Best car tire air pump?

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Mrxyz
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Best car tire air pump?

Post by Mrxyz » Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:29 pm

Hi

Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I wonder if you have any recent recommendations please.
Thanks

The Wizard
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by The Wizard » Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:43 pm

I could never stand those cheap 12v pumps.
I have 120vac pancake air compressors at my place and the GF's place; they do a super job of topping up tires on cars, bicycles, lawn tractors, and wheelbarrows. Plus they have air-tool uses...
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Dutch
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by Dutch » Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:48 pm

I use a $15 hand pump to keep the tires at the right pressure.

It's a bit of a workout, but it's been very reliable for the 4 years I've owned it.

Polaris
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by Polaris » Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:05 pm

I have no personal experience with it, but a Black & Decker ASI300 Air Station Inflator came very highly recommended on another forum.

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Cosmo
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by Cosmo » Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:37 pm

Mrxyz wrote:Hi

Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I wonder if you have any recent recommendations please.
Thanks
I have never had any luck with those 12v car chargers. Too weak and they never lasted longer than a year. Yeah, what The Wizard says above.

fareastwarriors
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by fareastwarriors » Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:41 pm

Cosmo wrote:
Mrxyz wrote:Hi

Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I wonder if you have any recent recommendations please.
Thanks
I have never had any luck with those 12v car chargers. Too weak and they never lasted longer than a year. Yeah, what The Wizard says above.

I agree they never last long but it saved my butt a few times. I just got some random crap.

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yukonjack
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by yukonjack » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:44 pm

I use my bike floor pump for the car tires. It works just fine and if your within 5 lbs of the recommended pressure it's not that hard. Plus it'll get your heart rate up a bit.

sscritic
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by sscritic » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:49 pm

Cosmo wrote:
Mrxyz wrote: Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I have never had any luck with those 12v car chargers. Too weak and they never lasted longer than a year. Yeah, what The Wizard says above.
Mine is probably 10 years old and still pumping. The pressure gauge broke within a year, but the pump still pumps. The advantage of having a 12 V air pump is when my granddaughters (really, my SIL) want me to pump up all the air filled flotation devices for the swimming pool at their house. Too many cigarettes over too many years means my lungs just don't cut it anymore. A pump in the car prevents a heart attack.

BoxOfUpticks
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by BoxOfUpticks » Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:15 pm

I highly recommend the Viair 70P. At around $40, t's a bit pricey for my taste, but after 4 years it's proven worth it -- I'm glad i ponied up for it.

I dealt with multiple leaky tire pressure monitor in the valve stems, reinflating multiple tires daily for a few weeks while the dealer dreamed up reasons why it's not a problem, even though it was a known issue and covered under warranty. The viair made short work of this chore.
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widestance
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by widestance » Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:31 pm

Depends on your budget and how much use you'll get out of it.
With these pumps you definitely get what you pay for. I'm never one to cheap out on tools, especially when they're for emergency use.

Pretty much can't go wrong with any of the Viair products.
http://www.northridge4x4.com/shop/catal ... Compressor

By the way, Northridge is a fantastic company to work with. Highly recommend.
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GDBryan
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by GDBryan » Tue Feb 25, 2014 9:42 pm

I have a small air compressor and tank that I bought several years ago. It works great and I also use it for blowing out my air filter, cleaning around the garage and for my air nailer.

banjo
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by banjo » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:02 pm

I just bought a Porter Cable pancake compressor to pump up my tires. The compressor was $98 at the Big Box Home Improvement Store (free shipping), and the total for the whole package was just shy of $150 after I bought some fixtures and a hose.

That is a bit pricey for pumping up tires, but worth it to me. The major issue for me is that all those "tire pumps" have a connector that has to be latched onto the valve stem to work, and then I lose half of the air I just put in trying to get the blasted thing off. With my compressor, I just push the fixture down onto the stem, and the air goes in. It even has a popup gauge on it to tell me when to quit, just like at the gas station.

I used to pump my tires by hand for the exercise, but every tire pump I have bought in recent years has been junk. I had one literally explode while I was pumping a tire. The cheap, plastic threaded cap that held the thing together came off, it went BANG, and I ended up with pump pieces all over the garage LOL. I have an A/C powered Slime pump too (I don't think they make it anymore). It labors hard to put 30 pounds of pressure into a tire, and it gets hot. It takes forever just to top off a tire. I was warned against using the 12V pumps because the QC is so bad on them you never know how much current it is going to use. I have heard many stories of people starting out with a flat tire, and ending up with a flat tire and a blown fuse buried somewhere under the dash. Not fun.

