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Best RV Air Compressor: Keep Your Tires Inflated Without the Hassle

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Viair 40047 400P-RV

Best RV Air Compressor

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While many air compressors on our list can be used for RVs, few of them are made with the explicit intention of doing so. The 400P-RV, on the other hand, comes with two different chucks, one being the 45-degree extended reach designed for use with dual wheels.

Even better, it features one of the most significant air flows on our list at 2.3 CFM, which can inflate most RV tires in under 30 seconds. You do not have to worry about the portable compressor reaching the back wheels as the 400P comes with a hose and extension that can reach 60’.

Bottom Line: With one of the most powerful motors, the longest hoses, and specific coupling attachments made for RVs, this compressor kit is a no-brainer.

Best RV Air Compressor: Keep Your Tires Inflated Without the Hassle

Whether you only RV occasionally or live it as a way of life, you will eventually need to do some general maintenance. One of the more common forms of general maintenance required is reinflating your RV’s tires when they begin to run low on air.

You can always go to a gas station or another similar spot to reinflate your RV’s tires, but these locations are not always the easiest to get in or out of. An easier and often cheaper alternative, in the long run, is to buy a compressor.

That is why we put together a list of the nine best portable air compressors, figuring out who they are best for. We also provide a thorough buyer’s guide, so you know what features are the most important and which are just hot air.

Looking for more info on RV portable air compressors?

  • Break down the portable air compressors into niche uses
  • Tell you what to look for when choosing an RV air compressor
  • Favor reliability over inflation speed or convenience
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Things to Consider When Buying an RV Air Compressor

CFM & PSI

The first spec is CFM, which stands for cubic feet per minute and rates the airflow of the compressor. PSI stands for pressure per square inch and determines the maximum amount of air pressure that a compressor can provide.

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The CFM matters as this ultimately determine how quickly the compressors can inflate your RV’s tires. It is essential to note the CFM of a compressor decreases as the PSI of a tire increases, so the CFM given is for 0 PSI.

These two specs are bandied about to sell you on a compressor, but only one of them is all that important. You should not ever get to a point where the maximum PSI rating of the compressor even matters since tires rarely require even 50 PSI, let alone the 100 to 150 maximum PSI often advertised.

Cables and Hoses

Since RVs tend to be large vehicles or towing loads, short cables and hoses limit which compressors are suitable for different RVs. This matters a bit less if you have numerous 12V attachments, but compressors that use 12V outlets are more limited.

Cables and hoses are one of the more surprisingly essential parts of an RV air compressor, as bad ones can make the compressor almost unusable. In fairness, while there is something to be said of the durability of the hose, more can be made of their length.

Power Source

An RV air compressor can draw power from a 12V battery directly, or it can connect to a 12V outlet in your RV. The dash 12V outlet uses your RV’s fuses to moderate the power, which can limit the air compressor’s power draw.

As such, compressors that draw directly from a 12V battery can provide a bit more power to the motor than those that draw from a dash 12V outlet.

While the ability to draw power from a 12V outlet, like on your dash, might seem convenient, that holds more for traditional vehicles than for RVs. With often limited power cord lengths, a compressor connected to a dash 12V outlet might not be able to reach your RV’s back tires.

Chuck Design

You generally want to lean more towards an air chuck that either twist on or locks on, so you do not have to press and hold the chuck into the RV tire valve the entire time. Another convenient type of chuck is the inflation gun, though these are less convenient when used with air compressors that have a lower flow rate.

The chuck design of your compressor may not determine how effective it is at inflating your RV’s tires, but it can make a significant impact on how easy it is to inflate trailer tires.

Portability and Weight

In terms of general portability, a handle always helps move the compressor around more easily. Some air compressors feature perforated handles to ensure that the handle does not get hot while the compressor is in use.

Depending on the type of RV you have as well as when and where you reinflate its tires, the portability of your compressor can be more critical. If you need to inflate tires in an emergency, a smaller, more portable air compressor comes in handy.

On the other hand, if you have a compressor to run regular maintenance on your RV, the power from a more substantial, heavier compressor is a good trade-off. However, the size and weight of a compressor is not a great measure of how powerful the compressor is.

