DeWALT 15 gal 200 PSI Workshop Compressor D55168 – Review


Compressors come in all shapes and sizes, for a workshop compressor you need a big tank to run your air tools and a high SCFM to keep the tool running.  The D55168 is the perfect compressor for a small shop or home garage.  It has a ample 15 gallon tank and produces 5.4 SCFM @ 90psi to allow for quick recovery times.  It produces 200 psi and was surprisingly quiet for an oil free pump.

When the truck dropped this unit off from ACME tools Eric immediately got out his pen and paper and started testing the unit, I had no idea what the heck he was yapping about or what he was testing for.  Rather than bore you with his findings, because I still can’t figure out what he was doing, I will just make it simple and you can watch the video for his findings.

At the top of the compressor is the business end, it has a 2 gauges, tank pressure and regulated pressure, the gauges are easy to read.  The regulated pressure is adjusted by a dial to the right of the gauges.  below that is a safety blow out valve and the off/auto switch which turns off the compressor when it hits roughly 200 PSI.  The unit is powdered coated in classic DeWALT yellow.  At the bottom is a drain ball valve to drain the unit when not in use, I would have like to have seen this with a little more clearance from the ground as less than an inch of clearance.

To sum it all up I like this compressor a lot it has worked well for every situation we have used it in. It is compact for it its power and ran every air tool we threw at it with ease.  DeWALT offers a one year warranty on this product.


  1. Never heard anyone say the compressor is quite because of an oil free. I though the oiled pumps were quieter but required maintenance of changing the oil.

  2. HA HA Toolman, I put little mistakes in the articles to make sure you guys are on your toes! Thanks for noticing that Lamar, I don’t know why I wrote that I wanted to write that oil free pumps work better in cold weather vs an oiled pump! O well I’m human!

  3. I just want to say pulling the pressure relief valve doesn’t do any thing but empy the tank of air.The purpose of draining the tank is to get the water out of the system..If you use your compressor in a stationary place you should make a water collection system for it out of pvc pipe.If your ‘s is portable you should have a water filter installed inline.

  4. If pulled, true it just releases air. The safety relief valve will pop if too much pressure is in the tank, the bottom of the tank is the drain ball valve and will allow moisture to drip out, I agree about the inline moisture filter installed.

  5. This compressor is great. I can go thru a couple sticks of 2-3/8″ nails when framing before it kicks on (that maybe more of a testament to the gun). The upright stance and the wheels make it easy to go down stairs to get in basements. It also rides over grass nicely when working on decks. I also use it with a couple air tools in the garage when doing brakes and such on my truck. I even use to blow my sprinklers out in the fall. You can’t go wrong with Dewalt.

  6. Impressed with your reviews. I’m looking to purchase this model very soon and I was pretty positive you guys would have a review on it. I’m sold. Thanks for the detail in the review.

  7. I’ve got this Dewalt D55168 compressor too. I purchased it for occasional home use. When it worked it was great for it’s small compact size. These compressors apparently are prone to have air pressure regulator problems leaking internally & electric motor failures. They push these little compressors to their max at the preset 200psi tank pressure. My compressor has suffered both failures. If you own one of these when the motor finally fails (trust me it eventually will), it loses power & starts shooting sparks everywhere like a blow torch. Make share your compressor is stored away from any flammables. That’s not even the kicker. The motor can’t be purchased separately, you have to buy the entire motor/ pump assembly & it’s over $500.00 (motor/ pump part no.N041594SV). The entire Dewalt D55168 compressor new is only $399.00. This problem should be a simple $100.00 max motor replacement if parts were actually available separately. This is not a consumer friendly scenario. Dewalt doesn’t actually build this motor/ pump assembly, the exact same motor/ pump can also be found in Devillbis, Craftsman, Porter Cable, Black & Decker, Bosch & other compressors. My suggestion is buy a traditional style compressor were the motor & pump are mounted separate from one another. If you own a D55168 sell it before it breaks. Hope this helps.

    • Quick update…I couldn’t rely on Dewalt support or any other parts websight for a solution, I tried. They basically can’t help or do any more than what their catalog says. I was hoping someone in the industry would have a workaround…nope. So I did a bunch of my own research, found some more information & figured I’d share. These Dewalt compressors (D55168) motor/pump’s are manufactured by Sanborn industries. Sanborn was purchased back in 1994 by Coleman Powermate. There is an alternate Sanborn universal motor/pump available for under $200.00. It’s exactly the same motor/pump assembly with the exception of a longer drive belt & tensioner pulley. Same exact HP motor & CFM pump specifications. The universal motor/ pump part number is: E106639. Best place I found to purchase it is Home depot on-line. For this price I was willing to preformed this repair on my D55168, now it works great once again. The leaky pressure regulator problem is a $22.00 fix (part number: N008792). I was originally pretty upset over my compressor situation as a whole but after thinking more about it & taking time to come up with a solution I guess the D55168 is probably a better compressor than the majority in it’s class. After all mine is a type 3 (2009 model), it did last nearly a decade. Also If you think about it… compressor manufacturers have expiration dates on the air tanks. Dewalt certifies their air tanks for 12-years. More stuff to consider.

  8. Hi Mark, MD from NC here to reply to your comments left on March 17, 2018. I purchased my DeWalt D55168 2 1/2 years ago. It’s purpose was for home/light work related functions. It stays in my “Man Cave” located in my basement. I have run air tools, i.e., impact wrenches, sanders, drills etc. I have used my nail gun sporadically, however, not nearly as much as the other aforementioned air tools. For what this particular compressor was purchased to do, I have absolutely no complaints what so ever! I procured the compressor at Lowe’s for $369.00. That particular unit is still selling for around that price 2 1/2 years later. Now I do have a 6 hp Ingersoll compressor, 60 gal, in one of my workshops that I paid a lot more for. This one has to have oil changed on it’s 2 stage motor. Simply put, for the money spent on the DeWalt, I have no complaints. I’m not suggesting for one moment that yours didn’t cause you havoc. Just saying it’s kind of like the car manufacturing business. You can certainly get a lemon, whether it be a GM, Ford, Chrysler or any other manufacturers. However, for the money, I believe mine was well spent purchasing the DeWalt!

  9. Hello M.D. thanks for your comment. Just to be clear, I wasn’t necessarily trying to say the Dewalt D55166 wasn’t a good compressor, because it certainly is.
    My beef was mainly the replacement parts situation. My compressor motor developed some shorted windings in the armature. Can’t purchase just an armature separately. The electric motor/ pump is sold as a unit & is unreasonable priced. Using your Gm, Ford, Chrysler metaphor for example…imagine buying this awesome new car…let’s say for around $30k…so down the road a bit it needs a part for the engine but it’s unavailable separately which means you gotta replace the entire engine at a ridiculous price of $50k (almost double the vehicle’s new value). I just think the replacement part industry has this scenario all screwed up that’s all. An armature can be purchased separately for even a basic circular saw…that’s the way it should be. I wasn’t very happy a professional company like Dewalt would put me in this situation. Dewalt support basically said “sorry, that’s the price”. I know these motor/pumps don’t cost much to be manufactured, especially since they are mass produced & used in so many other compressor brands. The prices are highly inflated by the middle man or something, my guess 500-600%. I did thankfully find a solution (in my above comment/ reply). Maybe it can help you or others in the future. If you go visit replace some part web-sights…under D55168 parts…scroll down to question & answers you’ll see lots of people have this same dilemma. I own a huge abundance of Dewalt tools & have few complaints.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here