We spent over 30 hours researching 15 different types of tire inflators and found that overall weight, power cord length, and air flow rate were most important. The Kensun AC Tire Inflator scored high above the competition in all categories and is our top pick. It’s very portable and fit easily in the trunk of the car. The high quality air hose was easy to use and is very durable. The cord length is super convenient, over 9 feet long, and can plug right into the car lighter. The three different nozzle adapters made it possible to inflate a large variety of items.
The purpose of our reviews and buyer’s guides is to provide consumers with detailed information on tire inflators so they can sort through the numerous choices available and decide on the one that will meet their needs and result in a good purchase for them.
The information we provide includes features of the tire inflators, specifics that are important to know and that help determine whether the model they are looking at is the right one for them.
The buyer’s guide is to give even more knowledge about choosing the right tire inflator so consumers are confident in their choices and happy with their purchases. Read more to learn about these three top rated tire inflators and see which one is the right fit for what you need and want.
Top 10 List
|Rank||Picture||Inflator||Max Pressure (PSI)||Power Cord (in)|
|6||Black & Decker||160||120.00|
Kensun AC Portable Tire Inflator
Never be stuck on the side of the road again with a flat tire. The portable and easy to use Kensun Tire Inflator fits right in your trunk, ready to help you out of a jam if you find yourself on the side of the road with a flat.
This multi-function tire inflator operates in either AC 110v or DC 12v. It provides up to 40 PSI with an air flow rate of 11 liters per minute. Kensun’s D1002 model has been tested on many different tires, up to 33”.
The 21.7” rubber air hose is high quality and provides plenty of air flow to make filling tires or anything else you use it for much faster.
You’ll have plenty of length to fill up all the tires with the 9’10” cord that can plug into the cigarette lighter. There is also a 6’7” cord with an AC plug as well. The three different nozzle adapters work perfectly for many different kinds of tires and other items as well including:
- Air mattresses
- Camping equipment
- All kinds of athletic balls (volley, basketball, football, soccer)
- Beach toys
- Pool toys
The Kensun Tire Inflator is the perfect solution for those who want to be prepared in the event of a flat tire. Having this tire inflator in your trunk prevents you from being stuck on the side of the road or in a parking lot waiting for someone to help.
Slime COMP06 Pro Power Heavy-Duty 12-Volt Tire Inflator
It can even inflate a tire on a mid-sized vehicle in only about 3 minutes so you’re not sitting stuck for hours waiting for help. The powerful 12v compressor has a 150 PSI and features a direct drive motor that is sturdy and long lasting.
This tire inflator plugs right into your cigarette lighter. The 16’ hose has a quick release coupler that reaches every tire on the vehicle effortlessly. The powerful; compressor inflates most standard tires in as quickly as 3 minutes so no long inflation times are needed.
The easy to read gauge is always accurate and easy to see even in low light conditions or nighttime due to the bright LED light. There are two different switches, one for the light and one for the inflator, on a dual power switch for your convenience.
Carry the Slime Tire Inflator easily in its canvas storage bag that fits perfectly in the trunk or behind the driver’s seat. There are two additional adapters included that work for rafts and balls, making this tire inflator able to inflate more than just tires. Inflate your basketballs, footballs, ATV tires, air mattresses, motorcycle tires and much more easily and quickly.
This tire inflator should not be used with the older 8 amp cigarette lighters due to the larger amp size of this model. It will need to be a 12v DC power outlet that is rated for 15 amps or larger.
WINDEK RCP-B62A Digital Heavy Duty 12v Tire Inflator
Windek is one of the largest tire inflator and air compressor manufacturers in the world.
They’ve produced excellent quality, heavy duty tire inflators that can be used to inflate tires of all kinds. The ease of use for this inflator makes it a customer favorite.
All users have to do is connect it to the tire, the outlet and then dial in the correct air pressure that you want. Everything else is done by the tire inflator.
This auto-inflate feature makes quick work of airing up any tires that have gone flat. This is especially helpful when you are stranded with a flat tire somewhere. No more having to rely on others or wait for help. With the Windek tire inflator, you can have your tires inflated and back on the road in minutes.
The digital auto-inflate reduces any chance of the tires being over-filled. Your tires will be filled the perfect amount every time. The LED work light enables you to see what you’re doing even if you have to inflate your tires at night. Reach all of your tires with the convenient 10’ cord that will connect to any standard 12v DC outlet.
