Why Your Air Compressor Won’t Stop Running: How to Fix

Your compressor won’t stop running, and you can’t fix it. In this situation, you have to find out the main problem. Then try to fix it. We will give you the quickest solution to fix the problem so that you can stop your compressor. 

Most compressors are not designed for continuous use. You need to stop the compressor or sometimes during operation. But sometimes the compressor won’t stop running. You have to be safe in this situation because it is a dangerous problem.

There are several reasons for constantly running compressors. Like internal leak gaskets, leaked air, damaged vale, worn seals, faulty pressure switches, etc. We will discuss ten problems and give you an easy way to fix the problem.  

[Easy fix] Why does my air compressor keep shutting off?

Problem with Pressure Switch 

A pressure switch is an essential part of a compressor. It works as the brain of a compressor. Not only, but a pressure switch is also a bridge between the air tank and the motorized pump.

You are wrong if you think a pressure switch is just a little device. The pressure switch failing means your compressor cannot operate. It is not possible for a compressor to control and detect the amount of pressurized air in the tank.

You can face several problems with the pressure switch. As a result, your air compressor doesn’t shut off. If the pressure switch fails as soon as possible, you should fix it.

How to Fix the Fault Pressure Switch 

If your compressor doesn’t stop running for a pressure switch problem, make sure you stop to use until you fix it. Fixing the pressure switch means you have to work with electricity. So be careful when you select it. Or you can contact an experienced electrician. 

You can replace the pressure switch. But finding the compressor parts are complex. You can use a different pressure switch until the following factors are met: 

  1. Fit the new pressure switch on your compressor
  2. The compressor has an unloader valve, and the pressure switch connects with the valve correctly
  3. Has adjustable pressure settings or has the same pressure settings that are both cut-in and cut-off
  4. The same voltage range as the old switch

Note: if your compressor has a warranty time, contact the company. The company will fix the problem. If you use the non-brand switch, the warranty can be invalid.  

Worn Intake Valve

The intake valve is an essential part of the compressor. The intake valve controls air that comes from outside and enters compressed air in the tank. But if the valve becomes old or worn, it can not have enough compressed air in the tank.  

The compressor can not run properly with the worn valve. If the intake valve is worn, the compressor continuously runs. Because the compressor pump brings that amount of air, the tank can not keep it. So the pump runs constantly.  

How to Fix the Worn Intake Valve

If you find out the valve becomes worn, ensure you don’t use the compressor until it is fixed. Setting the valve is easy; some compressors have more than one valve. 

You have to replace the intake valve, which is straightforward and available. Most of the time, the manual book mentions how to replace the intake valve. 

So first read the instruction from the manual book. Then replace the valve following the instruction. 

Leak Internal Gaskets

The gasket is a mechanical seal. It is a hidden but essential part of an air compressor. The gasket is situated between two surfaces that are being connected. Gaskets prevent leakage and resist a certain amount of compressive stress.

Over time use of the compressor, the gaskets become worn, leak, or loose. But the problem is you can see the leakage of the gasket. It is difficult to find out the leak of the gasket. 

A leakage gasket is one of the reasons for not stopping running the compressor. 

How to Fix the Leak Gasket

You can replace the leaking gasket and fix the problem. For that, you have to ensure that you have the right replacement gasket.

To fix the gasket, you have to take apart the pump housing. That is a long time process. So you must have the right replacement gasket. Also, you must be sure it is the reason for constantly running the compressor. If you are not sure, find out the real reason.  

Before taking it apart, the pump considers the other reasons. 

Check the Other Leaks

Leaks can be created anywhere on the compressor. You can not spot all the leaks. Some leaks are easy to find, and some are hidden. You need the compressor apart to spot some leaks, and again you can spot some leaks without the compressor apart.  

How do you check the leaks on the compressor? You can quickly prevent hidden leaks on your compressor. We will tell you the easy way.

You need a mix-up of water and soap for test leaks on the compressor. Apply the soapy water on the external parts of the compressor with a cloth or a paintbrush. You have to do it when the compressor is on. If bubbles create, you have to find out leaks. 

Usually, we can not hear the sound of the leak when the compressor is running. The soap bubbles help to find out the leaks. 

How to fix leaks in the compressor

How to fix the leaks in the compressor? It depends on the location of the leaks. You can fix some leaks with a plumber’s tape. Or you can select some leaks by cleaning debris out of the connections. 

Again, you need to replace or apart the compressor parts for fixed the leak. 

Check the Seals and Rings

Air leak is another problem for constantly running compressor. The seal and rings both decay over time. As a result, air can leak from these places. Air compressor constantly running if air leaks. 

