How To Paint A Car With A Small Air Compressor? Explained

Big-sized compressors are the only ones fit for car painting, or small air compressors also stepping up?

Queries start to arise when you come around to choose between small air compressors or big ones. A small air compressor is a must to paint a medium-duty project on a car with precision and quality.

While you are planning on painting the whole body with small air compressions, the capacity often can’t provide the necessary amount of paint needed. How to paint a car with a small air compressor?

Differences in pressure and user experience can be noticed during the usage of such any size air compressor. Then why would you use such small 2.5-25 gallons air compressors? Keep reading as you explore the in-depth research we provided!

How To Paint A Car With A Small Air Compressor

Small Air Compressor

Small Air Compressor

Be it dust removal or any light to the medium-duty task; small air compressors are the handiest of tools out there.

From saving money to maintaining a wonderful quality, a job feels like an achievement for most individuals.

Many types of air compressors run framing nail guns. However, some extra features form into a very impactful unit.

There are some qualities and others and pressure a small air compressor can live up to. Therefore they vow up-to all those fittings needed to make it the finest ones out there.

However, painting jobs will get some firm advantages from this. So let’s see how it can be built up to.

The Efficiency Of Car Painting

Car Painting

Ever wonder how much you can save up just by replacing that big old air compressor with a small one? The money, along with quality, lives up to many customers’ expectations.

Effectiveness and efficiency are something every customer needs. When you try to look into the base form of these paintings, many factors of small air compressors come in hand.

Appropriate Flow Rate

These little air compressors sometimes deliver nearby 100 PSI to 125 PSI maximum.

These flow rates match with the metal and body structure of car paintings, for which this flow rate is regarded as the perfect flow for car painting. The oil-lubricated shoe also shows durability.


It also adds to the durability of the car too. When we use these small air compressors with an initial fill, the special synthetic oil and air compressor oil also adds a plus point to the oil regulator.

When using the nail gun, the round-headed framing gives off a combo kit that contains enough power to harden into the hardest body metal.

The Paint Job

The Paint Job

Are you ready for the paint job process? The first and foremost thing that one has to keep in mind while getting ready to paint is the basic concern for these.



Before you risk your life painting the car, use these precautions and avoid the risk factors that may come up during your process.

Firstly, a pair of gloves. Take care of the hands first because they are the first thing you’ll be using.

Therefore go for the small air compressor you need mainly. Take the nail gun and header part. Adding onto the cart, make sure you have an extra water transporter too.

These are the basic requirements on the equipment part. Then comes the actual process.

How To Paint A Car With A Small Air Compressor?

How To Paint A Car With A Small Air Compressor

Firstly, painting a car with a small air compressor is much harder than it seems. Sometimes the air compressor may come up short with air volume or CFM while doing so.

Therefore these are the steps you need to follow –

1. Get Ready With The Equipment’s

Get Ready With The Equipment's.JPEG

Get all the equipment ready and in an executable state. Wearing gloves and other safety accessories is an extra add-on.

2. Test Out The Compressor

Test Out The Compressor

Being the painting process as you plugged in. Test out the air pressure as you start painting from a corner. If you experience drop downs between the air pressures often, then your air compressor will struggle a bit.

However, if the pressure drops stay smooth and perfectly, use the chance to paint the whole car in one shot.

3. Begin Painting

Begin Painting

Go around the car as you spray. Use the dust-removing advantage and precision small air compressors provide and use them to get a better grip on your paint. Detailed painting upgrades the value even a small air compressor can provide.

4. Keep Refilling

Keep Refilling

During the whole process, you are supposed to run out of air very often. Therefore keep refilling and the process ongoing.

Whether the tank gets heated up or creates up some water level, then you should stop and give some rest to it.

5. And The Final Part!

Keep an eye out for the water buildup on the tank. Make sure the water doesn’t build up that much. Try to drain the whole air compressor tank if water builds up totally.

Give it some time, drain it, get your work done. A water separator can be bought to maintain an automatic drain-up every time. Small air compressors often come up with water separators.

The average amount of passes you will do around the car is more than 20-30 times. Therefore between every 2-3 passes, try to drain up again. This keeps the painting job safe and harmful to you.

With all these processes going on, painting the whole car may be done in an hour or two. Therefore do the finish off properly.

After finishing, take off the water separator to a safe place and turn off all the switches before you take to pull the plugs off.

By following this process, you can paint the car just according to your plan. Sometimes some of these may not feel necessary as it is an elaborated guide on car painting with small air compressors.

Therefore just follow this guide, and you are totally good to go!


In the end, all that matters is getting your job done while maintaining good quality. There are many alternatives but what would you choose?

If you have used big-size air compressors, you know how the capacity lets you freely roam around while painting the car.

However, small ones provide precise accuracy along with better in-detail quality. It makes the car paint look more expensive it actually is.

The decision stays up-to you. It may feel a bit troublesome, but it stands as one of the best out there for home users, and we totally recommend it. I hope now you know how to paint a car with a small air compressor.

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