Boost Your Ride: Get the Ultimate Onboard Air Compressor

Off-road driving can be an exhilarating experience, but it comes with its own set of challenges. One of the biggest challenges for off-road enthusiasts is maintaining proper tire pressure, which can make all the difference when navigating tough terrain. This is where onboard air compressors come in – they allow drivers to inflate and deflate their tires on the go without relying on external air sources. In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of onboard air compressors for off-road enthusiasts, the key features to look for in a reliable compressor and provide reviews of the top models available on the market.

Table of Contents

Best Onboard Air Compressor

Product Description

Key Features


Check the Product


  • Compressor can run continuously at 100 PSI without overheating.

  • Small and lightweight design.

  • Airflow rate of 1.73 CFM.



  • Can work at a maximum pressure of 150 PSI

  • Airflow rate of 2.3 CFM.

  • Thermal Overload Protector.



  • 30-amp inline fuse and auto-thermal cutoff switch for motor protection.

  • 1/3 horsepower oil-less direct drive motor.

  • Maximum airflow - 160 Liters per minute.



  • Capable of inflating tires 37" or larger.

  • Max. working pressure - 150 PSI.

  • 2.5-gallon air tank.

Onboard Air Compressor

Looking for the best onboard air compressor for your off-road adventures? Your search ends here with the ARB CKMA12 Onboard Air Compressor!

This compressor is tough as nails, built to withstand any off-road challenge. It runs continuously at 100 PSI, so you can inflate tires and use air tools worry-free. With a speedy airflow rate of 1.73 CFM, tire inflation becomes a breeze, getting you back on the trails in a flash.

What sets it apart? Its compact and lightweight design. Installation is easy, and you won’t struggle with a bulky machine. It comes with a wiring loom and air locker solenoid, making setup a breeze.

Plus, it’s incredibly versatile. Inflating tires, powering air tools, or running air lockers – it handles it all effortlessly. Made with top-notch materials, it’s ready for any off-road challenge.

Don’t wait any longer. The ARB CKMA12 is the best onboard air compressor for off-road enthusiasts. Conquer those trails now!

 Product Features:

  • This compressor can run continuously at 100 PSI without overheating, making it perfect for extended use.
  • The ARB CKMA12 compressor is small and lightweight, making it easy to install and use.
  •  This compressor has an impressive airflow rate of 1.73 CFM, which means it can inflate tires quickly and efficiently.
  • This onboard air compressor comes with a complete wiring loom and air locker solenoid, making installation and operation simple and hassle-free.
  •  The ARB CKMA12 compressor is made from high-quality materials and is built to withstand the toughest off-road conditions.
  •  This compressor can be used for a wide range of applications, including powering air tools, inflating tires, and running air lockers.


  • compact and easy to install.
  • made from high-quality materials.
  • can be used for a wide range of applications


  • It may be a bit noisy when in use, which could be a downside for some users
Onboard Air Compressor

The VIAIR 400P is a strong and dependable air compressor that can inflate tires up to 35 inches on off-road and farm vehicles. It can work at a maximum pressure of 150 PSI and has a flow rate of 2.3 cubic feet per minute at 0 PSI, so it can finish the job quickly and effectively.

The car battery with alligator clamps directly powers this compressor. It has a 40-amp fuse for extra safety. It also has a built-in pressure switch that automatically turns on the compressor at 120 PSI and off at 145 PSI, keeping the pressure at safe levels.

This air compressor is great for tire inflation and has a deluxe carry bag for easy storage and transport. The bag has a compressor, air hose, and tire inflation gun, which makes it a convenient all-in-one solution for tire maintenance on the go.

Other features of the VIAIR 400P include a permanent magnetic motor, a maximum duty cycle of 33% at 100 PSI, and automatic reset thermal protection. It has a noise level of 74 decibels and can operate in temperatures ranging from -40°F to 158°F.

