Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Troubleshooting

As an experienced technician, I’ve spent countless hours troubleshooting Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressors.


I understand the frustration when the equipment doesn’t work as expected.


Whether it’s a pressure issue, a motor problem, or an oil leak, I’m here to reassure you that common air compressor problems can be resolved with some patience and the right guidance.


Remember, a well-maintained air compressor is key to its longevity and performance.


Let’s dive into the common problems you might encounter and explore the practical solutions to get your compressor back in action.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Troubleshooting


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Troubleshooting:


Chicago Pneumatic Cps 185 Troubleshooting


Table Of Contents
  1. Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Troubleshooting:


If your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor is experiencing issues, there are several troubleshooting steps you can take.

Start by checking the power supply, ensuring your compressor is plugged into a working outlet.

Next, examine the pressure settings; they should match the specific requirements of your operation.

Lastly, check for leaks in the air hose, as these can significantly impact compressor performance.

Remember, if problems persist, it’s best to consult a professional.


20 Common Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Problems And Solutions:


1. Overheating:

This is a common problem with Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressors. The solution is regular maintenance, ensuring the unit is clean and free of dust and debris, and that it’s in a well-ventilated area.


2. Excessive Noise:

If your compressor is making more noise than usual, it might be due to a faulty intake valve. Replacing the valve should resolve the issue.


3. Unstable Pressure:

Fluctuating pressure can be caused by a worn-out pressure switch, which can be easily replaced.


4. Oil Leakage:

If oil is leaking, it might be due to a damaged or worn-out gasket. Replacing the gasket should solve the problem.


5. Motor Won’t Start:

This could be due to a weak or dead battery, or a malfunctioning starter. Check the battery first, if it’s fine, you might need to replace the starter.


6. Air Leakage:

If air is escaping from the compressor, it could be due to a damaged seal. Inspect and replace the seal if necessary.


7. Compressor Won’t Stop:

This could be due to a faulty pressure switch. Replacing the pressure switch should fix the issue.


8. Insufficient Air Pressure:

If the air compressor isn’t producing enough pressure, it could be due to a blocked air filter. Cleaning or replacing the air filter should solve the problem.


9. Slow Pumping:

This could be due to worn-out pump parts. Replacing the worn parts should increase the pumping speed.


10. Compressor Vibrates Excessively:

Worn out or damaged belts can cause excessive vibration. Replacing the belts should stabilize the unit.


11. Rust in the Tank:

Regularly draining and cleaning the tank can prevent rust build-up.


12. Compressor Trips the Breaker:

This might be due to an electrical problem or a faulty breaker. Consulting an electrician is advisable.


13. Compressor Shuts Down Suddenly:

Overheating or overloading can cause this issue. Giving the compressor a rest and ensuring it is not overloaded can help prevent this.


14. Compressor Won’t Build Pressure:

Worn out valves or a damaged pressure switch can cause this issue. Replacing the faulty parts should resolve the problem.


15. Compressor Takes a Long Time to Fill:

This could be due to a leak or a worn-out pump. Check for leaks and replace the pump if necessary.


16. Belt Breaks Frequently:

This could be due to improper tension or a misaligned pulley. Adjusting the tension or aligning the pulley should fix the issue.


17. Pressure Builds Slowly:

This could be due to a blocked intake. Cleaning the intake should solve the problem.


18. Water in the Air Lines:

Regularly draining the air tank and using an air dryer can help prevent this.


19. Compressor Runs Continuously:

A faulty pressure switch can cause this issue. Replacing the pressure switch should resolve the problem.


20. Compressor Won’t Turn Off:

This could be due to a faulty pressure switch. Replacing the pressure switch should fix the issue.


Chicago Pneumatic Compressor Fault Codes:

When it comes to Chicago Pneumatic compressors, understanding fault codes can be crucial for efficient operation and maintenance.


Download the Chicago Pneumatic compressor fault codes PDF to view the list of common codes and their descriptions.




Benefits Of Troubleshooting Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor:

Troubleshooting your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor has several advantages.


