LAST UPDATED: April 18, 2019
Best Tire Pressure Gauges: Get the Air Pressure Needed for Maximum Performance
Our top picks for the best tire pressure gauge for your vehicle
The Review Team
How We Decided
The Drive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links. Read more.
PUBLISHED ON April 18, 2019
Over or under inflating your vehicle’s tires will have a direct effect on tire wear as well as the overall performance of your car. As a result, it's essential to get the best tire pressure gauge to ensure your tires have the right amount of air pressure. It can be difficult to notice a leaking tire with the naked eye, and if left deflated for too long, it could eventually cause irreparable damage. With so many models on the market, it might be difficult for the average driver to choose a worthy tire pressure gauge for their vehicle. Whatever your preferences are, check out our reviews and recommendations for the best tire pressure gauge.
Only capable of reading up to 75 PSI. Pricey. Feels bulky and might not fit compact glove compartments. Over time, the device fails to hold the reading unit, compromising its accuracy.
Has a cheap feel. Uses two different types of batteries. The power button has multiple functions, leading to confusion during reading.
Auto shut-off feature interrupts the reading, especially when checking more than one tire. LCD display is a bit difficult to read. Gauge tip develops issues after continuous use.
Why Trust Us
All of our reviews are based on market research, expert input, or practical experience with most products we include. This way, we offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Benefits of a Tire Pressure Gauge
- Reduce vehicle strain. The less air pressure in your car’s tires, the more strain exerted on them, damaging them more quickly. Having too much tire damage could expose you to air leaks. Worst case scenario, you will experience a blowout while cruising down the road. No one enjoys being towed, especially for an avoidable problem.
- Improve fuel economy. It might come as a shock, but the difference between good fuel economy and terrible gas mileage is your tire pressure. Fuel economy is affected when you are driving with low pressure in your tires. When your vehicle’s tires have the wrong air pressure, extra strain is put on the wheels. The engine will have to work harder to move the wheels, compromising the fuel economy of your car.
- Get better braking performance. Your tire pressure and vehicle’s braking are directly related. It will take more time and distance trying to brake with incorrect tire pressure. Properly inflated tires help give your car better grip and stopping power. Getting the best tire pressure gauge will help to ensure your tire pressure levels are where they need to be all the time.
- Enjoy better ride quality. The smoother your car rides, the more enjoyable your drive will be. When all your tires have optimal air pressure, there’s little to no strain while driving. Your tires determine your vehicle's height off the pavement. Having proper tire pressure could save your skin if you hit a pothole.
Types of Tire Pressure Gauges
Dial gauges are the most common type of tire pressure gauges you are bound to see when shopping for these gadgets. They are pocket-sized and feature shock-resistant covers. These gauges are the middle ground of reliability between stick tire pressure gauges and digital gauges.
Digital gauges are the modern tire pressure gauges; they are quite simple to use and easy to read. It will probably take between two to three seconds on average to get a reading. These gauges have a tiny digital display screen that helps give the user all the information they need in a quick and readable fashion. Digital tire pressure gauges are a little bigger compared to the dial or stick gauges, so if you are going to stuff one in your vehicle’s glove compartment, make sure there is enough room.
Stick gauges are among the most reliable air pressure gauges. They resemble a ballpoint pen. They are very easy to use and compact enough to fit into most vehicle maintenance kits. However, you will need a touch of know-how to determine air pressure when using this pressure gauge.
Tekton is a family-based tool manufacturing company founded in 1991. The company is located in Grand Rapids, Michigan and specializes in manufacturing fabricated metal products such as wrenches, sockets, pliers, driver bits, air hoses, bungees, pry bars, and vices. One of its popular products is the Tekton 5941 Tire Pressure Gauge.
Rhino USA Inc.
Rhino USA Inc. is a small American-owned company founded by a father and his two sons. The company is located in Temecula, California. Rhino USA specializes in designing and distributing powersport accessories such as bungee cords, tire pressure gauges, towing accessories for trucks, motorcycle tie down straps and loops, and wrenches, among other products. One of the popular products is the Rhino USA Tire Pressure Gauge.
