Updated: 04/18/2020 - VIAIR manufactures a wide range of high quality 12 & 24 Volt DC portable air compressors. From the economical VIAIR 85P that usually sells for under $50 and can inflate up to 31" tires to the brute power of the VIAIR 440P that can fill a large 37″ x 12.5″ tire from 0 to 30 PSI in under 5 minutes.
VIAIR portable compressors are powered by your vehicle's electrical system. Smaller portable compressors such as the VIAIR 85P simply plug into your vehicle’s cigarette lighter or 12-volt accessory jack, heavy-duty models like the VIAIR 440P use special clamps to connect directly to the vehicle battery terminals. In either case, you can keep one of these in your car or truck and always be prepared to inflate a tire without searching around for a gas station with an air pump, which is becoming increasingly difficult to find nowadays.
The VIAIR portable air compressors compared here are all top selling models with hundreds of positive 4 and 5-star Amazon customer reviews. Even if you intend on buying a VIAIR 12-volt tire inflator from a local retailer such as Walmart, Harbor Freight or AutoZone, I highly recommend that you read through some of the negative reviews at Amazon for the models that interest you so you’ll know what problems or complaints others have experienced.
VIAIR 00085 85P Portable Inflator
CFM @ 0 PSI
Max Tire Size
Plugs Into 12V Outlet
Great Amazon Reviews!
VIAIR 00088 88P Portable Inflator
Direct 12 Volt Battery Clamps
Inflate 33" Tires
VIAIR 30033 300P Portable Air Compressor
Max Tire Size
Inline Air Gauge
VIAIR 40043 400P Portable Air Compressor
CFM @ 0 PSI
Max Tire Size
Duty Cycle: 33%
@ 100 PSI
Inline Air Gauge
25' Air Hose
VIAIR 44043 440P Portable Air Compressor
Max Air Flow
Hundreds of 5 Star Reviews.
The VIAIR 00085 85P portable 12V tire inflator is a best seller with thousands of positive reviews. It is a powerful little compressor capable of inflating tires up to 31" and features a built-in LED work light.
The 3 foot long air hose features a twist-on tire chuck constructed of solid brass and a 10' power cord makes it easy to reach any of your vehicle's tires. The 85P outputs 1.26 CFM in free air and can inflate a 225/60R18 tire from 0 to 30 PSI in only 3 minutes.
VIAIR recommends this 6 foot air extension hose (P/N 00016) for use with the 88P.
You'll want to make sure your vehicle is equipped with a suitable 12 volt DC power jack or cigarette lighter plug with at least a 15 amp capacity. If you lack this, you'll want to get the VIAIR 88P, reviewed below, that offers direct battery clamp connectors. Also note that this model has a 60 PSI air pressure limit, which is plenty for most cars and SUV's that use 32 - 35 PSI recommended tire pressure.
20 to 30 PSI
30 to 40 PSI
Good quality tire inflation compressor considering price.
The 85P is competitively priced and usually retails under $50
1.28 CFM in free air with 60 PSI maximum.
The VIAIR 85P is an excellent choice for most average users. We rate it 4.5 stars.
VIAIR 00085 85P Air Compressor Owners Manual - PDF
VIAIR 00085 85P Dimensional Drawing - PDF
Manufacturer's Product Page - VIAIR 85P
VIAIR 85P ASIN-B0036E9VB6
The VIAIR 00088 88P 12V compressor is a powerful tire inflator with direct battery clamps. The direct battery connection is better, however the trade-off is you need to open the hood to access the vehicle's battery which is typically less convenient than simply plugging into a 12 volt power outlet. The upside is, the 88P has more power with 1.47 CFM and a 120 PSI maximum pressure than the plug in VIAIR 85P model and can inflate tires up to 33".
Like the 85P the VIAIR 88P offers a solid brass twist-on tire chuck and a 10 foot 12 volt DC power cord, however the air hose is a generous 16 feet long. The extra long air hose is really convenient for hard to reach tires such as trailer tires. The 88P outputs 1.47 CFM in free air and can inflate a 225/60R18 tire from 0 to 30 PSI in only two and a half minutes, even a massive 33″ x 12.5″ tire can be filled from flat to 30 PSI in around 5 minutes and 45 seconds.
This power comes at a price, the 88P draws up to 20 amps, requiring you to keep the engine running while using this compressor, which is something we recommend anyway whenever using a 12 volt DC compressor running off of a vehicle's battery.
Quality tire compressor considering price.
The 88P usually retails around $60
1.47 CFM in free air with 120 PSI maximum.
The VIAIR 88P is an good choice for some users. We rate it 4.5 stars.
VIAIR 00088 88P Air Compressor Owners Manual - PDF
VIAIR 00088 88P Dimensional Drawing - PDF
Manufacturer's Product Page - VIAIR 88P
VIAIR 88P ASIN-B005ASY23I
The VIAIR 300P is a more powerful compressor than the VIAIR 85P & 88P models. The 300P can inflate tires up to 33 inches. The 300P is powered from your vehicle's 12VDC electrical system using easy to connect alligator clamps. A long 25' air hose with inline tire pressure gauge is included.