 Product Features:

 – 12-volt motor powered directly from a car battery with alligator clamps

 – Maximum working pressure of 150 PSI

 – 2.3CFM free flow at 0 PSI

 – Built-in pressure switch with 120 PSI on and 145 PSI off

 – Deluxe carry bag for compressor, air hose, and tire inflation gun

 – Permanent magnetic motor with automatic reset thermal protection

 – Recommended for tire inflation on off-road and agricultural vehicles

 – 40 amp in-line fuse for added safety

 – Net weight of 8.5 lbs

 – Dimensions of 11.25″L x 4.00″W x 7.00″H


  • High output capacity
  • Portable design
  • Multiple power options
  • It comes with a variety of accessories


  • Relatively expensive 
  • May not be suitable for heavy-duty applications

The Smittybilt Universal Air Compressor is a budget-friendly option that still packs a punch with a maximum pressure of 150 PSI. It is also portable and easy to install, making it a great option for those new to onboard air compressors. However, some users have reported durability issues with this model.

Product Features:

– Most powerful compressor in its class.

– 1/3 horsepower oil-less direct drive motor.

– 30-amp inline fuse and auto-thermal cutoff switch for motor protection.

– Maximum continuous cycle time of 40 minutes at 40 PSI and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

– Maximum airflow of 72 litres per minute.

– Integrated 150 PSI pressure gauge for easy monitoring.

– Quick-release 24-foot coil hose for convenience.

– Storage bag included for easy transportation and storage.


  • versatile tool
  • Convenience
  • High Performance
  • Durability
  • User-Friendly


  • The cord that connects the compressor to the power source may be short for some users.

Upgrade Your Truck with the Best 100% Duty Cycle Onboard Air Compressor – ViAir Has You Covered!

Do you want a powerful onboard air compressor for your truck? Your search ends here with the ViAir Constant Duty Onboard Air System. This all-in-one kit has everything you need to set up a high-performance air system that can easily inflate large 37-inch tires. Whether you’re conquering rough terrain or handling heavy tasks, the robust 150 PSI VIAIR 450C compressor guarantees seamless operation.

But the real star of this system is its amazing 100% duty cycle onboard air compressor. Forget about overheating or waiting for cooldowns! With ViAir, you have a continuous and reliable source of compressed air anytime you want it.

Equipped with a 2.5-gallon air tank and multiple ¼” NPT port openings, this compressor is versatile. It’s not just for tire inflation; it can handle various pneumatic tools, making it perfect for all your inflation and pneumatic needs. Installing it is a breeze, and you can tailor it to suit your specific requirements.

It’s an excellent investment for off-road adventurers and anyone who needs a reliable onboard air compressor for trucks. Say goodbye to worries and embrace the power of ViAir!

Product Features:

– Pre-packaged compressed air solution.

– 100% duty cycle compressor.

– 2.5-gallon air tank.

– Designed to work in conjunction with the vehicle it is mounted on.

– Multiple ¼” NPT port openings.

– Comes with all necessary components for installation.

– Rated for inflation of 37″ tires and up.

– Can be used for a variety of pneumatic tools.

– Easy to mount and configure for different uses.

– Max. working pressure – 150 PSI.

– Max. Amp draw – 19 Amps.

– ¼” NPT Intake Port.


  • Onboard Air System
  • High Performance
  • Provides a constant source of compressed air for various needs.


  • Can be expensive to purchase and install.
  • The system requires a certain amount of space to be installed on a vehicle, which may be a problem for users with limited space.

Benefits of Onboard Air Compressors

Onboard air compressors are gaining popularity among off-road enthusiasts because of their many benefits. 

One of the primary advantages of onboard air compressors is the ability to quickly and easily inflate tires. This is especially important when driving off-road, where tire pressure plays a crucial role in navigating difficult terrain. With an onboard air compressor, drivers can easily inflate their tires to the optimal pressure for their vehicle and driving conditions.

Apart from inflating tires, onboard air compressors can also power various air tools like impact wrenches, air hammers, and sanders. This feature is particularly useful for off-road enthusiasts who need to perform repairs or maintenance on their vehicles while out on the trail.

