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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all - new here.

I recently purchased an air compressor from Harbor Freight. Model can be found here. It's not one of the large models, but does seem substantial enough for operating an impact driver and a couple of nail guns. (Not at the same time.) :)

The issue is I can't seem to get it to stay running for more than a couple seconds on a 20-amp circuit available in my basement. It seems nothing else can be going at the same time - not even a couple of light bulbs. The operating manual says it needs 14 amps, but I suspect, it draws much more on startup. When you hit the power button on the compressor it runs very slowly for about 3-4 seconds before the reset switch is tripped.

I tried turning off the lights on the same circuit and was able to get it to stay on a little longer, but it still cut-out. I tried another circuit in my garage, and the same thing happened.

My question is; is this particular model designed to be operated from a regular 15-amp household circuit, or based on what is happening is the unit defective, or is my diagnosis correct? That it needs a circuit with more current rating then 20-amps?

Any advice would be helpful before I decide and return this thing.

Rick
 

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My compressor is the same way on a 20amp circuit but it will stay runnin once it gets up to speed I'd suggest plugging it into a separate circuit by itself and trying to run it
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My compressor is the same way on a 20amp circuit but it will stay runnin once it gets up to speed I'd suggest plugging it into a separate circuit by itself and trying to run it
Hey thanks tractornut. I have tried other 20-amp circuits, but I can't confirm they have nothing else tied to them. I hauled it up from my basement to the garage and tried it there too without success. The garage circuit had a GFI on it. I wonder if that makes a difference? Clearly, the overload circuit is opening on the compressor since that's what trips, and the breakers at the panel never do. Perhaps that's faulty?
 

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Ok if it is the overload breaker on the compressor that is tripping then I would say take it back and get a different one
 
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