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Old 09-25-2022, 02:42 PM   #1
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Tire inflator recommendations

Last week I found myself needed to add air to trailer tires at a Forest Service campground. Fortunately I had a cheap 12volt air pump that did the trick, but Iím looking for a better version.

What do people use? The VIAIR units look good, but there is a huge spread in prices and I donít know what the differences are.

The inflator does not need to be 12 volt. Iíll have my generator, and an inverter in the RV, although 12 volt is certainly flexible.
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Old 09-25-2022, 04:18 PM   #2
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What size are your tires and what is the PSI?

I use the viair 400P-RV for my 315/80 22.5 and they take 120PSI.

For pickup trucks you could use the 88P

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Old 09-25-2022, 08:05 PM   #3
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I bought the Viair 88 to carry on my SXS while trail riding. I now carry it in the RV. Used it a couple times 2 weeks ago on my buddies 22.5" tires that had a slow leaker. No problem pumping up to 90psi. Just takes a little time.

The price differences will be determined by the max PSI, duty cycle time, and air volume each model is rated at.
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Old 09-25-2022, 08:34 PM   #4
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Tires are 235/80R16, with max cold inflation of 80 psi. These are not large tires, but my cheap inflator sure struggled.

I think the VIAIR 88 will be enough for my trailer and even for my pickup tires.

Thanks!
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Old 09-25-2022, 08:50 PM   #5
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I’ve been through a few inflators in the RV, from 120v compressor to Milwaukee m18 compressor to now the Milwaukee M18 inflator which is great, cordless compact and light with accurate automatic pressure guage. I have almost purchased a via air a few times but corded 12v is not convenient, less than corded 120v on my RV.

I already have Milwaukee tools, lights and vacuum and carry the batteries with me anyway and charger so it’s very convenient to have the cordless inflator to go with them. All the major cordless brands should have a inflator if your already carrying the tools.

https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Produc...lation/2848-20
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Old 09-25-2022, 10:07 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by jharrell View Post
Iíve been through a few inflators in the RV, from 120v compressor to Milwaukee m18 compressor to now the Milwaukee M18 inflator which is great, cordless compact and light with accurate automatic pressure guage. I have almost purchased a via air a few times but corded 12v is not convenient, less than corded 120v on my RV.

I already have Milwaukee tools, lights and vacuum and carry the batteries with me anyway and charger so itís very convenient to have the cordless inflator to go with them. All the major cordless brands should have a inflator if your already carrying the tools.

https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Produc...lation/2848-20
I actually find the 12v option quite convenient. I just hook it up to the batteries in my 5th wheel and air up tires. plenty of air hose to reach all of them and no reason to plug power, use the inverter, or start the generator. It just works.
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Old 09-25-2022, 10:39 PM   #7
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I cannot get to the actual batteries, which are enclosed under the bed. The leads from the batteries do go back to the original battery compartment, so perhaps I can clip the pumpís alligator clamps to something there. Something to think about.
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Old 09-25-2022, 10:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharrell View Post
Iíve been through a few inflators in the RV, from 120v compressor to Milwaukee m18 compressor to now the Milwaukee M18 inflator which is great, cordless compact and light with accurate automatic pressure guage. I have almost purchased a via air a few times but corded 12v is not convenient, less than corded 120v on my RV.

I already have Milwaukee tools, lights and vacuum and carry the batteries with me anyway and charger so itís very convenient to have the cordless inflator to go with them. All the major cordless brands should have a inflator if your already carrying the tools.

https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Produc...lation/2848-20
Like you I carry a number of Milwaukee power tools (both 12V and 18V). I actually replaced my 120V compact air compressor with the M12 inflator and it's been great. Super small and do a great job inflating the tires on our 37' DP as needed up to 100 PSI (will go to 125) and I chose it over the M18 as it has a 50% duty cycle, unlike the M18 which only has a 33% duty cycle.