Firstly, it allows you to identify minor issues before they escalate into major problems, saving you costly repairs or replacements in the long run.


Secondly, troubleshooting ensures that your air compressor operates at optimal efficiency, which subsequently leads to lower energy costs.


Thirdly, it extends the lifespan of your air compressor, ensuring that you get the most use out of your investment.


Lastly, troubleshooting enhances safety by detecting any potential hazards that can lead to accidents or damage.


Maintenance Tips For Your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor:

Regularly cleaning and inspecting your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor is essential to its longevity and optimal performance. Here are some maintenance tips:


1. Regular Inspection:

Examine the compressor for any signs of wear, tear, or damage. Check the hoses, connections, and seals for any leaks. The compressor’s oil level should also be checked and maintained at the recommended level.


2. Clean Air Filter:

A dirty or clogged air filter can reduce the compressor’s efficiency and cause damage to other components. It’s recommended to clean the air filter regularly and replace it when necessary.


3. Drain Compressed Air Tanks:

Over time, moisture can accumulate in the compressed air tanks leading to corrosion. Draining the tanks regularly helps prevent this issue.


4. Lubricate Moving Parts:

Lubrication reduces friction among moving parts and prevents premature wear and tear.


5. Regular Service:

Lastly, always follow the manufacturer’s recommended service intervals to keep your compressor in top shape.


Remember, neglecting regular maintenance can lead to serious issues and costly repairs in the future.


How Do I Reset My Chicago Pneumatic Compressor?

Resetting your Chicago Pneumatic Compressor is relatively straightforward.


1. First, ensure that the compressor is switched off and disconnected from any power source for safety reasons.


2. Next, locate the reset button typically found on the motor or near the pressure switch. The reset button is often red or black and labeled ‘Reset’.


3. Press the reset button firmly until you feel a click.


4. Once the compressor has been reset, reconnect it to the power source. Switch it on to verify if it’s working correctly.


If the compressor doesn’t turn on or continues to trip the overload, there may be a more serious underlying issue, and it’s advisable to consult with a professional or contact Chicago Pneumatic’s customer service for further assistance.


Remember, safety should always be your priority when dealing with electrical equipment.


How Do I Know If My Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Is Bad?

It’s important to recognize signs of trouble with your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor early on. Here are common indicators that your compressor may be bad:


1. Poor Performance:

If your compressor isn’t producing enough air, or the pressure is not as strong as it used to be, it’s a clear sign of trouble.


2. Excessive Noise:

While air compressors are not silent machines, an unusual or excessive noise could indicate an issue. This could be due to various factors, such as a faulty motor, loose parts, or internal wear and tear.


3. Overheating:

If your compressor is running hot more often than not, it’s a sign of malfunction. This could be due to insufficient oil, clogged vents, or malfunctioning cooling systems.


4. Oil Leaks:

Oil leaks not only create a mess but can also indicate serious internal problems.


5. Tripping Circuit Breaker:

If your air compressor frequently trips the circuit breaker, it could be a sign of a severe electrical issue.


6. Increased Energy Bills:

If you notice a sudden spike in your energy bills, this could indicate that your compressor is not running efficiently.


If you notice any of these signs, it’s advisable to perform troubleshooting or consult with a professional.


Ignoring these signs could lead to more significant problems down the line and potentially even a complete compressor failure.


What Would Cause An Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor To Not Build Pressure?

Several factors could cause your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor not to build pressure:


1. Clogged Air Filter:

A dirty or clogged air filter can restrict airflow, preventing the compressor from building the necessary pressure.


2. Leak in Air Lines or Seals:

Leaks in the air lines, seals, or connections could result in a loss of pressure. Regular inspection of these components is essential to ensure they’re in good condition and secured tightly.


3. Worn Out Pump:

Over time, the pump can wear out, making it difficult for the compressor to build pressure.


4. Faulty Check Valve:

If the check valve is faulty, air could be leaking back into the pump, making it hard for the compressor to build pressure.


