Review: Audew Portable Air Compressor Inflates Your Car’s Tires on the Go
A car’s tires slowly lose air as the seasons change and time passes, and it’s important to keep those tires properly inflated for safety and efficiency reasons. A portable air compressor is a valuable tool to have in those situations — or when you have a roadside emergency out-of-state. Digital tire inflators can cost a lot of money, but there is an affordable option on the market: the Audew portable air compressor. Here’s a look at the unit I was given to review.
Review: Audew Auto Digital Tire Inflator
Product: portable air compressor pump
Maximum pressure: 150 PSI
Power source: plugs into 12-volt outlet
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Product packaging & quality
The Audew air compressor comes in a cardboard box with a zip-up fabric travel bag included. The entire unit weighs 2.5 pounds and measures 9.5 x 8.5 x 4.5 inches — small enough to fit in even a compact car’s trunk or footwell. It’s roughly the size of a shoebox.
I’m not sure how durable the compressor is to last over time. The product description claims that the Audew air compressor consists of ABS material (thermoplastic polymer like what’s used in 3D printing) and stainless steel. Those products are durable to physical impact, but I can’t testify to the sensitivity of the inner mechanisms. The product does, however, come with a 12-month extended warranty.
The operating buttons are located on the front of the unit, and it has two cords extending from it: a 10-foot-long power cord that plugs into a 12-volt outlet and a 2-foot rubber hose. The power cord and air hose have slots on the back and side (respectively) of the unit to wrap around, but the cables don’t fit exactly in the tracks because they’re too long or big.
The package includes a handful of other nozzles that attach the hose to inflate an air mattress, bike tire, wheelchair, or sports ball. However, the instructions don’t include a reference guide to identify which adapter is which, so you’ll have to look online for help.
The instructions come in six different languages. Although the English translation does have some minor errors, they won’t impede your understanding of its basic seven-step instructions.
Putting it to the test
My wife’s car had a low front tire we’ve been intending to refill, so I used this opportunity to test the portable compressor. I used a pencil-style tire gauge to record the air pressure beforehand: 12 PSI.
I then followed the step-by-step directions included with the compressor to hook up and operate it. That began with turning on the car’s ignition (leaving it in Park) and plugging the inflator’s power cord into the 12-volt socket in the under-dash console.
That lit up the compressor’s display. I attached the air hose to the valve stem and clamped it in place (it uses the same locking mechanism that a foot pump does). This allowed the compressor to read and display the tire’s air pressure: 11 PSI, which was slightly lower than what the manual check said.
After verifying the ideal tire pressure level on the car’s door jamb sticker (33 PSI), I tapped the + button on the compressor until it displayed 33 PSI — the target inflation level. I flipped the “ON” switch and it immediately roared to life.
The current PSI reading on the compressor display steadily began to climb point by point until it reached 33 and switched off by itself. That inflation took a little under 3 minutes to complete.
I removed the air hose from the tire and turned off the car’s engine. I then used the pencil-style tire gauge to verify that the air pressure was indeed at 33 PSI; it read 32. Although a bit low, I was satisfied and wrapped up the unit’s cords and stashed it back in the travel case.
Final review and comments
To be honest, I was impressed with how quickly the small Audew air compressor inflated the car tire. I expected it to take longer and encounter some hiccups, but it operated exactly as advertised. I did notice that the readings were lower by a PSI compared to my manual measurements, so I’d recommend bumping the target PSI up by one or two to make up for the gap.
The air compressor was notably loud, even compared to a regular, wheel-mounted $500+ compressor unit. It rumbles and roars when it operates. Its rubber feet elevate it from being flush with the ground and vibrating against the pavement.
I had plenty of slack on the power cord by running it through the passenger window to the right tire, and the vehicle I tested on was a compact sedan. If you’re smart about running the cord through the vehicle and out a window, it should be long enough to reach a rear wheel on a large SUV or truck.
If you want a low-priced yet sufficiently functional portable air compressor to keep in your car for infrequent emergency fill-ups and top-offs, the Audew product is a great deal for the price. It will practically pay for itself after you’ve saved the quarters from a dozen stops at gas station air compressors.
It’s ideal for emergency travel usage and lightweight portability rather than a frequently-used, full-strength model — though it is impressive how much power the Audew unit produces for its size. Plus, it’s very simple to operate. You don’t need to be a car expert to fill up a tire with this simple device.
The Audew portable air compressor is available on Amazon and Audew’s website.
Product provided for review by the manufacturer.
Aaron is unashamed to be a native Clevelander and the proud driver of a Hyundai Veloster Turbo (which recently replaced his 1995 Saturn SC-2). He gleefully utilizes his background in theater, literature, and communication to dramatically recite his own articles to nearby youth. Mr. Widmar happily resides in Dayton, Ohio with his magnificent wife, Vicki, but is often on the road with her exploring new destinations. Aaron has high aspirations for his writing career but often gets distracted pondering the profound nature of the human condition and forgets what he was writing… See more articles by Aaron.