Imagine yourself and the kids on a long drive, enjoying soothing weather breeze in your vintage convertible.
The long deserted road shadowed between the eucalyptus on either side, is looking even more beautiful than ever. Suddenly, you feel some problem in the car and the moment you pull over, It’s the tire which has flattened & on top of this, you don’t have Air Compressor. Now that’s a bummer!
What will you do now? Will you wait for someone to come for help or you will keep driving the car eventually risking the safety of your loved ones? No matter which option you pick between the two, it won’t benefit you. Waiting on a deserted road makes you vulnerable while opting for the latter option means you are deliberately damaging your car.
That’s why every car owner must have one of the best portable air compressors for cars to tackle such a situation. Like me, I am sure you will also be very concerned about your car as it’s one of the biggest assets and investments we own. Moving a car with low air pressure in its tires not only disturbs your ride but also puts extra strain on the suspension and damages the vehicle.
Having one allows you to fix the flat tire immediately. You can inflate the tire at the desired pressure and don’t have to worry about the possible damage.
If you have ever tried a hand pump, then you must know how tedious it is and even it doesn’t work properly during the winter season. Finding out the right-hand pump is also a big headache. That’s why we recommend you pick one of these air compressors that you can carry easily and keep in your trunks to use when you need it.
Related: 11 Best Pancake Air Compressor Reviews 2020
Though we have made a huge list, however, those who want to know the key features of a good air compressor must not miss our detailed buying guide that will surely help you in picking the right tool.
Read Buying Guide to Pick the Right Air Compressor
Again, how this buying guide is going to benefit you?
For a moment, try to pause reading any further and open up a new tab in the browser. Furthermore, search the following keyword best portable air compressor.
A list of search results will open up! That’s awesome, isn’t it?
It dawns upon you that there are hundreds and thousands of products in the search results and you simply can’t settle on ONE product! Why? Maybe you don’t have any idea about which brands or models to go for? Even if you know the brands or the models, you don’t have any knowledge about the specifications of the products. Even more so, if you have the information about both the things, but you don’t know the pros and cons or the manufacturing material or any other product line which offers the same quality but at a lesser price…The list of “unknowns” can go on!
With this buying guide, our aim is to help you in getting to know the “unknowns”. It will eventually makes you a better judge of the situation and you will make the right choice rather than just spending your money where it doesn’t belong.
Things to Consider First Before Buying an Air Compressor For Your Car
There are numerous companies offering portable air compressors for cars’ tires and each of these companies offers different features. Some air compressors are very efficient and costly while others are affordable but offer lesser features.
Don’t be confused. Here are some features which you should check before making a deal as any unit, irrespective of its price and range, if offers these features, then you can buy it without any fear.
Air pressure is the most important feature that determines the efficiency of an air compressor. Some deliver 100 PSI pressure while others have maximum air pressure levels up to 150 PSI. However, you must know that the higher the pressure level of a compressor has the more efficient it is. So, if you have to pick among 100PSI or 150PSI levels, then go for the latter. Higher pressure level lets you work with different inflatables and you can use such air compressors for both home and car.
Those who are looking for a portable car air compressor must not overlook this feature. Power draw has a direct link with your car’s battery. Some products come with 12v power sockets while others use up to 150watts and 120 watts. Opt for the one that is suitable for your car’s battery and never exerts pressure on it.
When you buy a proficient air compressor, you can use it for different purposes. Its use doesn’t limit your car’s tires only. An air compressor that delivers a maximum air pressure up to 150PSI can be used to inflate car bicycle tires, balls, footballs, air mattresses, and other inflatables. They come with different nozzles and lets you get the maximum benefit from the air compressor.
A long cord is always convenient when it comes to inflating your car’s tires. After connecting the air compressor with a 12V power socket, the next task is to reach all the tires of the cars. A small cord won’t work well. Usually, air compressors come with a 10ft or a 15ft long cords and the latter one is better for the obvious reason.
