How to Safely Inflate a Tire

How to Safely Inflate a Tire

Justin G4/24/18

by Justin Gray

Inflating a tire: Connect the air hose to the tire and fill. How hard can it be?

I don’t mean to over complicate things, but having worked in the automotive industry for the past 20 years, I have seen many tires explode or blow off the rim, and learned a thing or two about safely filling tires.

Note: This blog is meant to be informational and shouldn't be used in place of proper training.

Safety FIRST
As it should be, your safety and the safety of those around you should always be the #1 priority!
• Wear gloves and eye protection
• Read the Tire Sidewall
• Understand how the equipment (inflator, air compressor, impact gun) works prior to using
• Fill your tires in a safe place (not on the side of the freeway if possible)
• Never stand directly in-front of the tire when filling!

Michelin tire sidewall

Read the Tire Sidewall
All tires have important information printed on them for a reason, read it. Be sure to fill your tires according to what is printed on the side of them; don’t trust your car owner’s manual, the sticker on the door jamb, or rely on what someone told you.

Understand Your Equipment
Being on the side of the road with a flat tire is not the time to learn how to use your equipment; familiarize yourself with their storage location (in your vehicle) and operation procedures prior to needing them!

Find a Safe Place
Again, your safety is the priority. If you experience a flat tire on the freeway, try to exit the freeway prior to stopping. If you find yourself on a city street with a flat, try to find a parking lot – of course this is situation dependent and may not be the best advice in all scenarios.

Always, try to find a safe place to stop and be aware of your surroundings. 

safely fill a tire

How to Safely Inflate a Tire
Now that your hands and eyes are protected, you’ve thoroughly read the sidewall of the tire, and are familiar with your tools – it’s time to inflate that tire!

In the case of this blog, I’ll assume that you are using one of our 12V inflators.
• Start your engine, we need the power from the alternator
• Connect the Inflator’s 12V DC cord to your vehicle’s Cigarette lighter socket
• Located Valve Stem on tire and remove the Valve Stem cap
• Attach the air hose to your tire’s valve stem
STAND TO THE SIDE OF THE TIRE (see picture above)
• Turn on Air Compressor/Inflator
• Monitor Air Pressure Gauge
• Turn off air compressor/inflator once desired pressure has been reached
• Remove air hose from tire valve stem
• Replace valve stem cap



*Note about filling: Generally speaking when tires explode during filling, they come off of the rim; you do not want to be standing in-front of the tire when this happens. This is why tires are put into "filling cages" at automotive shops (see above picture)

Final Thoughts
That wasn’t hard, now was it?!

Just remember that you should never stand in-front of the tire when filling it (stand off to the side)…always keep hands, head and every other body part away from the tire. I have personally seen a few tires blow off of the rim during filling, one with pretty serious injury.

Filling tires is simple and safe as long as you do it right.

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