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Air Tools and Air Consumption

Average air volume requirement

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Average Free Air consumption of some common air tools are indicated in the table below. The air consumption is based on commonly used working pressure of approximately 90 psi (620 kPa, 6.2 bar).

Air Tool/EquipmentAverage Free Air Consumption
(cfm)
Air Bushing 20
Air Filter Cleaner 3
Air Hammer, light 4
Air Hammer, heavy 22
Air Hoist, 1000 lb 5
Air Motor - 0.5 hp 6 - 10
Air Motor - 1 hp 12 - 15
Air Motor - 2 hp 18 - 20
Backfill Tamper 30 - 35
Bead Breaker 12
Bench Rammer 5
Brad Nailer 0.5
Blow Gun 3
Body Polisher 2
Body Orbital Sander 5
Brake Tester 4
Burr Tool, small 4
Burr Tool, large 5 - 6
Bus Lift 6
Car Lift 6
Carbon Remover 3
Carving tool 10 - 15
Caulking Gun 4
Chain Saw 7 - 22
Chipping Hammer 30 - 40
Chisel Hammer 3 - 10
Circle Saw - 8 inch 12
Circle Saw - 12 inch 17
Compression Riviter 1
Concrete Vibrator 20 - 50
Demolition Tool 30 - 40
Cut-Off Tool 4 - 10
Die Grinder 1/4" 4 - 6
Disc Grinder - 7" 5 - 8
Drill, Reversible or Straight-Line 3 - 6
Drill 3/8" 4
Drill 1/2" 4
Dust Blow Gun 3
File/Saw Machine 3-5
Floor Rammer 7
Framing Nailer 2.5
Garage Door, Pneumatic 3
Grease Gun 4
Grinder 2 in Horizontal 5 - 10
High Speed Grinder 8
Hoists, 1 ton 1
Hydraulic Riveter 4
Hydraulic Lift, 8000lb 6
Hydraulic Floor Jack 6
Impact Driver 1/2" 4
Impact Driver 3/4" 7.5
Impact Driver 1" 12
Impact Wrenches - 3/8" 2 - 5
Impact Wrenches - 1/2" 4 - 5
Impact Wrenches - 1" 10
Jackhammer, medium 135
Jitterbug Sander 6
Lift, Bus or Truck 10
Lift, Car 6
Mini Die Grinder 4 - 6
Nailer, Brad (30 psi) 2
Nailer, Framing (50 psi) 4
Needle Scaler 8 - 16
Nibbler 4
Nutsetter - 3/8" inch 3 - 6
Nutsetter - 3/4" inch 5 - 8
Orbital Sander 6 - 9
Paint Sprayers, production gun 20
Paint Sprayers, Small Hand Operated 3 - 7
Pavement breaker 35 - 60
Pneumatic doors 2
Rammers - small 3
Rammers - large 10
Ratchet, 1/4" 3
Ratchet, 3/8" 4
Rivet Buster 40 - 50
Rock Drill 100
Rotational Sander 8 - 15
Sand Blasters 6 - 400
Sander, Dual 11 - 13
Screwdriver 1 - 6
Shears 8 - 16
Spark plug cleaner 5
Speed Saw 5
Spray Cleaner 5
Spray gun, Basic (20 - 45 psi) 0.5 - 3.5
Spray gun, Commercial (30 - 70 psi) 4 - 7
Spring Oilers 4
Strait line Sander 4 - 7
Tapper - 3/8" inch 3 - 5
Tire Changer 1
Tire Inflation 2
Transmission flusher 3
Upholstery Stapler (30 psi) 2
Vacuum Cleaners 6
Valve Grinders 2

Ratings based on a 25% load factor - tools running 25% of the time.

  • 1 psi (lb/in2) = 6,894.8 Pa (N/m2) = 6.895x10-3 N/mm2 = 6.895x10-2 bar
  • 1 cfm (ft3/min) = 1.7 m3/h = 0.47 l/s
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