Craftsman is a well-known line of tools, work wear and lawn and garden equipment (including Air Compressors) that was introduced 90 years back in the US. It was owned by KCD IP LLC, which is a subsidiary of Sears Holdings. It was named as ‘America’s Most Trusted Brand’ and brand with ‘Highest Expectations’ in the year 2007. It is the official tool brand for National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and also DIY network.
Recently in this month itself, Stanley Black & Decker, an industrial toolmaker, announced that it will acquire the Craftsman brand from Sears Holdings Corporation SHLD for $900 million. The deal says that Sears will continue to collect a percentage of all new Craftsman sales for the next 15 years after the closure of the deal. It will also be able to continue selling the company’s tools for the first 15 years and that too royalty free post which it will have to pay 3% licencing fee.
Sears’ tool line has used the concept of good, better, best for many of its product lines and Craftsman brand is used for the middle tier. The highest tier is called Craftsman Industrial or professional. A few years back, the top brass at Sears decided to outsource the manufacturing process of the brand to places having a cheaper labour like China and Taiwan. Now the stuff is manufactured there, but the patrons swear that the quality is unmatchable to stuff made in the USA.
What do Air Compressors do?
Among the many things that Craftsman is known for, air compressors are one. Air compressors are today an essential household product or more specifically an essential garage product. It is required to have an air compressor for a variety of air tools (For instance, impact wrenches or air guns required for roofing or other purposes). It has an electric motor attached to it and it helps in preserving the air pressure in the tank. On connecting the air grubs to compressor, it helps in adding and checking the air pressure in the car’s tyres.
Top 4 Air Compressors Produced By Craftsman
They have a wide range of air compressors, but let us review the top four of their products that are helpful in day to day life.
#1 – Craftsman 3 Gallon Oil-Lube 135psi Portable Air Compressors with 3 Piece Kit
This is a perfect mate for all types of petty jobs required at home. You are fully sorted if you want to lie down and relax on an air mattress. Similarly, if you want to conduct a pool party or get a bouncy house ready for your little bundles of joy, there’s nothing to worry with this tool at home. Think of any task that requires inflation, the 1.0HP of this Craftsman 3-Gallon oil lube portable air compressor will do it for you. This small yet strong and tough mate of yours will make you a hero by doing house repairs yourself. It operates pneumatic tools like paint sprayers, air ratchets and nail guns with ease. It is extremely light in weight and hence convenient to move around with an ergonomic design. It comes with a hose, a small bottle of oil, and the owner’s manual accessory kit includes ball tire chuck, a male plug and a seal tape. The oil glass sight feature enables you to check the oil level without the need of dip stick.
#2 – Craftsman 33 Gallon Quiet Vertical Air Compressors
This compressor is priced on a slightly higher side, but when it comes to reliability and durability it is worth it. When compared to 150 PSI compressors, its life is nearly 20 percent more and since it has longer run time you can complete your chore faster and peacefully. It recharges very fast and hence the downtime between uses is less. The wheels make portability a child’s play.
Its big 33-gallon tank, oil free design, and easy portability make it a perfect choice for light to medium automotive projects. There is a high flow regulator in it, which lets you have the full power of compressor if the need arises. The best part is that it needs a low voltage start-up of 110-120V, which makes it work with an extension cord too.
The other feature that makes it a perfect choice is that it has two connects. It means you can attach two tools at one go, which results in fast working as you don’t need to waste time changing tools on a single line. It can be stored in any climatic condition with no tension of ruining or spoiling as it is oil-free design and hence no maintenance is needed.
#3 – Craftsman 10-Gallon 1 HP Oil-Lube Air Compressors
If you are looking for something that is between the above two both in terms of requirements as well as price, then you should go for this model. While doing the woodwork if you need a little more power, then use the 2-in-1 nailer/stapler that comes with this compressor. Similarly, if you need to inflate tyres of the bike or need to change your car Tyre, this 135 PSI compressor is spot on. It has a durable cast iron cylinder with an aluminium head, which helps in dissipating heat better. To ensure that it stays in good working condition, all you need to do is keep it lubricated, which is easy to do as the sight glass makes it easy to keep an eye on the oil level.
#4 – Craftsman 3-Gallon Air Compressors 1 HP Tank
This is one of the most versatile products, which is not only easy on the pocket but also contains all the required features that one needs in daily routine. It is portable with a cushioned grip handle, lightweight, high in performance, durable and easy to maintain. Even if the compressor is not used, it holds the pressure. It comes with a 17 piece kit that has all the tools that you may require for small tasks, including a coiled 1/4 in. x 25 ft. nylon air hose, blow gun and spare quick-connects.
How to Operate Your Craftsman’s Air Compressors?
These are meant to be used by layman and thus do not require any rocket science. There is a manual included in the kit and going through it will help you operate it. Here are some of the tips that you may find handy.
- When you unbox the Craftsman 3 Gallon Oil compressor, make sure the platform is flat and the power switch should be turned on only after plugging the cord into the outlet.
- Check the drain valve. If it is opened, you will not be able to inflate, so make sure it is tightly closed. You should use a wrench to do that.
- You need to be sure that the compressor shuts off automatically when the pressure reaches the inbuilt levels like for instance in a 3-gallon oil processor it should shut off once it reaches 100-115 psi. To ensure this smooth functioning, you should let the compressor run like that only for few minutes after turning it on.
- Always keep an eye on the oil level after every use for proper functioning of the compressor.
- The air control valve needs to be adjusted according to the air pressure you want in your air tool.
- One last thing to keep in mind is that the moisture should be removed from the compressor’s tank as it may lead to rust formation impacting the performance of the compressor.
How to Know When Your Craftsman 3 Gallon Oil Compressor Needs Oil?
Checking oil and replacing it is one of the most important things required for the long lasting performance of oil compressor. If you keep using it, the oil gets thickened and forms black coatings. If not changed, this overused thick oil can result in overheating the compressor and also permanent damage. So, you need to be cautious about the oil levels and oil quality.
- Keep an eye on the oil levels through sight glass after every use.
- If possible, keep a record of your oil changes. This will help you to figure out when the compressor oil needs a change.
- Go through the manual to know the correct volume of oil required for the efficient working of your compressor.
- A thumb rule says that after every 300 hours of working oil needs to be changed, but if you can’t keep the hour count make it a habit to change oil every year if you are not a very frequent user.
Portable air compressors help in reducing the time and effort required to complete projects in the home workshop, any job site, or a small repair shop you own. Thus, in your own interest, it is advisable to buy one depending upon your requirements.