Ok, I’ll grant you, not very high-tech – but when I got the opportunity to get one of these to test back in late 2020, I happily jumped at the opportunity as I don’t trust the tyre pressure inflators (British spelling) in the few garages out here in the wilds that actually have one (I think from WW2 in one case) as they all give different readings.
The 70mai Midrive TP03 12V Portable Car Tyre Inflator works well and reliably. I’m going on nothing more than experience (several decades of driving) for accuracy – it feels and sounds right.
When the inflator arrived I could not understand why it would not charge – then quickly realised that’s because it doesn’t have a battery – you plug it into the car cigarette lighter to use. My second thought was – will the power lead be long enough for the unit to reach the spare tyre in the back of the car? Yes, though in a BIG car you might wish to ensure you have a second power socket (cigarette lighter socket) in the back.
The unit is small and sturdy, comes in a nice container and I can’t think of any reason NOT to leave it in the boot permanently. The stock photos at the top and in the link above are much nicer than my photos but then if I used the former throughout, you would have no idea if I’d actually used this thing.
The TP03 offers a clear display (I ended up with strobing effects in my photo attempts), shows readings in 3 formats including BAR and PSI – I use PSI. From memory I knew my tyres should be 30 PSI – on checking with the TP03 they were around 22-24 PSI – and the SPARE in the boot was around 8PSI. They are now all at exactly 30 PSI and they even LOOK about right. Next time I’m in a big city I’ll compare with readings from two brand new garages but for now I’m happy the result is near enough.
As a last comment, the steering FEELS much lighter so clearly my tyres WERE too far down (we last checked them after a drive to the nearest garage in the height of Spanish summer heat – not a good idea now I come to think about it) whereas today I filled the tyres in front of our house with outside temperatures around 18c. The TP03 comes ready to work with normal car tyres but comes supplied with 3 adaptors – see link above if you’re interested.
So, am I happy? Yes, absolutely.
Update June 2021
At the time I wrote about this it seemed like a good idea but I wasn’t sure if it would be a gimmick or a lifesaver. Well, it’s been sitting in the back of our little runaround Seat Ibiza for months doing nothing then all of a sudden, a few days ago, Maureen (my wife) pointed out that one of the front tyres was “a little low”. Knowing we had the 70Mai in the back, we left it to sort out at the weekend – well, it’s the weekend and the front tyre was down to 18PSI….. it isn’t any more. The other front tire was at 30psi. I’ve just been up to where we park the car, plugged the 70Mai into the cigarette lighter socket and both tyres are now a comfortable 32psi. I’ll check again in a short while to ensure they stay that way. Good gadget, handy and easy to use.
Update July 2021
As it turns out, the front left tyre may well have a very slow leak – or someone’s taking the mick – as I checked again in the first week of July and the pressure was a little down, I’ve blown it back up and adjusted the pressure in the other tyres. It turns out that our local garage no longer has an air pump so being able to DIY the tyres truly is a life-saver. I’m so glad we decided to keep it in the car along with the also-reviewed TM-D28A jump starter.