The big win with the compressor is pumping up bicycle tires. I found that the hand pumps and the foot pumps could not put 80 pounds of pressure in a bike tire. With the hand pump, I ended up putting almost all of my weight on the T handle, and it was not moving. Then.... the little bit of air I had managed to get into the tire got out while I wrestled that blasted connector off the stem. With the compressor, it goes pfffft and the tire is full. Sweet.

So now I get my exercise elsewhere and pump up the tires with my compressor.

MathWizard
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by MathWizard » Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:17 am

Mrxyz wrote:Hi

Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I wonder if you have any recent recommendations please.
Thanks
I just buy one for each car, so I always have a spare and I have a foot pump for the bikes.
I have a pancake compressor for air tools, but it is a pain to drag up from the basement
where it is stored, just for a single tire.

Mine last for years, because I rarely ever use them.
What are you using yours for that they burn out so quickly?

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Frugal Al
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by Frugal Al » Wed Feb 26, 2014 12:39 pm

I find the smaller capacity 12v air compressors are OK in a pinch (which is really what they're for), but if you've got multiple vehicles, or leaky wheels/tires, and/or bad knees, a larger capacity compressor makes life much easier, and can be used for many other things as well. Also important is a quality chuck that seals well on the valve stem (most chucks and hoses that come with small compressor kits are junk), and a good, easy to use tire gauge. I like the brass chucks that NAPA sells and the Accu-gage dial gauges with bleeder valve.

Topic Author
Mrxyz
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by Mrxyz » Thu Feb 27, 2014 3:40 pm

MathWizard wrote:
Mrxyz wrote:Hi

Many years ago, I used to have a car charger powered car tire air pump which broke within weeks.
I wonder if you have any recent recommendations please.
Thanks
I just buy one for each car, so I always have a spare and I have a foot pump for the bikes.
I have a pancake compressor for air tools, but it is a pain to drag up from the basement
where it is stored, just for a single tire.

Mine last for years, because I rarely ever use them.
What are you using yours for that they burn out so quickly?
Hi,

I cannot remember why the failed or burned out.

Thanks for all the replies.
I do have a pancake compressor for nail guns, which I presume can be used to fill tires but I need to look for the attachment for inflating tires.

whomever
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by whomever » Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:10 pm

Just IMHO:

-if you're talking about regular inflation at home, I'd get a small compressor; it's useful for a lot of things, relatively cheap, and will last forever
-if you're talking about emergency roadside use, bicycle pumps are made for high pressure/low volume; the 12V ones are too large and expensive for my taste. I keep one of the ones below in the trunk (and it's saved me a couple of times when I'm at a trailhead and come out to a flat tire - I'd rather pump up the existing tire than use the mini-spare for 20 miles of rough forest service roads):

http://www.harborfreight.com/foot-pump-37544.html

Like most things from HF, they aren't the last word in quality. The rubber hose cracks in ten years or so. But they work fine, are a lot faster than a bicycle pump, and you can use leg power instead of arm power. For the price, they're a decent option.

lws6772
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by lws6772 » Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:32 pm

A good bicycle pump is what I've used for decades.

texasdiver
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Re: Best car tire air pump?

Post by texasdiver » Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:33 pm

OK here is the issue:

The normal cigarette lighter DC outlet in cars has too low of an amperage to power much of a motor. The wires running to those cigarette lighter outlets are thin and they are on a small fuse circuit. Probably a 10 amp fuse. So any big compressor will pull too many amps and blow the fuse. That's why the little compressors that go into the cigarette lighters take F O R E V E R to pump up a tire.

The solution is to buy a compressor that connects directly to the car battery with alligator clips. You can get much more powerful compressors that will do this. The one I bought for towing is a MasterFlow Tsunami Compressor: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000L9AD2U It draws 30 amps and will pump up car or trailer tires quite quickly and won't overheat. Tsunami is a favorite model for 4x4 folks who like to deflate their tires for really rough terrain then inflate them back up for the highway. The chuck is a bit fussy. It is a screw on type so you don't have to hold it on the tire. But you can go to Harbor Freight and get all manner of extra hoses, chucks, and assorted tools that will work off these compressors.

Of course if you just want something to plug into a wall 120 volt AC circuit there are all kinds of pancake compressors available that are designed to work with nail guns and other air tools that will inflate your tires quickly. But that only works if you are home.

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