How to Adjust Cut-Out Pressure on Air Pressure

Last updated: November 17, 2020
Published 2:22 am


An air compressor is one of the most versatile tools used by both homeowners and professionals. It serves various purposes, including pumping air into your tires or powering up a pneumatic tool. Using the air compressor is also very easy; there are certain techniques you need to master for your air compressor to perform excellently. One of the techniques to learn is how to adjust the cut-out pressure. Before you buy an air compressor, you need to know the size of the compressor you want. If you are a professional contractor and do projects that use tools that require a lot of compressed air, buying a small-sized or pancake air compressor is not a good idea because it will cut out very often. If you work with smaller pneumatic tools that require less air, you can see Best Pancake Air Compressor in 2020. In this article, you’ll learn everything there is to know about cut-out pressure.

For more on air compressors, see

How to Use An Air Compressor?

Air Compressor Maintenance Guide

Air Compressor Piping Diagrams and Tips

Air Compressor Safety Tips

How to Adjust Air Compressor Pressure Regulator?

What Is Cut-Out Pressure?

Cut-out pressure is set for safety purposes and to reduce the risk of damage. The air compressor works in a way that the pressure in the tank rises to power a pneumatic tool. The pressure rises to a certain limit set by you; that limit is called the cut-out limit. When the pressure reaches this limit, it cuts out and stops increasing. This limit is set to prevent much air from getting into your tool. If your tool requires a high PSI, then you’ll need to set your cut-out pressure at a very high rate. For this, you will need to set your cut out pressure to cut out at a certain time and not pressure.

How to Adjust Cut-Out Pressure

The cut-out pressure is a very important feature of the air compressor. It saves time and energy and also helps to get the work done properly. Below are the steps to follow to adjust the cut-out pressure to suit your tool

  1. Take note of the pressure switch. The pressure switch on different air compressors differ. You have to first point out the type of pressure switch on your air compressor.
  2. Remove the top of the switch; you would see two springs right underneath it.
  3. The spring on the left is the cut in switch while the spring on the right is the cut-out switch. Note that this position may differ for other air compressors. Check the manual for the correct position of the cut in and cut out string.
  4. If you notice a smaller spring beside the cut-out pressure, then that spring also adjusts the cut-out pressure but at high pressure.
  5. To increase the cut-out pressure, tighten down the spring. To decrease it, loosen up the spring. To loosen and tighten this spring, you will need to use a big set screw.
  6. To increase the pressure, turn the screw clockwise and turn it anti-clockwise to decrease it.
  7. Before you adjust the cut-out pressure, start the air compressor and close the drain valve. Wait for the compressor to stop before you adjust the pressure.

Importance Of Cut-Out Pressure

You may have noticed that sometimes, the pressure of your air compressor suddenly stops increasing; this is the work of the cut-out pressure. The pressure cuts out mainly because the air compressor is expelling a high amount of pressure that will damage the tool of not reduced or damager the air compressor itself. The air compressor may also start overheating if the pressure is not cut out, and this is unsafe for you. For your safety, it is important to set the cut-out pressure.

If you want the pressure to stop increasing after it has reached the specific pressure for your tool, set a cut-out limit. Pneumatic tools all come with their PSI, which is not to be exceeded. Your air compressor must be set to match that exact PSI number. This is important so the tool can work properly and produce the best result. Check the body of the pneumatic tool or the user’s manual to get the PSI.

What Is Cut-In Pressure

Cut-in pressure is the opposite of cut-out pressure; it is the pressure that starts the air compressor. It is the pressure you want your air compressor to release when it starts working to explain it better. The ideal cut-in pressure is 90 PSI. If it is lower than this, it will take a very long time for the pressure to increase. The cut-out pressure is usually higher than the cut-in pressure.

The difference in pressure between them is called the pressure band or the pressure differential, and it should be at least 14 PSI. If the pressure band is below 14 PSI, the air compressor may stop working and overheat. This will damage the motor and other parts of the air compressor.

Important Factors to Consider Before Purchasing an Air Compressor

Before you purchase an air compressor, there some factors you need to consider. These are


The size is the most important factor to look out for when buying your air compressor. Air compressors come in different sizes; small-sized compressors are used for small projects, and large air compressors are used for heavy-duty projects. You should also look at the CFM requirement when considering the size you want.

Power Source

Air compressors run on two different power sources; gas and electric. The gas-powered air compressor is used for industrial projects while the electric-powered is portable and used at worksites with constant electricity supply.


Air compressors are usually rated based on their horsepower. The horsepower refers to the strength of the engine and has nothing to do with its performance or air delivery. It is important because you need a motor strong enough to deliver the amount of pressure you need for your project.


Air compressors are multi-purpose tools that can be found almost anywhere. It is used in the home as well as on construction sites. Adjusting the CFM of your air compressor to the correct rating improves the performance of both the air compressor and the tool and ensures that it lasts long. It protects the air compressor from damage and also reduces the risk of accidents.