You easy find out the external leaks. But it is difficult to find out the internal seal and ring leaks. You can apply the soapy water method to determine leaks. We already mentioned the soapy water method above. 

Apply the soapy water on the exterior part of the compressor to determine the leaks. You can easily see all the leaks. 

How to fix seal and rings leaks 

How to fix the seal and rings leaks in the compressor? It depends on the location of the leaks and the type of compressor. You need to replace and apart the compressor parts, or you can use a plumber’s tape to fix the leaks. 

For example, your tube seal is leaking. To fix the leaks, you need to remove the pump, replace the seal, and again put them back together. Finally, you can select the tube seal leak.  

Taking apart the pump is a good idea to fix the possibility of leaks. You can replace any gaskets and other leak-causing components. 

Faulty Tank Check Valve or Seal

The tank check valve or seal is situated between the pump and the tank on the compressor. It prevents air from flowing out of the tank and into the pump because of the airflow in one way into the tank.  

If the tank check valve becomes damaged, it can not work correctly. So air leaks from the tank and prevents the pressure of the compressor. In this situation, your compressor won’t stop running.   

How to fix a faulty tank check valve or seal 

You need to replace the check valve or seal. It is a pretty straightforward method. Follow the below steps to replace the tank check valve.

  • First, turn off and unplug your compressor. So that you can control pressure.
  • Then, disconnect the pressure switch tube from the check valve
  • After that, disconnect the outlet tube
  • Finally, you can allow to remove the faulty check valve from the tank and replace it with the new one

In this way, you can replace the check valve. But by any chance, if you think the seal is causing the problem, then make sure no obstructions are stuck in the threading of the tank. Use suitable thread tape when you install the new check valve.

Tank Stem Leaks

The assembly of the compressor tank looks like plumbing. So you should use plumber’s tape or a variety of sealants to connect the pipes. Make sure there hasn’t any gap. 

If you have not appropriately applied the tape, there could be leaks. If this happens, your compressor fails to shut off. But how to find out the tank team leaks?

You can use the soapy water method. It helps you to find out the leaks. 

How to tank steam leaks 

You can use a plumber’s tape or a variety of sealants to fix the leaks. Make sure you apply them properly and make sure there are no leaks. 

Faulty Pressure Release Valve

The pressure release valve, or PRV, is related to the pressure switch. If the pressure switch fails, the pressure release valve fails to vent air. The compressor constantly runs and builds pressure until the pressure release valve is triggered. The valve vents air and lowers the pressure again.  

The pressure switch failure is not the only cause of constantly running the compressor. A faulty PRV is also a reason. Before maximum pressure shutoff is reached, the faulty PRV can vent air. For this reason, your compressor won’t stop running. 

How to fix a faulty pressure valve 

You can quickly fix a faulty pressure valve. It is a pretty straightforward method. You have to replace the PRV. You need to find the replacement according to the compressor’s model. 

Before replacing the PRV, turn off the compressor and depressurize the tank.  

Loss of Power 

The compressor use lot of electricity to maintain the pressure. So sometimes it can not control and loses power. As a result, the compressor runs constantly.

How to lose power 

The best way to solve this problem is don’t use the extension cords with your air compressor. The extension cords struggle to deliver the demanding power that the compressor needs. So the compressor sometimes loses power and fails to shut off.


What causes the air compressor to keep running?

There are several reasons for won’t stop running compressors. Some problem is
A faulty pressure switch
a faulty check valve
Air leaks
The intake valve
Leak gaskets and so on

How long can an air compressor run constantly? 

It depends on the size and type of the compressor. Typically, a compressor can run a few hours to 24 hours, seven days a week. Every compressor has limitations. You need to know it and operate it according to the compressor’s restrictions.  

When should an air compressor shut off?

Running an air compressor constantly is not good. You face several problems if your compressor runs continuously. You need to break for 4 to 5 minutes during the operation.  


Final Thought

The compressor won’t stop running; it could be a sign of a problem. There are several reasons for won’t stop running compressors. A faulty pressure switch, a faulty check valve, and leaks are the most common causes of an air compressor failing to shut off. The compressor also does not stop running of the problem with the gauge, intake valve, and motor problems.  

We already discuss 10 problems of compressors failing to shut off. Also, it gave easy ways how to fix the problem.  

You should sell the compressor if you didn’t fix it with the above solution. Otherwise, you will lose a lot of money because fixing the compressor’s problem is costly. So first find out the problem, then try to fix it. If you can not do it, sell the compressor. At least you get some money.