5. Incorrect Pressure Switch Settings:

If the pressure switch settings are incorrect, the compressor might shut off before it has had a chance to build enough pressure.


If you’re experiencing difficulty with your compressor building pressure, it’s advisable to check these areas or consult with a professional.


Remember, regular maintenance and inspections can help prevent these issues, ensuring your compressor operates at peak efficiency.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Won’t Start:

If your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor isn’t starting, there could be several potential reasons:


1. Power Supply Issue:

Ensure that the compressor is properly connected to the power outlet and the power supply is adequate. Check the power cord for any signs of damage or wear.


2. Faulty Motor:

Over time, the motor of your compressor can wear out or fail. If the motor is faulty, it can prevent the compressor from starting.


3. Tripped Circuit Breaker:

If the circuit breaker has been tripped, the compressor will not start. Reset the circuit breaker and try to start the compressor again.


4. Pressure Switch Issue:

If the pressure switch is not correctly set or is defective, it can prevent the compressor from starting. Ensure that the pressure switch is set properly, and consider replacing it if necessary.


5. Overheated:

If the compressor has overheated, it may not start until it has cooled down. Allow the compressor to cool and try to restart it.


Remember, if your compressor isn’t starting, it’s advisable to consult with a professional to avoid causing further damage or potential safety risks.


Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety guidelines when operating your air compressor.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Not Building Pressure:

If your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor is not building pressure, the problem might be due to several factors:


1. Damaged Air Intake Filter:

The air intake filter might be clogged or damaged, restricting the flow of air into the compressor. A clean and well-maintained filter is crucial for optimal compressor performance.


2. Faulty Unloader Valve:

The unloader valve is designed to release air pressure from the compressor when not in operation. If this valve is faulty, it won’t close properly when the compressor is running, leading to a loss of pressure.


3. Damaged or Worn out Seals:

Seals in the compressor might be damaged or worn out, causing air to leak and reducing the pressure.


4. Incorrect Pressure Switch Setting:

If the pressure settings are wrongly set, the compressor might not build up the required pressure.


5. Worn Out Compressor Pump:

Over time, the compressor pump can wear out, which makes it harder for the compressor to build pressure.


If you’re experiencing any of these issues, it’s recommended to consult with a professional or contact Chicago Pneumatic’s customer service.


Always remember to follow safety guidelines when inspecting or performing maintenance on your air compressor.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Reset Button:

The reset button on your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor is a critical safety feature, designed to protect your compressor from potential damage.


If your compressor has overheated or experienced an electrical overload, the reset button will trip, shutting off the power to the compressor.


To reset your compressor, locate the reset button, usually red and situated on the motor or near the pressure switch.


Press the button, which should click into place and restore the power to your compressor.


If the reset button trips again shortly after resetting, this could indicate a more severe problem, and it’s advisable to consult a professional.


Remember, always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and ensure the compressor is off and unplugged before attempting any troubleshooting or maintenance.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Won’t Turn On:

If your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor won’t turn on, several underlying issues could be the reason:


1. Power Supply Issue:

Check if the compressor is correctly connected to a working power outlet. Inspect the power cord for visible signs of damage or wear.


2. Defective On/Off Switch:

The on/off switch could be faulty, preventing the compressor from being powered on.


3. Faulty Motor Capacitor:

The motor capacitor is essential for starting the compressor. If it’s faulty, the compressor will not turn on.


4. Tripped Thermal Overload:

If the compressor becomes too hot, the thermal overload can trip and take the compressor offline to prevent damage. Allow the compressor to cool down before testing it again.


5. Faulty Pressure Switch:

A defective pressure switch may prevent the compressor from getting the signal to turn on.


If your compressor still won’t turn on after checking these areas, it’s advisable to consult with a professional.


Always remember to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety guidelines when operating and troubleshooting your air compressor.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Check Valve Problem:

If your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor exhibits problems like slow pressure build-up or air leaking when the compressor is turned off, it indicates a possible issue with the check valve.


