11 Best On-Board Air Compressor For Truck In 2023

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The use of an air compressor is required for routine maintenance to maintain the vehicle’s tires filled. It’s crucial for efficiency in using gas and for your protection. Your pickup truck can outfit with several onboard air compressors. But not every air Compressor is the same; some are vastly superior to others. You should, of course, acquire the ideal one you can for use on a truck.

However, we intend to track down the most top-notched onboard air compressor to increase your truck’s performance. Therefore, we picked the best onboard air compressor for trucks and located options in a wide price range. In this article, we will discuss the 11 best onboard air compressors.

Our top 3 picks:

ARB CKMTA12 ’12V’ On-Board Twin High-Performance Air Compressor

Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor 200 PSI

VIAIR 10007 Constant Duty Onboard Air System

What Sort of Air Compressor is Required for Truck Tires?

A compressor’s working pressure must be 10 psi higher than the pressure considered optimal for your tires. For example, pressures in the 40–80 psi range are required for pickup trucks, whereas pressures of 120 psi or above are optimal for semis.

However, for optimum performance, a compressor should use to inflate truck tires to 110 PSI or more significantly.

11 Best On-Board Air Compressors for Truck

We will discuss the best 11, their essential aspects, and their potential drawbacks. Each of our selected air compressors is usually considered an ideal truck fit. So, after reading this article, we hope you can easily decide on an onboard air compressor for your truck. 

1. ARB CKMTA12 ’12V’ On-Board Twin High-Performance Air Compressor

ARB CKMTA12 '12V' On-Board Twin High Performance Air Compressor

What We Liked

  • High-quality and potent
  • Compact and transportable
  • Several safety features
  • Produces little noise
  • Made to last more time

What We Don’t Like

  • Alligator clips are sometimes challenging to use because of their too small size

Designed specifically for the ARB air locker, this air compressor is portable and easy to operate. Since it is relatively compact, it can be moved by various vehicles. Although compact, this air compressor packs a powerful punch, allowing you to inflate tires of any size in only five minutes.

Because of its two cylinders, this air compressor is the most powerful. All four motors inside this air compressor are shielded from overheating, so feel free to use them. Also, this air compressor’s three complete wire looms make installation much simpler.

The battery’s safety is further increased by adding two heavy-duty Maxi-Fuses, which provide inline protection and genuine circuit redundancy in the case of a malfunction.

This air compressor has five pistons, each fitted with a high-quality European-made cylindrical roller bearing. Also, these Piston seals made from PTFE (Teflon)-impregnated carbon fiber and hard-anodized cylinder bores ensure a long service life with little to no upkeep.

With its sturdy construction and long lifespan, this device is dependable. Moreover, this is an excellent alternative for novices because it is simple.

2. Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor 200 PSI

Vixen Horns 12V Air Compressor 200 PSI

What We Liked

  • Useful and Cost Efficient
  • Quick and simple setup
  • Includes hardware for installation that dampens vibrations
  • Capacity to react quickly
  • Accepts high-pressure air from any shipboard source

What We Don’t Like

  • While using, it can be a bit loud

This Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor is a good option for anybody searching for a premium and dependable air compressor. With a short response time and a maximum working pressure of 200 PSI, this air compressor unit is ideal for emergencies. In addition, this air compressor employs a 12V permanent magnet motor with a 1.7CFM flow rate, so it can quickly inflate your tires.

Also, you can feel at ease knowing this compressor’s setup won’t be time-consuming. The check valve is incorporated into the compressor, ensuring it will function correctly and perform efficiently.

The anti-vibration mounting hardware that is provided with this gadget reduces vibrations. This set includes a 14-inch NPT fuse, 14-inch stainless steel standard hose, and a 14-inch NPT check valve. 

The thermal overload protection and aluminum alloy cylinder body ensure that this product will serve you well for years. Although it seems to be a little air compressor, it is compatible with the 12-volt systems in all vehicles. 

3. VIAIR 10007 Constant Duty Onboard Air System

VIAIR 10007 Constant Duty Onboard Air System

What We Liked

  • Quick and simple setup
  • Building quality is excellent, and all the fixtures are of a high standard
  • Suitable for any heavy work 
  • Comparatively quiet compared to similar units
  • Quickly-moving pumps are a notable feature

What We Don’t Like

  • Not intended for tires wider than 37 inches

As far as the best onboard air compressor for service trucks, this VIAIR is one of the best available. This equipment is operated by a 12V permanent magnet motor producing 1.66 CFM at atmospheric pressure.

In addition, the compressor is relatively strong, and inflating big tires is a breeze with this air compressor. There is a VIAIR 450C, a pressure switch that operates between 110 and 145 PSI, and all the other attachments you’ll need to get the job done.

