After buying an air compressor, the next step is to learn how to use it. Proper usage will result in the fullest service you can have from this machine. There are several steps to maintain an air compressor. Among them, one of the important steps is to control the CFM. We should properly know how to increase CFM on air compressor & how to reduce it. For your convenience, we have made a proper guideline. So, let’s dig into the tutorial.
Table of content
We have sorted the tutorial into different segments for your convenience. Check out the table down below to get to the specific segment easily.
As you know from our previous posts, we have already provided a brief description of how air compressor works. You can get an in-depth idea of CFM, PSI & different metrics of air compressors from our post on best air compressor review, where we have already discussed the topic in detail.
What Is CFM?
CFM is a basic term for maintaining an air compressor. It means Cubic Feet per Minute. So you already know it’s a unit for volume. This unit represents the rate in which your air compressor draws air from the atmosphere. Suppose a preset CFM for an air compressor is 5. That means it will insert the air at the rate of 5 cubic feet per minute.
How Much CFM Do I Need?
You will certainly need different CFM settings for different air tools. For example, you need to increase the CFM to maintain an air compressor for impact wrench. On the other hand, an air compressor for framing crew will need lower CFM.
Let’s say you will use your compressor for impact wrench. Then you will need to set your machine on at least 5 CFM. Depending on the tool, you may need 5-8 CFM at 90 PSI. Just like that, air compressor for spraying paint also needs 5-7 CFM at 30-40 PSI.
On the other hand, a pneumatic stapler will require only 0.3 to 0.5 CFM on your machine. Besides, a framing nailer may need 2.5 CFM to complete your job. So you have to change the CFM for different purposes. That is why learning to change the CFM is important. If you are not experienced, you may find it hard to change. But worry not, we’re going to show you how to change the CFM down below.
How To Increase CFM On Air Compressor
As you know, an air compressor has a default setting of a specific CFM at specific PSI. So changing it might seem impossible for us. But it’s not impossible to change the CFM. We have figured out two ideas that can help you to increase the CFM for proper usage. They are—
Lowering The PSI
You must have known the classic theorem of the pressure and volume being inversely proportional to each other. We won’t waste your time by narrating the mathematical calculations or details. But increasing a metric will decrease another one automatically. So decreasing the PSI is a great idea to increase the pressure.
You do not need high pressure for using a high CFM tool anyway. Like a spraying air tool needs only 30-40 PSI to run. So you can lower the PSI to increase the CFM. While checking the air compressor, you’ll notice there’s a regulator on it. Dial down the regulator so that the compressor draws less air into the tank. So the pressure within the tank is less than usual. As a result, the CFM is increased.
However, there is a certain limit of changing the pressure. So you can increase the CFM to only a specific level. Changing the CFM in this way is totally safe for your machine. So do not worry about damaging your machine following this method.
Adjoining Two Compressors
As we mentioned earlier, you can only increase the CFM to a certain limit. So you still cannot achieve the target CFM over the maximum limit. But you can still get away with it if you have an extra one at home.
Our second method is to adjoin two air compressors to get the optimum CFM. The calculation is quite simple, if two compressors have 5 CFM & 3 CFM at a specific pressure, then you’ll get 8 CFM at the same pressure. But the question is how to connect them? It’s quite simple, just follow the instructions below:
- At first, take both of the compressors and connect the tanks of them with two separate hoses.
- Then connect both of the hoses with a third hose. The third one should have three different holes. One of them will work as the output and the rest of them will work as the input.
- Now you are just about to finish the process. Join the output of the third one with the compressor. That’s it, you are done.
This way you can increase the CFM without even lowering the pressure. But what if you don’t own a second compressor? Worry not, check out our air compressor reviews and buy an air compressor at a reasonable price. Also, you’ll need additional hoses to complete the task. You can buy the extra hoses from any hardware store at a reasonable price. This method also doesn’t affect your compressor, so you can use it without any hesitation.
Lastly, if you don’t want to go through this much hassle, just buy an air compressor that has a high CFM rating. For example, the CAMPBELL HAUSFELD VT6275 3RHP60GAL Vercompressor has a whopping 11.5 SCFM @ 40 PSI & 10.2 SCFM @ 90 PSI which is pretty impressive considering its price. And, if you need an even higher CFM air compressor, you can go for the Ingersoll-Rand IRT45465770 Compressor which is undoubtedly one of the highest CFM air compressors in the market.
Frequently Asked Questions
✅ What’s The Difference Between CFM And SCFM?
Despite both of them are units for air volume, they are different in measurement. CFM means Cubic Feet per Minute where SCFM means Standard Cubic Feet per Minute.
✅ What Is The Difference Between PSI And CFM?
PSI means Pound per Square Inch & CFM means Cubic Feet per Minute. The first one is for pressure where the later one is for the volume of air.
✅ Can You Convert PSI To CFM?
As you know, pressure and volume are not the same element, they’re have an opposite effect on each other. So you can achieve higher CFM by lowering the PSI.
✅ Is Higher CFM Better Air Compressor?
Depends on the purpose you’re intending for. For air tools like impact wrench or paint sprayer, high CFM is required.
✅ Is SCFM Higher Than CFM?
Yes, SCFM can be higher than CFM depending on the temperature and humidity.
So that’s how you can increase CFM on air compressor to make it more efficient. Try these smart methods at home to make the full use of your compressor. Let us know if you have any different idea, we would love to hear from you. Happy working!