How to Convert AC Compressor to Air Compressor?

If you’re into DIY projects that involve pneumatics or compressed air, then you might already know that air compressors can be quite expensive to buy, especially if you want one that’s powerful. That’s why many DIYers prefer to build their own air compressors using spare parts or repurposed components. If you’re looking to build your own air compressor, then you’re going to want to know how to convert an AC compressor to an air compressor.

In this post, we’ll guide you through the steps required to convert an AC compressor to air compressor.

1. Get the Right AC Compressor

The first thing you need to do is get the right air compressor for your needs. A typical automotive AC compressor works best, as they’re designed to compress refrigerant gases, which in turn can be used to compress air. However, make sure that the AC compressor you get is in good condition and hasn’t been damaged in any way. You should also make sure the model you get is compatible with the pulley system to drive the compressor.

2. Remove Unnecessary Components

An AC compressor is designed to work with a range of components that may not be needed in your air compressor. You can start by removing the clutch, pulley, and other components that may not be needed in your air compressor setup. This will make your air compressor more streamlined and efficient.

3. Clean the Compressor

After you have removed the unnecessary components, make sure you clean the compressor before using it. This includes removing any oil or greased that may be present. Failure to clean the compressor may cause contamination of your compressed air.

4. Replace the Oil

An AC compressor will contain oil that is not suitable for use with air compressors. In most cases, you will need to replace the oil with fresh oil from a hardware store. It is important not to overfill the compressor with oil.

5. Install New Fittings

After you have replaced the oil, you will need to install new fittings on the compressor. You can do this by welding or brazing the fittings in place. You can also use compression fittings to attach copper tubing to the compressor. Be sure to use Teflon tape for sealing threads.


Converting an AC compressor to air compressor is a fun DIY project that involves some knowledge of mechanics and pneumatics. If you take the proper precautions and follow the steps we’ve outlined in this blog post, you should be able to successfully convert an AC compressor to air compressor without much difficulty.

By doing so, you’ll be able to create a powerful air compressor that’s customized to your own needs, and at a fraction of the cost of buying a new one. We hope this guide has been helpful to you.

Ronald Cantrell

My name is Ronald and I'm a passionate home tools blogger who loves to help people find the perfect tools for their homes. I'm constantly on the lookout for the latest and greatest products so people can make informed decisions when it comes to their DIY projects. In my spare time, I like to tinker around with projects of my own and put my knowledge of tools to the test.

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