Porter-Cable CMB15 Air Compressor Review – 1.5 Gallons, Shrouded

Porter-Cable CMB15 Air Compressor Review

Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor reviewThe Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor is maybe the most home friendly of the compressors I’m going to review.  For now anyways.

It’s 1.5 gallons, puts out 150 psi, it’s oil free thankfully, shrouded (which I don’t necessarily love,) pretty light, and has an outstanding delivery pressure and rate.

Need more pressure?  Turn the dial on the front.  This portable air compressor (handle anyone?) from Porter-Cable can easily fill tires, clean out some piping, operate some air tools.

And it comes with the accessory kit most Porter-Cable air compressors do, nothing fancy but it lets you get started right away.  Most compressors don’t.

The CMB15 compressor is the #3 best seller, has a high rating, and overall people seemed to love it.  Like I wrote above, me personally, I am not in love with this style of compressor.  I need something a bit more rugged, see the con section below.

I think the Porter-Cable CMB15 would be ideal for most people.  It can take care of most things that you’d need an air compressor to do.  It’s not expensive, you can store it or bring it with you easily, and it has the Porter-Cable toughness and warranty.

Porter-Cable makes tools that are well established in the construction world, there’s a reason – quality.  Read the review I have carefully crafted about this compressor below.  If you are undecided about buying a compressor, or don’t know if you even really need one, or simply have a question, use the comment form below and type away.  I’ll try to help as much as possible.

Hopefully this Porter-Cable CMB15 review will answer all of your questions.  Check it.

Read the rest of the Porter-Cable CMB15 Air Compressor review below:


Table of Contents (click ahead!)
Air Delivery            Power             Features             Specs             Accessories             Construction             Reviews             Pros & Cons

Air Delivery

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The Porter-Cable CMB15 compressor has an adjustable regulator right on the firetruckin’ front which lets you dial in the delivery pressure.  The tank is designed for a maximum pressure of 150 psi.

You simply get the compressor going, let it build up pressure, and then adjust the pressure as needed.  With the CMB15 you probably won’t be able to run like a wood sander full on for any length of time.  Then again, this isn’t some industrial compressor.

It delivers 3 cfm of air at 40 psi or 2 cfm at 90 psi, pretty flippin’ close to its big boy compressor cousins.

The Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor stores more air than the earlier models.   This means you get longer tool run times and faster compressor recovery time.  One recurring comment in other reviews about this compressor was the very fast recovery time.Also, it has 2 quick connect fittings to plug into.


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porter-cable cmb15 air compressor

The 8 piece accessory kit is included.

This compressor, like most of its size, uses the same electricity that you’ve got in your house, 110V.  How do you turn it on?  Plug it in.  The nameplate data says 120 volts and 10 amps, not bad.

The Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor is .8 hp. I went to their site to look it up and to look for a manual – which they didn’t have.


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  • Can deliver 2.0 SCFM @ 90 psi, or 3.0 @ 40 psi.
  • 150 max psi.
  • 8 piece accessory kit included.
  • Only weighs 20 lbs.
  • 25′ of crappy hose included ha ha.
  • Oil free for longer life and ZERO maintenance.
  • Full shroud for protection, the handle makes unit easier to carry.
  • Drain valve and rubber feet, which reduce vibration – prolonging life, included.


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  • dimensions: 16″ X 13″ X 21″
  • weight: 20 lbs.
  • tank capacity: 1.5 gallons
  • running horsepower: .8 hp
  • voltage: 120v
  • amperage: 10 amps
  • 1 year parts warranty
  • 105 Amazon reviews – 4.4 average rating
  • decibel level: 79 dBA
  • 2 pressure gauges
  • Adjustable pressure regulator


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Porter-Cable Air Compressors CMB15If you decide to get the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor, you also get an 8 piece accessory set.  This is not a kit that will let you start tearing down your home or car engine but it does let you get started as soon as your compressor gets delivered.

The CMB15 comes with an 8 piece set which includes – 25 ft nylon coil hose, 2 tapered nozzles, an inflation needle, 1/4″ tire chuck, hose adapter, 2 piece high flow inflator and deflator kit, and teflon tape.

When my compressor was new, I had to buy a separate accessory kit. Even if you don’t get this particular model or brand, make sure you check that before you buy. You don’t want to get home, get all geared up for a project and then realize you don’t have an air hose.


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Porter-Cable is used by contractors, serious do it yourselfers, and construction people.  Most of their compressors are built with an induction motor which has improved the overall performance and extended the working life of their compressors.

Complete with a soft-start motor, the Porter-Cable CMB15 can easily run off of normal household/garage circuits as long as you have supplied 110 volts and have at least a 10 amp circuit for it.

And don’t forget – it’s oil free so less maintenance and more getting work and projects done!