Accutire is a Chinese-owned, US-based pressure gauge production company. It’s a sister company to Measurement Ltd and specializes in the production of all types of gauges including digital tire gauges, racing gauges, mechanical tire gauges, and accessories. It is known for producing quality pressure gauges and performance products for both vehicles and motorcycles. Some of its products include Bluetooth tire pressure monitors, wireless digital TPMS, air compressors, and others. One of its popular products is the Accutire MS-4021B.
Tire Pressure Gauge Pricing
- Under $10: There are a variety of tire pressure gauges available at this price. However, most of the gauges you are likely to find in this range will only have the basic functionality with a low PSI reading. Depending on the manufacturing company, pressure gauges here are popular due to their affordability and basic performance.
- $10-$25: Some of the best tire pressure gauges on the market can be found in this price bracket. They have better build quality, extra features, and have the capability of reading higher PSI. Devices in this price range are popular due to their reliability, functionality, and low cost.
- Over $40: Tire pressure gauges here are top-of-the-range premium products. They offer multiple functions and are fitted with modern features such as wireless connectivity and integration with smart devices. These products have high accuracy readings and sturdy builds to provide the best performance for the longest time possible.
Maximum PSI Reading
It's important to always make sure that the tire pressure gauge you choose is within your car’s tire pressure range. Check the maximum tire pressure on the gauge to make sure it’s enough for your car’s tires. If your car has a specific requirement when it comes to tire pressure, which is common with custom tires, you might need to get a pressure gauge to match.
Avid drivers find the stick-style tire pressure gauge most useful. However, there’s one problem with this type of pressure gauge: They are lightweight. You don’t want to accidentally release too much pressure from your tires because the gauge could pop off unexpectedly. A heavier pressure gauge with an ergonomic grip will give you proper grip to hold the pressure gauge in position.
Digital tire pressure gauges need batteries to operate them. Most products will include them in the package, with some requiring specific types of batteries. In case your battery dies, getting new ones can be a pain, especially if they are unique.
- Ease of Use: It’s important that your tire pressure gauge is easy to use. It’s also more convenient to get one that you can operate with one hand. Dial pressure gauges require two hands to use, while the stick and digital tire pressure gauges only need one hand.
- Easy to Read: Analog and stick tire pressure gauges may be difficult to read accurately, especially during low-light conditions. However, the modern-day digital gauge has a backlit LCD display that improves accuracy.
- Durability: Dial and digital tire pressure units are the most robust. With care, pressure gauges can last a while. The best tire pressure gauge is one that can endure harsh weather and can last a long time.
- Accuracy: Pressure gauge readings would be useless without accuracy. Modern gauges, such as digital tire pressure gauges, have the capability of matching the accuracy levels on stick models.
Best Tire Pressure Gauge Reviews & Recommendations 2020
You can figure out the standout features of this device from its name: it's heavy duty construction. The Rhino USA Heavy Duty Tire Pressure Gauge is a dial tire pressure gauge for cars, trucks, and motorcycles. This heavy-duty tire pressure gauge is designed to produce accurate tire pressure readings in a variety of conditions.
This tire pressure gauge is fitted with 360-degree swivel chuck for easy reading. It’s also ANSI B40.1 certified and has a PSI range of between 0 and 75 PSI. It’s a manual gauge; therefore, there is no need for batteries. This pressure gauge also has a glow-in-the-dark feature that is helpful during low-light conditions.
Its bendable braided hose with solid brass hardware is designed to prevent slip-ups and provide a good grip. A bonus with this option is that it comes with a lifetime warranty. This gauge is also capable of locking in the result when you remove it from the tire.
Its external rubber cover also protects the gauge from drop impacts. The company also offers a full refund if you find its product unsatisfactory. One downside is the price. It’s also only capable of reading up to 75 PSI. Over time, the device may fail to hold the reading unit, leading to inaccurate readings.
There are several reasons why the Tekton 5941 digital tire pressure gauge made it on our list. This digital tire gauge features a unique, high-quality, practical design that supports a proper grip. The best part of this tire gauge is the lighted nozzle that makes setup easier during low-light conditions. You're less likely to stumble in the dark trying to find your tire’s pressure cap.
