Ep. 87: Air Compressor for Outdoor Adventure | RV offroad travel tips tricks how-to

Welcome back to Grand Adventure! I'm your host Marc Guido, and today whilewe're anxiously awaiting the return of camping season, we're talking about the importanceof bringing a portable air compressor along on your outdoor adventures, so stay tuned! [intro music] Now, if you're traveling off road it's oftenimportant to air down your truck tires, both to soften the ride over rocky terrain, andto provide your tires with enhanced grip, especially if you're driving through loosesand.

However, once you get back to asphalt youneed a quick and efficient way to air your tires back up to their proper pressure, lestyou risk experiencing a blowout.

Likewise, if you're driving a motorhome ortowing a camping trailer, it's essential to keep those tires at their maximum pressureto be able to fully support the heavy load that they're designed to carry.

Underinflation is the single leading causeof trailer tire failures, which is why we always check our trailer's tire pressure beforeeach and every day on the road.

Maintaining proper air pressure of both ourtruck and trailer tires is handled by a portable air compressor.

Those of us towing travel trailers or fifthwheels have 6, 8, or even as many as 12 tires to maintain, and there are several approachesyou might take to keeping them at their proper air pressure.

You could simply stop at a gas station ortruck stop to use their compressor, but where we camp there's seldom one nearby.

Also, many don't work, and nearly all nowrequire quarters or a credit card to operate.

Many RV'ers are content with carrying a portable120V pancake compressor like this one.

Yes, they'll do the job.

However, to use them you need a source of120V AC current, and where do you find that at the end of a dirt road in the middle ofnowhere? You might answer “your generator, ” of course, but what if you're just out exploring for the day? Chances are your generator is back at campwith your RV.

And why should you have to depend on a seconddevice, when you always have a power source readily available right here under the hoodof your truck? Another option is an inexpensive compressorfrom the big box store down the street that plugs into your cigarette lighter.

However, these all invariably lack durabilityand break easily.

They're slow and lack power, they're loud, and on a big job they overheat often, requiring you to pause inflation to allow the compressorto cool back down.

Many times in life you actually do get whatyou pay for, and there's a far better solution available for not a lot more money.

We use this high quality Viair 88p portable12-volt air compressor.

Let us first explain our relationship withViair, or rather, the lack thereof.

We've never contacted Viair, nor have theyever contacted us.

We bought this compressor on Amazon just likeeveryone else.

We're nothing but a devoted consumer of theirproducts, for both their superior quality and exceptional reliability.

All of the working components in the Viair88p are encased in metal, with a powerful motor operating a directly driven piston.

A motor this powerful has a 20A draw — that'stoo high an amperage to connect via a car's cigarette lighter port without blowing fusesin your vehicle, so it instead connects directly to the vehicle's battery with these alligatorclamps.

Compressors that use a cigarette lighter plugare only suitable for light-duty use.

On the 88p there's a 20A automotive fuse placedinline on the power cord for protection.

Atop the compressor there's a large pressuregauge, but the compressor must be momentarily switched off to obtain an accurate reading.

We find that it reads about, oh, 2-3 psi too high whenthe compressor is actually running.

The 88p's long piston stroke and rubber feetmeans quiet operation with minimal vibration.

There's an important integrated heat sinkon the piston head that gets very hot, so be careful to not touch it when in use orshortly thereafter.

Viair includes accessory tips that store right here on-boardfor inflating a football or an air mattress, and a switchable LED flashlight, right here, that also servesas a power indicator.

This Viair model has a 16-foot air hose anda 10-foot power cord.

If that's not long enough to reach all ofyour trailer tires, a six-foot extension hose is available from Viair as an accessory.

A twist-on locking brass air chuck ensuresa tight, secure seal, and doesn't require you to squat down and hold the chuck on thetire valve during inflation.

Unlike many of the cheap big box store compressors, you'll find no other frills on the 88p.

Where the 88p truly shines, though is in itsspecs.

That little gem puts out 1.

47 cu ft of airper minute at 0 psi, and 1.

25 cu ft per minute at 30 psi.

What does that mean in the real world? This will take a 225/60 R18 tire from 15 to30 psi in a mere 1 minute and 19 seconds, and it's capable of inflating up to 33-inch tires.

Its maximum operating pressure is 120 psi, but Viair makes other models capable of up to 150 psi, for you folks with the giant fifth wheels with the real high pressure tires.

Perhaps an air compressor's most importantspecification, though, is duty cycle, something that you'll never see manufacturers of cheapcompressors even mention.

Duty cycle indicates how long the compressorcan run before it needs to be stopped to cool down.

The 88p has an impressive 45% duty cycle — thatmeans that it can run for 25 minutes @ 30 psi before needing to cool down.

Most cheap big box store compressors, by comparison havea duty cycle of only around 15%.

It takes us only about 10 minutes to air all4 truck tires back up from 50% of normal pressure after off-roading, and that's something thatwe can accomplish without having to pause at all.

At only 4.

75 lbs, the Viair 88p is compactand lightweight.

It's IP53 rated for water and dust ingress, but it doesn't come with a case.

We picked up this small tool bag at Home Depotfor under $10.

In the case of the Viair 88p, quality doesn'tnecessarily come with a premium price tag.

At the time we're filming this video it'spriced at $65.

95 on Amazon, with free Prime shipping available.

The six-foot air hose extension is availablefor another 5 bucks.

On Amazon the 88p has garnered 4.

6 out of5 stars from nearly 1, 800 customer reviews.

Now while we're at it, we'd like to sharewith you this handy tire deflator from ARB that greatly speeds up the process of airingdown your tires for offroad use.

Sure, you could simply press on the centerpin in your tire valves to release the air, but there's a better way, and a faster way to doit.

This little piece of pure genius allows forthe removal of the tire valve core to allow air to rapidly escape, yet at the same timeholds onto the valve core to prevent dropping and losing it.

Once the desired pressure is achieved, asindicated by the highly accurate built-in pressure gauge, you simply twist to screwthe valve core back in.

So, we hope that this short video on air compressorshelps you achieve your own Grand Adventure! You can find more information including AmazonAffiliate links in the full YouTube video description down below.

We bring new outdoor adventure videos to YouTubeeach and every Wednesday, so if you're not yet one of our Grand Adventurers, hit thatsubscribe button over there right now, and ring the notification bell! Give us a thumbs up if you liked this video– it's really important to us — and we'd be honored if you shared Grand Adventure withyour friends and family.

As always, we remain available for any questionsor feedback in the comments section below this video, and we'd love to hear from you.

Until next time, remember.

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life is nothingbut a Grand Adventure! We'll see you next week!.

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