air compressor fittings

A Quick Guide to Air Compressor Fittings

A Quick Guide to Air Compressor Fittings

An air compressor is a versatile tool. You can use it in combination with other tools and increase efficiency. But how necessary are the air compressor fittings? You should understand that all the unique and special features of an air compressor are of no use if the fittings are not correct! It is the right fittings which help in increasing productivity and better results.

What are the Main Components?


Different plugs have matching couplers. The problem is that they all look alike. It is difficult to identify the right coupler based on just the looks or stripes. Manufacturers have their style and design. There is a universal coupler that can work in most situations. However, most professionals think that the universal coupler only works with industrial and automotive plugs, while others claim that they work with these and ARO as well. Couplers can be manual or automatic. In manual, you will have to pull back the sleeve to insert the plug while in an automatic, you will have to insert, and it will make the connection on its own. Choosing the right coupler is half the battle won! A bad coupler may result in leaks and more damages.


Firstly, you should know about the different flow sizes which can be ¼” or ½” in most cases. Flow size does not refer to the size of the fitting at the end. It is indicative of the volume of air the plug can manage. ¼” is the most commonly used flow size and used in homes. You will find that these plugs come in different types and styles like industrial, automotive, V-style, and ARO. The V-style plug is a high flow style type of plug. It has a larger opening to make space for higher airflow. 

Color-Coded Connectors

Manufactures recognize the fact that it can be tough to match the right plug with the right coupler. To make things easy, they have now come out with color matching options, which makes the fittings user-friendly. So, a company can denote each type of coupler and plug it with a particular color. For example:

  • Red for Industrial
  • Blue for ARO
  • Green for Automotive
  • Yellow for V-style

The advantage is that you can quickly differentiate between different components, which is especially useful while using oils and paints. You don’t want any residue oil to make a mess for you while you are working with something else. 


After reading this, we are sure you understand that choosing the right air compressor fittings is as important as choosing the right compressor. It is always a good thing to pick a reputable manufacturer even if the cost is on the higher side. Buying couplers and plugs from the same company will always be better. Also, try to find good manufacturers who are locally available. If you need to replace a coupler or plug quickly, you can’t wait for a delivery. You can also store some spares if you use the air compressor regularly.