on June 15, 2010
I've had a VIAIR 70P for quite some time and that unit is great for the small pump that it is. When I needed another small portable compressor that was able to be powered by a cigarette lighter power socket, I noticed that VIAIR had a new model and got one. This one is almost twice as fast as the 70P and every bit as quiet. The unit doesn't walk around when you're using it and the brass screw-on tire chuck makes for almost no air loss. The LED power indicator is a nice touch and I found the air pressure gauge to be spot-on as long as I turn the compressor off to check pressure. In all, another nice unit. -I just wish this was available when I got my 70P. Side note: don't throw away the box - its a means of storage since this unit doesn't come with a carry bag.
on July 21, 2010
I've had several other portable air compressors in the past but they were always in the $20, and below price range, which in essence turned out to be "junk. This is the first time I've purchased a Viair Air Compressor. I was hesitant in spending nearly $50 for for one, but once I received it I was very impressed with its quality and efficiency. I like the fact that the air hose fitting is brass and the end screws onto the air valves of tires. Unlike the toggle type of hose fittings on the cheaper models (which leak a substantial amount of air when you attach or detach them to the air valve and are cumbersome to use), the screw on brass fitting of the Viair loses a negligent amount of air during this operation. The pump is relatively quite for a portable, and it doesn't bounce around nearly as much as the cheaper models tend do. The air gage is very accurate (readings should be taken with the air hose attached and the compressor off ). My bicycle tires were about 15 lbs low and it only took the compressor 10 seconds to air them up. My car tires were about 3 lbs low and it took less than a minute to fill them. I also like the fact that the accessories for airing up air mattresses, basketballs and the like, are cradled on the compressor. All to often I forget where I put these items when I need them if not attached to the compressor. Compared to other air compressors within the same price range, I think this is by far, a cut above the rest.
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on May 1, 2011
This is a solid, well make unit. I've had 3 portable air compressors for personal automobile use over the last several years. This one is generally the best that I've owned. It is small, quiet, compact and doesn't bounce around. On my unit, the PSI gauge is relatively accurate which I crossed checked with a high quality dial type tire pressure gauge. I take my car to high performance driving events and for those of you that travel light to track events (no trailer), this is great pump to pack rat with the rest of your gear. It stands up to heavy use WHEN USED FOR CAR TIRES. The bronze twist on tire chuck is thick, solid and better made than those on other portable units. This is important if you are adjusting pressures on all four tires a few times a day over the course of a two/three day weekend track event. For a small portable pump, it's FAST. The pump works well for general, casual home use as well. But, with a PSI rating of 60, it is not made for bicycle tires. Small bicycle tires inflate extremely quickly with this unit. You have to watch the gauge very carefully and it is all to easy to exceed the pressure rating for the unit faster than you expect. This is where the design of the unit is flawed. When pressures exceed 60 PSI the fuse for the cigarette lighter in your car (20amp for my car) will blow before the fuse in the pump's power port plug will blow. It should be the other way around in my opinion. I think the people that complain of repeatedly blowing fuses in their car are likely using the 85P beyond the maximum 60PSI rating on the unit. The VIAIR 90P has a higher 100 PSI rating. I've never seen the 90P, but the push on attachment chuck is probably inferior for frequent use. I've had pumps with the push on type chucks, and inside of this type of chuck will wear down with repeated use. IN SUMMARY THE VIAIR 85P IS A FAST PUMPING, SOLID, DURABLE, WELL MADE PUMP WITH A MINOR DESIGN FLAW (FUSE ISSUE). DESPITE THE FUSE ISSUE, IT IS A GREAT CHOICE AS A PORTABLE TIRE PUMP TO KEEP IN THE CAR. DON'T USE IT TO INFLATE BICYCLE TIRES OR USE IT NEAR IT'S MAXIMUM 60PSI RATING.
