on June 5, 2010
I got this tire inflator because I didn't want to be dependent on my local gas station to fill my tires up. Last time I went there the air compressor was broken, so I finally bought this.
This unit hooks directly up to your car's battery. My 2010 Honda Accord only puts out 10 amps through the DC outlet inside the car, so I decided to get this one rather than similar units that I have seen that hook up inside your car rather than the battery. I have read other reviews about some of these inflators blowing fuses in the cars, so I was aware of that issue ahead of time.
After connecting the clamps to the battery and turning on my car, I filled up all my tires just to top them off. The compressor is relatively quiet (certainly not loud by my definition) and added about 2 psi to each tire in about 10 seconds for each tire. The unit was a little warm after all four tires, but certainly not anywhere near hot to hurt my hands from touching the metal heatsink. It probably gets hotter if you leave it on for longer, but for periodic tire inflation maintenance, it seems like it is rugged enough to handle it.
The nozzle is a clampdown type which also has a release switch. You press the release switch once to lock it into the release position, and press it again to close it back up.
Most of the parts are made of metal, not plastic. It does have rubber feet on the bottom to absorb the vibrations though. The length of the hose and DC power cord put together is just enough to reach all four tires on my car comfortably. The bag that comes with it fits all of the parts with some room to spare (I also keep my tire guage in there now).
All things considered, I think this is a pretty good unit. The construction feels good, which is reassuring since I had another tire inflator a while back that did not last long. It does everything I expected.
Update: It's now Oct. 2013 and I am still using this pump for my tires. It still works great, tops off the tires fast in seconds, and I appreciate the bag that comes with it which I also use to hold my tire gauge. One thing to note is that the cord plus hose is really just long enough for my 2010 Accord coupe, so if your vehicle is bigger, you may have to upgrade to the higher end models which I believe have longer reach.
on May 13, 2008
I'm very impressed by the performance of the 90P Viair compressor. I originally had wanted to buy the 70P Viair compressor because it was cheaper and because it has the car accessory plug-in (instead of the alligator clips), but both my cars has a 10amp accessory fuse and I did not want to take the risk of blowing them every time I used the compressor (I believe the 70P has a 14 amp draw). This led me to consider either the Masterflow, or the MV50, because of their reviews in Amazon. After reading many reviews later, I decide against both of them, mainly because I wasn't very keen on the screw-on air chuck and the coil spring hose. I wanted the snap-on chuck and didn't want to have to stretch a hose to get to a tire. Plus, I noticed that if the hose is attached to the farthest tire, the gauge would wind up being on other end of the car since it's attached to the compressor. I know these are small inconveniences, but for me, I wanted easy on, easy off, no pulling, and the tire gauge by the tire. The 90P looked to have what I wanted plus I thought it looked sturdier and well built. The price of the 90P was a little more than I wanted to pay but the reviews I read convinced me to give it a shot
I have a couple of tires with slow leaks that I haven't had a chance to bring in to fix. I was amazed at how fast it pumped up my tires from about 25lbs to 32lbs (both tires in about 1 min. each). I also topped off all four of my sister's tire in a few mins. The attached air gauge was just as accurate as my hand held gauge, and the bleeder valve on the chuck is definitely a plus. I know I probably won't be using the compressor as much, once I fix my tires, but WOW, you really get what you paid for. Not only is this fast, it quiet. I'm sure the Masterflow and the MV50 performance are probably comparable based on their reviews, but overall, I'm very happy with my choice. I have two other compressors which I paid about $25 for and they are twice as loud and take about 10 times longer. I'll probably keep one as a spare and throw the other one away.
Of course, after I bought this and used it, I found out that there is an 80P viair out there, also with the snap-on chuck, but for less. I would have gone and exchanged the two to save some money, but, I'm so impressed with 90P's performance that I didn't want to go thru the hassle of mailing it back and risk being disappointed. Will probably try the 80P if I need another one, but if they ever discontinue the 80P, I would definitely buy this one again.
I didn't give this a five star because I thought the wire should have been just a little longer and the price more inline with its competitors.
Snap-on air chuck with bleeder valve
Fast and very quiet.
Gauge is accurate.
Light and well built.
Fits well in bag (no need to detach hose to fit)
No filters to change/replace.
If you have a big truck, the wire may not reach your furthest tire. I have a pilot and I have only a little more than a feet of leeway (from battery to furthest tire
on January 12, 2010
- Quiet operation (specs state 67db) much quieter than the gasoline station compressor
- on/off switch
- Cables are long enough to reach my rear tires on a full sized sedan with ease (5ft air hose + 11ft power cable).
- Filling performance/speed on par with gasoline station compressors
- Can work on tires up to 33"
- Sturdy metal construction quick connect device
Cons (very minor critiques)
- I wish carrying bag was slightly bigger or the location of the air hose outlet could change. When I put the compressor in the bag it seems like it could unnecessarily bend the hose if I' not careful. This is just a very minor complaint.
- Haven't gotten the pressure gauge to read correctly.
- 1 year warranty (wish it was 2 or 3 years)
If you goto viair's website, the 70p is for up to 175/65/15 tires, which is 15" tires. I had 18" tires, so that's why I looked into the 90p.
I also looked at the Masterflow/Q-Industries MF-1050 / MV-50. These pumps are spec'd similarly to the Viair 90p. One confusing thing is that the MF-1050 and MV-50 are the same exact pump - did some research online. In the end, I opted for the Viair brand, b/c their website and company history seemed more solid than MasterFlow.
I think a lot of people who get compressors w/ a power rating of only 15A (those that are powered by cigarette lighters or 110v cords) have a pump that's just too underpowered for their needs. That's why it breaks down or they have an unsatisfactory experience.
This Viair 90p definitely meets my needs and I'd recommend it to all.
on April 22, 2011
I was not happy burning fuel to get to a gas station then shoving $1.75 in quarters to pump air. So, I looked for a better solution; one that I can leave in the garage or take with me in a convenient soft case.
I researched the various portable air compressor products at Amazon.com, especially the reviews. Reviewers complained of blown fuses using the cigarette lighter so I steered to this model that uses battery clamps. The 6 page "User Manual" has four pages of features and safety instructions including not to use when sleepy! There are less the three pages of actual instructions. This product is made in China and its user manual reflects a translation without using it. The manufacturer's web site offers no user manuals and is less than helpful unless you are an engineer.
This unit draws 23 amps and my cigarette lighter circuit has a 7 amp fuse. Even directly connecting to the battery, the manual does advise to run your engine. You then rely upon the 90P's in-line 30 amp fuse. I had no problem with blown fuses either without running the engine or with running the engine.
Next, reviewers complain of short cables. If you drive a truck, it may be too short unless you use those jumper cables you carry to help fellow citizens. I measured 12 feet of power cable and five feet air hose, exactly as advertised. So the 17 feet worked fine for a Jeep and a BMW 5-series. The manual does say to fully uncoil all cables.
Last, reviewers complain of inaccurate pressure gauge readings. The manual does not clarify this. To add pressure, it pumps air in with higher pressure. That affects the real-time pressure gauge reading. As a few reviews pointed out, pump three to four pounds more than you need then turn off the pump. The idle pressure reading is accurate per two other passive gauges I have.
The air bleeder chuck and air pressure hose are heavy duty quality items. The pressure relief valve, while convenient to adjust to a lower pressure, is also tricky to use. Press it too hard and it continually lets air out. I suggest a brief air release before adding air to release any moisture.
My expectations are exactly meet so 5 stars. It is seemingly well made; has multiple attachments; runs much quieter than a commercial air pump; is light weight and fits in a carry pouch. Long-term usage? I do not yet know; but I am registering online for the one-year warranty.
on November 24, 2009
I've had the little Viair 90p for about three years now. It's used to pump up tires following off-road trips and sees plenty of use. When other compressors have difficulty pumping up four tires this little thing just keeps going and going pumping up tire-after-tire even in the heat. Other compressors thermal out, overheating and shutting down. The Viair puts out 1.77 cu.ft. of air a minute and puts a 33" SUV tire from 18 psi to 36 psi in about four minutes. It uses a clamp-on valve connector which is quicker and easier to use then the kind that screws in place. Between the electrical cable and air hose it reaches all corners of my SUV with a bit of room to spare.
