what is the most accurate tire gauge made.
Most tyre gauges are more accurate than then need be. Temperature, driving conditions etc. often cause differences. Why are you looking for such accuracy? Measuring methods are likely a larger Influence.
If the OP buys a dial-type pressure gauge, it will be much more accurate than the cheaper, “pencil” type pressure gauges. Just be sure to avoid the Slime brand of gauges, as they are junk. For a few dollars more, you can buy a dial-type gauge that is more accurate and FAR more durable than the appropriately-named Slime brand.
For the shop, I buy Milton tire gauges and inflators. But they get used 25-30 times a day and accuracy needs to be +/- 1.5 lbs, something you’re not likely to need at home. Also, you’re probably not interested in spending $80 for a tire gauge. For my use at home I have a dial-type gauge, like this one:
I picked up a dial tire gauge from Summit Racing to replace my first dial type gauge that lasted 25 years.
The flexible hose makes it easier to use than the old gauge.
I also vote for a dial gauge over a pencil gauge. It’s best to get one where your normal tire pressure is about halfway up the scale. I have a number of Accu-Gage gauges that all read identically and that have held up well.
This is a good topic for vehicle owners and has been frequently covered in the past. Search “tire pressure gauge” for more.
Either get an expensive dial guage, or a cheap pencil gauge–do not get a cheap dial gauge.
Seems that pencils can be made, with tolerable accuracy, more cheaply than dials. Thus, the dial gauges that are price-competitive with pencils are pretty darn awful.
Maybe I should get a better dial guage but it seems to match what my TPMS says within a # or two. I have trouble reading the pencil guage and getting the dang thing firmly on the valve stem to get a reading.
Go with the dial.
Dial for the shop and a Milton pencil type for the center console.
The latest from Consumer Reports has two digital gauges on top, not too expensive, either:
“Our most recent test of tire-pressure gauges looked at 14 models: eight digital, two stick-type, and four dial-type. Those gauges came from five brands: Accutire, Intercomp, Gorilla, Milton, and Slime. We tested them for accuracy, ease of use, and durability, and also checked to see how they were affected by ambient temperatures spanning a range from just above freezing to 113-118 degrees F. Here’s what we found:
•Two digital Accutire gauges topped the Ratings, the MS-4400B ($10.99) and MS-4021B ($9.99). The heavy-duty dial-type Intercomp 360060 ($55.95) was also very good but is limited to 60 psi.
•Two of three samples of the Slime model 20074 ($8.99), a digital gauge, proved inaccurate at room temperatures.
•The Slime 20048 ($5.99), a dial type, was hard to read, inaccurate when cold, and lost accuracy permanently when dropped onto a concrete floor from a height of 30 inches.”
I have the Accutire MS-4021B. Works beautifully! I put a Meiser Accu-gage dial model (S60X) in my wife’s glove box. They’ve always worked well.
I like Milton I had very good luck eith there gauges
Quote from texas as reported from CS: “The Slime 20048 ($5.99), a dial type, was hard to read, inaccurate when cold, and lost accuracy permanently when dropped onto a concrete floor from a height of 30 inches.”
Dropping a delicate measuring device such as a dial type tire pressure gauge and then further criticizing for being inadequate it is not reasonable in my view. Dropping happens but I would not trust any tire pressure gauge after dropping it from a height of 30 inches unless the mfr provided the gauge with a protective housing and designed the gauge to withstand the described abuse. It would be good to know how CS, presenting themselves as authoritative, can pronounce any gauge as being accurate unless they are in possession of a master gauge with calibration accuracy traceable to NIST as would an instrument calibration service.
“It would be good to know how CS, presenting themselves as authoritative, can pronounce any gauge as being accurate unless they are in possession of a master gauge.”
Before they do road tests of the cars that they purchase, Consumer Reports preps them to specs, including checking/correcting the wheel alignment on the equipment in their shop. If they spent the big bucks for wheel alignment equipment, I think it is reasonable to believe that they have a master tire gauge that is properly calibrated.
I have a JL dial gauge which cost about $10 or so. When the car goes into the dealer for maintenance they put 34 lbs in the tires. My gauge reads the exact same, so I assume it’s accurate. It also compares well with the pressure you dial at a service station.
I just went out to look at the dial gage in my car, and it doesn’t even have a brand name on it. I’ve had it for about eight years, and it compares favorably to the pressure readings on the car’s tire monitoring system.
We are on our third car with TPMS; first an 08, then an 09 and now a 13. After living with a TPMS, I consider them to be accurate within ± 2 psi. They are a crude indicator of tire pressure problems. If they are getting to be more accurate, I don’t know that yet.
In the engineering world, a typical measuring instrument calibration check schedule is once per year. In the consumer world, you can do as you please. Brand name means nothing; reliable performance over time is important and and a periodic instrument calibration check against an NIST standard can tell you what is good.
I have a pencil type and a dial type. Both no-name cheap off the shelf from parts store and have had them for ten years. They give me identical readings and match the shop numbers after they put air in my tires. Unless they are all erroneous in the same way, I think most gauges should be fine.
After listening to everyone, I vote for both. Keep the durable and easy to store pencil gauge in your glove box and a decent, accurate dial gauge in your shop. I have an air pump and air tank which both seem to have fairly accurate dial gauges so that is a good cya at home. With the fluctuation of temps we have in northern NE, accuracy is only relatively important. The pressure changes a little with the temps by the hour around here…
Besides, accuracy is not as important to me as long as all the tires agree and they fall in a certain range depending upon my load. Low, 28 to 32, med 32 to 35 and high 35 to 40 for cars…So I don’t get upset if they are within those ranges.