.5 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively
  • Oil-lubricated pump
  • Comes with an air filter and oil bottle

1. Best Horizontal: DeWalt DXCMPA1982054

DeWalt DXCMPA1982054
Photo: DeWalt

  • Voltage: 120/240 volts
  • Max Pressure: 155 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 5.7 CFM @ 90 PSI, 7 CFM @ 40 PSI

Starting us off is this unit from DeWalt, which has a horizontal design and stands out as one of the best due to its relatively high inflating speed. It delivers up to 7 CFM at 40 PSI and 5.7 CFM at 90 PSI, ensuring quick tire refills.

The compressor has a relatively high max pressure output, which stands at 155 PSI. This means it will deliver optimum performance when powering pneumatic tools.

Other features include a heavy-duty dual voltage induction motor that can function in both 120- and 240-volt circuits, 2 pneumatic wheels and a handle for easy portability, and a twin-cylinder pump with an aluminum head and valve plates for quick heat dissipation.

On the downside, this horizontal design consumes a lot of floor space and its pump requires constant lubrication for durability and optimal performance.


  • High inflating speed
  • High maximum pressure output; ideal for powering pneumatic tools
  • Dual voltage induction motor; functions in both 120 and 240-volt systems
  • 2 wheels and a handle for easy portability
  • Aluminum head and valve plates on the pump for quick heat dissipation


  • Space consuming horizontal design
  • Requires oil changes from time to time

2. Has a V-Twin Cylinder Pump Industrial Air IL1682066MN

Industrial Air IL1682066MN
Photo: Industrial Air

  • Voltage: 120/240 volts
  • Max Pressure: 135 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 5.3 CFM @ 90 PSI, 6.2 CFM @ 40 PSI

This air compressor from Industrial Air is fitted with a V-twin oil-lubricated cylinder pump, which has a solid 1-piece cast-iron crankcase and a thermally stable cast iron body, making it very durable.

The pump is run by a dual voltage heavy-duty induction motor that is designed for 120V outlets but can be easily converted to work in 240V circuits.

Combined with the 20-gallon tank, the pump and motor give a max pressure output of 135 PSI, which is sufficient for powering pneumatic tools, and a flow rate of 6.2 CFM at 40 PSI and 5.3 CFM at 90 PSI.

Other features include a quick-set regulator, multiple pressure gauges, an on/off switch, a quick-connect air outlet, a vertical space-saving design with two wheels and front handles for easy transportation.

However, the pump and motor are not enclosed for protection against the elements.


  • Strong and durable cast-iron V-twin cylinder pump
  • Dual voltage 120- and 240-volt motor
  • Multiple pressure gauges for displaying the relevant information
  • Vertical space-saving design


  • Oil-lubricated pump.Requires oil changing from time-to-time
  • Pump and motor are not enclosed for protection purposes

3. Quiet: NorthStar 25653

NorthStar 25653
Photo: NorthStar

  • Voltage: 115/230 volts
  • Max Pressure: 135 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 5.0 CFM @ 90 PSI, 6.0 CFM @ 40 PSI

NorthStar’s 25653 has a vertical space-saving design with a belt-driven V-twin pump at the top that runs smoothly and very quietly, which means less noise in your garage or workshop.

Dual crankshaft ball bearings also contribute greatly towards this smooth running while a built-in regulator helps you to control the air pressure directed towards connected pneumatic tools.

You get a dual-voltage 115- and 230-volt induction motor, a 6-foot power cord, an easy-start valve that is less strenuous to the motor, two solid tires, and a handle for easy portability.

On the downside, this compressor requires quite some maintenance work in terms of regular oiling, and its components are not covered for protection from the elements.


  • Smooth and quiet belt-driven V-twin pump
  • Dual crankshaft ball bearings for smooth running
  • Dual voltage 115- and 230-volt motor
  • Less strenuous easy start valve


  • Requires regular oiling
  • Pump and motor are not enclosed

4. Auto Shut-Off: Wen 2202

Wen 2202
Photo: Wen

  • Max Pressure: 135 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 3.8 CFM @ 90 PSI, 5 CFM @ 40 PSI

With its auto shut-down safety feature, Wen’s 2202 turns off upon reaching the max pressure (135 PSI) and this ensures safe, reliable compressing.

