What is an Air Hose?

Ken Black

An air hose is a device used to deliver air to a product such as an air tool or air compressor. The uses of an air hose run the gambit from recreational uses to life-saving devices and cover many points in between. Most air hoses are made to be durable, because their ability to remain airtight is critical to proper operation.

An air hose can be used to inflate tires.
An air hose can be used to inflate tires.

Most are familiar with an air hose through the use of an air compressor, which is connected to another device via a hose. Even if some people do not own an air compressor, car owners have likely used one at one time or another to inflate tires. They are often found a fueling stations where air can be obtained for no charge or for a small fee.

Many mechanic's tools are tethered to the pneumatic compressor using an air hose.
Many mechanic's tools are tethered to the pneumatic compressor using an air hose.

Air hoses are also often used with different types of air tools, which require compressed air to operate. These tools include such things as sprayers, nailers, torque wrenches and even some automobile buffers, which may use air instead of electricity to run. While using these tools, it is important to ensure that the air hose does not become damaged by making sure it does not come into contact with sharp corners or other objects.

Some may be familiar with a type of air hose that coils, similar to what a traditional telephone cord may do. This coiling hose is often used with home air compressors. They are also often made of soft materials because a home user will likely only need it over a limited area.

In other cases, more protection may be needed for the hose. Air hose reels are meant to provide that protection. Most complete encase the hose in a metal container, with an outlet to the air compressor and another outlet to the other end of the hose. These reels usually automatically retract an air hose when it is not in use.

Those using an air compressor and hose may find they need a variety of air hose fittings. For many air tools, the connectors may be the same. In other cases, they may need to be changed. While there is some effort to make these universal, there are still likely to be times when the fittings do not work on all other products.

The price of air hoses are varied, but many can be found relatively cheap. Some cost as little at $15 US Dollars (USD). Others will cost several hundred dollars. The quality, size and length are the determining price factors.

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