Learn about pneumatic breakers and how to use them.


When it comes to the construction equipment industry, there are two different types of breakers: pneumatic and hydraulic. Both are handy tools that can help get things done more efficiently. A pneumatic breaker breaks up concrete and other hard materials by driving an impact head.

What is a pneumatic breaker, and what is it used for?

With a head made of steel or aluminum, pneumatic breakers are designed to hit the material with enough force to break it into smaller pieces. It breaks up concrete, asphalt, masonry, rocks, and ice. It can break up the frozen ground, roots in the yard, or even clear clogged pipes from water lines.

The main goal of using it is to save time, money and labor. It can be used on residential and commercial projects without any problem.

How does it work?

It breaks the pressure of air and converts it into kinetic energy. When you depress the foot pedal on the breaker, a small piston pushes up against the material until it breaks through its outer layer. It creates an opening in which there’s less resistance for further compression.

Pneumatic vs. hydraulic breakers

Hydraulic breakers have a higher impact force, which means they can handle larger loads with less wear and tear on the equipment than pneumatic ones. This also means that one should be careful when operating a pneumatic breaker. However, this should not be an issue with a hydraulic breaker since they’re designed with safety features such as overtravel limits. 

Lubricant oil in pneumatic breakers.

The same lubricant oil can be used in pneumatic and hydraulic breakers. The oil keeps the tool running smoothly, safely, and efficiently. It also helps keep the breaker cool so it doesn’t get too hot. Oil is composed of silicone fluids that prevent rusting when they come into contact with other metals; they don’t stick together but instead spread out evenly over surfaces.

How and why to clean out the breaker? 

Clean out the breaker after every use, as it will remove debris that can cause damage to the tool, as well as make sure the breaker is working at its best. It would help if you also considered cleaning it out when you notice a decrease in performance.

Hose leak.

The first thing to check is the hose connection. When there is a leak, it may be from the joint between the pneumatic breaker and the power source. Make sure that this connection is tight and that there are no cracks or wear on either part of the connector.

Check for cracks as well; if they are cracked, water can get inside them and cause corrosion. Also, inspect any damage to these components on their exterior surfaces for signs of rust or other deterioration caused by moisture exposure over time.

Take proper precautions.

Use proper safety precautions and equipment when drilling with a pneumatic breaker.

  • Safety glasses should be worn at all times while operating this tool.
  • A face shield is required for those who work around sandblasting operations or other high-velocity materials. This will protect against flying debris that could hit the face.


While learning how to use the breaker, it’s important to remember that this equipment’s proper maintenance and service are essential. If breakers are not cleaned regularly, grease will build up on the moving parts and cause them to wear out sooner. It’s also important not to store the pneumatic breaker at an angle—the hose should always be straight up when installed. If there is any movement during operation, debris could enter the hose, making it difficult for air to flow through it properly.