on August 26, 2011
I starting looking for a portable tire inflation device because the stores and filling stations within a mile or so of my home either stopped providing air inflation stations or failed to keep them working. I was originally looking for a simpler device, but I ran across the VIAIR products after some Internet research. I concluded that the lesser products seemed to be built to a much lower standard, and I decided to spring for a VIAIR. The company has several models that seem to be a bit more efficient. However, they have cords that plug into the power port (old cigarette lighter) sockets. Since they draw 15 amps or more, I found it would not work in my car -- or many others, either. Therefore, I decided to spring for the 90P model. While a bit more pricey than most, this pump is very well made. Its cord clips directly to the car battery, and has an inline 30 amp fuse. While not the best battery clips, they work fine. It says it has Teflon bearings. I cannot evaluate all the features, but it has a look and feel of a professional device. When I use it, it can top off a tire in 10-15 seconds (say bringing from 29-30 lbs up to 35 lbs). It also has a quick attach type fitting to place over the tire stem, which is quick and easy to use. It just feels solid when it runs. The only problem I see is that the 12 foot cord is too short to be convenient. I could actually stretch the 12 foot cord to get the pump close enough to the rear tire on the side opposite the battery to fill the tire with the 5 foot air hose. But this seemed a bit clumsy. I ended up getting some additional wire and spliced it into the existing cord to add 10 more feet. Now I can easily reach all my tires, even the spare in the trunk. By the way, if you want to try this, if you get 12 gauge low voltage wiring (readily available at Lowes, etc.) that is 15 feet long, cut 5 feet off the current (16 gauge) cable on the 90P, and splice them -- you will have 22 feet of cord, and the resistance will be very close to that of the original cable (the extra length is compensated by the bigger gauge wire) so it does not affect the performance.
If you are like me, prone to spend a little extra for a device that should last a long time and work in any situation, then this VIAIR 90P is a great buy.
on February 28, 2013
I like how compact this pump is, and after three years of decently heavy use I haven't had any trouble with the pump itself. If you can find it around $70, it's a good deal, but I don't know if I'd pay much more than that, because...
1) It's loud. You'll want to step away to have a conversation, there's definitely quieter pumps out there.
2) The included air hose is not the best, and there's no blowoff valve - DO NOT turn the pump on before connecting the chuck to the tire, or you'll blow the hose out immediately.
3) The included gauge isn't accurate at all. I used a standard inflation gauge to find what the Viair gauge read when the tire was actually 35 PSI, and scribed that mark on the face of the dial (I think it's about 48).
4) It's not very powerful. It takes just over 10 minutes to inflate my 255/85r16 (~33x11) tires from 15 to 35 PSI. The 245/75r16 tires I had before took about 6 minutes a tire at the same PSI levels.
I wouldn't choose this pump as a primary inflation source if you've got anything over a 31 inch tire, and maybe not even then if you frequently air down. I'll be going to a CO system shortly, but I'll certainly continue to carry this compressor in the truck as a backup.
on September 30, 2015
What I do not like is the gauge and amp rating of the wire. After running for 2 minutes you can smell warm rubber. Not burning wire (just yet) but you can stick your nose over the wire and you can feel and smell the best coming off the wires. The wire becomes extremely maluable (bendable and soft). A pump drawing 23A and a 30A fuse inline should have a good size gauge wire. The single 60W incandescent lamp I have bedside has the same wire as this. Probably 16 gauge. This pump needs 12 or more gauge. I run it for 3 minutes and turn it off and let it cool for 3-5. You better leave your engine running if you're doing all 4 tires, in my opinion due to the 23A draw. My pool pump draws 23A and my frig draws 8A and the lump doesn't let up, if it's running it's taking at least 20A. Holy cow. And the on off switch is rated for only 15A at 125VAC. I'm going to start removing solder connections and solder higher gauge wire and an appropriate switch to dissipate heat. I may also take a 120mm computer fan to help cool the heat sink.
on February 24, 2012
I own the VIAIR 90P Portable Compressor, which I purchased from Amazon in November of 2009.
I've only used it about five times since then in an emergency, but it works fines. It does overheat filling one tire to 45 psi on my one car that has a slow leak and loses about 25 lbs every 30 to 40 days, and the pressure gauge stopped working completely on its second use, with the needle sticking on the wrong side of the peg after each use.
The metal valve clip, that attaches to the tire stem, is a bear to remove once the tire is full The compressor does work fine, but the attachments are of lessor quality.
That VIAIR unit I received from Amazon was made in China.
on April 16, 2011
I had some concerns about purchasing this model after reading other reviewer's comments about the 12 ft length of the power cord being too short and the inaccuracies of the pressure gage. Well the power cord and 5' air hose is long enough to reach the left rear tire (opposite side from the battery) on a 119" wheelbase Navigator and would be long enough to reach that tire on the L series with 131" wheelbase if the wheel was rotated so that the valve stem was on the forward side. The pressure gage was within 2# of being spot on. The whole unit, in the very nice bag, fits neatly under the rear seat so it is out of the way but very available. About a week after it arrived I had a bolt go through one of the tires which resulted in the 18" tire being completely flat in the morning. It took 5 minutes for the 90P compressor to bring the tire to 30 psi and got me to the tire repair shop without having to put on the spare. Thanks Viar for a great product.