ARB Off-Road E-Z Deflator, Review, Overview and How To Use
Why Lower Air Pressure Off-Road?
When it comes to airing down your tires before you hit a trail, you need a reliable deflator. You can always use a piece of bark or a stick to depress the valve stem in order to let the air out but last time I checked, sticks don’t read air pressure and they can break off in your valve core which can damage the actual core.
Hitting the trail with a reliable tire deflator is a must and many guys in the circle would agree. Once you experience lowering your tires air pressure off-road, you can never go back, unless of course, you want a bumpy jarring experience going over rocks. Even if you are going on a mild trail with few rocks and bumps, lower air pressure is a key to a smooth, more enjoyable ride.
Full Air Pressure in Tires
- Stiff and Rough: With full air pressure in your tires on a trail, you really feel every single rock, bump, hump, and stick in the road.
Low Air Pressure in Tires
- Soft and Comfortable: Having lower air pressure in your tires can make for a much more enjoyable experience because your tires are not as rigid, and tight. With lower PSI, your tires flex and conform to the terrain allowing the tire and lower pressure to soak up the sudden bumps, humps, and rocks making your ride smoother.
Introducing the ARB E-Z deflator. Probably the most well-known deflator out there. But it’s not the only one. The good thing about ARB is well, it’s ARB.. a tried a true brand name that has been around for decades.
The ARB E-Z Deflator
The ARB Inflator Kit
Do your own research when looking into deflators and you will find there are hundreds of options out there but for the most part, the ARB E-Z Deflator is a great place to start. ARB also offers a pretty robust recovery gear starter kit with just about everything you need if you are just getting into off-roading. One thing is certain when you start offroading and Overlanding. What can happen will happen, and being prepared is only have the battle. The premium recovery kit comes with a Snatch Strap, an Ultralight Snatch Block, a Tree Trunk Protector, and 2 X 10k lb 3/4 inch Pin D-Shackles.
ARB Recovery Kit
ARB Off-Road E-Z Deflator Overview
The ARB easy deflator tire gauge features a full geared, solid brass precision movement with bronze bourdon tube.
Wait, what is a bourdon tube? A bourdon tube is an instrument for measuring the pressure of gases or liquids, consisting of a semicircular or coiled, flexible metal tube attached to a gauge that records the degree to which the tube is straightened by the pressure of the gas or liquid inside.
There are many other types of air pressure deflators out there that feature plunger-type gauges.
These other gauges are likely to be affected by changes in the temperature, humidity or altitude.
The ARB E-Z deflator has been tested for accuracy before shipment.
Is it worth the extra money for this Air Deflator?
I think so, yes.
This is high-quality air deflator that will last you the life of your 4×4 adventures and well into your next vehicle. Once you get the hang of it, the product is super easy to use. It comes in a super durable case that you can fit a few other items in.
You can also fit a pocket knife, flashlight, or any other combination of small EDC tool in the ARB E-Z Deflator case.
The deflator comes wrapped with a band and packs in a tight location when you need it store tightly. When you take off the band that is wrapped around the ARB E-Z deflator, just loop it around your wrist and then wrap it back up when you are finished.
I have used a few other deflators and they seem bigger, clunky and harder to fit in tight locations. When you are packing gear in your 4Runner, you want to free up as much space as possible, so small compact, durable deflators like this are key.
The next best smaller option would be a set of Staun Deflators or Coyote Enterprises Deflators, however, those two options are on the pricey side. But, there are companies like Boulder Tools and others who make a cheaper version but some reviews suggest the ending PSI may vary.