Size and Weight
Only compact and portable air compressors are easy to carry and you can take them with you anytime. If an air compressor is too heavy and bulky, then keeping it in your trunk every time might not be possible for you. Moreover, bulkier air compressors are also difficult to operate. Never go for a bulkier air compressor when you an option of the lightweight air compressor.
Only those companies give a warranty for their products which own their products and have confidence in it. If a company never gives any warranty of the air compressor, then it confers that there is something wrong with the product and it’s not a reliable option. That’s why don’t forget to check the warranty of the air compressor before buying it.
Time required to inflate a tire is another important aspect which means how much time an air compressor takes to reach the desired pressure level. The time for every air compressor is different, some reach this level within a few seconds while others take a few minutes. Of course, quick inflation is a way more practical option.
Top 11 Best Portable Air Compressors for Cars 2020
After reading the buying guide, we hope you have a clear idea of the crucial features of an air compressor.
Last update on 2023-06-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Now, you must be curious to know more about these tools so we have jotted down a list of eleven air compressors that are very popular among car owners. The details and descriptions are mentioned along with product specifications, pros, and cons.
So, without further ado, let’s dig in!
1. DEWALT 165 PSI 6 Gallon Pancake Air Compressor
We will start things off with the best offering on this list, the DEWALT pancake air compressor that is known for its outstanding performance. The high-efficiency motor lets you inflate the car’s tire without facing any inconvenience. The performance of this model doesn’t depend on weather circumstances as it delivers 165 max PSI and a 6.0 gallon tank.
High flow regulators and couplers are present to give the maximum performance while 2 universal couplers support two users at a time. If talking about the portability of the compressor, the 30lb weight makes it very convenient to move from one place to another. You can easily carry it with you and place it to the car’s trunk without worrying about the storage space.
You can call it an eco-friendly unit due to the quiet operation. 75.5 dBA noise level can be set to perform noise-free work at night. The unit comes with a protective rubber leg cover that keeps it safe from scratches and damage so you can enjoy its utmost performance for decades.
A ball drain valve is added for quick and thorough tank draining. Many people have testified that you can handle tires that need high pressure, but the product is specifically designed for car tires and can’t be used for trucks or large vehicles.
It’s overpriced and not within the budget range of everyone. That’s the only drawback of the compressor. It’s one of the best models that’s recommended to those who are looking for a longlasting and highly portable compressor.
- Item weight: 32.1 pounds
- Product Dimensions: 17.2x 16.6x 20.1 inches
- Noise Level: 75.5 dBA
- Maximum Delivered Pressure: 165 PSI
- Warranty: 1-year
- Very reliable and durable compressor
- 30lb lightweight compressor
- 75.7 dBA noise level for quiet operation
- 2 universal couplers
- Poor gauge assembly
2. EPAuto 12v Tire Inflator & Portable Air Compressor Pump
There are a few things that really make EPAuto 12v dc portable air compressor pump a worthy option for you to consider. Firstly, it’s one of the best in our list due to the high power it delivers that is up to 180 watts of power when connected to a 12V battery.
You can connect it directly into a cigarette lighter socket of the car and can use it for multiple uses such as inflate the tires of different vehicles including cars, bikes, and SUVs. It comes with additional adaptors that let you fill the air in balloons, balls, footballs, and kayaks.
You get readings in four different units which saves your time from converting one unit into another. See the readings in PSI, BAR, KPA, and KG/CM on the bright display screen and forget about the inaccurate readings that often causes over inflation.
To prevent overinflation, another amazing feature is also provided by EPAuto that auto shuts off the air compressor when it reaches the desired pressure level. The Inbuilt LED flashlight lets you use it easily at night and never make any mistake during work.
If you are concerned with the negative sides of this air compressor, then you find it overpriced when compared with other air compressors while high power consumption is also a big drawback.
