Got a tire low on air and deflated (hopefully not a totally flat tire)?
Wondering how to get free tire air?
If you can get free gas for your car, you should be able to get free air.
For those who don’t know, under-inflated tires can lead to a number of problems, like:
- Lower fuel efficiency. The U.S. Department of Energy says, “under-inflated tires can lower gas mileage by about by about 0.2% for every 1 psi drop in the average pressure of all tires.” The department also says that by keeping your tires inflated to the proper pressure, you can improve your gas mileage by an average of 0.6%, and up to 3% in some cases.
- Increased wear on the tire. This decreases the tire’s lifespan.
- And, in some cases, it can lead to a damaged wheel.
Having properly inflated tires has many benefits including saving you money on gas by improving your gas millage.
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So, as you can tell, keeping your tires properly inflated is important.
However, finding free air for tires isn’t always easy. While most gas stations and car washes have those air machines or pumps, you usually have to put in $0.75 to use it for a limited time. So not only do you have to hurry so you don’t run out of time you also have to deal with broken machines that sometimes take your money but won’t actually start.
That’s why, in this post, we cover how to get free air for tires.
Below, you’ll find tips on finding gas stations with free air near you as well as other ways you can get free air for your tires without puncturing (pun intended) your wallet.
So, check out our tips and save yourself some cash!
1. Get free air from gas stations and other places
Finding air for free at gas stations isn’t always easy since many don’t offer it.
And, using a paid air compressor at gas stations can set you back $1 to $2 per fill!
This is a pretty high amount.
Fortunately, there are still gas stations and other places (like Sam’s Club and Walmart) out there that do provide free air. But, finding them isn’t always easy.
Finding gas stations and other places that have free air is time-consuming.
That’s why FreeAirPump.com is such a good website.
It works similarly to these apps that find cheap gas near you. It features a map of places offering tire air for free, and you can enter your address, city and state or zip code into the search box and find free air near you.
This saves you so much time searching around for places near you that offer it.
The list of places is user-generated, so it’s not always completely accurate – since some places may no longer offer free air, or they may have closed down.
However, it gives you a great place to start and saves you a lot of time hunting down places yourself.
Check out the map and search for air in your area by visiting this page.
Now, a quick note; many gas station air pumps don’t have a tire pressure display.
So, if you do use a free public air compressor and your car does not have a built-in monitor and tire pressure display, then you might need to buy a tire pressure gauge. This is because you’ll need to know the tire’s pressure so that you don’t fill it too much and pop the tire, or fail to fill it enough.
Don’t know how to use a tire pressure gauge?
Here’s a helpful guide on how to use a tire pressure gauge by the DMV.
Other ways to get free air for tires
Aside from getting it for free at gas stations, you can also get air for your tires, without paying a cent for it, with the tips below.
2. Use a portable air compressor
A really easy way to get free air is to buy a portable air compressor, and use it as a tire inflator.
This is so much easier than having to drive miles to a gas station that offers free air.
And, you can pick one up for as little as $30 on Amazon – and then you can use it over and over again. It’s a super convenient way to get air for your tires, and its super handy to have when you’re traveling.
Plus, if you use Swagbucks you can get points for doing easy tasks like watching videos. You can then redeem these points for free Amazon gift cards which you can use to buy a compressor, basically for free.
3. Check the trunk of your car – you may find a tire inflator in there!
Next time you need air for your tire, check your car first.
Since a lot of new vehicles don’t come with a spare tire, you often get an air compressor for free from the manufacturer.
So, if your car did not come with a spare tire in the trunk, then there could be a portable air compressor in there.
4. Ask a friend to borrow their air compressor
If a friend of yours owns a compressor, then ask to borrow it. This is an easy way to get free air when you’re in a pinch.
5. Just ask if you live in California or Connecticut
Since gas stations in California and Connecticut are required by law to offer free air to drivers, you can get free tire air just by asking, if you live in those states.
In California, you usually have to be a paying customer to get the free air, so fill up the tank as well to avoid paying for air.
Also, some compressors may require payment unless you ask the cashier to turn the compressor on for you – all you have to do is ask, and the cashier is required by law to manually turn the compressor on.
6. Visit the shop that installed your tires
You can sometimes get free air from the tire shop that installed your tires. Visit the shop that installed your tires.
Discount Tire provides free air pressure checks, regardless of whether you bought your tires from there.
7. Get your car’s oil changed
A lot of oil change shops will also provide free air. Just ask at the shop whether they offer this service for free.
8. Visit the RV lanes
Some gas stations have designated fueling lanes for RVs, and also for campers. These lanes sometimes have a standalone pump that offers free air. So, you can use this lane instead and get free air.
9. Use a bike pump instead!
Okay, so this option isn’t really that convenient. But, if you’re in a real jam, it’s a good choice.
If you have a bike pump, then you can use it to inflate tires. However, we will warn you that it can take dozens, or sometimes even hundreds of pumps to move the needle on the pressure gauge a few PSI.
Free gas station air hacks and tricks
While researching for this post, I came across questions like, “how to get free air at gas stations hack?“.
The thing is, while there may be ways to hack into these machines and their computer systems, it’s just not right. I mean, there are so many easy ways to put air in your tires for free that trying hacks and tricks just isn’t worth the trouble.
If you’ve been wondering how to get free air for tires, then you might want to give some of these tips a try.
You’ll save yourself money on paying for air from public air compressors and by improving your gas mileage. You’ll ensure that your car’s tires stay in great condition!