Noise

All air compressors make a fair amount of noise, but there can be a vast difference in the volume from one model to the next. That said, the noise a compressor makes is often tied to the power of the motor with more powerful air compressors making noise.

Smaller, less powerful air compressors might be quieter, but they also have more limitations in which tires they can inflate. Regardless of the volume, it is a good idea to get some form of hearing protection when using an air compressor for an extended period.

Best RV Air Compressor: The Results

Viair 40047 400P-RV

Best RV Air Compressor Kit

Viair 40047 400P-RV Automatic Portable Compressor Kit

The VIAIR 400P satisfies most RVers needs with a complete kit that has everything you need and then a little bit more just to make sure. You do not have to worry about this compressor breaking down on you with a motor that draws 30A of power.

You also do not have to worry about sitting there forever, waiting for your tires to reinflate thanks to a flow rate of 2.3 CFM. To ensure that your scant time spent inflating your RV tires is even easier, the VIAIR 400P comes with a professional-style air gun that activates the compressor only once engaged.

To cater to RVers in particular, the VIAIR 400P comes with 60’ worth of hose broken down into a 30’ standard and 30’ extension. The 400P includes your standard 90-degree chuck, but it also comes with a 45-degree extended reach chuck for dual rear wheels.

From a general perspective, the 400P has a heat-shielded coupling to prevent melting components. It also comes with one of the best bases that we found that is both vibration-resistant as well as more durable than most.

  • PROs

    • Comes with a complete kit
    • Puts out 2.3 CFM
    • Has a 60’ hose
    • Comes with an air gun
  • CONs

    • Is a more expensive compressor
    • More limited power options
Bottom-Line: So long as you do not drive a Class A motorhome, the Viair 400P comes with everything you need to inflate tires quickly and conveniently.

TIREWELL 12V

Best Portable Air Compressor on a Budget

TIREWELL 12V Tire Inflator - Heavy Duty Direct Drive Metal Pump 150PSI, Portable Air Compressor with LED Light and Battery Clamp

When you need a reasonably capable compressor for your RV but do not want to pay an arm and a leg, the TIREWELL is a decent option. You should not have to worry about the TIREWELL blowing any of the fuses of your vehicle as it only requires a 15A power draw.

While not spectacular, the 1.24 CFM flow rate is at least average and a substantial amount for the cost of the TIREWELL. As an added convenience, the TIREWELL comes equipped with a built-in LED light to make connecting the screw-on connector with no issue at night.

While not the lightest that we reviewed, the TIREWELL is just over 5 lbs and is more portable than many other comparable products that we found. The direct-drive motor is housed in a steel chassis to ensure that you do not have to worry about it breaking.

Be forewarned that the TIREWELL overheats more than some and can fail if you push it beyond its design.

  • PROs

    • Is a less expensive model
    • Has an LED light
    • Is a more portable unit
    • Only a 15A power draw
  • CONs

    • Tends to overheat
    • Not the most durable
Bottom-Line: As long as you do not expect the TIREWELL to magically inflate your RV tires as quickly as more expensive options, it is a good value at a budget price.

GSPSCN Silver Dual Cylinder

Best Mid-Range

GSPSCN Silver Dual Cylinder 12V Air Compressor Pump for Car, Heavy Duty Portable Tire Inflator 150PSI with LED Work Lights for Auto,Truck,SUV, Balls etc

The GSPSCN is a dependable unit for those willing to spend more than the budget models but do not need the power of an expensive one. A big part of this comes from the surprisingly large flow rate of the GSPSCN, which sits at 2.4 CFM– good for second-best on our list.

Aside from the excellent flow rate, the GSPSCN is also one of the more convenient models that we reviewed, sitting at just over 7 lbs and with a convenient handle. The built-in LED light also makes using the GSPSCN at night much more manageable, maybe when you have already reached your park.

The GSPSCN also sports a steel direct-drive motor able to handle average tire sizes, though it may not be suitable for larger RV tires. Still, the 25A power draw helps ensure that you do not have to worry about the motor breaking down.

