Compressor plus tank or just the pump, man!?!


New member
Hi folks,

I’m building a small off-road trailer to act as a base camp and will be adding onboard air, as equipment gets migrated from the tow vehicle.

My main vehicle is a JLUR Wrangler 4xe on 33s, and I often air down for trail driving. I may go to 35s, but haven’t been tire-limited yet on the trails we’ve run.

Is there any benefit to adding a tank to the pump setup for extra capacity? The current pump is a Viair 440p which does a very good job with the moderately-sized tires. My lockers are electric, and I have electric tools for all of my trail repair needs to date - but would include a tank if it could be of value.

Thanks for your input!


Only reasons you would want a tank would be for an air nozzle to blow things off and/or to run efficient/low CFM air tools in bursts.

I have a tank for blowing things off. Air filter, boots, the dogs, interior rugs, etc... the list is nearly endless.


Rendezvous Conspirator
I've gone tankless on my last two OBA setups. I have mine setup for automatic inflation shut-off, which is really nice because I can set the pressure I want and just walk away until the compressor shuts off. (Usually I use that time to do a walk-around inspection, etc.)

I started by basically copying this setup here, except that I added more QDs so I can plug in the regulator or leave it out, if I need full-flow. I set the regulator to the desired pressure, and when the tire comes up to that pressure, the backpressure in the line causes the compressor to shut-off. My current OBA is plumbed to both sides of the truck, with 200psi line (and the auto-shutoff is at ~90psi), so I can plug in the regulator and hose on either side. Post-regulator, I can use regular coiled hose (which is usually rated to ~100psi).



A tank will save a bit of time when inflating tyres. It will also cost more, weigh more and use some space.
Depends on what is most important.
Maybe you can use something you already carry? The bull bar, a chassis rail (but square sections have limited pressure capability)
OKA196 motorhome


I like air tanks. Gives surge capacity. Airing tires you can run the compressor 100% of the time. Even as you are checking pressure or moving to a different tire the compressor is running and saving that air until you get to the next tire. If you keep a head of pressure in the tank there are times you can blast some air and the compressor doesn't even need to cycle.

Now I'm not talking about having 60 gallons of air on hand. Just a little 1-2 gallon tank. Doesn't have to be in an accessible place either. Tuck it into some unused out of the way corner. Want to go old school? A tubular accessory, bumper hoop, roll bar hoop, welded shut with a bung on it. Suddenly you have a storage tank that takes no room. Bonus feature (old race car stuff here) you will loose air pressure if you develop a cracked weld.


Rock Stacker
I would say all the above is true. The hard part is the volume and cfm balance. I run a 2cfm viair and a 2gl tank that I can isolate. The difference between airing up four 35"s from 10 to 30psi is about 25 seconds when bypassing tank. However, I will always run a tank. I have shutoff/isolater valves in different spots in the system to isolate a break in the line or leak, etc.. If I fry a comp or it quits working for whatever reason (one viar I had on my PU truck started up right as I hit a puddle on the freeway, sucked water and froze), I still have air to operate lockers, etc.
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Rock Stacker
I run the power tank "monster valves" on my crawler, makes quick work of tire fills. Only had one problem with one valve so far, I did not close off the valve on one air down and tire leaked to flat in about a minute. My fault really, did not hear the hiss.


Expedition Leader
I like having a tank. Even a small tank adds that nice little 'burp' of air if you need a bit extra for seating a bead on a tire or blowing some dust off things.

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