With our Coventry head office based in the heart of the British motor industry, we understand that to produce a high-quality vehicle, you need only the best equipment.

With more than 30 manufacturers building more than 70 models of vehicle across the UK, the automotive sector is one of the most important with focus on growth and development.

We are able to tailor our compressed air systems to suit your application, so whether you’re manufacturing the next top-model vehicle or servicing vehicles to keep them safely on the road, we can help you.

Typical uses of compressed air in the automotive industry include:

  • Product finishing
  • Air operated robots
  • Air tools
  • Paint shop applications
  • Breathing air
  • Tyre inflation
  • Pick and place

From car and engine assembly to welding robots and paint processes, our specialised knowledge delivers efficient turnkey installations within a sector with high-production demands and a unique set of challenges.


Air Compressors

We can provide a variety of different types of compressors to suit your application. Oil lubricated compressors are the reliable backbone in many automotive processes today, while oil-free compressors provide high quality air for painting and coating processes.

Search air compressors

Air Quality

All employers have a duty of care to their employees to ensure that the breathing air they are supplied with is adequate for the respiratory protective equipment (RPE) they are using and safe to breathe.

Compressed Air Quality Testing

Which air compressor do I need to use when working in the Automotive industry?

It is important to invest in the right compressor when replacing equipment or buying new, so you must consider the following:


  • Find out the air demand and air pressure required for the application you need to power; this will help pinpoint the size of compressor you require.
  • Also consider the compressed air storage required as you will require a receiver for this. 4 to 5 gallons of air storage per CFM is an example.
  • When purchasing your compressor, also assess the space you have to put it in as the equipment needs to be in a safe position that allows room for maintenance.


Rotary Screw Air Compressor

The rotary screw air compressor is probably the most common type of air compressor today. A male and a female screw move towards each other while the volume between them and the housing decreases. The pressure ratio of a screw is dependent on the length and profile of the screw and of the form of the discharge port. The quietest style of air compressor, the maximum pressure achievable from a screw air compressor is 13 bar (188psi). Direct Air & Pipework are distributors of both CompAir and Boge screw air compressors and can offer both oil lubricated or oil free machines.

Vane Air Compressor

A Vane air compressor is driven at very low speed and is favoured for its outstanding reliability. The rotor rotates within a cylindrical stator and is the only continually moving part. The rotor is offset and uses centrifugal force to extend the vanes from their slots forming compression cells. Oil is used to lubricate and seal the cells as they decrease in volume, compressing the air. Direct Air & Pipework supply the popular and reliable Hydrovane air compressor in a range from 1.1kW to 75kW.

Piston Air Compressor

One of the earliest compressor designs, the versatility of the piston compressor allows it to change from compressing both air and gases with very few alterations. Piston air compressors are normally quite loud and through multi staging can reach incredibly high pressures for applications such as breathing air.


If you’re using compressed air to power applications within environments such as spray booth facilities, it is important to consider contamination such as oil can:

  • Damage equipment
  • Prevent paint adhesion to surfaces
  • Paint to crack, flake, or bead
  • Future corrosion on final car finish

Therefore, considering oil-free air compressor technology is a great start.

How can I get a better quality of air?

Working in the Automotive industry means high quality air is required for specific applications including paint shop applications and breathing air.

The quality of air compressed within your system is directly affected by ambient influences. Contaminants such as water, oil and particles are present in the air around us and get intensified in industrial settings. To improve air quality, you need to consider implementing downstream solutions such as filtration and dryers.

Direct air can offer air quality testing and breathing air testing.

What is the most energy efficient air compressor?

If you’re running your compressed air system frequently, then you’ll want to consider the energy your compressed air system is consuming and if it can be reduced. 

With the global challenge of climate change being more severe than ever and compressed air systems accounting for a significant percentage of facilities energy bills, ensuring customers are using that consumption as efficiently as possible is essential.

The most energy efficient air compressor really depends upon the application it is used for. It is widely recommended that when thinking about compressed air energy efficiency you should conduct an energy audit to measure your current usage and identify areas where you could make effective energy reduction cost saving changes.

Leak detection is one-way huge energy savings could be acknowledged, as on average a 6mm hole leaking compressed air can cost you around £30,000 per year.

Direct Air can support all compressed air requirements for the Automotive industry from powering air tools to large scale projects, like this one carried for Dennis Eagle’s increased air demand.

Dennis Eagle are an automotive company and use compressed air for applications across the shop floor, including paint booths, paint sprayers, air filtration vent masks and air tools. However, the biggest compressors support their shotblast areas.

Take a look at the complete compressed air project we carried out in more detail:

Case Study

Enquire today

Complete the form below to contact the Direct Air team with your enquiry.

Talking to us is easy

We're happy to explain how all our products work and to help you get started over the phone. Real people, plain English and no obligation.

You can call us

0800 021 6800


We offer complete compressed air solutions including design, installation, servicing & WSE inspections.


We consider your entire compressed air system from the compressor to downstream equipment & pipework.

Industry / Sector

Whatever the industry and whatever the application, there's a growing demand for higher-quality compressed air.