Keep in mind, the top exterior of the GSPSCN is made out of plastic, not metal like the main chassis.

  • PROs

    • Is a less expensive unit
    • Puts out 2.4 CFM
    • Has an LED light
    • Is a more portable unit
  • CONs

    • Uses too much plastic
    • Is slower than some
Bottom-Line: When you do not need a big air compressor but do not want to cheap out either, the GSPSCN is a suitable Goldilocks product that comfortably sits in the mid-range.

Air Lift 25856 Load Controller Dual

Best Suspension RV Air Compressor

Air Lift 25856 Load Controller Dual Heavy Duty Compressor

Not all RV compressors are made to reinflate your RV tires or even necessarily to be used specifically on your RV. If you have a towed RV, as opposed to a motorhome, the Air Lift suspension system can make towing your RV safer and more comfortable.

Keep in mind, the Air Lift compressor installs on your towing vehicle but then offers incredibly reliable and convenient air suspension. For one, the Air Lift comes with dual-path controls so that you can inflate multiple airlines of your air suspension system at once.

Even better, the Air Lift 25856 comes with a dash gauge that tells you the PSI rating of both air suspension springs simultaneously. To make things a little bit easier, the Air Lift gauge also comes with push-button controls that allow you to adjust the springs’ air pressure individually or together.

While you should get a professional to install your Air Lift suspension system, the 25856 comes with everything you need.

  • PROs

    • Comes with a complete kit
    • Has dual path control
    • Includes a dash gauge
    • Has push-button controls
  • CONs

    • Is a more expensive model
    • Is not the most powerful
Bottom-Line: While most of the products we reviewed are meant primarily for tire inflation, the Air Lift provides an air suspension system that makes towing an RV safer and smoother.

SuperFlow MV-9012

Best CFM

SuperFlow MV-9012 Volt Air Compressor, Portable Heavy Duty Air Pump 12v Air Compressor, Tire Inflator 150 PSI, by for Off Road Vehicles, Trucks, RVs, Bikes and Cars

When reinflating your RV’s tires, waiting for a slower unit or worse waiting between duty cycles can be torture. That is why the SuperFlow tops our list with the most significant flow rate that we came across at 3.71 cubic feet per minute.

Of course, a high flow rate is only as good as the motor pushing it, but the SuperFlow has you covered there too with a 45A direct-drive motor. On top of that, the SuperFlow is the only model on our list that comes with a tank and sits at a solid 1.5 gal.

Considering how robust the SuperFlow is with tire inflation, it only makes sense that this unit also sports one of the more durable bodies on our list too. That said, you need to make sure that you can handle the massive power draw, and it is not the easiest to move in and out.

  • PROs

    • Puts out 3.71 cubic feet per minute
    • Has a durable chassis
    • More powerful than some
    • Has a 1.5 gal tank
  • CONs

    • Is a more expensive model
    • Is a heavier unit
Bottom-Line: As long as you have the power, the SuperFlow is easily one of the strongest products on our list with a powerful motor and flow rate that leaves the others we reviewed sucking wind.

AstroAI Portable

Best Portable Air Compressor for Small RV Tires

AstroAI Portable Air Compressor Pump, Digital Tire Inflator 12V DC Electric Gauge with Larger Air Flow 35L/Min, LED Light, Overheat Protection, Extra Nozzle Adaptors and Fuse, Yellow

Not everyone has a large Class A or even medium-sized Class C RV motorhome and do not need to spend the kind of money a suitable unit costs. This is where the inexpensive AstroAI comes into play while still having decent specs.

For example, while not the top-rated on our list, the flow rate of 1.24 CFM is still respectable and on the average side of the scale. This unit also comes with a reliable gauge that tends to be more accurate than many of the other less expensive models that we came across.

On top of that, the 15A power draw means that you do not have to worry about blowing a fuse when connecting it to your 12V dash plug. Even better, the LCD backlit display and built-in LED light make using this unit at night a breeze.

