Getting a flat tire is always inconvenient. Luckily, adding air back into the tire can be a pretty easy process. Follow these three steps if you plan on filling your tires with an air compressor.
Step 1. Check The Tire Pressure
The first step is knowing how much air pressure must be put into the tire. The exact amount of air can vary based upon the axle load, number of tires per axle and weather conditions. Make sure to check the owner’s manual before beginning this process.
Check this information so you know what type/size air compressor to purchase. A smaller compressor will keep pressure between 100-150 PSI. A tire gauge will tell you how much compressed air your tires need. Excessive air added to the tires can cause performance issues for the vehicle. Not adding enough air can also cause some issues, including extra friction. Most tire manufacturers say for every 3 PSI below the recommendation, you burn 1 percent more fuel while also adding 10 percent of extra tire wear.
Try filling up the tires when the outside temperature is low for the best results. Colder temperatures will give you a more accurate reading. Tires will show higher pressure when the temperature is warmer. When performing this task, each tire should feature a stem cap screwed to the top of the valve stem. Remove this cap, but make sure not to lose track of it. Do not remove the cap, however, until you are ready to use the air compressor.
Step 2. Turn On Air Compressor
Generally, air compressors will run on electrical power. Plug in the compressor and let it accumulate air. Some smaller units will feature a two-prong plug, while larger units may require three prongs. You will need to use outlets with the correct voltage for the units. Using the wrong circuit can blow out both the circuit and compressor.
Move the compressor as close to the tires as possible once it’s running. Attach the air hose to the unit and include the quick coupler at the end. This fastener will let you push air into the valve stem. Activate the safety position on the nozzle, if applicable. Securely fasten the hose to the valve stem, then turn on the machine.
Filling up the tire may take a decent amount of time, depending on how flat it is. Most compressors will have gauges in place to help you add the proper amount of air. Some inflators may even turn off automatically when the correct level is reached. Do not walk away from the compressor during this process.
Step 3. Detach Hose
Check the tire pressure periodically while filling the tire up. Digital inflators will automatically monitor the levels, in most cases. Push down on the tire gauge to release some air if too much has been added to the tire. Remove the compressor hose when the job is complete. Then put the stem cap back in place on the valve.