How to Add Air to Nitrogen Tires


If you have already taken the steps of filling your tires with pure nitrogen, then you realize the benefits nitrogen tires provide. Not only are you enjoying better fuel economy, your tires are running cooler and air escapes at a less frequent rate than regular tires. Still, the nitrogen does escape the tire after a while and needs to be refilled. Find a local nitrogen dealer to refill your tires with nitrogen. However, it is also safe to add compressed air to nitrogen-filled tires.

Things You'll Need

  • Air compressor
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Remove the hubcap that protects your tire's valve stem. Refer to your car's manual for the proper way to remove hubcaps. Some vehicles may not have hubcaps that protect the valve stem. Do not remove the hubcap unless necessary.

  • Locate the valve stem. Nitrogen-filled tires may have a bright green, or different colored valve stem to differentiate them from regular tires. Inspect the valve stem for damage or leaks. If the valve stem is damaged or leaking, take your vehicle to have the valve stem replaced.

  • Remove the valve stem cap. Pull the cap directly off the valve stem. To prevent rupture or cracking, do not twist or shake the valve stem.

  • Place the tire pressure gauge over the valve stem. Check the tire's psi rating and compare it to the manufacturer's suggested psi rating. Do not add air to the tire if the tire pressure gauge reads within the suggested psi. If the tire does not require additional air, replace the valve stem cap.

  • Turn on the air compressor. Check to make sure the attachment to the air compressor is meant for the valve. Place the air compressor attachment over the valve stem and gently press down. Do not force the air compressor attachment down on the valve, or you'll risk damaging the valve stem.

  • Hold the air compressor attachment on the valve stem for approximately 15 seconds. Recheck the psi. Continue to fill the tire with air in 15 second intervals until the tire reaches the desired pressure.

  • When the tire's pressure is within the suggested range, turn off the air compressor and replace the valve stem and hubcap. Repeat the process with all tires.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check tire pressure often. If some tires are filled with pure nitrogen, and some with regular air, the rate of air leakage will be different in the tires.

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