Replace the Regulator on a Pancake Air Compressor

Picture of Replace the Regulator on a Pancake Air Compressor
I borrowed my father's compressor to finish some work on my deck.  As you can see in the picture, it's been around the block a couple of times.  After setting it up one day I could hear more air than usual escaping.  Turns out the regular had broken right where the air hose connected.  Duct tape from a previous attempt to stop an air leak was all that was holding the hose on the compressor.

Luckily, replacing the regulator is an easy job, and can be completed in less that half an hour.
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Step 1: Materials and Tools

Picture of Materials and Tools

1/4 inch Mini Regulator - under $20.  Most hardware stores should have one of these in stock.
Teflon tape


Adjustable Wrench - for turning stuff
3/16 Allen wrench - for turning other stuff
Scrubbing pad - for scrubbing stuff

I didn't take a pic of the tools needed, I figure most folks know what we're dealing with here.

Step 2: Remove Old Regulator

Picture of Remove Old Regulator
With adjustable wrench in hand I set about removing the old regulator.  First I removed the duct tape hold on the air hose.  Judging from the amount of rust inside the break I'm guessing it's been cracked for a long time.

I placed the wrench around the body of the old regulator to get it off, as I couldn't turn it by hand.  As soon as I applied pressure the entire regulator fell to pieces.  After that everything came off easily.  You'll want to save the female quick connect to use on the new regulator, if it's still in good shape.  

I also saved the gauge.  The new regulator came with one, so now I have a spare for another project.  Sweet!
Between this post and the resourceful hardware store clerk at True Value I was able to fix my compressor. I had always been one of the duct tape fixers as well but that only lasts so long!
Robot Lover4 years ago
pancake compressors are just to small for me! But they can be great if you are trying to save space.
neuropol (author)  Robot Lover4 years ago
Well, pancake compressors are only really good for nailers. Using a larger compressor for that is impractical.
tinker2344 years ago
wow wonder how to make a air compreaser
Sometmes old how-to magazines, like Popular Mechanics and Popular Science have had articles on how to make an air compressor from an old lawnmower engine. I cannot tell you which issue of which magazine, but you might want to check an Instructable I did for information on searching these magazine archives. I would look in the editions of these magazines published in the 1950s and 1960s. You will also need an electric motor to turn the modified lawnmower engine. Check the prices of components you will need before you begin and you may simply want to buy a small or medium home air compressor to suit your needs.
ok thanks soory about the mispelling have 3 computers on oldest one
Robot Lover4 years ago
*how to replace an air compressor.

: )