- Item Weight: 1 pound
- Product Dimensions: 13.5x 8.1x 5.6 inches
- Voltage: 12 Volts
- Display Units: 4 (PSI, BAR, KPA, and KG/CM)
- Maximum Pressure: 70 PSI
- Can be used for heavy-duty appliances
- Precision pressure reading
- The power draw of 180 watts
- Auto shut-off prevents over inflation
- The maximum delivered air pressure is 70 PSI
- Expensive and not affordable for everyone
- It’s not energy efficient as consumes excessive energy
3. VacLife DC 12v Portable Air Compressor for Car Tires
When you are looking for an air compressor for your car, then fast inflation speed is a vital factor you should consider. VacLife air compressor is popular for its ultra inflation speed which inflates your car’s tires within a few seconds. It saves your time and energy on a long journey when your car’s tire suddenly gets flattened on a deserted road. Of course, in such a situation staying on the road isn’t free from security risks.
The operation of this model is also very easy. All you need to do is simply plug it into the 12v power outlet of the car and switch and attach the hose to the desired tire. The efficient air compressor will take just a few moments to inflate the tire and you will be ready to resume your journey.
The auto shut-off system is also present is the unit so you can preset the value of the pressure and reach the desired pressure level accurately. The safety from over-inflation and the lifetime warranty given by the company proves it one of the best tire air compressors.
It comes with four additional nozzles and a 13ft long power cord so you can easily reach all tires of the car and face no issue in inflating your tires, mattress, footballs, and other things. An LED light is embedded in the air compressor which allows you to inflate tires at night.
The air compressor works perfectly for all vehicles which require air pressure up to 150 PSI while the power draw is 120 watts.
- Item weight: 2.4 pounds
- Product dimensions: 9.8x 6.4x 3.8 inches
- Maximum Air Pressure:
- Wattage: 120 watts
- Voltage: 12 Volts
- Power Supply Type: Cigarette Lighter
- Maximum air pressure is 150 PSI
- 13 feet long power cord for easy access
- Best air compressor for cars
- Offers lifetime warranty
Bulkier than counterparts
4. FORTEM Digital Tire Inflator & Portable Air Compressor
It’s another great option from the models on this list for people looking for the best air compressors for cars due to the features it offers. The compact design of the air compressor is lightweight and space-efficient that easily store away the cables inside the units.
The bright display screen lets you read all readings effortlessly so you don’t miss the desired pressure level and never overinflate the tires. FORTEM digital car inflator isn’t designed for car tires only rather you can also use it for other inflatables such as air mattresses, balloons, and footballs as it comes with three nozzles attachments.
The model set includes one carrying case, 1 FORTEM air compressor, and one extra fuse. An extra-long cord is also included in the unit that lets you reach the deflated tire without facing any issue while the automatic shut-off system prevents over-inflation as well as eliminates the need for manual shut-off the system.
Another great feature of this model is its compatibility with the 12v power socket and makes it a great option for many car users. The air compressor is ideal for inflatables which require air pressure up to 150 PSI.
You get a one-year warranty with a FORTEM Digital car inflator and can get your money back if you find any technical issue in the compressor. After reviewing the features of the air compressor, there left no doubt that it’s one of the best air compressors for cars and worths your money. However, the average build quality and expensive price are two downsides of this unit.
- Item weight: 1.9 pounds
- Product Dimensions: 8x 6.5x 3.3 inches
- Maximum Pressure Value: 150 PSI
- Power Cord Length: 9.84ft
- Maximum Current: 10A
- Power: 120 Watt
- It offers multiple features and accessories
- Excellent performance and time-efficient
- Auto shut-off to ensure accurate pressure
- Reliable and longlasting product with a one-year warranty
- Build quality isn’t satisfactory
5. AUTLEAD C2 12v DC Portable Air Compressor Tire Inflator Pump
There are a lot of air compressors in the market, so it’s important to narrow down your search to get one of the best models for your car. Some air compressors offer multiple features while others are good in terms of the main functions.
