Paintball is one of the most exciting and competitive team shooting sports. Whether you are a pro or a weekend warrior, most players find it difficult to learn how to fill a paintball tank with an air compressor.
But the fact is that the process is very easy. You just need to take the hose of the air compressor and attach it to the tank, either by using the fill adapter or the fill station. Slowly fill the tank with air with a continuous gauge check until it fills.
No matter how easy the process is, there are always some safety precautions and tips that you must know. So let’s dig deeper into the matter.
What Will You Need to Refill The Paintball Tank Using An Air Compressor?
With the right tools, using the air compressor to fill your paintball tank is not a difficult process. Make sure you have arranged them before starting the task. Here is the list of them.
- High-pressure air compressor
- HPA or CO2 paintball tank
- Fill adapter or fill station
- High-pressure nozzle and hose
- Safety equipment, including eyewear and gloves
- Scale [not mandatory]
How to Fill Paintball Tank With Air Compressor? [Step by Step Guide]
Well, you know, a paintball tank filling up is pretty easy to DIY with an air compressor without any experts’ assistance.
You just need to know how to put the right equipment together while refilling the paintball tank.
Let us see how to do so.
Step 1: Inspect The Condition of Your Paintball Tank
The first thing that you need to do is to inspect the condition of your paintball tank before even starting filling.
You can do hydrostatic testing to look for leaks and observe the shape and condition of the tank.
Find the date engraved or printed on the tank. Do not refill the paintball tank if the testing date is overdue.
In the case of a new paintball tank, you can skip the step.
[Hydrostatic Testing: It is a process where the gas cylinder or tank is inspected for factors like leaks and strength.
Perform the test; it requires draining the tank completely and filling it with water. Then the tank is pressurized 1.5 to 2 times greater than the measured pressure. If the tank is damaged or old, you will see water leaking out of the tank.]
Step 2: Empty The Paintball Tank
The next is to drain out all the air left in the paintball tank. It is essential because if any air is present in the tank, it can interfere with the filling process.
Draining the paintball tank is not very hard to do. You just need to open the air bleed valve. It will drain out the remaining air.
Although it is optional, you can also use the scale as an alternative to removing all the extra air in the tank. If you wish, you can use the scale in the following way-
Find out the actual weight of your empty paintball tank.
Put the tank stand on the scale, and once the scale registers the empty weight of the tank, you can go to fill it.
Step 3: Attach The Air Compressor to The Tank
Next, attach a compressor with your paintball tank using the fill station or fill adapter.
In case you are using a filling adaptor to do the task, ensure to use the right size of your specific paintball tank.
Step 4: Ensure Proper Connection
Always ensure that you have a proper connection between your air compressor and the paintball tank before starting to fill.
Once you have a secure fit between them, open the valve of the air compressor to refill the tank.
Step 5: Fill The Tank Slowly
After connecting the air compressor and the paintball tank, start filling the tank. Slowly open the valve and let the air fill up the tank until the PSI reaches the desired level.
Ensure to fill up the tank slowly. Filling it too fast can disrupt the pressure balance and lead to the malfunction of the tank.
Step 6: Watch The Gauges
While filling the paintball tank, you need to keep an eye on the pressure gauges.
You will find two gauges- one on the paint gun and the other one on the air compressor.
Both of them show the air pressure.
Step 7: Ensure No “Hot-Fill”
The thing you need to keep in mind is that there is no hot fill in the process. It is related to a common mistake made by most paintball users- filling the tank too quickly.
By chance, if you fill the tank too quickly, you will see a sudden rise in the pressure gauge. It is called hot fill.
Hot fill causes the air tank to get hotter, resulting in the loss of some pressure from the tank. So you need to ensure no “hot-fill.”
Step 8: Remove The Hose
Once done, turn off the air compressor and remove the hose from the paintball tank.
It is nothing more than the reverse process of attaching the air compressor to the tank.
Before detaching, open the bleed valve to release the extra built-up pressure. Finally, check the pressure of your paintball tank.
Challenges May Arise When Filling Paintball Tank With Air Compressor
When you are filling your paintball tank with an air compressor, we think the most challenging thing is to fill the tank with the proper amount of air pressure. You already see there is a little margin of error while refilling the tank.
Even if you fill the tank too quickly, it will cause a hot fill leading to air loss after filling.
It means if you have a 4500 psi paintball tank, it may end up with only 3500 psi in the end.
By chance, if you overfill the tank, the worst result is the paintball tank explosion.
So keep a sharp eye on the gauges while filling and, of course, ensure a slow fill.
For any reason, if you do not feel confident filling the tank, the best advice is to seek the help of the experts.
Whatever the task is, you should always keep your safety the first priority.
Additional Tips for Filling The Paintball Tank By An Air Compressor
To iterate, paintball tank filling using an air compressor is an easy go if you follow the proper steps.
Still, here are some additional tips that you should keep in mind for safety precautions.
- Avoid putting grease or oil on the paintball tank’s nipple. It is because when you fill-up the tank, heat can build up, warming the grease or oil. As a result, there can be a risk of fire.
- Never put your paintball tanks in direct sunlight or at extreme temperatures. Heat can pressurize the paintball tank causing damage to the regulator seals.
- Use a fabric bag or something like that as a tank cover to protect your paintball tank.
- Have a “slow-fill” while accomplishing the task.
- Avoid filling the paintball tank to the point where it explodes.
- Ensure to check the hydrostatic test date before filling the tank. You should re-inspect the hydrostatic test date every five years.
Ed Walker is an automotive cleaning expert with extensive automotive cleaning skills. I have been working in automotive cleaning plants with perfection for the past decade. In addition, I own my cleaning workshop, where we wash away firm dirt and grease out of vehicles and turn them into new ones. Sharing cleaning tips for automotive is my passion.