viair 88p side view
Gear Review,  Recovery Gear

Gear Review – Viair 88P

Gear Review – Viair 88P

30 second review: This is about as small of a compressor as you can get that still has enough power to pump tires that your overlanding rig probably has. I think it fits the bill perfectly as long as you know its limitations which are namely just how long it takes to reach the psi you’re looking for.

Viair 88p Storage
I keep my air compressor stored in my recovery box on the top of the truck. The main body only takes up about a 7″x 11″ area then the hose can be rolled up as tight or loose as needed depending on where you’re storing it.

Operation Instructions: Running the compressor is dead simple

  1. Make sure the compressor itself is off first.
  2. Pop your hood and attached the battery leads to the positive (red) then negative (black).
  3. Screw the air hose chuck onto your tire’s valve stem.
  4. Turn the compressor on.
  5. Monitor the pressure and turn off when it’s full.

I double checked the air pressure with an old school mechanic’s gauge and the reading on the Viair was consistently about 2 psi high. So keep that in mind when filling your tires and inflate an extra 2 psi.

viair 88p working
Leads running to the battery and air hose connected to the tire.
viair 88p power switch
Once connected, power it up.
Viair 88p gauge
Note that the gauge is not totally accurate but good enough.

Performance: I recorded the fill time for my 235/85/R16 Falken Wildpeak (32″) tires to see how long it would take.

  • To fill the tires from their aired down condition at 28 psi to an acceptable 40 psi took 90 seconds. This would be good enough to get you home, but if you run higher pressures it’ll take a bit longer;
  • To fill my front tires from 40-48 psi it took 4 min 45 seconds.

According to Viair’s website a similarly sized tire would take about 3 minutes to go from 15 psi to 30 psi, so if you had aired down to 15 psi because you were in some really rocky terrain or deep sand and you wanted to get back up in the 40’s it would take you 4-5 minutes.

Cost: The Viair 88P fluctuates a lot on Amazon, but can usually be found for less than $60

Should you buy it? 

  • Absolutely.
  • The Viair 88p is a sturdy, well built compressor, that comes in a small size that’s easy to store.
  • The only drawbacks are if 15-20 minutes is just too much time to devote to filling all 4 of your tires; or if you have a tire larger than 33″ you’ll want to look at either the Viair 300P (for shorter fill times), or the Viair 400P (for shorter fill times or bigger tires).
    • The Viair 300P is currently $115; and the Viair 400P is $160

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *