California Air Tools Steel Tank Air Compressor

Last updated: May 28, 2019

California Air Tools Steel Tank Air Compressor

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We looked at the top Portable Air Compressors and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Portable Air Compressor you should buy.

Overall Take

The California Air Tools Steel Tank Air Compressor is heavier than many other portable air compressors, weighing 90 pounds. However, it comes with wheels, making it easy to transport around a specific area. Its oil-free pump reduces maintenance, and the lower noise level makes it perfect for using at home.

In our analysis of 94 expert reviews, the California Air Tools Steel Tank Air Compressor placed 2nd when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

The CALIFORNIA AIR TOOLS 10020 Ultra Quiet air compressor is designed to be one of the quietest 2.0 Hip electric air compressors in the industry having only 70 decibels of sound. The powerful 2.0 HP motor operates at only 1680 RPM creating less noise and less wear. The Oil-Free Dual Piston Pump System is engineered for high performance and durability. The oil-free pump allows you to use in different temperatures and uneven terrains. The 10.0 gallon steel air tank with wheels is easy to store and move freely. The 10.0 gallon air tank will fill (from empty to full) in less than 130 seconds. The control panel comes complete with 2 – 1/4″ quick release connectors that will allow you to use up to 2 tools at the same time. This air compressor delivers 5.30 CFM at 90 PSI allowing you to use larger air tools and more air tools at the same time. Having a low amp draw of only14.0 amps allows you to use normal 15 amp outlets. Powerful and maneuverable this air compressor is ideal where noise in a shop, garage or work area is a major issue.

Expert Reviews

What experts liked

Extremely powerful,yet quite pump. You can have a normal conversation while standing right next to it.
Here is where the CAT-10020 shines. Putting out only 70 decibels, it’s a huge difference from the normal 80-90 decibel models out there. It may not seem like a huge difference, but trust us, you’ll be thankful for it. You won’t be annoying any neighbors even when you’re working in the garage at night and carrying on a normal conversation with another person standing right next to the compressor is completely doable.
Many users turned to this air compressor because it is rated as the quietest 10-gallon air compressor on the market today, which can make a big difference if you are planning to use it frequently.
The problem with using an air compressor indoors is the noise so the California Air Tools CAT -10020 gets off to a great start – it’s a damn quiet air compressor. At 70 decibels it is quieter than the average conversation. Despite this, it has a two horsepower motor that keeps the noise down by powering two pistons to fill up the tank.
Since this air compressor operates with an oil-free pump, you can expect the least amount of maintenance. Not only is it oil-free, but the pump is also durable and long-lasting.

What experts didn't like

At 90 pounds, it is not as easy to move around as some other units.
On/off switch not in the best location.
Many users report that the unit stops working within the first year of use and that California Air Tools frequently declines to honor their already short one-year warranty.
Wheels not exactly the best – that’s why we didn’t mention them.
Rather massive for a portable air compressor (90 pounds).


An air compressor is a must-have tool for any DIYer. Even if you only ever use it to make sure your vehicle tires stay properly inflated, it’s handy to have around. You can use an air compressor for everything from spray painting a wall to doing minor car repair work. But perhaps the biggest reason to buy an air compressor is to power tools like nail guns, air impact wrenches and air hammers. You can also use a portable air compressor to quickly clear debris from a work area, boosting its versatility.

In a portable air compressor, it’s important to take weight and size into consideration. Some air compressors come with wheels, but that won’t help while taking it up and down stairs. If you opt for a larger air compressor without wheels, consider purchasing a cart with wheels or casters if you need to even occasionally move it around.

You should also consider size when choosing an air compressor. Chances are, you’ll want it out of the way when it’s not in use, but some can be massive, especially for an air compressor billing itself as “portable.” Take a look at where you’ll store your air compressor, and pay close attention to dimensions to make sure you don’t end up with a space hog.

You’ll likely put your compressor through some challenges during use, especially if you’re transporting it on a daily basis. If you fear you might accidentally drop it, it might be worth it to look for a model that builds in protection against shock.

Of course, you’ll also need to consider noise. It can never hurt to have even a slight reduction, even if you aren’t concerned with disturbing neighbors. You’ll find many air compressors output between 80 and 90 decibels, but newer models cut this down as low as 75 dB. At the lowest ranges, you’ll find that people can even carry on conversations near where you’re working without extra effort.

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