This device has the capability of digitally displaying the tire pressure in real time. It’s better compared to analog versions where users have to keep guessing. Tekton’s nozzle also seals really well into the valve system, which helps take quick, accurate pressure measurements. The Tekton digital pressure gauge also comes with push-button control. The batteries in this device are included.
One drawback is that the device feels cheaply made, which can affect its durability. Also, while the batteries are expected last more than two years, there are two different types: one lithium coin cell and three button cells. It would also be better if there was a separate button to switch between readings. Turning on this device involves pushing the button quickly; holding the button for too long will trigger the reading display.
The Accutire MS-4021B gauge has a unique design that gives it a modern look. It is easy to read and has a robust, sturdy construction with a rubber-coated handle for proper grip. One of the strong points of this pressure gauge is that it is affordable and accurate within a 0.5 PSI reading. It is capable of reading tire pressure from 5 to 150 PSI.
An added advantage is its angled head, which makes it easy to insert the gauge into position. This product features a large digital LCD backlit display. It’s designed with a smart automatic shut-off feature that turns off the device when not in use.
However, its auto shut-off feature can be detrimental. This gauge will only stay on for about 15 seconds before shutting down when not in use. If you are checking the pressure of several tires, there’s a lot of wasted time waiting for the device to reboot for each reading. Finally, its LCD display is a bit difficult to read.
This classic tire pressure gauge features a basic system where the tire’s air pressure pushes the gauge rod out to tell you the tire’s air pressure. It has a built-in deflator valve and a tire tread depth gauge. It measures tire tread in 1/16-inch increments. It measures air pressure in a range of 10 to 70 PSI in two pound increments.
What makes this gauge stand out is that it’s made from machined parts. It also works in all climates and temperatures. The mechanical design of this gauge means you’ll never have to depend on batteries or other power sources to get it to work. It’s also slim in design, so it’ll fit virtually anywhere.
The downside of this unit is that it takes some practice and finesse to use it. Otherwise, you risk getting readings that are off. It also may not come with the tire tread depth gauge. It lacks a light, which can make it hard to use in low-light or dark situations.
This digital tire pressure gauge will give you four readings on the backlight LCD screen. These include PSI, BAR, KPA, and Kg/cm. The nozzle is lit to give you more visibility in low-light areas. The nozzle will form a seal over the valve stem to give you an accurate reading. Four batteries are required to operate the gauge. It has a PSI range from 4 to 150 in increments of .1 unit.
You’ll find this gauge comfortable and easy to use. There’s a simple three-function button to control the gauge. The unit is designed to comfortably fit into your hand with an ergonomic design. Its non-slip texture ensures it’s secure in your hand during use.
The downside of the gauge is that it requires four batteries. This is a lot for a tire pressure gauge and means you also risk the batteries being dead when you go to use it. The unit isn’t very durable, and may not last being stored in your vehicle.
Measure air pressure up to 120 PSI with this gauge. This unit is an all-in-one design with an inflation gun, chuck, gauge, and hose. The dial is large and measures 2 inches across. This makes it easy to read. The gauge reads from 0 to 120 PSI, but it also has measurements for BAR, KGF, and KPA.
What’s nice about this tire gauge is that it comes with the inflator hose. This means you can check your tire pressure and inflate at the same time with one easy-to-use tool. It comes with an industrial type D plug. It measures to a high air pressure level, which makes the gauge versatile.
Unfortunately, you may discover that the gauge begins to leak. This will cause inaccurate measurements or make it difficult to inflate your tires. The hose length is also short, which makes it difficult to use. The PSI measurement reading can also be off.
Measure up to 60 PSI with this round tire pressure gauge. It has a bleeder valve for exact measurements. You can use it for bicycle, motorcycle, and vehicle tires. The dial is large and analog to make it easy to read.
You’ll like that this gauge is made of durable steel. This makes this gauge strong enough for heavy-duty use and storage in your car. The simple design and large dial make it easy to read and user-friendly. The bleeder valve is nice because it helps you to get an exact and accurate measurement.
Unfortunately, this gauge isn’t calibrated and may provide you with inaccurate measurements. It’s also hard to get it to zero out between each reading. It will only give you measurements in PSI, which limits its measuring abilities. The maximum measurement isn’t as high as other gauges on this list.
