air compressor stopped working

Why My Air Compressor Stopped Working – 9 Possible Reasons & Solutions

This comprehensive guide would help you troubleshoot the machine if your air compressor stopped working. Most air compressor users don’t understand what happens to the air compressor when it is not running. Instead of coming to any conclusion, it would be best to look for the root cause which will lead you to the solution.

Without troubleshooting, finding the exact reason is quite challenging. A trip-off condition on the circuit breaker, less power requirement, faulty capacitors, etc., are some of the root causes of the air compressor not working.

We will look into the troubleshooting, root cause, and solution regarding the air compressor not running. Continue reading this guide!

Troubleshoot, Root Cause, and Solution

We looked at 6 possible reasons why the air compressor stopped working. Read them carefully to get your air compressor’s best efficiency and outcome.

Is there Power?

Each air compressor’s power requirement varies in addition to its power access. Some models run on electricity while others work with fuel or starting capacitors or an induction motor. We recommend you not run an electric air compressor unless you have minimal knowledge of technical jargon.

When operating an electric compression system, ensure the electrical power plug is well-secured to a wall socket. A loose plug may stop the power supply, causing the air compressor to stop working.

Don’t use power strips and power bars. The machine can’t be connected directly to the electricity sources with them.

Consult your local electrical repair shop and get the list of the best electrical accessories for your air compressor.

Note: Be careful with the extension cord as their gauge ratings are different. Use 10 to 25-gauge extension cords to avoid choking off the power going to your compressor.

Inspect the Compressor Switch

Sometimes, the power switch couldn’t turn on the air compressor when it stopped working. This way, inner circuit units, and the automatic run sensor get affected.

Detecting any minor problem becomes much easier when you troubleshoot your air compressor.

A circuit breaker’s trip-off condition can stop an air compressor’s operation. Also, power might be unavailable on the pressure and on/off switch.

Taking assistance from some small diagnostic tools, an operator can check the flow of electricity.

Note: Constant stops and starts can be caused because of the air compressor circuit boxes with a partial connection.

Faulty Start Relays and Capacitor

Defective capacitors can do a lot of damage to air compressors. A hard start capacitor is the best way of troubleshooting the air compressor.

If you get confirmation from your technician regarding the broken capacitor, replacement is the only solution.

Similar to a defective capacitor, a faulty start relay will also give a sign. In this case, fresh start relays need to be installed in the air compressor to eliminate the problem.

Damaged Pressure Switch

If your air compressor stops working, inspect the pressure switch condition. Follow the below process to inspect the pressure switch.

Step 01: First, release the air by opening the drain valve. Ensure that the air compressor is completely free from air and water vapor. For this, a blowgun will be handy. Attach the blowgun to the drain valve. Thus, inside air and water vapor will release from the air compressor properly.

Step 02: Now, close the drain valve. Then, plug the air compressor into a power source and turn it on by flipping the pressure switch lever.

Step 03: Next, the pressure switch will create a “click” sound, be attentive to hear it. Even the quietest air compressor will generate that sound. If you hear the click sound, be sure that your air compressor doesn’t have a faulty pressure switch.

On the other hand, there will be no sound in a damaged pressure switch. In such a situation, your mechanic might adjust the pressure of your air compressor.

Is there Sufficient Oil?

An oil-lubricated air compressor requires a constant supply of oil to perform efficiently. Every air compressor’s pump comes with a manufacturer-specified oil level. If the oil level is low, the air compressor will stop working. So, periodically check the level of the oil. At the same time, inspect for any potential leak in the pump area.

Improper oil viscosity is also responsible for the air compressor’s stopping working. Choose an oil with the correct viscosity. If not, drain and replace the oil without fail. Wrong compressor oil can do long-term damage to your air compressor.

While in the case of a pancake air compressor, the machine has to be placed on an even surface. Each time the oil was refilled, the oil flowed to the side of the machine at the bottom surface.

Check the Receiver’s Pressure

The Air compressor’s operation can be affected due to sluggish build-up. Dirt accumulation in the air tanks can impede the air compressor’s pressure rebuilding process. So, we recommend you clean the filthy air filters periodically.

Receiver pressure also reduces if air leaks from the loose joints. You can solve the air compressor stopped working problem by replacing the air filter or tightening joints.


When should I replace my air compressor?

Examine the air compressor health and replace it if you find the below factors,

  • Unrepairable and broken parts of the air compressor
  • It consumes lots of energy, and the issues can’t be solved
  • Reduction of the capacity

What are the signs of a bad air compressor?

A lousy air compressor shows several symptoms. The common signs are,

  • Unbearable noise from the air compressor
  • Leakage of air
  • Sudden shutdown
  • Stops working completely or continue working

Can an air compressor be repaired?

Air compressors’ problems are different, and all problems are not the same. Some problems can easily be repaired, while others are a bit troublesome. Repairing an air compressor is easy for those with little knowledge of air compressor parts. However, we always recommend you consult a mechanic if your air compressor shows poor performance.

Final Words

Has your air compressor stopped working? Due to many reasons, an air compressor’s performance and efficiency can reduce or stop working. Troubleshooting is the best way to identify the problem, and then the solution will be much easier.

The above tips might help you save a few bucks. However, you should take your air compressor to a repair shop if it stops working.

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