  • PROs

    • Is a less expensive model
    • Has an LED light
    • Only a 15A power draw
    • Has a solid gauge
  • CONs

    • Not the most powerful
    • Not the most durable
Bottom-Line: When you have a smaller RV like a Class B or smaller towable camper, the AstroAI is a cheap and convenient alternative to some of the more potent products out there.

Helteko Portable Air Compressor Pump

Best Portable Air Compressor

Helteko Portable Air Compressor Pump 12V DC - Digital Tire Inflator - Auto Tire Pump with Emergency Led Lighting and Long Cable for Car - Bicycle - Motorcycle - Basketball and Other

Out of all the units we reviewed, few are as effortlessly portable as the Helteko with its sleek ABS chassis and a total weight that sits just above 2 ½ lbs. Even better, the Helteko comes with many different convenience features to make using it more comfortable to use as well.

For instance, like some other portable products, the Helteko comes with a bright LED light to make using it in the dark that much easier. On top of that, the Helteko also comes with a digital LCD display that keeps track of the programmed tire pressure and current air pressure simultaneously.

Another remarkable quality of life feature of the Helteko’s is its noise level, which the lowest we reviewed at under 50 dB. This low noise level is coupled with an extremely low power draw of only 10A, which is tied for the lowest on our list, though this is also one of the more underpowered options that we reviewed as well.

  • PROs

    • Is a less expensive model
    • Is a more portable product
    • Only a 10A power draw
    • Only puts out 50 dB of noise
  • CONs

    • Not the most powerful
    • Not the most durable
Bottom-Line: If you need a portable unit that takes little time to set up and is easier to use than some others, the Helteko is a decent emergency option.

MasterFlow

Best Modular RV Air Compressor

12 Volt Air Compressor, Portable Air Pump 12 Volt, Tire Inflator 140 PSI, Air Compressor by MasterFlow for Cars, Trucks, and Bikes.

One of the best qualities of the MasterFlow is that it can technically run a couple of different ways with the less obvious one making it very convenient. Like many smaller products, the MasterFlow can run from a 12V outlet, but it can also be easily modified, so it is hardwired to your RV.

Keep in mind, this means you still need to consider the power draw based on your RV’s specifications, but the MasterFlow also has a reasonably low power draw of only 15A. This draw means you should not have to worry about the MasterFlow blowing any of your vehicle’s fuses.

The MasterFlow also features a brass coupler with three different adapter nozzles, but the Q Japan Nitto coupler is excellent for a wide variety of different tires. The main issue is that auxiliary parts, like the hose and feet, are not the most durable, and the airflow is one of the lower reviewed.

  • PROs

    • Is a less expensive model
    • Can be modified
    • Only a 15A power draw
    • Has a solid connector
  • CONs

    • Only puts out 1.05 CFM
    • Not the most durable
Bottom-Line: The MasterFlow is reasonably priced and can be hardwired directly to your RV, allowing you to use it in a couple of different ways– both of which only draw 15A of power.

VIAIR 45053 Silver Automatic (450P-RV)

Best Portable Air Compressor for Class A RVs

VIAIR 450P-RV Silver Automatic Portable Compressor Kit (45053), 1 Pack

The most significant difference between this VIAIR and other compressors is that this one will not overheat in the relatively short amount of time that some others do. Instead, the VIAIR 45053 is the only product on our list that can run for an hour straight without having to be turned off to cool down.

While it does not put out quite as much air as some of the shorter running models, it still holds its own with a flow rate of 1.8 CFM. On top of that, this VIAIR does not suffer from some of the durability issues than other products we came across.

Even better, much like the other VIAIR kit on our list, the 45053 also comes with a complete kit that includes the 60’ air hose making it ideal for reaching the back tires of your RV. Also, like the other VIAIR kit, this model comes with the tire inflation gun, so you do not have to worry about a problematic chuck.

  • PROs

    • Comes with a complete kit
    • Puts out 1.8 CFM
    • Has a 60’ hose
    • Can run for 1 hr
  • CONs

    • Is a more expensive model
    • More limited power options
Bottom-Line: If you like the high-end quality of VIAIR but need a model that can run for longer periods without stopping for Class A RVs, the 45053 is a great option to maintain your tire pressure.

Last update on 2020-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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