Tips for Using an Air Compressor for Your Vehicle

A flat tyre can happen at any time and it may be when you least expect it. So you should have tools on hand to deal with the flat tyre especially if you are in a location that will not be reached easily by roadside assistance. So if you are travelling in off-road conditions, you need to have a recovery kit to deal with most emergencies that you may come across.

Tyres are a vital aspect of the vehicle and you need to ensure that the right air pressure is maintained at all times. You have to know the proper tyre pressure required for your vehicle under different road conditions. This will be provided in the owner’s manual. Also, the axle load, weather and number of tyres per axle can also impact the tyre pressure value. There are also different types of air compressors. A very convenient air compressor to have is 12-volt unit. It is not very powerful but it can be hooked on to the vehicle battery to fill up the air in your tyres. They are cost effective as well.

Another portable air compressor is the hand carry compressor which is very lightweight. You can take them with you when you are travelling. These units are powered by electricity. You can also find some gas powered models. There are other uses of a hand carry compressor such as inflating mattresses and other inflatable items. There are wheeled portable air compressors that tend to be heavier than the hand carry compressors. Mobile air compressors are generally used with construction trucks and they will need to be towed behind the truck. You can find these in so many sizes and shapes.

You can also use a tyre gauge to identify the amount of compressed air that has to be added. If the tyre is overinflated, you will run into problems with vehicle handling. Under inflated tyres can increase friction and heat up the rubber damaging the tyres. This will require you to replace them frequently. When figuring out the ideal air pressure, don’t rely on the PSI number that is etched onto the sidewall of the tyre. This is simply the maximum air pressure of that tyre. However, this value will give you an idea of the type of 4WD air compressor you can purchase. Smaller units will be able to maintain a maximum pressure of 150 PSI.

It is recommended to fill the tyres when they are cold. This is because you will be able to get a more accurate reading with cold temperatures. If the tyre is hot, the air pressure shown by the tyre gauge will be higher. So give the tyre half an hour to cool down once you have parked it in a safe place. If you are in a hurry, you can add 3 PSI over the recommended value for the tyres. Once you remove the stem cap attached to the top of the valve stem in the tyre, you can start using the compressor. You will need to plug in the air compressor so it can accumulate air. Bring this up to the flat tyre and the air hose has to be attached to the compressor.

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