Pneumatic Tool Maintenance

A man installing wood flooring with a pneumatic nailer.

With regular maintenance, expensive pneumatic power tools will pay for themselves because they will assist you through many DIY and home improvement tasks. It's simple—if you treat your tools well, they will do the same for you. Stay in the habit of good tool maintenance, and you'll be the person who always has good tools to use for every task you try.

Keep Tools Dry and Well-Stored

Always store your tools properly to keep them in good working condition. One of the biggest concerns should be keeping your tools dry. Damp, humid environments can cause corrosion and damage to all your tools. Use silica packs to absorb excess moisture in your tool storage area if you live in a damp environment, and do what you can to be sure your tool storage area is consistently dry.

Don't Use Too Much Force When Handling Pneumatic Tools

This tip is something you can do when you're actually using the tool. When you press down too hardly or force a tool, you can cause wear and damage that prevents it from functioning properly. Let the tool do what it was designed to do, and don't use too much force.

Always Use the Proper Tool for the Job

Someone working on a tire with a pneumatic nailer.

Even tasks that seem simple should be handled with the right tool because applying the wrong tool to even a simple task can cause big problems. Remember that for every job, there is a tool to suit it.

Clean Your Tools After Every Use

Even if you only use your pneumatic tool for a minute or two, it needs to be cleaned. Wait for your tool to cool down, and wipe it thoroughly with a clean, dry cloth after every use before you put it away for storage. Make sure you're keeping your cloths clean and dry as well because wiping a tool down with a dirty cloth won't do any good.

A pneumatic nailer and lumber.

Remember to Keep Yourself Safe

Wear proper safety glasses and avoid very loose clothing. You don't want to have any dangling jewelry, accessories, or clothing. Wear protective footwear and handwear as well. Boots and gloves will do a lot to keep you safe while you work with power tools. Keep yourself properly dressed, and you will keep yourself safe while you work with those powerful tools.

Tighten the Fasteners Regularly

The vibration and movement of air-powered tools can cause nuts and bolts to loosen up over time. Regularly tighten up your tools and all accessories, and check the hoses regularly to make sure they are fitting properly. Hoses may need to be replaced from time to time as well, so look for holes and cracks that signal you need new hoses.

Drain the Receiver Tanks

Some pneumatic tools require the use of receiver tanks, which will collect moisture while the tank is in use. If there is a built-in moisture valve, use this to drain the tank. Otherwise, release the air pressure from the tanks and manually drain the tank yourself regularly to get rid of excess moisture.

Check Your Air Filters Regularly

If your pneumatic tool equipment has air filters, they will need to be replaced regularly. After every few uses of your tool, check the filters to see if they're ready for replacing. Install new air filters regularly so your tools keep working at maximum capacity.

If you’re using pneumatic tools, it means you need to be doing maintenance on those tools. If you keep them in great shape, you’ll be able to do much more with all your air-powered tools.