on January 18, 2011
After reading all of the reviews, I still was not convinced that I could trust this product, so I called the company, VIAIR directly with questions. First, I got right through to their technical department, and was given very clear answers to my questions. My main question was about blowing any fuses, as some reviewers had complained about, and the technician assured me that would not happen, as long as I had the engine running BEFORE I plugged in and turned on the compressor. After I spoke to the technician I decided to go ahead and purchase the VIAIR 85P compressor. When it arrived the directions on the box were very clear about turning on your engine before operating the compressor. The compressor is extremely easy to use. The brass screw on tire chuck for the tire stem is so much more convenient and easier to use than the machines at local gas stations, because you just screw it on and you do not have to hold it in place. It filled up my tire to the correct pressure in less than a minute, and the tire gauge makes it impossible for you to make any errors in judgement as to how much or how little to fill your tire, as long as you know what the PSI is for your tires. I am thrilled that I purchased this product. It is everything that the company advertises it to be and more. Also, as one previous reviewer suggested, keep the box, it is very convenient to store the compressor in, and has a convenient plastic carry handle.
on September 13, 2010
Item arrived quickly. The compressor is very compact and feels well built and heavy.
I verified before purchase that it draws 14.5 amps, 12v. My power sources on a 05 landcruiser are 15 amp 12v. I tested it this weekend. Started the vehicle, used the rear cargo Aux socket to fill the two rear tires, it has plenty of power and inflated quickly. I moved it to the front cabin Aux socket on dash, and it blew the 15 amp fuse. Then I used the 15 amp cig lighter socket, and it blew that too.
Its not much use if it blows the fuse when you need it most.
I'm going to look into a direct battery power adapter plug.
on August 2, 2012
The Viair 85P operates relatively quietly, with hardly any vibration, and it moves a lot of air. I use it routinely to top off car tires, which it does in a snap, and have used it to fill tires from flat in just a few minutes. Its price is pretty reasonable considering what a sturdy, high-quality product it is.
You should choose carefully between the Viair 85P and its cousin, the 70P. With the 85P, you might think you're getting a more powerful compressor for just a few dollars more. Actually, BOTH compressors are designed to be the most powerful you can run from a 12V car accessory socket. With a limit of 15 amps, the two products just use the available power differently. The 85P has a larger stroke to move air faster, but the motor only has enough torque to operate up to about 60 psi before it blows its own fuse or that of your car. The 70P has a shorter stroke and is a little slower, but will work up to 100 psi. The way you can think of it, if you're familiar with a manual car transmission, is that the 70P runs in a lower gear and can climb a steeper hill.
If you know that you'll only need the compressor for automotive or higher-volume applications where the pressures are relatively low, you might prefer the 85P. It's really terrific for car tires and comparable uses. I imagine it's the one you'd want to use for something like an air mattress, though I haven't tried that. However, with the 70P you can trade off some speed for a little more versatility.
I think the 85P is a solid product and I've rated it highly, but personally I made the wrong choice. I always imagined that I could use my great air compressor not only with the car, but also to pump up my tires when I got around to riding my bicycle again. Since my bike tires require 75 to 80 psi, that wasn't going to happen. I actually did manage to inflate them, but it was impossible to top them off. You have to turn off the compressor to get a pressure reading, and then the motor stalls when you turn it back on, blowing the fuse.
By the way, if you do manage to overload the compressor and blow the fuse, it's located inside the 12V plug. Unscrew the metal tip of the plug to replace it. You need a fast-acting 15A 250V glass tube fuse. The 6x30mm AGC-type fuses are easy to obtain. You can even get them from or through Amazon.
Of course, if it comes to that, it's possible that the fuse in your car will blow before the one protecting the Viair does. Personally I don't have that problem because I always run the compressor from the battery power pack I keep in the trunk for emergency engine starting. That way I never worry about blowing a fuse in the car or needing to run the engine to use the compressor. I recommend the Jump-N-Carry JNC300XL 900 Peak Amp Ultraportable 12-Volt Jump Starter with Light. It's smaller, lighter, more powerful and cheaper than the power packs with built-in tire inflators, and of course it has an accessory socket. For the price of a bells-and-whistles Chinese-made power pack, you can get the better JNC product plus a Viair air compressor!
on July 1, 2012
Read about this here quite awhile ago and was put off over the contradictory reports of fuses blowing, since in my situation I would rather fill a tire at a slower speed then have to start the engine. Contacted Viair and asked for specifics. No help so I thought they are not a good company and blew it off. 6 months later, said what the hell.
For those not familiar with basic electrical principle. A motors power draw is rated in watts, which is amps x volts. So as the battery depletes the voltage diminishes, thus the amp draw must go up to keep the watts the same. So one might think a fuse would be more likely to blow on the third or fourth tire, as the pump draws down the battery. What I did was try to get the amps high enough to blow the fuse by using batteries that were partially depleted, not the normal 12.6 or 12.7 volts.
