Air Compressors

Hello, I am a new contractor and will be doing roofing. My question to you all is what compressors do you use or recommend for roofing?

Good luck and I will be anxious to see what some of these knowledgeable guys on here suggest. We use Jenny gas compressors, I believe they bought Emglo, with Honda motors. The Emglo with 5HP Honda motors used to run 4 fast shinglers all day everyday and they don’t anymore. They also break down constantly. Similar to the old Senco PW staplers, you couldn’t hurt them as long as you kept oil in them. Aah the good old days!

Nowadays I use a DeWalt airless, it’s the common one you find for ~$350 at the big box.

The longest lasting one I had was an Ingersoll Rand with a cast iron pump and a 5.5 Honda.

All the stuff not related to the pump & engine broke beyond my desire to repair after about 12 yrs of daily use.

If you want a gas powered compressor look for a cast iron pump and a Honda engine.

All the name brand airless (electric) compressors seem to be about the same from what I can see.

IIRC DeWalt bought Emglo with the same results as GAF buying Elk if you get my drift.

You can’t go wrong with Rolair.


Rolair gas compressor, single wheel, dual tank. 4 guns on a 4 nail job. 3 guns on a 6 nail. I have the rolair, bull 2hp electric when we have an outside 20amp plug. It’ll toss some 15’s, but it’ll run 2 guns. It’s an oil lubed compressor and it last a long time. It is fairly heavy, so get the wheel kit. I keep 2 of the red, Porter cable pancake, 110 electric, $89 compressors for the job where you have to carry it a long distance. It’s light and good for a year and toss it. I also like these because the box truck has a 2000 watt inverter which will run the little 110 pancake for the small repairs.


I use dewalt electric for 1-2 guys.
I use the Rolair gas for the crew 4-5 guys.
We usually use both on a job.
We will use the electric when it is just one guy renailing the decking or the felt.
Use the Gas when it is time for the whole crew to nail shingles.

I’d say close to 90 percent of all roofers and Framers in my area use the Rolair gas
Single wheel, dual tank, Honda 5.5

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Hitachi electric,and any gasser but a Hitachi.
Current newish one is a rolair and while it’s decent it’s not as nice as they used to be.

I burn up electrics every 2 years,doesn’t seem to matter the brand. I like Hitachi because the model I get is light and keeps 2 shooters working.

We use rolair has powered for 3-5 nailers and they run 5 days a week without too many break downs.