Another benefit of an onboard air compressor is the ability to adjust air pressure in shocks and suspensions. This feature enables drivers to fine-tune their vehicle’s suspension for optimal performance on different types of terrain.

Key Features of a Reliable Onboard Air Compressor

  1. Durability: Off-road driving can be tough on equipment, so it’s important to choose an onboard air compressor that is built to last. Look for compressors made from high-quality materials, such as aluminum or stainless steel, with a solid construction that can withstand rough terrain.
  2. Portability: Depending on the size of your vehicle and the amount of space you have available, you may want to consider the portability of your onboard air compressor. Look for compact and easy storage compressors, with mounting options that suit your specific vehicle.
  3. Pressure Capacity: The pressure capacity of your onboard air compressor is another important consideration. Make sure to choose a compressor with a pressure range that meets your needs, whether you’re inflating tires or powering air tools.
  4. Ease of Use: An onboard air compressor should be easy to use, even if you’re not a mechanical expert. Look for compressors with user-friendly controls and clear instructions for installation and operation.
  5. Additional Features: Some onboard air compressors come with additional features, such as built-in air tanks or pressure gauges. Consider which additional features may be useful for your specific needs.

Maintenance Tips

  1. Check the air filter regularly: The air filter prevents dirt and debris from entering the compressor and damaging its components. Check the air filter regularly and clean or replace it as necessary.
  2. Drain the moisture regularly: Compressed air contains moisture, which can accumulate in the tank and cause rust and corrosion. Drain the moisture regularly from the tank to prevent this.
  3. Check the oil level: Some onboard air compressors require oil to lubricate the components. Check the oil level regularly and top it up if necessary.
  4. Inspect the hoses and fittings: Check the hoses and fittings for signs of wear and tear, such as cracks, leaks, or loose connections. Replace any damaged parts immediately.
  5. Lubricate moving parts: Some onboard air compressors have moving parts that require lubrication. Check the manufacturer’s instructions and lubricate these parts as necessary.
  6. Store the compressor properly: When it is not in use, store it in a dry, clean place and protect it from dust and moisture.


Q: What is an onboard air compressor?

A: An onboard air compressor is a device that is mounted on a vehicle, typically a truck or SUV, that is used to inflate tires, power air tools, and perform other tasks that require compressed air.

Q: How does an onboard air compressor work?

A: An onboard air compressor works by compressing air and storing it in a tank. The compressor is powered by the vehicle’s engine or a separate motor, and the compressed air can then be used for a variety of tasks.

Q: What are the benefits of having an onboard air compressor?

A: Having an onboard air compressor can be beneficial in a number of ways. It allows you to inflate tires on the go, power air tools, and other equipment, and can be useful for a variety of tasks both on and off the road.

Q: What are some common uses for an onboard air compressor?

A: Some common uses for an onboard air compressor include inflating tires, powering air tools, operating air horns or air suspension systems, and running air-locking differentials.

Q: What are some factors to consider when choosing an onboard air compressor?

A: When choosing an onboard air compressor, you will want to consider factors such as the compressor’s capacity, duty cycle, noise level, and ease of installation. You will also want to consider whether you need a compressor that is oil-lubricated or oil-free.

Q: Can I install an onboard air compressor myself?

A: Installing an onboard air compressor can be a DIY project, but it can be complicated and may require some knowledge of automotive electrical systems. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and to ensure that the installation is done safely and correctly.

Q: Are there any safety considerations when using an onboard air compressor?

A: Yes, there are some safety considerations when using an onboard air compressor. It’s important to wear eye and ear protection when operating the compressor and to follow all safety instructions provided by the manufacturer. You should also be aware of the potential for overheating or other malfunctions, and take appropriate precautions.

In conclusion, onboard air compressors are an essential tool for off-road enthusiasts. They provide a wide range of benefits, from inflating tires to powering air tools and adjusting the air pressure in shocks and suspension. Investing in a reliable onboard air compressor is a smart choice for anyone who enjoys off-road adventures. It provides peace of mind knowing that you.

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