I find it perfectly adequate and as you mention it works with my existing batteries and chargers.
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Old 09-26-2022, 06:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jharrell View Post
I’ve been through a few inflators in the RV, from 120v compressor to Milwaukee m18 compressor to now the Milwaukee M18 inflator which is great, cordless compact and light with accurate automatic pressure guage. I have almost purchased a via air a few times but corded 12v is not convenient, less than corded 120v on my RV.
I have other M18 tools but what's keeping me from buying this inflator is the integrated hose & fitting that only works if you have straight-on access to the valve stem. It won't work on my inside dually wheels. Is there are fitting that allows you to attach a chuck meant for duallies?
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Old 09-26-2022, 07:07 AM   #10
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I have other M18 tools but what's keeping me from buying this inflator is the integrated hose & fitting that only works if you have straight-on access to the valve stem. It won't work on my inside dually wheels. Is there are fitting that allows you to attach a chuck meant for duallies?
I use a Schrader to 1/4 NPT adapter from there you can do anything you want, I did a Jaco Lightning Chuck along with Alligator valve caps works great, literally stick it on check pressure, inflate if needed, walk away, come back unclip move to next tire. My inside duals have had extension though on both my gas and new diesel so I don't have to go to far back.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

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If you want full air compressor the Milwaukee M18 is amazing as well and I carried that for more than a year after my 120v, but its pretty bulky and heavy compared to the inflater, which is super easy to store and carry.
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Old 09-26-2022, 07:15 AM   #11
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Like you I carry a number of Milwaukee power tools (both 12V and 18V). I actually replaced my 120V compact air compressor with the M12 inflator and it's been great. Super small and do a great job inflating the tires on our 37' DP as needed up to 100 PSI (will go to 125) and I chose it over the M18 as it has a 50% duty cycle, unlike the M18 which only has a 33% duty cycle.

I find it perfectly adequate and as you mention it works with my existing batteries and chargers.
Yes the M12 inflator was just not going to do it (love the M12 tools I carry those too), so I went with the air compressor which I use at home as well, great machine, but when the M18 Inflater came out I knew that was the one for the RV and also my Jeep when I go off-roading and deflate the tires and need to air back up afterwards.

Dragging a cord or hose all around and gaining access to the vehicle batteries is not fun on my setup, the cordless really makes everything easy, and yeah already had the batteries anyway.
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Old 09-26-2022, 09:46 AM   #12
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Yes the M12 inflator was just not going to do it (love the M12 tools I carry those too), so I went with the air compressor which I use at home as well, great machine, but when the M18 Inflater came out I knew that was the one for the RV and also my Jeep when I go off-roading and deflate the tires and need to air back up afterwards.

Dragging a cord or hose all around and gaining access to the vehicle batteries is not fun on my setup, the cordless really makes everything easy, and yeah already had the batteries anyway.
Interesting...... I have had no issues using the M12 with my 37' DP. I did buy an extension with quick deflator option.

Again the thing that kept me from the M18 was the limited 33% duty cycle vs the 50% duty cycle of the M12...... sounds weird I know but if you look up the specs you'll see the difference.

In any case, there is a special right now at HD that gets you a 4Ah and 2Ah battery with charger as well as the M12 Inflator for $129...... best deal going on the M18 right now is $179 for the inflator as a bare tool

I also ditched my 120V inflator which was a very nice California Innovations unit that was nice and quiet and had high CFM but I have had no issues with the M12...... M18 is great also as both have the very nice digital pressure gauge and you can simply dial in the desired pressure and the unit just turns off when you hit the number..... very nice products from Milwaukee
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Old 09-26-2022, 11:59 AM   #13
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My Viair is 12v. I can access the battery connection points from under the steps directly to the batteries, or behind the front wheel where the BCC is located, the Chassis battery behind the hood. These all work great for the passenger side and the front drivers side. But just a foot short for the rear drivers wheels. My Gen in located right there, so I can simply clip onto the battery leads at the starter solenoid. Just a heads up for multiple connection points.
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Old 09-26-2022, 02:01 PM   #14
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Interesting...... I have had no issues using the M12 with my 37' DP. I did buy an extension with quick deflator option.
I guess I was more thinking for my Jeep because going from say 12 psi back to 30 psi on 35's needs lots of battery.

The M12 is probably fine for putting a few psi a low tire on the RV once in a while, however when I got my new RV the tire has 120 psi, so I deflated closer to tire charts at my axle weights to 100 psi, well the fancy new built in TPMS started complaining and wanted 110 psi minimum. So I used the inflator to put 10 psi back in all 6 tires for now and that blew through a 8AH battery to do it, no way an M12 could do that.

The M18 seems to work pretty fast too, I would imagine its much faster than the M12 beyond just duty cycle.
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