The basics of air blow guns

23rd Jan 2023

An air blow gun is used for compressed air applications, like debris removal, non-contact drying and blowing. It comprises a nozzle attached to an airline that delivers a steady stream of compressed air.

To select an appropriate air blow gun, you must consider the maximum pressure that can be applied. First, ensure your input connection type and size match the air compressor hose. The nozzle of the air blow gun should then be chosen to provide a suitable output port for your application. Compressed air output can be constant or adjustable depending on the trigger design.

Types of typical air intakes

Air blow guns have various input port types allowing for a secure and simple connection to the compressed air supply. In addition, because air blow guns typically have female threads, they connect to fittings with male threads and hose barbs or pneumatic couplings on the other end.

Hose barb

Hose barbs are fittings commonly used to connect and secure air tools, hoses, or tubes. They're typically made of plastic, steel, or brass. The male threads of the hose barb are connected to the air blow gun, and the female threads of the hose barb are connected to the tube or hose. In addition, the barb rings allow for an easy connection that is leak-free. A hose clamp is frequently used to secure the hose barb in place.

Pneumatic coupling

A pneumatic coupling connects compressed air tools to a compressed air line. While under pressure, the air blow gun can be easily connected and disconnected from the air supply line. It comprises a quick coupling and a plug-in or nipple. The plug-in side adheres to common styles to ensure interchangeability, like the Euro coupling or Orion coupling style. The system remains pressurised when the plug side is disconnected, allowing you to quickly and easily disconnect and reconnect different tools with the same connection style.

Common nozzles

Air blow guns have an outlet port with a nozzle that directs the compressed air that comes out. There is an appropriate nozzle for each application and usage of the air bow gun.

Straight nozzle

Simple and consistent pressure.

Star-shaped coanda

Central cone with many side openings.

Safe straight nozzle

Straight nozzle with one or more side holes and an integrated pressure regulator.

Flat nozzle

A multi-channel fan nozzle that is suitable for large areas.

High-flow coanda

A large-diameter central cone with various side openings to increase airflow.

Venturi nozzle

Large-diameter nozzle with large-diameter openings on the sides to use less compressed air.

Flow regulation

There is typically either a control knob or pistol grip design to control the air pressure output. A control knob can be twisted to adjust and control the compressed air flow. The pistol grip design allows for variable flow control based on how far the trigger is pulled.

Safety requirements

When used improperly, air blow guns can be dangerous.

  • They can produce loud noises that can result in hearing loss.
  • Particles projected by compressed air can enter your eye and cause irritation and infections.
  • Compressed air itself can cause injury if it enters your body through the skin.

Housing and internal components

Metal or plastic housings are common on air blow guns. The plastic housing is much lighter than a metal housing and prevents the handle from feeling cold. In addition, the pistol grip and handle provide the user with ergonomic benefits. The nozzle directs the compressed air into the desired location and is typically made of aluminium or zinc-plated steel. The gun's internal parts are made of brass and stainless steel, while its sealing is typically made of nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR). Air blow guns can also have protective shields typically made of plastic to protect the user from rebound particles.

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