The air hose is 30” long and fits all standard tire valves with no problem. There is a keychain tire gauge included that enables users to know the air pressure of their tires at any time.
Store everything in the portable carrying bag, which is compact enough to fit into the trunk easily. Customers, who purchase this tire inflator from Windek, will receive a 1 year limited warranty, a satisfaction guarantee, and great tips as well.
These top rated tire inflators have everything you need to ensure you are never caught with a flat tire at home or out somewhere. Each of them has the power and adaptability to inflate not only vehicle tires but other inflatables as well. Having a good tire inflator helps car owners ensure that they keep their tires at the optimum levels which helps fuel efficiency.
Below we have a buyer’s guide that will help give you more information about tire inflators and will equip you with the knowledge you need to choose the right one for your vehicle and needs. With all of the choices available on the market, it’s good to have the knowledge you need to sort through them all.
|11.70 x 6.80 x 4.80||7.00 x 7.13 x 9.25||10.20 x 6.00 x 4.10||12.00 x 10.00 x 8.00||2.80 x 8.50 x 6.50||12.10 x 7.80 x 6.80||10.40 x 7.90 x 7.40||7.00 x 3.00 x 6.50||8.20 x 7.20 x 5.50||6.50 x 3.60 x 6.20|
What is a Tire Inflator?
Tire inflators come in many different styles and are equipped with many different features. It’s always a good idea to know what you need and want the inflator to be able to do before you purchase one. Doing this will ensure that you get the inflator that will fit your preferences and needs and you won’t be wasting money.
Tires are an important part of a car’s overall performance. If they are worn or unbalanced in any way, it can affect how the car runs. Having a tire inflator eliminates the problem of the vehicle’s tires being low and causing driving issues. Now that gas stations charge for air, having a tire inflator can save you money in the long run because there are many things it can be used to put air into.
Below are some points to consider when you start researching tire inflators to purchase one for yourself. It is especially helpful to have a good quality tire inflator if you do regular work on vehicles in your garage. Having the ability and means to air up the tires on the vehicles your repair is an added benefit your customers will really appreciate.
With all of the choices of tire inflators available, it is unnecessary to spend large amounts of money to get a commercial grade tire inflator. Even if you have your own repair shop, it’s unlikely that you would have e cause to inflate all the times at the same time on several vehicles at once. You can find an excellent quality, mid-range tire inflator for under $100 and it will be more than sufficient to take care of all of your inflation needs.
Many of the tire inflators that we have shown you are powered both by 12v DC or AC v. You can power them by either plugging them into the vehicle’s cigarette lighter or by using electrical energy. The main difference between air compressors and tire inflators is the power and inflation capacity.
Tire inflators may take a bit longer to inflate tires than a regular air compressor will but the time difference is not huge. They are well worth having to avoid being stuck out somewhere with a flat tire, and to use for all your household inflation needs such as children’s toys (balls, etc) and bicycles, motorcycles, ATV tires, air mattresses, and many more items.
There are many different features that a tire inflator has that will come in handy. Many features are standard and many different models will have them, others may be additional features that you don’t usually get with a tire inflator. Decide which features are important to you when you are looking at the different models.
- Air Pressure Gauge – This will tell users what the current air pressure is inside the tires. This is important to know so the tires are not over or under filled.
- Auto Inflate – This feature allows the user to pre set the amount of air that goes into the air. Hit the button and the tire will auto inflate.
- Auto shutoff – This feature will automatically shut the inflator off when it reaches the proper tire inflation. One of the benefits to this automatic shut off is that is reduces the possibility of over-inflating the tire.
- LED work light – Not all flat tires happen during the daylight of course, so it is good to have a feature in place that can provide plenty of light if your tire goes flat at night. There is nothing scarier than being on the side of the road with a flat tire and no light source. The LED light will allow other cars and vehicles to see you on the side of the road as well as illuminate the area you will need to be working while you inflate the flat tire.
- Long power cord – Many tire inflators will have cords that range anywhere from 6-12 feet or longer. The benefit to a longer cord is that it enables the user to reach any tire on the vehicle that needs inflating.
