Finalscope is reader-supported. As an affiliates we earn from qualifying purchases.

How To Increase CFM on Air Compressor? Quick Steps

Air compressors are widely used tools by the mechanics and sometimes by common people also, they have many applications but one of the most important is that they come in use with air tools to provide the compressed air to them, but a problem arises there that different tools have different requirement of CFM of air compressor, we can not purchase different air compressors for each of our air tools distinctly.

Thus sometimes there arises a condition that the air tool with which you want to use the air compressor requires a higher CFM from the compressor than what the CFM rating of air compressor is, in these conditions you want to increase the CFM of your air compressor to make it compatible with your air tool.

If you do not know what CFM(cubic feet per minute) is, then it is the rate of flow of the air that a compressor produces, like if we take an example if your compressor has 10CFM rating then it means that 10 cubic feet of air will come out of the compressor in one minute. The CFM that an air tool needs highly varies from tool to tool.

So now you can understand how important it is to increase the CFM of an air compressor because if you not to do so, your air tool will not work properly, but many of the people do not know that they can even increase the CFM of the compressor, so you are fortunate that you came to know about this and we will try our best to make sure that you understand this process of increasing CFM of the air compressor and will be able to implement the same.

Now let’s look at the methods with which you can increase the CFM

  • Decrease the pressure inside the compressor.
  • Use two air compressors.
  • Giving the compressor more time.

So basically these are the three ways in which we can increase the CFM, now we will look at each of them individually to have a clear vision.

Decrease the Pressure

This is the most common way of increasing the CFM and also very easy to perform.

The pressure and CFM are inversely proportional to each other which means if you decrease the pressure inside the compressor then its CFM will increase.

Now you will think how you can regulate the pressure of the compressor, it is very simple to do so, you just need to dial down the regulator of the compressor, when you will dial down the regulator, the compressor will intake the air slowly thus building less pressure inside it and increasing the CFM.

The plus point about using this method is that it is very safe while on the other hand with it you can extend the CFM only to a certain limit. 

Giving the Compressor More Time

This method is not expensive at all, as in this you just have to give more time to the air compressor to fill up the air inside it, and also adjust the pressure inside the compressor using a regulator. This method does not work when anyone needs a very high CFM as it can not increase the CFM after a certain limit.

Use Two Compressors

If you want to increase the CFM of the compressor to a great extent then the other two methods will not be able to do that, as they can only increase it to a certain limit. Therefore in such conditions, it is very preferable to use this method, but the main limitation of doing this is that it is expensive to buy two air compressors.

While it provides a very high CFM on the other hand there are various disadvantages of doing this.

  • You have to do setup between the two compressors to keep the CFM high, also it is difficult to maintain this setup.
  • The tanks of the compressors will take more time in getting full.
  • The compressors will also overheat more often.


Now that you know that how to increase CFM of an air compressor, we want to tell you that if you only want to use one air tool using the air compressor then purchase the air compressor according to its requirements so you don’t have to go through these hectic procedures, but if you are a mechanic and have to use different tools with it then we can understand that you can not purchase a different air compressor for each device so feel free and safe to use these methods.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: Can we decrease the CFM of an air compressor?

Yes, you can also decrease the CFM of the air compressor by simply filling up the tank regularly and adjusting the pressure with the regulator of the compressor. But make sure that you are not decreasing the CFM so much that you will be unable to fill the tank. The safer thing would be to purchase a compressor with a low CFM rating.

Q2: How can I know about the CFM that my compressor is producing?

CFM rating is generally present on the body of the air compressor but if you want to measure it manually then do follow these steps.
1. Divide the capacity of the tank(in gallons) by the 7.48 to convert it into cubic feet.
2. Release the air already present in the compressor.
3. Now start filling the tank and note the time till when it gets full.
4. Find the difference between the PSIG values written on the tank and measured after the completion of filling.
5. Divide the difference between the two PSIG values by 14.7 this will give the pressure added after refilling.
6. Multiply this pressure with the cubic feet capacity of the tank this will give the cubic feets intake by the compressor while filling.
7. Divide the number of cubic feet that you have found by the number of seconds taken in filling the tank and multiply the result by 60 to find the CFM.
Now check whether you can use the compressor with your tool after knowing about its exact CFM.

Q3: Will using two air compressors increase the CFM?

Yes, it will increase the CFM to a great extent.

Leave a Comment