What is a Tire Pressure Gauge?

Tire pressure gauge is very useful for keeping car tires properly inflated. However, it is possible that even with your tire pressure gauge you may still struggle with your steering or experience bouncy rides. 

The first step in tire maintenance is ensuring that your tires are running at optimal pressure. However, this may be difficult to achieve if you use the wrong pressure gauge or you miss the accurate pressure for your tires. 

This detailed article shows you all you need to know about your tire pressure and the best tire pressure gauge for your car. 

What is a Tire Pressure Gauge and why do you need one?

Tires often require a certain pressure level, anything above or under could be very risky. A tire-pressure gauge is simply a pressure gauge used to measure how much pressure the tires on a vehicle have.

You mustn’t wait until your tire is flat before you check your tire pressure. Nevertheless, if you ever need to inflate your tires, you can check out the Top 10 Portable Tire Pumps. 

Here are some of the reasons why you need to keep your tires at optimal pressure at all times. 

  • Underinflated or overinflated tires wear out easily and unevenly
  • It reduces fuel efficiency
  • Poor tire pressure reduces the life span of your tire
  • It is a dangerous venture to drive around with under or overinflated tires
  • It affects your driving and builds up heat

With a tire pressure gauge, you do not have to worry about the inaccuracy of a station tire gauge, which is inaccurate most of the time. Also, it helps you decide pretty quickly if your tires are the reason for a malfunction. It is advisable to check your tire pressure once a month.

Types of Tire Pressure Gauge

Are you convinced that you need to get a tire pressure gauge? Yes? If so, the next thing you may be wondering is the best tire pressure gauge to get for your car.

But before we get to the best products for you, you should learn about the different types of pressure gauges.  There are three types. Stick, Dial and Digital tire pressure gauges.  

The Stick Pressure Gauge

With the semblance of a pen, these stick tire pressure gauges are portable, affordable and easy to use. It has a graduated rod that slides out of the device when you press its valve end to your tire valve stem. 

To use a stick tire pressure, simply take off the cap of your tire valve, connect the open end of the stick valve and apply a fair amount of pressure.  

You will notice the air forcing the graduated rod out. It may stop reading between 20 and 40 PSI. Wherever it stops is the current pressure gauge of that particular tire. 

The downside to this stick pressure gauge is that it may be difficult to read for inexperienced people. Also, it is not known to be entirely accurate.  

The Dial Pressure Gauge

Sometimes known as the analogue pressure gauge, it has a round clock face with numbers on it. Just like the stick pressure gauge, it is easy to use and compact. 

To use this pressure gauge, simply remove the cap of the tire valve and attach the valve of the dial gauge. Watch the hand or pointer on the face of the valve until it stops and then you take your reading. 

Unlike the stick gauge, the dial gauge is a bit sensitive and should be properly taken care off. Try not to drop it carelessly. The only disadvantage of the dial gauge is that you need to use your two hands when using it. 

Notably, it is more accurate than the stick pressure gauge. 

Digital Pressure Gauge

This type may be the easiest to use because it is easier to read. Your tire pressure simply shows on the screen so you do not have to go counting when reading. 

Some digital pressure gauges have a backlight that makes it easier to read in the dark. They are resistant to damage, wear, and are less expensive than the analogue gauges. 

However, they are not as portable as the other pressure gauges and they use batteries which you will need to replace from time to time. 

When you go shopping, these are the three types of tire pressure gauges that you will see. To pick the best tire pressure gauge for your car, there are certain features that you should look out for. 

Features to Consider

  • Wide range: The standard tire pressure borders around 30-35 PSI but for large trucks and RVs you should be looking for a pressure gauge with a range as high as 100 PSI. A low range pressure gauge is relatively useless to a large car and may give an inaccurate reading.
  • Easy to Read: Some gauges have readings that may be difficult to interpret for an inexperienced eye. Look out for gauges that have clear readings and LED backlight for dark places.
  • Portable and easy to use: Using a pressure gauge is not rocket science. So look for a tire gauge that makes the process easy. Choose a tire gauge that is easy to use, portable and durable. 

