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A pneumatic tool or air tool or air powered tool or pneumatic powered tool is one type of power tools, driven by compressed air, supplied by an air compressor, one type of gas compressors. Pneumatic tools can also be driven by compressed carbon dioxide (CO2) stored in small cylinders allowing for portability. Pneumatic tools are safer to run and maintain than their electric power tool counterparts, as well as having a higher power-to-weight ratio, allowing a smaller, lighter tool to accomplish the same task. General grade pneumatic tools with short life span are commonly cheaper and are also called disposable tools in tooling industries while industrial grade pneumatic tools with long life span are more expensive. In general, pneumatic tools are cheaper than its equivalent electric powered tools.

Air tools were formerly unpopular in the DIY market, but are becoming increasingly popular, and have always been ubiquitous in industrial and manufacturing settings.

Technical Terms

It is important to know some general specification technical terms used in pneumatic tools while it is also related to how to choose a good air compressor and if the tool can meet your job requirement so that an air tool can be used properly, respectively, Free Speed (rpm),Air Pressure(psi/bar), Air Consumption(cfm/scfm or m3/min), Horse Power(hp), spindle size...etc. Depending on different type of pneumatic tools, there are different specification values that you need to pay attention to.

Flow or airflow, related to air consumption in pneumatic tools, represents the quantity of compressed air that passes through a section over a unit of time. It is represented in l/min, m3, at the equivalent value in free air in conditions of standard reference atmosphere (SRA), i.e. +20 c, 65% of relative humidity, 1013 mbar, in accordance with norms NFE.

Types of Pneumatic Tools

Air impact wrench

Air ratchet


Blow Gun


Pneumatic angle grinder

Pneumatic drill

Pneumatic jack (device)

Pneumatic nail gun


Paint sprayer

Common Brands


Atlas Copco

Campbell Hausfeld

Central Pneumatic

Compair Broomwade Ltd

DeVilbiss Air Power Company

Dotco,Cleco,Buckeye by Apex Tool Group

Florida Pneumatic

Husky (tools)


Mac Tools

Master Palm

Master Power by Apex Tool Group

Matco Tools



Superior Pneumatic

In addition, many store brands exist, such as those carried at Princess Auto, Summit Tools or Harbor Freight Tools.

ISO 9001:2008 Certified Pneumatic Tool Manufacturers

Why is it important for pneumatic tools to be ISO 9001:2008 certified among manufacturers? ISO 9001:2008 is the current version for ISO 9001. "...ISO certifications are Quality management systems, that give a base-level confidence in an organization’s ability to provide conforming products, they have facilitated world trade..."[1] Although it is costly and each ISO certified manufacturer has to go through annual certification review, it ensures tool manufacturers complying with industrial quality and safety standards and be certified by certification authority bodies. The certification authority bodies are located in different countries assisting manufacturers to be ISO 9001 certified.

It is also important to know while there are many tools distributed in the market, many of them are not ISO certified and may not be used in the industrial sectors where ISO 9001 certification is required. And if a business is exporting goods to European countries, many of them requires CE Marking on the products, especially, pneumatic powered and electric powered tools

The current ISO 9001 version used in tooling industry is ISO 9001:2008. And it is also very important to note that ISO 9001:2008 certification compliance has been a trend and required by many countries for exporting and importing trade besides CE Marking on the tools. There are many manufacturers globally who make ISO 9001:2008 certified pneumatic tools with CE Marking for other major pneumatic tool brands:

Master Air Tool Co., Ltd

Chicago Pneumatic

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