How to Fill Paintball Tank with Air Compressor Step by Step

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Last updatedLast updated: February 12, 2021
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Paintball is a sport that involves shooting paintballs with the aid of a paintball gun and compressed air housed in a tank. The compressed air pushes pellets from the gun to its targets. As you might have guessed, the gas doesn’t last forever. It needs replacement after it is exhausted. You need to know and understand how to fill a paintball tank with an air compressor, so you can resume shooting in no time.

Air compressors are widely used to fill paintball tanks at home without the stress of seeking a professional’s help. However, refilling an air tank is nothing compared to pumping air into your car tires. This process involves acquiring an air compressor that has the right pressure to help refill a paintball tank.

Refilling paintball tank requires various steps that need to be followed properly. In this article, we will share how you can fill a paintball tank with an air compressor seamlessly.

What type of paintball tank do you have?

How to Fill Paintball Tank with Air Compressor Step by StepThere are two main types of paintball tanks, and they are High-pressure Compressed Air (HPA) Paintball Tank and Compressed Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Paintball Tank. They both help to propel pellets when playing paintball but they have they operate differently.

HPA paintball tank contains breathable filtered air or highly pressurized oxygen. High-quality options with different capacities and sizes are available on the market. But the maximum capacity available is a 5,000 Pounds per square inch (PSI) tank.

CO2 paintball tank contains CO2 in its liquid state because the gas turns liquid when it’s compressed. CO2 tank sizes vary from 3.5 – 40 ounces (100ml – 1,180ml).

Before going ahead with filling your paintball, you should know the type of paintball you have. The HPA tank is often preferred over the CO2 tank because it’s not affected by temperature. A reliable paintball tank like the Ninja Paintball Compressed HPA Air Tank can be trusted to deliver the right pressure once it is properly filled. It can hold air up to 3,000 PSI.

On the other hand, when the CO2 inside a CO2 tank is subjected to a high temperature or low temperature, the CO2 will increase or decrease the pressure in the tank respectively.

Can you use a regular tire compressor?

The simple answer here is NO. Your regular tire compressor max at about 180 PSI, which is not enough because your paintball tank requires a minimum of 3,000 PSI to get filled up. You need a specialized, heavy-duty option, like the Orion Motor Tech air compressor or the cheaper GX PCP Hand Pump. The Orion Motor Tech and GCX PCP can pump your tank to 4,500 PSI.

How to refill your tank


Refilling your paintball tank with an air compressor is a pretty challenging process. However, we have helped you simplified the process into steps that we will discuss below:

1. Determine your tank maximum PSI

Before filling your paintball tank, you should identify how much PSI it holds. This is often indicated on the tank. The average capacity is about 4,500 – 5,000 PSI, so you should ensure you do not go beyond the tank’s capacity.

If you are filling a CO2 tank, you should first refrigerate it to stabilize its temperature. This action will help fill the tank without any hassle.

2. Release air from your tank

Before refilling your HPA or CO2 tank, ensure there’s no air inside. Releasing the air is pretty simple; simply open the air valve and all the air will escape from inside the tank. You must release the air only in a well-ventilated environment to prevent breathing troubles.

3. Connect your air compressor

After releasing the air from your tank, you need to connect the tank’s nozzle and the air compressor’s nozzle. Both nozzles must match and be connected securely to prevent air from leaking.

How to Fill Paintball Tank with Air Compressor Step by Step4. Turn the compressor on

It’s now time to turn the air compressor on. Ensure the compressor’s power cable is connected properly before starting it. It takes a few minutes before the tank is filled with new air once you use a compatible air compressor.

5. Watch the gauges

There are two gauges you must pay attention to when filling your paintball tank – the one on the air compressor and another on your gun. You should closely watch both gauges as you refill your tank, thus helping you to countercheck the gauge’s function. Typically, both gauges should move similarly.

6. Avoid “Hot Fill”

A major mistake people make when filling a paintball tank is rushing and doing it too quickly. It is termed “hot-filled” and it occurs when you push the button or lever too much. The air travels into your paintball tank and causes the gauge to quickly rise. Such movement can damage your tank, so you should try to prevent this situation as much as you can.

A “hot-fill” usually appears to fill the paintball tank, but in reality, it doesn’t. Few minutes after disconnection, the gauge will reduce even without use. You don’t want to see an empty tank just minutes after you refilled it. You can avoid this by refilling the tank slowly.

7. Release the pressure

After refilling the paintball tank, there would still be some air inside the air compressor ready to get passed into the tank. Some people forget this and it can cause issues later on. This excess air can be released through the release valve attached to the compressor. When you push the valve, all the extra air will escape.

If you fail to release the pressure before removing the hose, you might put your tank in trouble, and have to spend to replace it.

8. Detach the hose

After you’re done releasing the pressure, detach the hose from the tank’s fill nipple. By a simple pull, you can remove the hose. After you must have removed it, you should place it gently back in a safe compartment and you’re ready to play paintball again.

Final thoughts

A paintball gun can’t work when the air in its tank is exhausted. The tank needs to be refilled to regain its capacity and continue shooting pellets. But many people are not familiar with the processes involved in filling a paintball tank. As we mentioned before, the tank can be filled with an air compressor. You need to follow several steps to fill your paintball tank safely and correctly.

Our article has carefully explained the simple steps you must follow to fill your paintball tank with the air compressor. If you want to learn how to fill a paintball work air compressor, this article is the right guide for you, thanks to its comprehensive details.

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