kellyds

Air Compressor - Best Type/Size for Motorhome Tires

47 posts in this topic

What type/size air compressor would I need to help keep my motorhome tires inflated to 120 PSI? It is hard to find a reliable service provider on the highway when you need to top off the tires.

David & Sandy Kelly

2008 Coachman Sportscoach Elite

Cummins 360

Toad 2011 Ford Escape

Companion Chloe (MaltiPoo)

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Do you have an on-board air supply? Another source for air would be nearly all truck stops right at the pumps. I don't mean to avoid your question but we have been full-time for over 10 years and we have not found it necessary to carry around that much extra weight and bulk.

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I agree with Bill.

Contact your chassis maker. Most provided an air distribution plenum what easily accommodates a ball valve, quick disconnect, hose and air chuck.

The advantage is less expensive, less weight, guaranteed "dry" air (through your air dryer), etc.

You mention 120 PSI. Is that PSI based on your tire manufacturer's recommendation for you actual weights? That PSI would suggest the likelihood that you are running right at your tire's carrying capacity (in which case you might consider upgrading to a larger tire/one with more carrying capacity when you replace the tires) or carrying more PSI than needed for your actual weights-- a sure fire way to get a harsher ride.

Brett

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Bill & Brett both have the correct Idea.

If you are now filling your tires to 120 psi because it is written on the tire then you need to step back and evaluate your load.

Have all four corners weighed.

Then look on your tire mfg site for their tire chart to find the recommended psi.

Do you have the recommended pressures on your information sticker in your coach? It should be somewhere close to your VIN No. That will give you some indication of the correct PSI-- based on each axle at its GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating). That may or may not be close to your actual weight.

I think once you fill your tires to the correct PSI(which should be lower then 120 psi)you will think you have a different coach with a softer & better ride.

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I checked the recommended weight on the info sticker in the coach and it said all tires should be 120 psi.

Thanks for the help and I found out that all Wal-marts that have a service facility will also air tires.

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I checked the recommended weight on the info sticker in the coach and it said all tires should be 120 psi.

Thanks for the help and I found out that all Wal-marts that have a service facility will also air tires.

Kelly,

It's important that you understand that this information may be incorrect. The manufacturer my simply using a CYA label. You need to KNOW how much your coach weighs at each tire. You need to know the axle capacities as well as the tire capacities and then you need to put the right amount of air (no more, no less) in each tire based upon the tire manufacturers recommendations.

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What Bill and Brett have explained is true. You need to weigh each corner of your coach to see how much weight you have on each tire. The proper PSI can vary greatly depending on how much your coach weighs.

I don't know what tires you have so here is a random example:

19.5" rims with Michelin 245/70/R19.5 XRV tires.

Coach weight tire PSI

3640 80

3740 85

3890 90

4080 95

Other tires can have even larger variances depending on coach weights.

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kellyds,

I agree with all the tire loading rhetoric above, but disagree with using everyone else's air. Too many times I have found air systems with bad connectors that won't fill properly, low pressure, hoses that won't reach tires (at truck stops), and trying to fill with residual diesel on the ground, drivers lined up behind you, etc.

I purchased a dual tank air compressor from Harbor Freight for about $100. It cuts off at 135 psi. Weighs about 25 lbs and is about 2.5 feet square. It sits in the front center of the storage bay. I put ball valves and quick connect fittings on it to match my assortment of hoses and gauges, fillers, air guns, etc. It is a liquid oil unit that is much quieter than the "oil-less" units like the portable unit referenced. You barely hear it with the bay doors open. And I have four gallons of air always available for quick job like blowing out my electric shaver.

I find it much easier and less hectic using it at a camp ground than trying to do it at a truck stop or other industrial situation. And I use it for the tires and air bags on the van, our bicycle tires, blowing off dust/dirt, etc.

I find it very handy and convenient.

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I use the Airlift portable air compressor available at Camping World. It is pricey but I have been satisfied with it. It can top off your 120psi tires. It is very fast for car tires but requires a little patience for the bigger tires. I have a portable emergency battery that I carry all the time anyway so I can carry the compressor and battery almost anywhere. It does draw enough power that you would want to run your car if you have a lot and use a little care when operating off coach batteries. I also have a DC power supply so I can use it on120 volts. I would spend the money again.

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Check out the Sears Craftsman air compressor, Model No. 919.153093. It is a 120V, 150 PSIG, comes with the 25' air hose, air chuck, and misc attachments for $99.00. Buy a GOOD air gauge and keep it in the coach, just for the coach and only the coach. I would also, if you have duals on your RV, purchase a straightline air chuck and gauge in order to make filling and checking easier.

