Tips for Choosing the Right Compressed Air for At-Home Sandblasting


The compressed air is the part the powers the blasting so, whether or not you are using a direct pressure or siphon delivery method, you need to choose the right air for your compressor. Once you have the right air, you need to make sure the rest of your equipment is right, including the sandblaster exhaust valves, to properly vent the air supply.

Different Types of Compressed Air

A piston air compressor is the most common and it’s often the least expensive. Two stage air compressor pumps will produce more compressed air, but they are more expensive. However, if the electrical power will be limited to a single phase and you need to have the most air you can get, then try this one. Vertical air compressors use less flow space but also pump out less air than horizontal air compressors. Vertical models need to pass a vibration test in order to stay upright. If you supply a large heavy tank and a small compressor pump, this is one way to pass the test. However, it also means that there will be less compressed air. Diaphragm air compressors are an older technology, since they use a bladder to pump the air, and these don’t normally have pressures of more than 100 psi.

Home Garage Power Will Be Different than Industrial Power

Note that most home garages have a residential electrical power supply ranging from 208 to 203 volt single phase. You will want to access your home’s electrical panel for the air compressor usage.

What to Know When Comparing Air Compressors

Air compressors have two different volumes of compressor airflow that you can find in the specifications. One is displacement and one is a working compressor number. The working compressor number is the usable air volume and you will find a number between 90 and 100 psi. A higher psi means a faster cleaning. These are usually more expensive, but you may find the cost is worth the time saved.

Factors that Affect Sandblasting Efficiency

It isn’t just the air that will affect sandblasting efficiency. If you are buying a smaller abrasive blasting cabinet, it means you will also have a smaller dust collector. The result is that you will have to run the cabinet for longer periods of time. If you operate a smaller gun with the air compressor that could work for a larger gun, this will extend the cleaning time. If you are using a smaller dust collector, then the workspace will require more frequent cleaning.

Finding the right compressed air is just part of the battle for having an efficient sandblasting project. You need to make sure that your other supplies are compatible and you choose the right delivery method to fit your needs. With the right delivery method, air, abrasive, and sandblaster exhaust valves, you will be successful.