So, if you are concerned with the main function only and not looking for extra accessories and features, then the AUTLEAD 12v air compressor is the best option for you that delivers maximum pressure up to 150 PSI. It’s portable and can easily be transported from one place to another. The efficient air compressor works at the airflow rating of 1.43 CFM while the power draw is 120 watts.
To fill 195/70R14 tires, you need just 40 seconds which means the small unit isn’t only compact, but also time-efficient. Another great feature of this unit is its 2-years warranty that gives you immense peace of mind, return it immediately if not working accurately.
The efficiency of the air compressor is unquestionable, but the limited accessories and short power cord are major downsides that make many people give it a second thought.
- Item weight: 3.59 pounds
- Product Dimension: 9.1x 6.4x 3.9 inches
- Voltage: 12 volts
- Wattage: 120 watt
- Power cord length: 10ft
- Inflation Speed: 1.43 CFM
- Max Working Pressure: 80PSI
- Average reliable and fast inflation speed
- It can fill 195/70R14 tires within 40 seconds
- Precision guaranteed due to digital meter
- It comes with a 2-years warranty
- No accessories are included
- The length of the cord isn’t good for distant tires
6. Avid Power 20v Cordless Tire Inflator Air Compressor
It’s a multi-purpose air compressor that should be the first choice out of all the models for those who are looking high-quality cordless tire compressor. Portable design lets you keep it in the car’s trunk easily so you can keep it every time and deal with an emergency situation effectively. A built-in LED light is present in the air compressor that lets you read the preset values while the auto shut feature automatically turns off the air compressor when the desired value is achieved.
The maximum air pressure delivered by the Avid Tire inflator which is one of the best portable tire inflators is 100 PSI that is sufficient for cars’ tires and many other inflatables including sports balls, boats, and buoys. However, the air compressor isn’t recommended for large vehicles and truck tires.
One of the distinguishing features of the car is the dual function power supply which never lets you worry in a situation when your battery power runs down during traveling. 12V car power adaptor is included in the package other than the real-time capacity indicator. The package includes an inflating needle, 20V lithium-ion battery, cordless power inflator, air tap, charger, and a tool bag.
As the electric inflator is cordless, there are no messy wires and the package is easy to move from one place to another. If you want to know the negative sides of the air compressor, then you should know that the battery life of the air compressor is quite low and the delivered power is also not satisfactory.
- Item weight: 3.96 pounds
- Product Dimension: 13.9x 10.3x 3.7 inches
- Type: Cordless
- Maximum Pressure: 100PSI
- Display: Digital Display (LCD)
- Warranty: 2 years
- Power Supply: 20V Li Battery
- Small and compact design for easy portability
- Two power inputs
- Maximum power pressure is 100PSI
- Flexible input options
- Low battery life
- Average power
7. Kensun AC/DC Tire Inflator Portable Air Compressor Pump for Car
Kensun is known for its highly reliable products and this model is one such example. It works on both AC and DC voltages and works for both car and home plugs. The amazing inflator takes just a few seconds to reach the desired pressure level and provides superb power due to the dual metal motors.
This multipurpose air compressor is a great option for various power inflators and lets you inflate tires of different cars, sports balls, and boats. You can read all values of the readings in a glance as a bright and clear builtin LCD screen is present there for your convenience.
The maximum air pressure it delivers is up to 100 PSI which is lesser than other models in the list, but sufficient enough to deliver the actual function effectively. Moreover, the price of the air compressor is quite reasonable which makes it one of the best products in the market.
Kensun portable air compressors are tested rigorously as they are designed to last and deliver high quality even after decades. You don’t have to waste time in value conversion from unit to9 another as the air compressor displays readings in different units, i.e. PSI, bar, KPA.
The only negative aspect of the air compressor is the analog meter which makes meter reading difficult sometimes.