Parts of the ARB E-Z Deflator
- Internal Thread: Front portion that threads onto your valve stem
- Slide valve. Push forward to hold/read pressure & pull back to bleed air pressure
- Valve Stem Adapter Handle: Screws head of unit on two valve stem
- Valve Core Handle: Screw clockwise to insert valve, anti-clockwise to remove valve
How To Use the ARB E-Z Deflator
STEP #1: ARB E-Z Deflator – Thread on Valve Steam
Step #2 – ARB E-Z Deflator – Push Lightly & Turn to Remove Valve
Step #3 – ARB E-Z Deflator – Push in to Read Air & Pull Out is Release Air
Step #4 – ARB E-Z Deflator – Push in Lightly and Tighten Valve
Step #5 – ARB E-Z Deflator – Remove Unit
Quick Overview on How to Use the ARB E-Z Deflator
Once you have screwed on your internal threading to your valve steam using the valve stem adapter handle, you can then move to the valve core handle.
What they do not tell you here is that you need to slightly push the valve core handle in, in order to lock your valve. You push and turn counterclockwise to engage a “lock”. Once you have engaged and locked your valve, then you can turn counterclockwise to pull out your stem.
You can turn the valve core handle until it literally pops out. You will feel it.
Once your valve core handle has popped out, you can then slide your slide valve back (pull back) to release pressure. Once you push back in your slide valve, you can then read your pressure. So, pull out on the slide valve to release air pressure form your tires and push back in to read your pressure.
It honestly took me a minute to figure this out on the trail the other day. So, hopefully, you read this whole post before you go hits a trail.
Below is a step by step from the instruction manual but I think we explained it much better above.
Step By Step from the instructions: How to Use the ARB EZ Deflator
- Step #1: With the slide valve pushed forward, thread the valve stem adapter onto the valve stem in a clockwise direction.
- Step #2: Push the valve core remover forward until engages the valve and turn anti-clockwise to remove the valve.
- Step #3: When the valve core is removed it will push the cork remover out and the gauge will read the tire pressure.
- Step #4: Pull out on the slide valve to release air. Push in on the slide valve to stop air and check the pressure. Note, Gauge will not show correct pressure wall deflating.
- Step #5: Space when the desired pressure is released push the valve core remover in and turn clockwise until the valve seats firmly. Note do not over tighten the valve core.
- Step #6: Remove the unit by turning the valve stem adapter in an anti-clockwise direction. Ensure a valve cap is placed on the valve stem to prevent ingress of debris.
Caution: Do not exceed the maximum pressure on the dial. Accuracy can be impaired by dropping or severe jarring.
Warning: To avoid the possibility of an injury, eye protection should be worn when using this gauge or when attempting to d0 any tire repairs.
ARB Air Inflator
The ARB air inflator is an essential second step in the air for your tires. Obviously, you take the air out, you have to put it back in.
The problem with gas station inflators is they have no gauge. When you are putting air back into your tires, you are guessing how much air pressure you are putting in, this is no fun.
If you have an air pressure deflator like the ARB E-Z Deflator, you can put this on every time you think you are close, but this is super time consuming and no one wants to sit in the cold or blistering sun, reattaching a pressure gauge.
When it comes to air pressure in your tires, the ARB air inflator is just as important and the deflator. When you hit a gas station after hitting a trail, it is incredibly convenient to slap on your ARB inflator and read your air pressure as you are filling your tires.
If you want to take your inflation/deflation to the next level, you can look at the MORRflate 4-way inflation/deflation system.
Going a step further with On-Board Air?
The next step in putting air back into your tires would be on-board air. Onboard air is when you have air pressure tanks mounted to your vehicle.
These tanks can be mounted just about anywhere. ARB among many others offer solutions for onboard air.
These systems can range from $150 – $500+ depending on the set-up. There are beginner systems and much more advanced systems. The main difference in onboard air solutions is the amount of pressure you can run at one time.
With the more advanced systems like CO2 filled PowerTanks, you can run air tools, multiple air pressure lines and have plenty of room in the tank left over for whatever is thrown your way. Onboard air mounts in your 4Runner are pretty awesome but can come at a hefty price. And, just because they are cool doesn’t mean they are for everyone.
We will likely be doing one these in an upcoming post. But for now, go grab these products as you will need them either way and they kick ass.
Do your research before you buy anything. You don’t always need the best products out there, you just need the best product for your needs.