inflating tires, cheap compressors keep breaking ...

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Disabled Account
Joined 2008
ok i dont know what is the deal with my tires (i drive a full size sedan) but every once in a while ( more often than you would really expect, but not the point) they need some air pumped into them

i bought some manual hand pump (for like $6) from strauss auto parts and it broke after about maybe one tire worth of air.

then i bought an electric one from strauss (for like $20) ... it also broke after about one tires worth of air.

at that point i realized that i will not buy anything from strauss again. i bought the next one (electric) on the internet, got the most "heavy duty" one i could find. it was supposed to be designed for trucks and suvs (i drive a regular car) and handle up to 350 PSI ... paid like $60 for it ... and it actually lasted about 2 or 3 years ... then it also broke (after about 5 tires worth of air)

and now i have a tire that needs some air ... and i dont know what to do any more ! i know if i buy another pump its gona probably break before im even done inflating the tire whether it is manual or electric

usually when i need some air i just drive to the gas station and use their pump ... but sometimes there is not enough air to drive safely TO the gas station

i need a solution that works ...

help !
What price range are you looking for? Also, does it have to be either manual or run off of 12v from the car battery (actually 13.8v or so). If run off of 120v, then Sears and Home Depot, among others, usually have a small hotdog or pancake style compressor for $100 to $150 range. Not the heaviest duty in the world. But for inflating tires, it should last for years. If you need to run off 12v, drop a reply post and I will find a couple websites for good 12v compressors. They aren't cheap though.

Disabled Account
Joined 2008
thanks, i found this:

Q Industries MV50

and ordered it ...

and this is the old one that i just tossed in the trash:

Bon Aire Inflator

i hope the new one will be better because:

* it is open to cooling by ambient air instead of enclosed into plastic which traps heat

* it connects directly to battery instead of cigarette lighter adapter so most likely it has more powerful motor

* reviews seem to suggest that it works faster and vibrates less than most units

before tossing out the old one i found the problem with it ... the rivet holding the valve on the compressor fell out and jammed the piston. the poor unit has a displacement of probably like 0.6 cubic inch and runs so hot and vibrates so much that im really not surprised ... also i find it odd that it only has ONE valve ... even my dust mask that i use when building speakers has two ... i think it relies on the valve in the tire itself to act as the second one ... and for this miserable scheme to work the hose had to be made super short, like 1.5 feet ... i wonder if that bon aire compressor was designed by bose :)

anyway i should be getting the new one in 2 days, so i'll let you know how it goes ...
The Q Industries Compressor definitely looks like it's heavier duty that the Bon Aire. A couple of things to think about. In regards the compressors life, these compressors appear to both be oil free designs. This design will wear out faster that an oiled compressor due to the fact that there is a around the piston that is rubbing on the cylinder wall, and no oil to act as a lubricant. But based upon the type of use you plan, I would expect that the Q would last a while.
In regards to your tire(s), all tires lose air over time, you should be checking your air pressure weekly and refilling as necessary to maintain recommended pressure. If the tire is leaking down fast enough that you don't feel comfortable driving to a gas station to use the compressor there, you probably should have the tire(s) looked at. It might be as simple as the valve stem is bad, or the tire bead has a leak. Even if it is a hole in the tire, some can be repaired, presuming it's worth it.

Good Luck,

Disabled Account
Joined 2008
i look at it from the cost/benefit point of view. if its simpler for me to put air in the tire than to fix it then i will just fill it with air.

last time it cost me 5 bucks to fix a hole and in terms of time it probably took close to an hour to drive to the place, wait for somebody to come out, remove the wheel, find the hole, fix it, put it back on, and then for me to drive back home.

in that hour i can inflate my tire maybe 5 times and by then i may need new tires anyway.

so to me its not about whether what is happening to my tire is "normal" but rather its about what is less hassle.

a good enough compressor would save me some unnecessary trips to the tire shop ... thats the way i look at it.

what would be an example of an "oiled" compressor model ?
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