Porter-Cable Pancake Compressor problem

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Forum topic by ChunkyC posted 12-26-2009 03:51 AM 14005 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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856 posts in 3217 days

12-26-2009 03:51 AM

I have a Porter-Cable Pancake Compressor that has just started leaking. I disassembled it tonight, again, and I found a small pin hole in the head. grrrr

Hole in the head
(You should be able to click for a full size image)

The hole looks way to symmetrical to be an “accident.” Does anyone have any have thoughts about the hole? Can it be fixed, and how, or am I in the market for a new compressor?


-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

14 replies so far

View GFYS's profile


711 posts in 3434 days

#1 posted 12-26-2009 03:58 AM

Well if you are sure it’s a defect…you could try some epoxy or liquidsteel unless you think it’s under warranty. It’s not like you are going to ruin it. Get McGyver on it!

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

5804 posts in 3158 days

#2 posted 12-26-2009 04:02 AM

Merry Christmas: I couldn’t tell exactly where the pinhole was, but if it’s not too big, you can fix it with some JB Weld. I ‘ve used it on several small holes, and it works good. It’s a two-part mix, like epoxy. Mix it together, put in on front and back, let dry(it drys pretty quick, but let it set up for a couple hours, and your back in business. Hope this helps.

-- " At my age, happy hour is a crap and a nap".....

View GFYS's profile


711 posts in 3434 days

#3 posted 12-26-2009 04:11 AM

That doesnt look like a defect. Are you sure that is what’s leaking?

View SteveMI's profile


1092 posts in 3258 days

#4 posted 12-26-2009 04:19 AM

I’m not sure that is a defect. Looks like it is suppose to be there.

Mine leaks down if anything is attached to the hose, seems the seal in the coupling isn’t perfect any more. So I just disconnect each time.

Try draining it at petcock, take hose off, plug it, re-pressurize and let it sit to see if it leaks down. If it doesn’t leak down, then you need a new hose or patience. Won’t cost anything except a plug to try.


View ChunkyC's profile


856 posts in 3217 days

#5 posted 12-26-2009 04:22 AM

No question, that is where the leak is. I went back to the shop after posting this question and took a closer look at the head and value assembly. The hole is right over one of the exhaust values. I can see a mark on the valve too. I’m going to guess that the compressor must have sucked in something small and it get compressed right through the top of the head.

I might try some JB-Weld on it but you can’t put any on the inside of the head as that area is a valve seat. But I seriously doubt that JB will hold on the outside of the head at 150 psi.

I found some replacement parts at The head, gasket and valve assembly, w/ shipping, is $50. I might try ordering just the head. If that doesn’t fix it, then I’ll look for a new compressor.

-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

View Bothus's profile


441 posts in 3140 days

#6 posted 12-26-2009 05:03 AM

Good luck and be careful Chuck.

When I went to buy a new compressor I ended up buying a bicycle and a new refrigerator.


-- Jerry Boshear, Professional Kitchen Designer, amature woodworker.

View Northerner's profile


88 posts in 3124 days

#7 posted 12-26-2009 05:35 AM

you sure it isnt some kind of cross-over port or something to draw a vacuum cause it does look to perfect and centered to be just random.

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning!

View ChunkyC's profile


856 posts in 3217 days

#8 posted 12-26-2009 05:39 AM

>> you sure it isnt some kind of cross-over port or something

This is what I was thinking when I posted the question but it really doesn’t look like it.

-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

View lew's profile


12017 posts in 3719 days

#9 posted 12-26-2009 06:03 AM

Not sure what the shipping will be but here is a link that has prices that are pretty reasonable.

Does that hole go thru to the outside of the head?

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View dmorgantx's profile


70 posts in 3046 days

#10 posted 12-26-2009 02:24 PM

So- I have one of these compressors and about a month ago I experienced a leak. Thinking back to SteveMI’s comment- I may have had something hooked up. Anyway- I just got mad, shut it down, let it drain etc. Then about a week later I decided to try it again and it is no longer leaking.

I’d go with the though that the whole is suppose to be there. I don’t believe that looks like an accident- its perfectly round and perfectly placed.

Perhaps is the hose thing?

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3651 days

#11 posted 12-26-2009 07:10 PM

Mine leaks down if I leave the hose connected…not thru the hose , but the coupler.
I used some dishsoap and water in a spray bottle to find the exact point of the leak because I didn’t know if the hose had become porous or what was leaking for sure. I do now : )

If you’re referring to the tiny hole that appears in the “rainbow” part of the casting , it looks like it is meant to be there. What condition is the head gasket in ? Usually , once you disturb a gasket , it is no longer able to seal properly.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View ChunkyC's profile


856 posts in 3217 days

#12 posted 12-26-2009 08:05 PM

Just found this little gem:

“I think the problem is the tank check valve. If the valve doesn’t seal off air will bleed back to the cylinder. There is a small vent hole in the cylinder head to bleed off the air escaping from the check valve. A new check valve should solve the problem.”

Oh and BTW, I’ve got enough sense to know that it’s not a hose leaking. If the hose is leaking, that would be a good trick sense the hose is upstairs in the garage.

-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

View pakuchn's profile


2 posts in 2152 days

#13 posted 05-29-2012 01:31 AM


I have the same issue. Can you please tell me the part number and where you purchased your Check Valve?

Thank you..

View pakuchn's profile


2 posts in 2152 days

#14 posted 06-01-2012 11:37 AM

Issue has been resolved. I took the check valve out, sprayed W-40
in it. Waited all night for it to dry, put it back and it all works like new.

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