The shroud I will mention again down in the con section but since it has to do with the construction…

I don’t know how much I like the whole thing being protected by a shroud, I like seeing what is going on.  It’s probably more of a personal preference thing as here at work we have a few of this style of air compressor, the shrouded kind.  The shroud of the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor serves a couple purposes – it protects both the compressor and you from injury or damage and it also reduces the noise.


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105 Amazon reviews, nearly 70 of which are 5 star. This is the #3 selling air compressor online. Most seem to appreciate the actual portability of this compressor as well as the reliability and trust associated with the Porter-Cable brand.  Here is what some others have said:

“A plumber for 35 years, I am always looking for the perfect tool to replace what used to be the perfect tool in my truck.  This thing is beyond fabulous.   Lightweight and well balanced when you grab and go, it’s also well protected by its case.  It’s as light and compact as all the truck compressors I’ve used but didn’t have the tank to build up pressure.   Adjustable pressure delivery dial and a cord wrap that actually works. rubber feet let it stay put while in use instead of “walking around.””(read more here:Amazon Porter-Cable CMB15 Reviews)

“This Porter-Cable CMB15 portable compressor replaces my small twin tank Campell-Hausfeld that took forever to fill and only put out 125 psi. Now with the luxury of 150 psi output and quick cycling to fill the tank, mounting tubeless tires and getting them to “pop” on the rims is a breeze plus the tank is large enough for powering my impact driver to break a few large nuts free when I need to. It’s a lot quieter too. Only thing I might add is to buy yourself a few quick release fittings and you’ll be all set.”(read more here:Amazon Porter-Cable CMB15 Reviews)

“I needed a small, portable compressor to adjust the air pressure in my RV tires. My large compressor in the garage wasn’t too convenient plus it cuts off at 120psi and cuts back in at 90psi. Since my RV is set at 90psi (or 110psi when storing), it was tedious trying to get the tires up to pressure.

This Porter Cable unit cuts off at 150psi and cuts in at 120psi. Filling my tires is a breeze and goes much quicker. It’s small, relatively lightweight and easy to use as well as store.”(read more here:Amazon Porter-Cable CMB15 Reviews)

Amazon Rating: 4.4

Pros & Cons

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Porter-Cable C2002-WK oil free air compressorPros

The pros for Porter-Cable air compressors kind of should just be standard.  I bet you’re getting tired of hearing the same old stuff – oil free, lightweight.  We’ve pretty much already covered the pros for this air compressor up above.

I’ve mentioned it 2x now but what about the shroud?  If I consider this is a con, why can’t it be a pro?  Just because I don’t like it doesn’t mean you won’t or that it doesn’t have a purpose.  The shroud protects the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor from damage and allows less noise outside.  It also keeps you from banging into fittings or maybe warm piping.  It keeps things cleaner as well.

Another pro for sure is the weight and portability.  It can go most places.  It can also be used for a bunch of extra little things like cleaning out keyboards.  You can charge the 1.5 gallon tank outside in your garage, shut off the compressor, and then bring it inside for your needs.

oil free air compressorsCons

The shroud, and this apparently is more of a personal thing on my part lol.  I really like to be able to see the internals of things – compressors, engines, bodies.  Paying atention are you?  If the compressor springs a leak or I have to replace a component, I do not want to first have to remove a cover to start looking for it.  That’s it.  Like I said, most people seem to like the shroud.

The main question people and users seemed to have with this compressor was the capacity.  Basically it all depends on what you are trying to do and the needs of the tools you’ll be using.  As long as your tool is under the capacity of the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor, you are good to go.

For example a certain paint sprayer requires 2 cfm at 40 psi, this one can do that.  But you might want to get a compressor with a larger tank to store extra air, feel me?  It can blow out filters, parts, equipment, just make sure you are getting or get all of the accessories you need.  The CMB15 can run most smaller fastening tools like brad nailers and staplers no problem.

Check current pricing discounts:

Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor reviews

Features Overview:

FeaturesPorter-Cable CMB15
Tank Size1.5 Gallons
Weight20 lbs.
Variable Output?Yes
Adjustable Pressure?Yes
WarrantyYes/1 year


This is almost all of everything there is to know about the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor.  We went over some of the features and specifications and also some uses that it would probably best be suited for.  This particular compressor is ideal for the homeowner and the DIY person.  Some advantages about it include being oil free which means less maintenance as well as having an adjustable pressure output.

I like products from Porter-Cable, it’s one of the few that I immediately go to and feel like I can trust their brand or tool.  This air compressor is no different.  Like I wrote above, we use shrouded air compressor here at my work for some jobs like blowing out drains.  We use that style for appearance and safety reasons.

An air compressor behind a shroud just looks cleaner and it also produces less noise.  If you are looking for a fairly light air compressor that is highly portable, you may want to really consider the Porter-Cable CMB15 air compressor.  Big savings, free shipping maybe, and a 1 year warranty.

Porter-Cable Air Compressors CMB15 reviews

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