- Item weight: 3.94 pounds
- Product Dimensions: 11.8x 4.3x 6.7 inches
- Maximum Pressure: 100PSI
- Power Functions: Both AC and DC
- Power Draw: 120 watts
- Equally useful for both home and car usage
- Reliable and built for the last product
- 2-year warranty
- Accurate analog pressure gauge
- Two power plugs are included in the package
- Bulky and a bit heavy
- Analog meter makes readings difficult to read
8. TEROMAS Portable DC/AC Air Pump for Car Tires with Digital Pressure Gauge
The next product on our list is the TERMOAS tire inflator air compressor that is also one of the highly-rated models in our list due to the excellent features it offers. It’s equally useful for both home and car usage as it works well on both 12V car cigarette lighter socket and 110v ac & 120v ac wall plug for home.
This air pump for cars comes with three additional adaptors which allow you to use it for different purposes including inflatable boats, cars, balls, air mattresses, etc. High quality and sturdy material are used in the manufacturing of the inflator to ensure the durability and reliability of the air compressor. That’s why it requires minimum maintenance and never damages easily.
The efficient unit can deliver up to 150PSI pressure and takes just four minutes to inflate a P195/ 65R15 car tire. Though the time is a bit longer than other air compressors in the list, the high durability justifies it and makes it a perfectly balanced product.
The compact air compressor is easy to lift, carry, and keep in your trunk. You can use it anytime and anywhere with 100% satisfaction.
There are also a few negative sides of this model as well. For instance, power cords are shorts and the build quality doesn’t meet premium quality standards. Overall, the product is reliable and worth buying.
- Item weight: 3.11 pounds
- Product Dimensions: 9.25x 6.69x 3.15 inches
- Maximum Pressure: 150 PSI
- Wattage: 120 watts
- Display Units: PSI, KG/CM2, BAR
- AC cable length: 60 inch
- DC cable length: 126 inch
- Sufficient air pressure for multiple inflatables
- Excellent performance
- 1-year warranty
- Built-in LED lights for a better view
- Average build quality
- Power cords are shorts which cause reach problems
9. HAUSBELL 12V DC Portable Air Compressor with Emergency LED
Every car owner wants to buy the best product for his or her car. For some people, price becomes a big hurdle in the way of a perfect deal. If the same has happened with you, then don’t worry at all as HAUSBELL portable air compressor offers excellent features at affordable rates.
The lightweight air compressor offers max 150PSL pressure and works on both AC and DC voltage. The tire pump shuts automatically when it reaches the preset value while there is also additional overheat protection shut off that keeps the unit safe from getting overheated when it’s overloaded.
The powerful air compressor comes with a 3-meter long power cord that lets you inflate car’s tires from a distance. You also get three nozzles with this product so you can easily fill the air in rear and back tires.
Easy access and convenient use of the air compressor becomes possible due to the built-in LEED light that allows you to see readings clearly at night. Likewise, the use of the air compressor is also very easy. You can set the tire pressure gauge in no time and press the + and – button to increase and decrease the value.
The entire package includes a digital air compressor, one fuse, and three nozzle adaptors. However, these are lesser accessories when you compare them with other compressors in the list which is also a downside of the unit.
- Item weight: 2.14
- Product Dimensions: 8x 3.5x 6.2 inches
- Power Cord Length: 9.8ft
- Maximum Pressure: 150PSI
- Required Voltage: 12V
- Number of additional nozzles: 3
- Equally useful for cars, bikes, and inflatables
- The power draw of 120 watts
- Maximum air pressure delivered is up to 150PSI
- Inbuilt LED light
- Insufficient accessories
- Bulkier and overweight
10. Breezz 12v Portable Auto Tire Pump Air Compressor
It’s another affordable model for people looking for the best auto air compressors for cars. It offers max pressure up to 150PSI and known as a reliable air compressor due to the features it offers. Another plus point of this unit is the compact design of the air compressor that is lightweight and space-efficient. It helps you store the unit easily in your trunk.
Inflating your tires at night is also a big deal when you have a Breezz air compressor. It has a bright display LCD screen lets you read all readings effortlessly so you don’t miss the desired pressure level and never overinflate the tires. One of the best things about Breezz digital car inflator is its multiple usages as it isn’t designed for car tires only rather you can also use it for other inflatables such as air mattresses, balloons, and footballs as it comes with three nozzles attachments.