To sum up, a complete duty cycle yields 100 PSI of air pressure at maximum efficiency and 50 PSI at half capacity. It is an excellent choice e for lengthy, nonstop, labor-intensive jobs that may go on for up to an hour without intervention. 

A 2.5-gallon air tank and all other parts of a system to inflate tires are included with this compressor. Also, the tank of this compressor is constructed for flexible mounting, so that you can use it again and again. Finally, for ease of use, this compressor comes with all the directions necessary for effective operation.

4. VIAIR 20005 PSI High-Flow Air Source Kit

VIAIR 20005 PSI High-Flow Air Source Kit

What We Liked

  • Built to last
  • Conveniently compact and transportable
  • Intuitively simple to use
  • It doesn’t make a loud noise
  • It takes very little time to fill tires

What We Don’t Like

  • Not meant for more extensive work

The VIAIR 150 PSI High-Flow Air Source Kit is a good choice if you need power immediately but also want to prepare for future expansion in the near and far years. This kit contains a 2.0-gallon tank, an internal 280C VIAIR compressor, automatic pressure switches adjustable from 110 to 145 PSI, compression fitting, a pressure safety release valve, and a drain cock.

Each of the four available VIAIR air source kits is ideal for air horns and other light pneumatic applications. This tool features a permanent magnet motor and can withstand pressures up to 100 PSI while operating at a duty cycle of only 30%. 

When operating in well-ventilated areas, the PSI duty cycle can use for up to 18 minutes without compromising performance. With its high output and small size, the Viair 20005 is perfect for mobile pneumatic applications. This includes using air horns, inflating tires, and using air tools.

Moreover, this air compressor only requires a grounded power source, an airline connected to the compression fitting, and wiring for the pressure switch.

5. TIREWELL 12V Tire Inflator-Heavy Duty Double Cylinders compressor

TIREWELL 12V Tire Inflator-Heavy Duty Double Cylinders Direct Drive Metal Pump 150PSI

What We Liked

  • Reasonable cost and high efficiency
  • Capable of inflating tires rapidly
  • Longer-Lasting Construction
  • Heats up rapidly
  • Simple to implement

What We Don’t Like

  • A little bit noisy

TIREWELL, a leading manufacturer of professional air compressors, is an excellent choice for onboard air compressors for service trucks. Leaking car tires can fix immediately with this air compressor. 

This air compressor pump employs a high-quality direct drive motor to power the robust metal double cylinder if there is insufficient pressure. Because of this, the pump is highly effective despite its slow spinning speed. For example, the pump can inflate a 195/65R15 tire to the necessary 35 psi in about 2 minutes.

Also, this tire compressor’s dual-cylinder, direct-drive motor, is powerful and quick. Simply remove the hood, connect the battery clamp to your car battery, and you can start your engine without entering the vehicle. In addition, it has a 5-meter cable for extra reach.

This high-quality air compressor has a cigarette lighter and a 15A fuse. In addition, a 1.5-foot power line for use with a cigarette lighter, an inflated tube of 1.8 feet in length, a high-quality screw connection for secure attachment to the tire gas mouth, and a handle coated with a sponge are all included in the box. 

6. Smittybilt 2781 5.65 CFM Universal Air Compressor

Smittybilt 5.65 CFM Air Compressor

What We Liked

  • Long-lasting and easy-to-carry
  • Quality Construction
  • Extremely powerful and intense
  • Optimal for off-roading
  • Affordable

What We Don’t Like

  • The screw-on fill tip is a little annoying to use

As far as off-road air compressors go, the Smittybilt 2781 5.65 CFM Universal Air Compressor is unrivaled. The motor of this air compressor is safeguarded by a thermal cutoff mechanism and a power source that only requires 12 volts.

Because of its 30-amp inline fuse and 1/3 horsepower oil-less motor, this Smittybilt air compressor is suitable for use in many environments. It is possible to generate up to 72 liters of air per minute with this compressor. So even if it isn’t running at total capacity, it can keep going for 40 minutes before it has to rest. 

Its portability and high output make it an excellent choice for folks with little storage space yet requiring regular tire inflation. In addition, this compressor features a pressure gauge that lets you track how far along your inflation is. 

This gauge can ensure that your tires have the proper air pressure. Besides a gauge, air hose, storage bag, and numerous hose ends for, among other things, inflating up pneumatic mattresses. It also has a 30-amp inline fuse for safety.

7. Viair 10000 Onboard Air System

Viair 10000 Onboard Air System

What We Liked

  • Simple to install
  • Slim and lightweight
  • Made to last longer time
  • Tank refills rather quickly
  • Affordable

What We Don’t Like

  • Low capacity

The Viair 10000 Onboard Air System is a valuable add-on that will assist you in getting the most out of your truck in various ways. In addition, a 1-gallon air system kit is available, which can be used for air horns and lockers. 