These basic features should guide you when you are shopping for your tire pressure gauge. However, if you still haven’t been able to make up your mind, on the best tire pressure gauge for your car, here are some of our recommendations.

Jaco ElitePro Tire Pressure 

As the winner of the “#1 best of the best” award in the Best Reviews 2019, Jaco ElitePro Tire Pressure gauge is surely one of the best products out there. It is easy to use and has a pressure range for normal-sized vehicle tires. 

Top Features

  • Flexible “No Leak” air hose
  • Rubberized gear style protective shock
  • 360- degree swivel chuck
  • Built-in air bleeder valve
  • 0-60 PSI Range
  • Glow in the dark dial

TireMinder High Precision Digital Truck and RV Tire gauge

If you own a large truck or an RV, The TireMinder Tire Gauge is perfect for you. It has a wide range 0f 10-50 PSI and is incredibly accurate. This all-metal gauge comes in a protective pouch and has a no-sweat custom grip. 

For easy use at night, it has LED backlight and a front-facing flashlight. It is portable and convenient. 

Top Features

  • +/- 1 PSI precision from 10-150 PSI
  • Replaceable AAA batteries
  • LED backlight display 
  • A firm no sweat grip

Rhino USA Heavy Duty Tire Pressure Gauge

Known for its versatility, the Rhino heavy-duty tire gauge is easy to read and easy to use. Rhino is a quality product with a built-in deflator and a glowing dial. It doesn’t require batteries and can be used for any car. 

Top Features

  • Easy to read even for old eyes
  • Portable and easy to use
  • 0-200 PSI 
  • Built-in deflator

TEKTON Instant Read Digital Tire Gauge

This may be the best tire pressure gauge for dark places. The TEKTON digital tire gauge has a lighted nozzle and display screen for ultimate visibility in the dark. 

Its accuracy is enhanced by its instant digital display reading. It is portable and ergonomically designed to fit the hand eliminating inaccuracy due to slipping. 

Top Features 

  • Lighted Nozzle and LED display screen
  • 1 CR2032 3V lithium coin cell and 3 LR44 1.5v button cells. 
  • Instant read
  • Auto shut-off
  • 4 different measurement units 

Summit Tools Pressure Gauge 

For long-lasting protection, the Summit Tool pressure gauge comes with a protective rubber shield. This shield is shockproof, waterproof and weatherproof, making it the most durable pressure gauge on the market. 

It also has a 360-degree swivel, constructed with brass and an easy to read glow-in-dark 2-inch scale dial. Its wide range of 1-100 PSI makes it compatible with large vehicles. 

Top Features

  • Accurate reading
  • Easy to use and easy to read 
  • Glow in the dark dial
  • Safe and durable
  • Universal application

How to Check Your Tire Pressure Gauge

It is not enough to get the best tire pressure gauge, you also need to know how to use it to avoid over-inflating or under inflating your tires. 

  1. Ensure that the tire is cold. Hot tires have higher pressure which may alter your pressure readings. So, start with cold tires that have been parked for at least 3 hours.  
  2. Ensure you use the correct tire pressure of your car. Sometimes you may find the right pressure for your tire on the driver’s side door jamb, if not contact a professional. 
  3. Remove the cap of the tire valve. Be careful not to loosen the valve.  
  4. Place the open valve end of your tire pressure gauge on the valve stem of your tire and apply pressure until there is no hissing sound. 
  5. Depending on the type of pressure gauge you are using, you can take your reading now.

When it comes to car maintenance, tires are the easiest parts to maintain. If you have the right tools and know what to do, you can enjoy your tires for a very long time. 

After checking your tire pressure, you may need to inflate your tires. If you are a newbie to this whole tire business, you can use this guide to get the best tire inflators.   

Learn more about Tire Inflators

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