10 Best Inflators | March 2017
- long 10 foot power cord
- programmable pressure gauge
- 2 foot air hose is too short
- good value option
- front integrated pressure gauge
- extremely loud and vibrates a lot
- quick connect pvc air hose
- uses a standard wall outlet
- carrying handle increases size
- three unit readings
- seven minute inflation
- hose is on the short side
|Brand||Suaoki DC Portable|
- spare dust caps included
- easy adapter storage
- display does not light up
|Brand||P.I. Auto Store Premium|
- inflate-right technology
- rubberized feet for stability
- compact and easy-to-store
- 16 foot long air hose
- adapters for inflatables and balls
- carrying bag included
Benefits of an Inflator
Maintaining proper air pressure in one's tires is crucial for getting the most miles per gallon out of a gas tank. In fact, experts say that for every pound drop in a tire's pounds per square inch (PSI) of air pressure, the mileage of the car goes down by 0.4 percent. Keeping an inflator on hand can help drivers boost their PSI to the proper levels on-the-go, without the help of a professional mechanic. Inflators are designed to fit in most vehicles without taking up too much space, and some weigh as little as six pounds, so anybody can lift and move them as needed.
When someone is driving on a leaky tire and doesn't have time to patch up the hole, or isn't near a mechanic, he or she needs to add air frequently. Fortunately, most inflators run on 12-volt batteries that can draw power from a car's DC port. They are also designed to recharge within just a few hours when using an AC power supply. Depending on the PSI of pressure that an inflator can produce, some can even fill up oversized truck tires. They are also great for active people who spend their weekends hiking or camping.
Some inflators come with nozzle adapters allowing one to put air in car tires, bicycle tires, and even basketballs. Good Samaritans who want to help people on the side of the road with deflated tires should get an inflator with an extra long reach so it can connect between the two cars.
There are several important safety tips for driving after dark that can prevent an accident, but in the unfortunate event that an accident does occur, having an inflator with reflectors is handy. It can be used to alert other motorists to their presence when they're on the side of the road.
How To Avoid A Flat Tire
An inflator is an important part of any fix-it kit for drivers who like to patch up their own tires. But the ideal situation is to reduce the possibility of a flat tire in the first place. It's a good idea to visually check one's tires about once a week to catch any slow leaks. Not all flat tires come from nails on the road; some result from a tire that was leaking for a long time, and couldn't handle a sudden 200-mile road trip. That being said, sharp items like nails in the road are one of the top causes of flat tires, which is why drivers should avoid taking their vehicles down torn up alleys where people tend to dump construction items.
There's one cause of flat tires that has nothing to do with driver error and that's vandalism. Anyone from an angry ex-employee to a mischievous teenager might slash a person's tire, so drivers should always park their car in well-lit areas, preferably where they can keep an eye on them. When a tire becomes worn out in one area, this can also cause it to tear open. So in addition to regularly checking air pressure, drivers should also check to make sure their tires are wearing out evenly.
Making lots of fast stops and starts are some of the main reasons tires wear out. For this reason drivers should always accelerate and come to a stop slowly. Unfortunately even the best drivers can't compensate for a bad tire tread, so when purchasing tires, buyers should look for ones that have an extra thick tread that's puncture resistant.
Safety Tips If You're Stranded On The Highway
Most people associate car accidents with moving cars, but even those at a complete stop are at risk of a collision. Being stranded on the side of a highway is very dangerous; cars are speeding by at 60 or 70 miles per hour, sometimes only a few feet away. Everyone should keep reflectors in their trunk in case they're ever stranded at night, so other cars can see them. They should turn on their emergency flashers, too. Depending on the emergency flasher laws in one's state, they may be allowed to drive with flashers on, while still seeking a safe place to pull over.
Driving through long stretches of highway with very few off ramps can be especially dangerous. People should take note of the name of the last exit, so they can explain their location when they call for assistance. If a driver doesn't feel safe when broken down in a particular area, they should stay in their car with their windows rolled up and their doors locked. Should anyone suspicious approach the car while they're stranded, they should repeatedly honk their horn and flash their lights to catch the attention of passing vehicles.
People exiting their vehicle should always get out on the side away from passing traffic. People should never stand directly behind or in front of their car, especially at night, since other cars might run into it. If possible, people should drive their car very slowly to a large shoulder, or off the highway entirely. Even on a flat tire, a vehicle can still move a short distance at a slow speed.