Because it has a duty cycle of only 10% and a maximum flow of 2.54 CFM, this device is ideal for completing standard tire maintenance work.

This compressor has a 15-minute continuous use time before it needs to be reloaded. Also, faster tank filling is made possible with a 40-amp relay. 

Because of how quick and easy the setup process is, you won’t waste too much time on it, this device is powered by permanent magnetic motors and can produce up to 150 PSI maximum pressure. 

There are 145 PSI-rated safety valves provided for security. The additional airline, plug, drain cock, drain amp, and compressor fitting are all included with this compressor. Moreover, this compressor features a pressure gauge that allows for more accurate monitoring of pressure levels.

8. ARB CKMA12 On-Board Air Compressor

ARB CKMA12 On-Board Air Compressor High Performance

What We Liked

  • Best to use on off-road trips
  • High quality built
  • Best for air lockers
  • Customize tire pressure
  • Portable and lightweight

What We Don’t Like

  • Price is a bit higher

This ARB CKMA12 is the best onboard air compressor for trucks on this list. This 12v air compressor for the truck can use in either a fixed or portable setup and features high-quality components throughout.

In addition to its many practical applications, this compressor boasts the highest flow rate in its class, making it ideal for activating an onboard quickly inflating tires, Air Locker, and performing various other tasks.

Moreover, this air compressor can release the pressure on fixed tires while off-roading. The ability to customize tire pressure for different weather and road conditions is the most useful function of this air compressor.

Again, this compressor provides a ready supply of compressed air in any location, making it an indispensable tool for off-road adventures. Lowering your air pressure will significantly increase your 4×4’s traction in various off-road settings, while higher pressure rates are recommended for highway driving.

Each ARB 4×4 air compressor is put through its paces at the factory, with tests for leaks, current draw, and flow under load performed before packaging.

9. Viair 20001 PSI Ultra Duty Onboard Air System

Viair 20001 PSI Ultra Duty Onboard Air System

What We Liked

  • Utilized for a total of one hour
  • Reasonable priced
  • Compatible with a small number of pneumatic tools
  • Built-in high quality
  • Fills tires quickly

What We Don’t Like

  • Using in shallow temperatures could cause failure

Among the power-adding devices now on the market, this Viair big-duty truck air compressor has one of the highest degrees of flexibility. Its appearance is durable and can be used for up to an hour to pump air into 37-inch tires.

Mainly this is a heavy-duty truck air compressor system specially designed for automotive maintenance and repair. For example, filling a large tire takes about seven minutes with the VIAIR Ultra Duty Onboard Air System. With this modification, the compressor is significantly better suited for large-tired trucks.

However, this tire inflator can reach up to 200 PSI pressures and has a flow rate of 1.76 cubic feet per minute (CFM). Additionally, its massive size limits its adaptability while being installed in trucks. The good news is that this truck bed air compressor is a standard size and can fit in the back of almost any pickup.

This VIAIR air compressor comes with 20 feet of 12-gauge wire, an inline fuse holder, a dashboard panel with an ON/OFF switch, and a pressure gauge for more straightforward setup and operation. And there are no missing parts; everything required to set up your vehicle is included in the package.

10. Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor

Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor 150 PSI

What We Liked

  • Features a check valve on the included leader hose
  • Fills tires promptly,
  • Has a powerful pump
  • Low cost
  • Portability and ease-of-use

What We Don’t Like

  • Not durable enough to use for very long

This Vixen Air Compressor is an excellent choice if you need a high-quality compressor to use while traveling. This compressor’s maximum pressure can generate 150 PSI, making it suitable for industrial applications. Because of this, tires with a diameter of up to 37 inches can use without issue.

The Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor 150 PSI is also useful for rapidly inflating many tires. The high-flow air outlet allows you to fill a tire in just a few minutes, making it ideal for inflating a large number of tires swiftly.

Its output is sufficient for most impact wrenches and air-powered tools; therefore, it is universally applicable. 

It is compatible with vehicles using a 12 V system and air tanks of up to 5 gallons. Everything you need to set up the Unit, from screws to a fuse and a 1/4-inch NPT inline check valve on a stainless-steel braided hose, is included in the box.

Overall, this Vixen Horns Heavy Duty Onboard Air Compressor is ideal for anyone who often uses air tools during their work.

11. Viair 10002 VIAIR Quarter Duty Onboard Air System

Viair 10002 VIAIR Quarter Duty Onboard Air System

What We Liked

  • Simple to set up
  • Quickly and easily fills tanks
  • • Installation is possible in a wide variety of locations
  • Lightweight and affordable
  • Provides precise and accurate control

What We Don’t Like

  • Not suitable for tire inflation

An affordable and valuable onboard air compressor option is this VIAIR quarter-duty onboard air system. This is for activating smaller air horns, slightly modifying the load while traveling, and opening the air locker.

