Recommended Air Compressor Oil

by Geoff Hineman
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Like most machines with motors, lubrication is needed to ensure a long product life and guarantee day-to-day functionality. With a diverse array of oils on the market, it can be easy to get confused about which type of oil you need for your air compressor.

Manufacturer Recommended Oil

The first place to check when trying to find out which oil is best for your air compressor is with the manufacturer's recommendation. New compressors come with user manuals. If you have a used air compressor or your user manual does not recommend a specific type of oil, contact the manufacturer with your question.

Synthetic Compressor Oil

These days, most oil manufacturers have synthetic options available for air compressors. In fact, synthetics are usually recommended for compressors that are run for extended periods of time. Most synthetic oil manufacturers have a list of air compressor models their different synthetics work with best.

Regular Compressor Oil

If you don't feel like you need a synthetic oil for your air compressor, standard 20 weight and 30 weight oils should work just fine. Just make sure that whichever air compressor oil you choose, however, is nondetergent and nonflammable. The 20 and 30 weight options should be able to maintain viscosity in most air compressor applications. If you run at very high temperatures, however, you may want a 40 or 50 weight option.

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