We tested each tire pressure gauge on a 2018 Ford Fusion equipped with a direct tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). We took note of how quickly each compressor could inflate a tire, as well as build quality, ease of use, and the quality of any additional attachments. For testing, we timed how long it took for the compressors to raise the tire psi from 30.0 to 40.0 psi.
Our testing vehicle’s TPMS detects tire pressure and displays information as close to 1.0 psi from the actual reading, giving us an accurate reading for each tire pressure gauge. Each air compressor in this review was rated out of 5.0 stars based on accuracy, ease of use, and product longevity, all of which we evaluated during our testing process.
Accuracy is the most critical aspect of a tire pressure gauge. While you don’t need a gauge to be accurate to the nearest tenth of psi, a quality gauge should be accurate within 3.0 psi and ideally within 1.0 psi.
To measure accuracy, we compared the readout of the gauge we were testing to our test vehicle’s TPMS, which is accurate to within 1.0 psi.
We weighted accuracy most heavily in our review standards for our overall rating. The tire pressure gauges matching closest to our car’s TPMS scored highest in this category.
Every tire pressure gauge can become less accurate over time, but a quality gauge will remain accurate for several years and beyond. Also, gauges built of durable materials will last longer in the potentially rough-and-tumble environment of your garage.
To determine our longevity scoring, we spent hours combing through customer reviews from buyers who have owned these gauges for long periods of time. We specifically focused on the updated reviews to take note of potential changes in accuracy and wear as the gauge aged with extended use.
Ease of Use
During our research, we wanted to find tire pressure gauges that would be straightforward to use and instantly measure our tire’s psi. Tire pressure gauges that came with a carrying case, different attachments to accommodate various tires, and a glow-in-the-dark readout for lowlight situations scored highest in this category.
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