Can you add an extra tank to an air compressor?

Can you add an extra tank to an air compressor?

Air compressors continue to go a long way in ensuring everyday technology is possible more safely and efficiently. It powers most tools used for creating or making daily necessities. That said, we aim to address commonly asked questions about air compressors. Why add an extra tank to an air compressor? A lot comes to mind when asked such a question. Ideally, there are multiple reasons why anyone can opt to add an additional tank to an air compressor.

For starters, you can opt to add a tank to an air compressor if the air tool you are using draws more air than the air compressor can deliver. If you add a tank when you’re not using compressed air, then your air compressor may run and fill both tanks. This means that your air compressor will be running much faster and longer before stopping or reaching cut out pressure. It will then fill a larger volume. 

Similarly, adding an extra tank significantly increases compressed air’s storage capacity and allows users to complete multiple tasks much quicker. With minimal effort and a shortlist of items from your dealer, you’ll be able to achieve various tasks that your air compressor alone can never do. 

Regardless, before adding another tank, always ensure that your air compressor will handle the increased run time. Suppose your air compressor’s duty cycle is low; an additional tank may cause the compressor to run too long hence damaging the compressor motor. 

Before adding an extra tank to your air compressor, here are a few considerations to keep in mind.

1. Place the extra air tank closer to your job site.

The potential benefit of adding an extra air tank is the fact that it can be placed near a job site. Suppose you’re working on your roof; it would be much convenient to run an airline from the heavy air compressor at the ground to the secondary portable tank on the roof. With this, it would be much easier to move around and run an airline to the nail gun. 

Similarly, adding another air tank to your air compressor equally enables you to use higher demand air tools for an extended period of time. However, for safety reasons, if your air supply or pressure diminishes and your air tool begins to wind down, ensure you stop working to let the air tanks come back up to cut out pressure. Simply put, always be mindful of your duty cycle.

2. Plumbing the extra air tank

Plumbing the additional air tank determines the need for modification to ensure that air from the compressor pump flows both into the main tank as well as the new tank at the same time. 

If plumbed this way, it becomes much effortless to use one pressure switch on the air compressor capable of monitoring the pressure in both tanks and, in reverse, shut the air compressor off when the pressure reaches the normal cut out the setting of the original compressor.

How to add an extra tank to an air compressor for more compressor capacity

Whether your compressor is small or not just enough to power your tools, you seemingly don’t have to go the extra mile of getting a bigger or newer setup. However, with these simple and straightforward instructions, you’ll be able to add an extra tank to your existing compressor with ease. 

  • Purchasing the required parts

Before opting for an additional air tank for your compressor, it would be a lot wiser to visit harbor freight, home depot, or any other preferable hardware shop that will provide you with all the essentials needed for the project. 

  •  Drain the compressor

Before assembling your add-on tank, make it a priority to release all the air as well as drain any condensation from the original air compressor. To ensure your compressor stays in shape and to avoid rot or explosions, draining your compressor is essential. 

  •  Removal of the safety valve and installation of the Tee

Here, you’ll need to use an adjustable wrench to remove the air compressor’s safety valve. Upon removing the safety valve, you can now prepare your brass tee with RTV silicone adhesive around the male side’s threads. Once this is done, install the Tee into the spot you removed the safety valve from.

You can then clean any residue from the threaded end, install the safety valve into the top and the brass tee’s female end. After doing this, attach the new compressor hose to the brass tee’s bottom, female side. Ensure all the installed pieces are nice and tight but not too tight.

3. Fill the extra tank with air.

Upon completing the above steps, you’ll now need to fill the extra tank with air. First, turn the dial to a closed position. With this, your compressor will close off the air to the hose but allow air to pass through the brass tee you had installed into the new air tank. 

With the dial closed, you can now turn on your device. You’ll be able to notice that none of the adjustments would have affected the functionality of your air compressor. 

Frequently asked questions

1.Does adding an extra tank increase CFM?

Well, by building less pressure in the tank, the CFM of the compressor is more likely to increase. This may involve dialing down the regulator. Once you dial down the regulator, air will flow into the tank slowly and, in reverse, build a lower pressure inside. The lower pressure will then allow you to have a much higher CFM.

2.Is it okay to put a bigger pump on an air compressor?

Ideally, not much can be done to improve an air compressor’s performance without upgrading to a larger motor. You may burn out your existing motor if you try to run a larger pump. 

3.Do screw compressors run backward?

No, since they are specifically designed to rotate in one direction. However, if you prefer changing the rotation direction, it would be a lot wiser to re-design other components to accommodate that change. 

4.Does the size of an air compressor matter?

Well, this entirely depends on the type of project you’re working on. If your project requires you to use air tools that need high air volume for continuous use, it will be much preferable to consider a much larger tank and vice versa.

5.How do I speed up an air compressor?  

Speeding up your compressor may require you to keep the intake air cool. You can either clean the air off before using or prevent pressure drop as much as possible. Preferably, you can stay small with the size of the compressor while ensuring regular lubrication.

6.Do air compressors explode?

Sure, but it entirely depends on either manufacturing defects or how regularly you maintain your compressor. The most common cause of air compressor tank rupture is the tank’s corrosion, often due to water condensation. Therefore, periodically draining your compressor daily after each use is essential. 

7.What’s the life span of a regular air compressor?

These units can last up to 15 years, depending on how you regularly maintain them. 

8.Do most air compressors take long to fill up?

No. If your compressor takes longer to fill up, then it could be that it typically has an intake or pressure valve failure or gasket failure. 

Wrap up

We’ve narrowed down all the essential aspects that should be considered before adding an extra tank to an air compressor. However, before making this big step, ensure you understand and know what you’ll use the compressor for. Regardless, with our fantastic value bundle options and instructions, you can get the project started!