A 2-gallon air tank and pressure control allow you to choose between 90 and 120 psi on this device. The motor’s duty cycle is set at 25%, a permanent magnetic type. You’ll find that filling the tank at the maximum operating pressure of 120 PSI is quick. You can inflate up to four tires with a 31-inch diameter at once.

Additionally, the makers of this item have carefully provided all the necessary tools and components for assembly and installation. It has many possible mounting sites on a pickup or SUV. It can be driven in any terrain, from mud to rocks. 

This Onboard Air System draws up to 18 amps of current from a 12-volt permanent magnetic motor. Those who spend as much time as their 4×4 off-road vehicle in the wild outdoors will appreciate the VIAIR light-duty onboard air systems.

What to Look for Best On-Board Air Compressor?

Choosing the best car air compressor necessitates some consideration of several factors. The following guide will help you find the best onboard air compressor for the truck. In case you have no idea what to check for in an air compressor.

Air Pressure

How rapidly the tire is inflated is determined by the compressor’s output in terms of air pressure. Due to the quick inflation speed, you may save time and prevent the motor from overheating. For an air compressor to work with the tires on your vehicle, the pressure must be at least 100 psi and 150 psi.

Noise Level

Operating with an air compressor would be annoying if the noise level is too high. Therefore, you need to opt for something quieter while making a purchase.


You don’t want to replace your air compressor very often, so it’s essential to consider the quality of its construction before making a purchase. A longer duration of useful life is possible if it is built to last. Therefore, it is essential to search for a compressor that is constructed with superior components.

Duty Cycle

Compressors have a maximum duty cycle, or how long they can operate without stopping to cool down. Before deciding, you must do sufficient research because the duty cycles of various machines vary greatly.

Size and Weight

In today’s market, you may get air compressors in various sizes. It’s possible to get enormous and bulky or small and easy to store. Choose one that fits you well without taking up too much space.

Also, the installation of the compressor onto your truck will inevitably increase its total weight. For this reason, it’s best to choose a lightweight option so your vehicle can carry it without any trouble.

Air Flow

The airflow CFM represents how much air the compressor can deliver in a given amount of time. Strong airflow from onboard air compressors makes it easy to inflate tires quickly. Therefore, you should pick an air compressor with a CFM rating of 1.5 or greater.

Ease of Installation

The more time it takes to set up an air compressor, the longer it will take to use. Buy a product that doesn’t require any special tools for assembly and comes with all the necessary mounting hardware to save yourself time and effort. The manual also includes instructions on how to set up an air compressor.

Pressure Gauge and Tank Capacity

A gauge to measure air pressure is typically included with the air system. Because of this helpful feature, you can monitor the pressure output.

The tank capacity is yet another factor that plays a role in determining how frequently the compressor needs a break. A larger tank necessitates fewer breaks. The size of your compressor should mainly be determined by your car. An air compressor with 4 gallons or more capacity is the best option.


A top-notch air compressor may cost anywhere from $100 to $500. Go with whatever best suits your budget. Although most high-performance models include hefty price tags, many reasonably priced alternatives deliver good performance and value.


Do trucks with board air compressors have any downsides?

An onboard air compressor can be handy, as flat tires can occur anytime. It employs a tank to keep compressed air to immediately provide large volumes of air. However, due to frequent exposure to dirt and bright light, air compressors require regular upkeep to ensure they survive as long as possible.

Where do you place an air compressor in a truck?

The inside of the frame rail beneath the vehicle is the best option when positioning air compressors. This is so because the compressor is well-protected from the elements and receives enough airflow to maintain a constant operating temperature. As a result, the compressor can withstand light rain or a splash without getting any damage.

Are portable air compressors worth it?

The results of employing a portable air compressor are superb. Larger, more powerful compressors are ideal for more reliably powering a more excellent range of tools. In addition, the amount of usable air produced after compression can be used as a proxy for a compressor’s efficiency. Also, it requires minimal maintenance.

What use does the air compressor on the truck provide?

A truck-specific air compressor is designed to pressurize the air in the vehicle’s air suspension and braking systems. This type of compressor frequently draws its power from the vehicle’s engine. The air compressor can produce the necessary air pressure to ensure that the air suspension, auxiliary components, and braking system can all operate.

Can you fill a car tire with a 6-gallon air compressor?

With a 6-gallon air compressor, you can quickly fill and deflate vehicle tires. Compressors don’t need to be limited to inflating tires, which only require 1-2 CFM.

Final Verdict

Having a worth compressor will extend the life of your tires. However, your effort will be in vain if you choose the incorrect one. In addition, by using the most fantastic truck air compressor, you can significantly increase the quality of your work.

I’ve outlined the best onboard air compressor for the truck above to aid your decision-making. Make sure you choose the one that is ideally suited for your truck.

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