- AC/DC compatible – Most tire inflators offer both AC and DC power sources. The DC power can be plugged into the cigarette lighter and the AC can be plugged into a regular electrical outlet. Both have benefits and having the choice of both offers convenience to the user.
- Adaptors for Inflatables – Many models of tire inflators come with adaptors that are used to inflate other objects such as air mattresses, balls, bicycle tires and more.
- Fast inflation – Tire inflators will typically take longer than a regular air compressor, but some models offer faster inflation which is related to the power the particular model has.
- Durable air hose – All tire inflators have air hoses and it’s important to ensure that the air hose that comes with the tire inflator is long and that it has a good diameter as well. Typical hose lengths will range from 2 ft. to as much as 16 ft for the heavier duty models.
- Carrying case or bag – Keep your tire inflator handy is important so no pieces are lost. Most models offer a carry bag or case of some kind to keep all the components in when you store it. Most are easily stored in the trunk or behind the driver’s seat due to their smaller size.
- Compressor – The size of the compressor correlates to how fast the tire inflator works. The higher the PSI compressor, the stronger and faster it will inflate tires. A model with a small PSI would not typically be sufficient to inflate vehicle tires but would work for sports equipment, bicycles and the like.
- Warning lights – This feature is not the same as the LED work light feature mentioned above. Some models offer warning lights that will flash which work well on the side of the road, especially in low light/visibility conditions and nighttime.
- Portability – Most tire inflators are smaller and lightweight in comparison to regular air compressors which don’t make very convenient emergency pieces of equipment. One of the reasons these units are so popular with consumers is being able to store these units in the trunk or carry them easily.
- Battery Powered – Some models are battery powered and don’t require the use of cigarette lighters or electrical power at all. The only drawback to battery powered units is that it is imperative that you make sure the battery is fully charged at all times in the event you may need it.
- Duty Cycle – The duty cycle isn’t a feature as much as it is a consideration to look at when comparing models. Duty cycle is based on percentages. A 45% duty cycle unit will operate continuously at 100 PSI at 72 degrees for 4 minutes and will require a cool down period as well. A unit that has a 100% duty cycle can work without the cool down period.
It is always important to use power equipment of any kind with caution and safety in mind. We have listed several safety tips below that will help reduce any injuries or accidents that may occur.
- Tire inflators should not be used for more than 10 minutes or so continuously. It will need to cool for at least 25 minutes in between inflation times. Failure to do so can result in the unit becoming overheated which can burn up the motor and cause it to malfunction. Tire inflators should never be allowed to run unsupervised.
- Never inflate the tires with a tire inflator while the vehicle is running. Shut the engine down completely before screwing the hose on and inflating the tire.
- Never assume or “eyeball” the tire to determine air pressure. Use a gauge and make sure you know the proper numbers for your tires. Many models of tire inflators have built in tire gauges or you can purchase a handheld one.
- Never use a tire inflator with the older, 8 amp cigarette lighters. Most current tire inflators are at least 15 amps and would not work with an 8 amp cigarette lighter.
- Never let children handle or use the tire inflator. Older teens can use it safely as long as they have been shown how, but this is not a toy that a child should have access to.
- Be sure to read all instructions and warnings before using your tire inflator. It will tell you the information you need to know about the specific unit you have.
- If there are other drivers of your vehicle, make sure that you instruct them on how to operate the tire inflator in the event they are the ones caught with a flat tire somewhere. Everyone who drives the car should know how to use this piece of equipment safely.
Tire inflators are an excellent means of ensuring that you or your loved ones are never stuck on the side of the road or stranded in a dark parking lot after work with a flat tire. By having a reliable tire inflator in the trunk you will be able to take care of business and get back on the road.
The top rated tire inflators we have reviewed here are all excellent models that perform well for customers and they have become favorites due to their reliability and performance. The buyer’s guide has provided more detailed information on the features and benefits of having a tire inflator.
With this knowledge, consumers can confidently sort through the different models and styles available and find the choice that appeals to them the most as well as the one that will fit the needs and preferences the consumer has.
Although tire inflators have more of a specific job title than air compressors, most tire inflators can also be used to inflate numerous other items as well. Having a good quality tire inflator for each of your vehicles can give you peace of mind that no matter where the drivers are, they have the means to take care of flat tires on their own in an easy and safe way.