Hiring air compressors to drive tools and equipment on your work site can keep down costs as well as help your tools to last longer. But the benefits of compressed air don' stop there.

Here are 13 ways air compressors are widely used in industry, leisure and in daily life. Some of them you may not expect.

1. Expanding

While most air compressors store pressurised air to drive a motor, in their most basic form they use this air directly. Compressed air can be used to inflate vehicle and bicycle tyres, inflatables, air beds and other assets.

2. Spray painting

Small air compressors are used to power airbrushes for personal and commercial use, from delicate desktop brushes for artists to larger systems for repainting and touching up vehicle bodies.

3. Pressure washing

Pressure cleaners and water blasters use compressed air to pump water at high pressure, enabling more effective cleaning of concrete floors and masonry, stain removal and engine bay degreasing.

4. Fountains

Air compressors also control the precise release of water in fountains and timed water displays, as well as snow displays in shopping centres.

5. Scuba diving

Compressed air is what makes diving possible. Pressurised air stored in tanks allows divers to stay underwater for longer.

6. Paintball

Paintball guns are connected to air canisters that use compressed air to fire ammunition. Compressed air also powers air guns.

7. Cooling

Probably the most common use of air compressors in everyday life, refrigerators, freezers and air conditioners all use air compressors to chill the air.

8. Engines

Air compressors are included in vehicle engines for heating and cooling, as well as in air brakes for larger trucks and trains. Many theme park rides are run on compressed air.

9. Health

Compressed air has a number of uses across the health services, such as dentists using compressed air to clean away debris and prevent infection during treatments and hospitals delivering oxygen to patients.

10. Agriculture

Farms use air compressors to spray crops, power equipment, transport feed and grain to silos and ventilate greenhouses.

11. Manufacturing

Air cylinders power a range of pneumatic processes in factories and manufacturing plants, from positioning, cutting and sanding to packaging and transport.

12. Workshops

Petrol and electric air compressors can drive power tools for personal use and in machine shops. Small tools such as nail guns and impact wrenches only require a small air compressor, while a more powerful unit will be needed for pneumatic drills, sanders or grinders.

13. Construction

Construction sites can power a range of tools and equipment using a larger air compressor, such as drills, hammers and compactors. For remote sites without reliable access to electricity, petrol and diesel air compressors with large fuel tanks will provide uninterrupted power so you don't need to charge equipment or run a generator.

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