Some key features include:
One disadvantage of the 300P inflator noted by users is the length of the power cord is only 8 feet. This can make it hard to reach tires in some vehicles even with the 25' coiled air hose. A suggested solution was to use jumper cables to lengthen the electrical connection to the air compressor.
31" x 10.5"
0 to 30 PSI
3 Min. 25 Sec.
15 to 30 PSI
2 Min. 0 Sec.
33" x 12.5"
5 Min. 0 Sec.
15 to 30 PSI
2 Min. 45 Sec
Good quality compressor for the price.
The 300P usually retails under $150
2.3 CFM in free air with 150 PSI maximum.
The VIAIR 300P is an excellent HD tire inflator We rate it 4.5 stars.
VIAIR 30033 300P Air Compressor Owners Manual - PDF
VIAIR 30033 300P Dimensional Drawing - PDF
Manufacturer's Product Page - VIAIR 300P
VIAIR 300P ASIN-B000X90YUO
VIAIR's 400P inflator is popular with off-road enthusiasts worldwide. The 400P is larger and more powerful, capable of inflating a large 35-inch tire from flat to 30 PSI in under 6 minutes.
This power requires a direct connection to the vehicle's battery using the included alligator clamps. The engine should be running when operating the 400P inflator to ensure that the current and voltage requirements of this powerful portable air compressor are met.
As with the VIAIR 300P, there were complaints about the 8' length of the power cord. Many consider this too short for ease of use, even with the 25' coiled air hose. A set of jumper cables can be used as a work-around if you have hard to reach tires on your specific vehicle.
Bottom Line - The 400P is an excellent choice for those needing to maintain larger tire sizes up to 35". For off-road, RV and farm use, having a portable tire inflator that can be used anywhere can be an invaluable resource.
3 Min. 0 Sec.
1 Min. 35 Sec.
4 Min. 20 Sec.
2 Min. 5 Sec
35" x 12.5"
5 Min. 20 Sec.
Good quality compressor for the money.
The 400P retails around $200
2.3 CFM in free air with 150 PSI maximum pressure.
VIAIR's 400P inflator is powerful. We rate it 4.5 stars.
VIAIR 40043 400P Air Compressor Owners Manual - PDF
VIAIR 40043 400P Dimensional Drawing - PDF
Manufacturer's Product Page - VIAIR 400P
VIAIR 400P ASIN-B000X9AXR8
The VIAIR 440P is the most powerful portable air compressor in the VIAIR lineup. 150 PSI rated and a massive 3 CFM air flow.
The 440P can rapidly inflate up to 37" tires. This is the best portable inflator kit to buy if you need to inflate large RV, tractor or truck tires.
A Vibration-Resistant Diamond-Plate Sand Tray helps keep dirt out of the compressor motor and reduce vibration and noise. The inline 120 PSI air gauge and 25-foot coiled air hose with open end air chuck make filling tires a breeze.
What we didn't like - As with the other VIAIR 300P - 450P heavy-duty compressors for tire inflation, the 440P has a 8 foot power cord which some users consider inadequate.
Bottom Line - If you want the most powerful portable inflator on the market, then the VIAIR 440P is likely your best choice.
35" x 12.5"
4 Min. 30 Sec.
2 Min. 15 Sec.
37" x 12.5"
4 Min. 50 Sec.
2 Min. 40 Sec
Good quality compressor.
The 440P usually retails under $300
3.0 CFM in free air running with 150 PSI maximum pressure.
The VIAIR 440P air compressor is a powerhouse. We rate it 4.5 stars.
VIAIR 44043 440P Air Compressor Owners Manual - PDF
VIAIR 44043 440P Dimensional Drawing - PDF
Manufacturer's Product Page - VIAIR 440P
VIAIR 440P ASIN-B000X9BXQS
VIAIR is leading manufacturer of high-performance mobile air compressors based in Irvine, California. VIAIR Corporation was founded in 1998 and is a global company offering a wide selection of 12- and 24-volt automotive air compressors and air accessories. VIAIR products are currently being utilized by auto enthusiasts, 4x4 and off-road, RV, farm, trucking and numerous others around the world. VIAIR products receive excellent customer reviews from thousands of satisfied customers.
Quick Tip: It is important that you keep your vehicle running while using your compressor. This will prevent your battery from discharging and insure that your 12V portable air compressor has the optimum DC voltage and current capacity that it requires to operate at peak efficiency.
Keeping properly inflated tires is essential. It would be hard to go wrong selecting one of VIAIR's portable air compressors to ensure that you can easily accomplish this task. All of the VIAIR compressors on this page come with a one-year limited warranty and are highly rated by users.
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