Smittybilt Tire Deflators
How It Works: A spring inside the machined brass housing must be overcome by the tire pressure in order to allow air to escape from holes in the body of the deflator. A jam nut keeps the pressure set, but be sure to crank it down or it is easy to accidently alter the pressure.
Installation Notes: Smittybilt’s packaging states “Get The Original,” but they look just like the Staun deflators. In fact, some of the components even interchange! The Smittybilt deflators do not come in various pressure ranges, and the spring is noticeably stiffer than the Staun. As a result, small changes make a big difference in pressures, making it difficult to set all four deflators to the same value. Smittybilt does not endorse leaving the deflators on while you drive, but we did this (at low speeds) without any issues.
Pros: Low price, manual start, easy to transfer between vehicles.
Cons: Difficult to set to the same pressure, poor fit and finish, small adjustments make big changes.
Our Take: The price is right, but be prepared to make some compromises for that value.
Currie EZ Deflator
How It Works: The Currie deflator functions the same as the ARB deflator. In fact, near as we can tell they are exactly the same product.
Installation Notes: The tool must be entirely threaded onto the valve stem to ensure that the core can be removed without damaging it. We were curious about the accuracy of the gauge, but found it to be within two pounds of the liquid-filled Power Tank gauge we used for reference in all of our tests.
Pros: Fast, reasonable price, integral gauge makes it simple to check pressure, can easily run different pressures to suit the terrain, easy to transfer from one vehicle to another.
Cons: Only capable of airing down one tire at a time, interference issues with some beadlock rings, cannot be used while the vehicle is moving.
Our Take: This deflator strikes a near perfect balance between speed, price, and ease of use.
Power Tank Monster Valves
How It Works: Instead of relying on the stock valve stems, Monster Valves add a second valve stem to the wheel that are larger than stock. This aluminum valve stem has a threaded collar on it below the valve core. Simply unscrew the collar to uncover the holes in the valve body and begin deflating.
Installation Notes: In order to install Monster Valves you have to drill and tap a hole into each of your wheels. Power Tank has a video on its website that explains the installation. You do not need to dismount the tires, and Power Tank suggests mounting the Monster Valve 180 degrees from the factory valve and inboard on the rim in order to keep it protected from harm. Make sure that you drill and tap them straight, you only get one shot! The Monster Valves also come with a Monster Chuck to air up with. Airing up from 10 psi to 40 psi through the standard valve stem took two minutes for our Krawler, while the Monster Chuck on the Monster Valve only took 1:20, a 50-percent improvement.
Pros: Blistering fast, allows you to check the air pressure with the original valve stem while airing down with the Monster Valves, only system that allows faster airing up.
Cons: Have to drill holes in rims, could get torn off on the trail, cannot easily transfer between vehicles.
Our Take: Monster Valves could be the perfect choice for those who have 37-inch and larger tires and still drive on the street.
Rimrock Mountain Supply Rapid Air Down Stems (RADS)
How It Works: The RADS are similar in premise to the Monster Valves, with a collar on the outside of the valve stem that has holes beneath the valve core. Turn the collar to expose these holes and air comes out at a rapid rate. Unlike the Monster Valves, the RADS use a traditional-sized valve core.
Installation Notes: Rimrock Mountain Supply recommends adding a second hole to your rim for the RADS, so we did this for our test. We had an issue with the valve stem being too long for our relatively thin steel wheels, so we had to cut the bottom threaded portion of the RADS in order to allow the tire bead to pass over the valve stem.
Pros: Fastest product in our test, low profile, allows you to check the tire pressure with the stock valve stem while airing down through the RADS.
Cons: Requires dismounting tires from wheels and drilling holes in wheels, fitment issues on some applications, cannot easily transfer between vehicles.
Our Take: We recommend using them instead of traditional valve stems rather than in addition to, just to simplify installation. The limitation is that you cannot check the air pressure while deflating, but we would just get close and then use the traditional valve core to fine-tune the pressure.
382 North Smith
5241 S Commerce Drive
Extreme Outback Products
720 SW 34th Street
Rimrock Mountain Supply
2214 Babson Dr.
400 W. Artesia Blvd.