So, P225/75R15 tires on large van. 35 psi required. Battery is rot gut, 11 years old, low specific gravity. This means capacity is low and voltage will drop faster then a newer battery, so it is a good worst case scenario. In addition, resting voltage drawn down to 12.45. Lower each tire to 25 psi. They need 35 psi. Accurate ampmeter in line. Voltmeter connected. Takes about 1 1/2 minutes to raise to 38 psi. 15 amp fuse. On first tire volts drop to 11.8 and amp draw at 12.75. Lowest volts get is on last tire at 11.55 volts and 13 amps. Similiar amp draw to third tire so was kind of stabilizing at that. Filled last tire twice and still 13 amp, then turned on lights, volts dropped to 11.2 and 21 amps! so quickly turned off (after maybe 30 seconds), cause not in mood to change fuse (Box hard to access) but really, those blade fuses don't blow that fast or at strictly 15 amps,(that's why houses burn down) could probably go at least several minutes above 20. As I said on newer battery voltage would not drop as low as this under load so amps would not even get as high as 13 amps.
Switching vehicles, on 13 inch Geo tires takes 1.5 minutes to go from 20 to 40 psi which is way overfilled. 45 seconds from 25-35 psi. Results were similiarly positive, even though I started at 12.3 volts. A half empty battery. This done by leaving lights on awhile, then waiting couple hours for stabilization
So really, I don't know how you could blow a fuse with this unless possibly with 4 tires even bigger then those van tires which is as big as most people get. Maybe like the tires on that Ram 2500 that get pumped to 60 psi that one guy here said he had. Even then I suspect all 4 would have to be extremely low (but if they are that bad you have a flat) then if the battery was shot and you turned the lights on and prayed, maybe you could blow a fuse.
Have an Interdynamics "truck air" 275 USA made from the dark ages.(1980's) Nice units then,(no longer made) and had a fan, This Viair is faster and quieter,and I like that it is smaller. But does get too hot to touch in one place, no fan, so if used heavily the heat may impact it's life span, but for occasional use will probably last pretty good. Has a feeling of quality to it and the chuck is well done. Gauge easy to read and accurate, matches all 5 of my accugauges
Would actually give this a 5 but cord is slightly short for a van with 10 1/2 feet between front, back wheels, c to c. but does reach barely. Easy to alter but have to wait for warranty expiration I'm betting. Also don't like that Viair could not give a similiar example like this review. Doing their work for them. Nobody give's a s&*% anymore, about their own products, have you noticed? The way Viair stresses you must turn the engine on is just stupid beyond belief, as this test shows. But this seems a very good choice considering the competition assuming it holds up. I mean as opposed to what you can see in stores. I'm glad I got it. Hope this helps.
on November 5, 2015
This may be one of the best products I've ever purchased. And a very smart thing to have in your car at all times. I've already used it to "save" two coworkers. It works extremely well and knowing that I never have to worry about a flat tire no matter where I am - in the driveway or at work or halfway to Fairbanks - provides a huuuuuuge sense of security. When I forwarded this listing to a mechanic friend of mine, he said it was a bit of overkill, but trust me: you get what you pay for and when it comes to a flat tire in the middle of the night during winter - you want overkill. Very easy to use - has a built-in pressure gauge and even a little built-in light. Seriously, do yourself a favor: put one of these in your car's trunk and one in your wife's and send this link to your friends. I keep mine in a bag of roadside stuff I put together. I'll post a photo.
on October 17, 2015
It's a great compressor very solid heavy and doesn't feel like those cheap, the pressure gauge it's not that bad but it's always a good idea to have another one just to make sure your tires are inflated to the specific factory psi. i order a battery cigarette adapter you know just in case because i read bad reviews that blows your fuses, but i tried in both ways and work just fine and also it's printed in the sticker that you must have the engine running while your running the compressor, I keep the compressor in the original box because it's pretty solid cardboard. there's some pictures video take forever to upload.
on October 25, 2010
This compressor works great. I use it once a month to adjust the pressure for my car. It is very portable (I can keep it all the time in my car, it does not take much space), and the cord has just the right length to reach all 4 tires from the dash plug. Not too noisy for a compressor, and fast. The gauge is accurate, as long as you turn the switch off to get a reading.