That said, the unit is a single-stage compressor that delivers a flow rate of 3.8 CFM at 90 PSI and 5 CFM at 40 PSI, and is fitted with two pressure gauges, one for checking the tank’s internal pressure and the other for checking the airflow rate.

Other features include a quick-drain valve that is easy to reach, a 1/4-inch NPT quick coupler for fast hose changes as you hook up different tools, an on-board handle, and two wheels for easy transportation.

However, the compressor has an oil-lubricated pump that requires more maintenance work and its airflow rate is quite low, which means slower inflating of tires


  • Auto shut-off on reaching max PSI
  • Two pressure gauges for checking the flow rate and the tank’s internal pressure
  • Easy-to-reach quick drain valve for releasing excess pressure
  • 1/4-inch NPT quick coupler for fast hose changes


  • Requires regular oiling
  • Relatively low air flow rate

5. Low Voltage Start-up: Porter-Cable PXCMF220VW

Porter-Cable PXCMF220VW
Photo: Porter-Cable

  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Max Pressure: 150 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 4.0 CFM @ 90 PSI, 5.0 CFM @ 40 PSI

Porter Cable’s PXCMF220VW is quite unique because it features a low voltage start-up, which eases the torque increment by the motor and reduces current draw. This ensures a smooth and less noisy start.

That said, power is provided by an oil-free pump and induction motor, which require very little maintenance, and provide reliable performance for long run-time when powering heavy consumption pneumatic tools.

The unit’s design also lacks belts and pulleys, translating to reduced maintenance, while the motor has high-quality motor windings that are very durable.

More features include a protective cover over the pump, motor, and other working components, solid rubber wheels and handle for easy movement, a quick connect coupler, regulator, and two gauges for monitoring the tank pressure and flow rate.

However, this compressor’s motor is designed to only operate using 120 volts power supply and therefore, is limited to use only in the North American market.


  • Smooth low voltage start-up
  • Easy-to-maintain oil-free pump and motor
  • Durable high-quality motor windings
  • Protective cover on the working components


  • Single voltage motor (120V). Only suitable for the North American market

6. Affordable: Briggs & Stratton 074064-00

Briggs & Stratton 074064-00
Photo: Briggs & Stratton

  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Max Pressure: 150 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 3.7 CFM @ 90 PSI, 4.8 CFM @ 40 PSI

If you are on a tight budget, Briggs & Stratton’s 074064-00 is the most affordable air compressor in this review that you should consider buying.

The unit features a vertical tank with a 1.5 horsepower induction motor and an easy-to-maintain oil-free pump at the top, with the two being fully enclosed for protection from the elements, as well as for noise reduction.

Additionally, the built-in pulling handle is curved around the motor’s housing for impact protection. This handle also combines forces with the compressor’s tough rubber wheels to ease portability for quick movement around your worksite.

Other features include a quick-connect coupler, a regulator knob, and 2 gauges for easy operation. However, this unit’s inflating speed is quite slow (3.7 CFM at 90 PSI).


  • Affordable
  • Vertical space-saving design
  • Easy-to-maintain oil-free pump
  • Fully enclosed pump and motor for protection and noise reduction
  • Handle and tough rubber wheels for easy movement


  • Slow inflating speed

7. Easy to Use: Campbell Hausfeld DC200000

Campbell Hausfeld DC200000
Photo: Campbell Hausfeld

  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Max Pressure: 150 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 4.0 CFM @ 90 PSI

Though it has a horizontal tank that consumes more floor space, this 20-gallon air compressor lays out the gauges and other controls optimally over the wider top for easy reading and use. The piece also features an oil-free pump that is very durable and easy to maintain.

Power is provided via a 1.3 horsepower motor, which ensures the tank is filled to provide a max pressure of 150 PSI and a flow rate of 4 CFM at 90 PSI. This makes it suitable for painting, nailing, bolt tightening tools among many others.

Other features include a steel handle and large wheels for easy portability, and a fully enclosed motor for safety purposes.


  • Optimally laid out gauges for easy reading
  • Low maintenance oil-free pump
  • Relatively high 150 PSI max pressure. Suitable to use with different tools
  • Fully enclosed motor for safety


  • Space consuming horizontal tank

8. Powerful: Eagle EA-6500

Eagle EA-6500
Photo: Eagle

  • Voltage: 115 volts
  • Max Pressure: 125 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 6.0 CFM @ 90 PSI, 7.9 CFM @ 40 PSI

Eagle’s EA-6500 is a very powerful 20-gallon air compressor that has a 2.5 peak horsepower motor, which runs a double piston oil-free pump to deliver 6 CFM at 90 PSI and 7.9 CFM at 40 PSI for quick inflation.

