Difference between an Air Compressor and An Air Tank

Difference between an Air Compressor and An Air Tank
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Difference between an Air Compressor and An Air Tank

Air Compressor vs. Air Tank

Let’s talk about another important topic today. Many people perceive compressed air tanks and air compressors to be the same thing. While they might have a lot of similarities, they both are quite different. Here we will try to explain both of them. So let’s break down the topic in two parts: air compressor and an air tank. And then first understand them individually and then compare them with each other.

Air Tank

A compressed air tank or a portable air tank is a small vessel or a tank, which is used to carry compressed air. It is a handy tool that is used widely in garage and workshops. You can it up with compressed gas and then carry it with you wherever you want. It is handy and portable. You can easily carry it with you. Compressed air tanks are used for filling up the auto vehicle tires including bikes, cars, trailers, and bicycles.

However, due to them being small, they can only be used for a few quick applications using a blow-off tip. The air tanks are very small to complete any other operations except for a few quick operations.

The compressed air tank is lightweight as compared to the portable air compressor. This makes them relatively more useful in many fields. It is also useful when you are traveling to a distinct location where there is unavailability of electricity. You can fill up a small air tank and carry it with you for ease.

Air tanks come in different sizes marked in gallons.

Air Compressor

An air compressor is an electric device used to compress air. It is used to supply airflow though out an entire device or equipment. The air compressor converts the power stored in air pressure into potential energy. Electrical, mechanical and chemical energy is also converted into potential energy. There are two basic types of air compressor:

  • Dynamic displacement: The dynamic compressor has two main parts namely a centrifugal compressor and an axial compressor. Dynamic displacement compressor turns kinetic energy in the air pressure into potential energy. Then the centrifugal force is induced with a spinner which is used to move air faster. This force first accelerates and then decelerates the air, which in turn is converted into pressure due to this system.
  • Positive displacement: A positive displacement compressor reduces the volume of the chamber into which the air is being compressed. The air is pushed into the tank and then it is compressed. When the container reaches its maximum pressure point. The valve opens up and all the air gets discharged into the system from the compression point.

Difference between an air compressor and a compressed air tank

As we explained above, an air tank is a container to hold compressed air and an air compressor has the power to convert air pressure into proper compressed air.

Air tank is recommended for small tasks that do not need a lot of air as they can only hold a small amount of air. Whereas an air compressor is used for bigger machines such as a refrigerator.

There is some commercial air compressor available in the market that has both the properties of an air tank as well as an air compressor.

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