Best Tire Gauges
That little orange light is glowing on the dash again? Time to check your tires and use a tire inflator to get the proper amount of air!
Underinflated tires reduce fuel economy. They also reduce your vehicle’s handling capabilities. Driving with partially flat tires can raise the risk of losing control or causing an accident. The NHTSA estimates that nearly 660 deaths are caused by under-inflated tires every year.
The improper inflation pressure can also shorten the life of your tires. Anyone he was bought new tires recentlyUnderstand how important it is to keep their tires inflated and to get as much life as possible from them.
A TPMS System is an excellent first alert that your tire pressure is getting low. When you are inflating tires, you need a gauge to help you measure your progress and keep from overinflating them. An overinflated tire can explode and can be dangerous. Checking your pressure level as you inflate can help you avoid this.
Additionally, if you have a tire pressure gauge, you can check your tires every month, and help extends their lifespan by running them more closely to recommended guidelines.
Gauges are a “must have” item and they are so cheap that there is no excuse not to invest in one. Additionally, they make excellent gifts. Make sure each one of your kids has one and knows how to use it!
Jaco Elite Pro Gauge
Joes Racing 32307
Here’s a bit of nostalgia for you!
Just like the Jaco listed above, this one uses heavy duty construction and the ability to record air pressure measurements up to 60 PSI. The green, glow in the dark dial allows you some old-school visibility for when you are airing up tires in the dark.
Now, this gauge is quite large. It isn’t a thin gauge that is going to fit into your glove box. However, what you gain with this larger size is a 17-inch air hose that it is easy to reach the tire valve of a motorcycle or to measure a car’s tire pressure while it is hoisted on a stand.
This is going to be a useful tool for those of you who need highly-accurate measurements of the car’s tire. The ANSI B40.1 rating ensures that the gauge is calibrated correctly. It is also an excellent tool for those who need a tire inflator measurement device that isn’t continually getting lost in the mess of shop tools.
I still prefer the Jaco above, but those of you off-roading in your Jeeps and everyone tired of replacing batteries, this is one of the most rugged analog models that I think I have run across.
This device looks like a thermometer that you would use to check your kid’s temperature. In a way, that is what makes me love this option. It is extremely intuitive to use and very non-threatening. The shape of this air pressure gauge balances nicely in the hand and it is one of those tools that you can hand to a clueless 15-year-old and watch them master it in a minute or two.
This is the best tire pressure gauge for the dad who needs his kids and wife to check the pressure more frequently. The 99 max PSI reading is a little lower than the Jaco above, but since most car and motorcycle tires max out at 30 to 60 PSI, that won’t be an issue. You can’t use it for weird situations such as measuring a road bicycle’s tire pressure.
The batteries that this one uses are the CR2032 batteries that are always easy to find. The trick is that they do not work well in cold weather. If you live up north where you endure months below 30 degrees, a digital tire gauge isn’t going to the best choice for you as the batteries tend not to work and the LCD screens can be hard to read.
The buttons also activate easily. This means that if you keep it in your glove compartment, the buttons can easily be depressed by the stuff it bumps into and it wears your batteries down quickly. So be thinking about a safe place you can store this little pressure gauge.
The seal to the valve stem takes a second to figure out, but then you can run along and measure it quite easily. You can also store the proper tire setting for your vehicle into it so it remembers the settings and instantly tells you if the tires are too low with just a quick glance.
Accutire MS-48B With Thread Checker
Tekton 5941 Digital Tire Gauge
Pressure Gauge With Inflator For Compressor
Ease of Use
This is one of those tools that is only handy if you use it. If you have a tire gauge that you hate using, then you might go longer between checks. That is why something like the Tekton 5941 is such a good choice. It feels good in your hand and makes checking your tire levels extremely easy.
You could hand it to your 7-year-old and have them check your tire levels (I’m assuming you only give your child tools they are trained to use safely!). It’s easy and it is fun. That’s what you want to go for.
Connection To Valve Stem
There is nothing more frustrating than to get a gauge that refuses to seal properly to the valve stem. You need one that you can press up against the Schrader valve of a tire for an instant seal every time.
Most of the ones on this list provide exactly that with no finicking. You press, read, and move on. We left the gauges off the list that seemed to have difficulty getting a good seal.
Build quality matters. Air gauges are one of those devices that are made en masse by overseas factories with little quality control. Most of those cheap gauges end up in gas stations across the country. However, more of them are being sold by Amazon. Hopefully, this list of high-quality gauges will help you avoid the cheap knockoffs that are flooding the market.
Some of these gauges are too large to fit easily in your glove box. We’ve helped point out which gauges are a little larger so you can hopefully find a smaller gauge for your car or a larger gauge for your shop’s workbench.