# How to Calculate the Horsepower of a Compressor

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Horsepower (hp) measures the amount of mechanical energy a device uses to complete a task. An air compressor converts electrical energy into mechanical energy to move air or liquid particles. Typically electrical power is measured in watts which equals a single joule of energy consumed every second. A single unit of horsepower is equivalent to 745.8 watts. A watt meter allows you to calculate the horsepower of a compressor by first finding its power in watts.

### Things You'll Need

• Watt meter
• Calculator
• Turn on the watt meter.

• Plug the compressor into the watt meter. Note the number of watts of power the device draws. For example, the power might be 1500.0 watts.

• Convert the power to horsepower by dividing by 745.8. In our sample exercise, 1500.0 watts divided by 745.8 watts equals 2.0 horsepower.

## References

• Photo Credit Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images
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