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Check out the Sears Craftsman air compressor, Model No. 919.153093. It is a 120V, 150 PSIG, comes with the 25' air hose, air chuck, and misc attachments for $99.00. Buy a GOOD air gauge and keep it in the coach, just for the coach and only the coach. I would also, if you have duals on your RV, purchase a straightline air chuck and gauge in order to make filling and checking easier.

Got a good used one on FleaBay for $65, works great, except that I had to replace the silly coil hose that came with it due to an air leak. The problem I had was getting a good (Non-China) heavy duty tire pressure gauge. Finally found one (can't remember the name) that my old truck driving neighbor recommended. Again, got it on FleaBay.

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Checking out my options here and wondering if anyone has any clue of the existence of miniature brushless motor DC-powered air compressor? That entails that the compressor be very small, like say 60mm by 40mm or so, weighing less than 80 grams, and able to output highly compressed stream of air (continuous or pulse). Maybe a separate container would be needed to hold the compressed air? Before devising such an item, perhaps this already exists? Thanks for your intuitive input.

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Look at the Huskey Portable air compressor from Home Depot.

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I agree with one of the poster's response to have all corners weighed. I too have a portable air compressor that I use to air up the tires should it be necessary.

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Bob Dickman Tire Center, Junction City, Oregon advertises two air pressure booster assemblies (AB1 @ $449.00 and AB1/P @ $499.00) (seems a bit pricey) but claims to boost on board air system from 80 psi input to 160 psi output. Anyone use one of these or heard whether they work as claimed.

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I just bought a 02 Monaco that has a ball valve and snap on fitting facing out the passenger side next to the generator.

I was wondering if I could use this for other things as you suggest?

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I just bought a 02 Monaco that has a ball valve and snap on fitting facing out the passenger side next to the generator.

I was wondering if I could use this for other things as you suggest?

Yes you can use that to fill tires and any other things while parked that require compressed air. If the coach did not come with a hose attached, be aware that there are at least three different chuck styles, though they look similar. I would call Monaco and ask what you need to buy to connect to that chuck that they installed.

Brett

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I realize this is an old thread but am hoping it is still monitored by someone.

We just retired and bought a new coach so now I'm totally involved in trying to understand all aspects of RV maintenance. I am looking for the easiest way to check and inflate our tires. My plan is to keep a small air compressor at home that I can move to the RV if we take an extended trip. Mostly we go on week long (or less) trips around Florida. Instead of carrying it then I would like to use outside resources for inflation. I was very happy to see that Walmart has air inflation available. However if I am only supposed to check and fill when the tires are cold how do I do that when using random Walmart (or other) locations. I've had to drive and heat up the tires just to get there. Do I have to sit and wait for the tires to cool? If so, how long does that take? Do they ever really get cool in the Florida midday heat?

Thank you

Nancy

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Nancy,

Good question. Check tire pressure in the morning before driving. Note how many PSI you need to add to bring tires to correct inflation. When you get to the station (tires now warm), check tire pressure and add the amount you would have liked to add that morning. Sometimes this takes too people, one with the air hose and a "supervisor" to do the math-- ya, OK to cheat and use pen and paper.

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Nancy

Bretts coments are correct.

To you and others concerned about needing a compressor on the road I am not really sure it it is necessary or the best way to allocate your money. If you are going to spend a few hundred you would be much better off investing in a TPMS that will give you low pressure warning even while driving.

While setting the correct pressure is a "Hot Topic", if you have done the basics of getting the actual corner tire loads and confirmed the minimum cold inflation then add 10% cushion. All tires will loose are but only at about 1 or 2% per month so unless you have a leak or puncture you should be good for at least a couple of months or more between needing any air at all.

Pressure will change with temperature http://www.rvtiresafety.com/2012/04/how-do-i-know-what-my-hot-pressure-and.html

Only a little bit with elevation so you should not need to be adding air till you have lost at least 5% of your cushion.

If you discover you have lost 10 to 20% of your air over a day or so since you last checked your pressure, you have a more serious problem and the problem needs to be fixed. If you are loosing air that fast a compressor will only give you enough air for a short drive and driving on a puncture or damaged tire could lead to more damage or even a blow-out.

Bottom Line Once you properly inflate your tires you should be able to get them aired up for free every few months and never need a compressor.

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Yes, quite successful. It's great for topping off the tires. It has a built in gauge, the hose screws on the tire valve. I have the plug go bad on my first one. I had used it for several years. I contacted them to get a replacement plug and they sent me a new one along with free return shipping for the old one.

I have a somewhat large but portable compressor with a tank and this one beats it hands down.

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I saw the same Slime Pump in Walmart, $64.97 and it had a few extra items, (their slime goo, which I would never use), an adapter to connect cigarette lighter connection to pos/neg battery terminals. Is the head on this typical 1/4". I am trying to put together an air dryer hookup, as per Tireman, and it would be helpful if the same air dryer I make for my garage unit could be quick connected into this, when I am on the road with the RV.

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