Like other models in the list, it also offers an auto-shut feature so your car’s tire never gets overinflated. An extra-long cord is also included in the unit that lets you reach the deflated tire without facing any issue.
Another great feature of this unit is its compatibility with the 12V power socket and makes it a great option for many car users. The air compressor is ideal for inflatables which require air pressure up to 150 PSI. Getting these features at such a reasonable price definitely makes Breezz air compressor one of the best car air compressors.
You get a one-year warranty with a Breezz car inflator and explore its features completely. However, we can bet that after reviewing the features of the air compressor, there would be left no doubt that it’s one of the best air compressors for cars and worths your money. The overall package includes one air compressor, 3 nozzle adaptors, and one user manual.
- Item weight: 2.44
- Product Dimensions: 7.8x 71x 2.4 inches
- Max air pressure: 150PSI
- Distinguishing features: Portable, powerful, and easy to use
- Display units: KPA, PSI, BAR
- Power supply type: Cigarette Lighter
- Capable to deliver maximum air pressure up to 150PSI
- It comes with a one-year warranty
- Nozzle attachments are included
- It uses a 12Volts power socket during work
- Inbuilt LED for working at night
- Not designed for large vehicles such as truck and motor lorry
- Short power cord and average build quality
11. Helteko 12v DC Portable Air Compressor Pump for Automotive
Now, it’s the time to discuss the last model on our list that is the Helteko Portable air compressor pump. Helteko portable offers fast inflation speed which inflates your car’s tires within a few seconds. The amazing pump is excellent in its performance and saves your time and energy.
It’s quite small and compact which makes the operation of the air compressor also very easy. All you need to do is simply plug it into the 12V power outlet of the car and switch and attach the air hose to the desired tire. It results in up to 120watts power consumption. The efficient air compressor will take just a few moments to inflate the tire and you will be ready to resume your journey.
No need to worry about the over flattened and overloaded tires as the auto shut-off system is also present is the unit so you can preset the value of the pressure and reach the desired pressure level accurately. Keep your mind free from the tension of over-inflation and get a five years warranty.
An LED light is embedded in the air compressor to read air pressure while the air compressor
comes with four additional nozzles and a 3.5ft long power cord so you can easily reach all tires of the car and face no issue in inflating your mattress, footballs, and other things.
Remember, this model works perfectly for all vehicles which require air pressure up to 150 PSI, but avoid using it for vehicles that require more pressure.
- Item weight: 2.55 pounds
- Product dimensions: 9.5x 6.4×4. 8 inches
- Maximum Air Pressure: 150PSI
- Wattage: 120 watts
- Voltage: 12 Volts
- Special Features: auto shut off
- Power Supply Type: Cigarette Lighter Socket
- Small and compact design
- Inbuilt LED and auto shut off system
- The power draw of 120 watts
- LCD display for various features
- Average performance
- Low-quality build quality
Being a car driver, you’ll more likely be interested in the following other tools.
Last update on 2023-06-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Ah, the ending is the most crucial part when we are discussing things which benefit our readers!
Anyways, the only thing that matters most is the very fact that, by now, your mind is absolutely clear on what you are going to buy. Car maintenance is always termed as a costly business but if you get the right product, it’s worth the money.
We have described every feature in detail and also shared the buying guide with our readers. To make a lucrative deal, you must know the requirements of your cars and have a clear idea of which factor is more important to you. Is quick inflation of the tire more important for you or reliability is something that makes a product perfect in your perspective?
Figure it out yourself!
Furthermore, an important factor is budget. Don’t ignore it anyway or you will regret later for buying a too expensive or too cheap product. Spending some extra amount on quality products benefits you in the long run. On the other hand, compromising on the performance of the air compressor and saving a few bucks may cost you a lot in the future.
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