Despite this, the motor has a low amp draw, which increases the overall lifespan of the compressor by up to 4 times.

Other than that, the unit has a vertical tank with a control panel at the top, which has 2 gauges for checking the tank and tool pressure, two 1/4-inch quick connectors for fast tool changes, and a roll cage design with solid wheels for easy movement even in a rugged worksite.

On the downside, this piece is very costly and its maximum pressure is quite low (125 PSI), which means it’s not as effective when powering pneumatic tools.


  • The powerful motor helps to deliver a high 6 CFM inflating speed at 90 PSI
  • Low maintenance oil-free pump
  • Low amp draw enhances the compressor’s durability
  • Two 1/4-inch quick-change tool connectors


  • Expensive
  • Relatively low maximum pressure

9. Fully Enclosed Components: Husky C201H

Husky C201H
Photo: Husky

  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Max Pressure: 175 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 4.0 CFM @ 90 PSI

The first thing you notice on this vertical air compressor is its fully enclosed top, in which the pump, motor, and all vital components are protected from collisions and the elements. This also helps to drastically reduce the noise produced when in operation.

Another benefit you get with this unit is a very high max pressure of 175 PSI, which means it provides enough power to operate your pneumatic tools at peak performance.

Compression is done using an oil-free pump that requires little to no maintenance at all, and also makes it easy for spray-painting because no oil separators will be required in the system.

However, the compressor’s motor has a single voltage rating at 120 volts, making it a bit limited in terms of the regions that it can be used.


  • Fully enclosed top for safety and noise suppression
  • High 175 PSI max pressure
  • Low maintenance oil-free pump
  • Vertical space-saving design


  • Single voltage 120V motor. Only suitable for the North American region

10. Has a Direct Drive Motor: Campbell Hausfeld HL433000DI 

Campbell Hausfeld HL433000DI
Photo: Campbell Hausfeld

  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Max Pressure: 125 PSI
  • Inflating Speed: 4.5 CFM @ 90 PSI, 5.5 CFM @ 40 PSI

Lastly, Campbell Hausfeld’sHL433000DI is fitted with a direct drive induction motor and this gives the compressor the advantage of having fewer mechanical connections for smooth and less noisy running.

That said, this motor is rated at 2 horsepower, which is quite powerful, and ensures the unit delivers 4.5 and 5.5 CFM at 90 and 40 PSI respectively, resulting in quick tire inflation.

More features include 2 gauges for monitoring the tank’s pressure and flow rate, a handle and large wheels for easy portability, and the inclusion of an air filter and oil bottle as part of the kit.

On the downside, this unit is equipped with an oil-lubricated pump that requires regular maintenance and has a relatively low 125 PSI max pressure rating, which makes it less ideal for powering heavy consumption pneumatic tools.


  • Smooth and less noisy direct drive induction motor
  • Relatively powerful 2 horsepower motor for quick tank filling and inflation
  • Handle and 2 large wheels for easy portability
  • Includes an air filter and oil bottle to get you started


  • Oiled pump requires regular maintenance
  • Relatively low 125 PSI max rating

How to Use a 20-Gallon Air Compressor

Using an air compressor is quite easy. All you need to know is that there are 4 main components: the motor, pump, tank, and controls. Before getting to work, if your unit has an oil-lubricated pump, fill it up with oil first. Otherwise, you can proceed to these steps.

  • Attach a hose to the regulator valve and connect your tool to the other end of the hose.
  • Power on the compressor by plugging it to a wall outlet and flipping on its switch.
  • Wait for the tank to pressurize. Basically, the motor runs the pump, which compresses air into the tank and you can check the pressure level using the control gauges.
  • Once the pressurized air reaches the maximum PSI capacity or the PSI capacity that your tool requires, turn off the switch and get down to work.


As you can see, there are quite a lot of 20-gallon air compressor options to choose from and they have some differences between them in terms of max air pressure, design, flow rate, etc.

However, using the buying guide above, you should be able to easily pick the best 20-gallon air compressor that matches your usage requirements.