What is CFM in Air Compressor?

The first and foremost thing that you need to assess when buying an air compressor whether for commercial or personal usage is the air quantity needed for the application that you’re using it for.

What is CFM in Air Compressor

The answer to this depends on the purpose for which you need the air compressor and to analyse it you must know what is CFM in air compressor, as it can determine the air flow needed. Every air powered tool has its own requirement when it comes to temperature, volume, and pressure of the gas.

In this blog, we’ll be discussing a little more about the CFM.

CFM In An Air Compressor

We’ve talked a lot about CFM in our introduction but what actually is the CFM. CFM is the acronym for cubic feet per minute indicating the flow rate of the sir compressor.

It is the amount or quantity of the compressor to generate the pressure specified for a particular tool. So the CFM ratio of an air compressor can be reduced and increased accordingly.

CFM In An Air Compressor

The air compressor having high CFM ratio can produce more compressed air that is best for heavy duty operations and to power more dense air tools.

If you want to pick the best air compressor for your required tool then you must meet the requirement of the tool which will automatically make it function well. The biggest consideration you can make for your air compressor is the volume of tank and CFM ratio.

Does Higher CFM mean a Better Compressor?

Most people are often confused about the ideal CFM ratio for their air compressor. According to the experts, if the CFM of your air compressor is high then it can easily reach a higher pressure level.

Does Higher CFM mean a Better Compressor

With an increased pressure level, you can easily perform large scale and heavy duty operations, however, only higher CFM can’t guarantee that your air compressor would be better in every aspect. The only thing that a CFM can predict is a smoother procedure and bigger tank.

As important it is to have an air compressor with considerable CFM ratings, it doesn’t entirely mean that the compressor is the best for your needs as well, thus you shouldn’t always pick the one having the highest CFM.

Other than that, you must go for the compressor that is well-equipped with other domains of capabilities. The output produced should complement your application needs and by following it you won’t either overspend or get limited features for an air compressor.

How much CFM Does my Air Compressor Need?

When it comes to air compressors, you always have many questions related to the quantity of the components. As per the CFM, you should go for the scale of your required tool to be powered.

How much CFM Does my Air Compressor Need

For those looking for the answer to the quantity of CFM you need from an air compressor Is that you must need to consider the tool first. You can either just be using it for installing door trim or you can use it for powering automobiles. Both of these applications require different CFM ratings.

Other than that, you must also know about the running hours of the air compressor and the number of tools that will be powered from it simultaneously.

You can calculate the CFM by adding the required CFM ratio for every tool which you’re planning to power.

Are CFM and SCFM Same?

Before getting any deeper with the CFM, we must know the difference between CFM and SCFM as most people think of both as the same units.

Although both of them are used for their equivalent tasks, they can’t be referred to as the same because when calculated, they use different standard values.

CFM is the cubic feet per minute for air flow and the standard pressure for CFM is 90 PSI, but when you want to calculate SCFM then you should work with standard pressure and temperature defined above.


As we have reached the end of the blog, you might be having some queries. Some of them are answered as follows:

Why do you need to calculate CFM?

Calculating CFM in an air compressor is required as per the applications you’re trying to execute. Some tasks like refilling tires or backfilling the tampers doesn’t require extra CFM but rock drilling or air knives need high CFM for efficient performance.

Does an air compressor with increased CFM provide efficient performance?

As CFM means the amount of air release per minute, thus if your air compressor release a heavy amount of air then it can surely deliver efficient performance.

What should we choose CFM & SCFM?

Technically, CFM and SCFM have quite the same purpose and both are just modified versions of one another. So, if you’re aware of the mechanics and functionality both of them are offering then you can choose whichever you want. But, if you are new in this field then choosing SCFM would be safe.

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