This tire pressure gauge comes with a large dial gauge, 360 swivel chuck, braided hose, and 360-degree swivel tip. There’s also an extended head. The hose is a durable braided design and 11.5 inches in length. The hardware is solid brass for durability and secure connectivity. It measures up to 75 PSI. It also comes with a deflator valve.
What’s nice about this gauge is that it comes with a carrying bag. This protects the gauge and makes it convenient to carry with you. The dial glows in the dark, which makes it easier to read at night. The 360 swivels make the gauge more flexible and easier to use.
Unfortunately, this gauge won’t measure anything other than PSI. It’s also difficult to use, and there’s a steep learning curve. It doesn’t measure as high of a PSI as other gauges on this list.
This large air pressure gauge is battery-powered and has a green LED lit screen. It can measure from 0 to 200 PSI with a one percent accuracy variance. It gives measurements in PSI, BAR, Kg/cm, and KPA. The dial measures 2.5 inches. The gauge is made of plastic and has a protective boot. The connection is made of solid brass. It measures at ¼-inch NPT male.
You’ll like using this gauge because it’s LED-lit, which makes it easy to read during the day and night. The multiple measurements make the gauge versatile for a variety of air pressure measurements. The same goes for the high air pressure measuring abilities.
Unfortunately, this gauge can be awkward to use. The large round gauge and short hardware make it awkward to fit onto your tire valve. It also requires batteries, which means you’ll need to regularly replace them, or you risk it not working when you need it most.
This digital tire gauge can be used during the day or night thanks to the backlit LCD screen and lighted nozzle. It will display your tire pressure gauge in four types of measurements, including PSI, BAR, KPA, and Kg/cm. It uses three CR123A batteries. You can use this gauge for a wide range of uses, as it can measure up to 150 PSI.
What makes this unit stand out is the quality of the gauge measuring your tire air pressure. It’s certified to be accurate, so you can trust the measurements it gives. The ergonomic shape of the gauge makes it comfortable to hold. It also has an auto-shutoff feature that triggers after 30 seconds to conserve the battery.
Unfortunately, this gauge isn’t very dependable and may randomly stop working. It runs on batteries, so while you can replace them, the screws to do so are incredibly small. This makes changing the battery a difficult task. While the company is based in the USA, the gauge is made in China.
- After purchasing your tire pressure gauge, make sure you keep it handy in your vehicle at all times. It's also essential that it is carefully stored in a compartment. Poorly storing your gauge will affect its durability and overall functionality.
- Understand the correct tire pressure of your vehicle. It’s vital that you do not inflate your tires based on the maximum PSI indicated on the tire wall. You should confirm the correct PSI for your tires by checking the sticker placed in the driver’s side door jamb or by reading the owner’s manual.
- Driving your vehicle heats your tires. Heated tires give incorrect pressure readings. Make sure you only check your tires when they are cold or have been sitting idle for some time.
- When checking the tire pressure, make sure you push the gauge down firmly on the valve stem to get the most accurate reading.
- In case you accidentally overinflate your tires, most tire pressure gauges are fitted with a bleeder valve to help release excess tire pressure.
Q: How often do I need to check the tire pressure?
A: It largely depends on the age and model of your car. Modern vehicles have built-in tire pressure sensors, so you may rarely have to check the pressure unless the warning light is triggered. A good rule of thumb is to always perform a visual check before driving your vehicle.
Q: How will I know if my tire is going flat?
A: If you check your tire pressure level and it's a few PSI below normal, you have a pressure leak. It's normal for the PSI to drop. However, drastic drops may be a sign of tire wear or something else going wrong.
Q: Will winter temperatures affect my tire pressure?
A: Yes. Any temperature changes outside will affect your tire pressure. If it’s 45 degrees during the day, then 15 degrees at night, your tire pressure will vary by about 3 PSI. Since it’s usually coldest overnight, the low-pressure indicator light may go on first thing in the morning and then shut off after you start driving and the tires warm up.
Our top pick for the best tire air pressure gauge is the Rhino USA Heavy Duty Tire Pressure Gauge. It comes with a lifetime warranty, has a glow-in-the-dark dial, and is very durable.
If you are looking to purchase something more practical and affordable, consider the TEKTON 5941 Digital Tire Gauge.