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smyrna5 08-12-2007 03:15 PM

Air Compressor Controls
Hi. I am new to the forum. It looks like a good one. I was in Lowes today and could not resist a floor model Kobalt 5.5 gallon 1HP air compressor they had marked down 75% to $37. I figured it was at least good for pumping up car tires. I didn't get any manuals with it of course, not even an air hose. Having never owned an air compressor, I am wondering what the big black knob you can turn is for? Also why are there two gauges? I assume I can just buy a quick disconnect hose to attach to the connector on it?


jiggyjack 08-12-2007 04:18 PM

Grats on the buy.

Quick breakdown. The black knob controls how much air pressure is allowed to go out through the hose. The gauges tell you how much air is in the tank and the other tells you the pressure going the the house to the tool. (This is adjusted with the big black knob.)

Hope this helps.

smyrna5 08-12-2007 04:22 PM

Thanks jiggyjack. Now to get a hose, some couplers and try it out on something. Not enough CFM to run most rotating air tools or spayers (3.8 CFM @ 40 psi, 2.9 CFM @ 90), but will probably run a nailer for home use, some smaller rotary tools, and for sure an air brush sized gun. Oh yeah, I have to scrounge up two lawnmower wheels for the frame, since it was missing those, but that shouldn't be too hard at the local thrift store or Harbor Freight.

SecretSquirrel 08-12-2007 04:32 PM

The formal name of the big black knob is the "pressure regulator". When adjusting for the desired pressure it is always best to turn the pressure down 10 or so PSI below the desired setpoint, then dial it up towards the setpoint. This will help the regulator's diaphragm to seat properly and keep it from constantly bleeding off air while it attempts to regulate the pressure.

Make sure that baby has some compressor oil in it before cranking it up (assuming it is not oil-less).

There should be a valve at the bottom of the tank for bleeding off condensation. Use it after periods of constant use.

smyrna5 08-12-2007 04:38 PM

SecretSquirrel, there is a water bleed valve on the bottom of the tank, and I also notice that the brass valve in the right in my picture is an air bleeder, which has a little ring you pull out to release the pressure. Should I use this to release the pressure when I am done using it?

Thanks again guys.

jiggyjack 08-12-2007 04:42 PM

Yes, that is to allow the water which will condense in you tank a way out.

SecretSquirrel 08-12-2007 04:44 PM


Originally Posted by smyrna5 (Post 57373)
I also notice that the brass valve in the right in my picture is a bleeder. Should I use this to release the pressure when I am done using it?


No, that is a pop off valve for relieving over pressure. I generally keep air in my tank because it costs electricity to keep it filled, but if you want or need to bleed off the tank then pop on an air nozzle on the end of the hose and blow off some shop tools. You could leave the tank charged but set the regulator to 0 PSI and that will relieve the pressure on the hose only.

jiggyjack 08-12-2007 04:59 PM

Agent double 0 zero is right sorry I just looked at the pic. I thought you were talking about the drain on the bottom.

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