The check valve ensures that air flows in one direction from the pump to the tank, preventing it from flowing back:


1. Damaged or Worn Check Valve:

Over time, the check valve can wear out or get damaged. A faulty check valve allows air to leak back to the pump, affecting the pressure build-up.


2. Clogged Check Valve:

Debris or buildup in the check valve can restrict airflow, impacting the compressor’s performance. Regular cleaning can ensure the check valve remains functional.


3. Incorrectly Positioned Check Valve:

If the check valve is not correctly installed or positioned, it may not perform adequately, leading to pressure issues.


If you identify any of these problems with your check valve, it’s recommended to replace it and consult a professional if you’re unsure.


Always adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines and safety measures when performing maintenance on your air compressor.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Cleaning Tips:

Maintaining cleanliness is key to the optimal performance and longevity of your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor. Here are some cleaning tips to help you:


1. Clean the Air Intake Filter Regularly:

Regularly inspect and clean the air intake filter to prevent dust and debris from entering the compressor. A clogged filter can affect the compressor’s performance and efficiency.


2. Wipe Down the Exterior:

Use a damp cloth to wipe down the compressor’s exterior to remove any accumulated dust or dirt.


3. Drain the Air Tank:

Moisture can accumulate in the air tank over time and can lead to rust. Make it a habit to drain the tank after each use to prevent this.


4. Clean the Compressor Vents:

Ensure the compressor vents are free from dust and debris to allow for adequate ventilation, keeping the machine cool during operation.


5. Check and Clean Air Lines:

Check the air lines regularly for any sign of wear and tear. A leak in the air line can lead to inefficiency and even failure.


Remember, always turn off and unplug the compressor before cleaning. If you encounter any issues while cleaning, it’s advisable to seek help from a professional.


Always adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines and safety protocols during maintenance.


Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor Lubrication Tips:

Lubrication is an essential part of maintaining your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor’s functionality and extending its lifespan. Here are some lubrication tips to guide you:


1. Use Manufacturer-Recommended Oil:

Always use the oil recommended by the manufacturer to ensure compatibility with your compressor. Using the wrong type of oil can result in decreased compressor performance or even damage.


2. Regular Oil Change:

An oil change at regular intervals is crucial for the smooth operation of the compressor pump. The frequency will depend on the compressor type and usage, but a general guideline is to change the oil every 500-1000 hours of operation.


3. Check Oil Level Frequently:

Regularly check the oil level in the compressor. A low oil level can lead to overheating and damage to the compressor pump. Make sure the oil level is within the recommended range, but avoid overfilling.


4. Inspect Oil for Contaminants:

When checking the oil level, also inspect the oil for any signs of contamination such as debris or water. Contaminated oil can cause wear and tear on the compressor parts.


5. Lubricate the Air Filter:

If your compressor has an oil-lubricated air filter, ensure it is adequately lubricated to prevent dust and debris from entering the compressor.


Always remember to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines when performing any maintenance on your air compressor, including lubrication. If you are unsure or encounter any issues, consult with a professional.


Storing Your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor:

Proper storage of your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor can greatly extend its lifespan and ensure its readiness for use. Here are some guidelines to assist you:


1. Clean Before Storing:

Always clean your compressor thoroughly before storage. This includes draining the tank, cleaning the filter, and wiping down the exterior.


2. Store in a Dry, Clean Area:

Choose a storage location that is free from moisture and dust. A dry, clean environment will protect the compressor from rust and other potential damage.


3. Cover the Compressor:

Use a protective cover to shield the compressor from dust and dirt. The cover should be breathable to prevent condensation.


4. Lubricate Before Storing:

Lubricate all moving parts as directed by the manufacturer before storing the compressor for a prolonged period. This will help prevent rust and ensure smooth operation upon reuse.


5. Disconnect Power Source:

Make sure to disconnect the compressor from the power source before storage to avoid any accidental switching on.


Always adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to storing your Chicago Pneumatic Air Compressor.


If in doubt, consult with a professional. Proper storage can prevent a variety of issues and prolong the life of your equipment.




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