Among the many products that go through our garage and testing station, among the category of devices and tools that we’ve used the most are inflators. Or, at least, most of the inflators that I’ve used so far are specifically tyre inflators. This time around, what we have here is more than just an inflator, given that it’s marketed as more of a general inflator for many things.
Here, we have Ryobi’s RI4-120G cordless inflator, which could not only inflate car tyres (a bit more on that later), but it could equally inflate anything that needs air, like air mattresses, sports balls, balloons, and so on. Although, unlike most of the other inflators that we’ve tested (in particular, among the more compact options), the Ryobi RI4-120G cordless inflator is battery-powered, and is cordless.
Plus, the entire thing is really compact, making it an even easier sell to buy and keep inside your glovebox for emergency roadside repairs. Given that it sits within Ryobi’s 4V Lithium range of tools, this also means that the RI4-120G cordless inflator uses the same, easily interchangeable 4V 2Ah battery. The battery can be recharged readily via USB, and they’re just as pocketable as the inflator.
In the box, each tool in Ryobi’s 4V Lithium range, including the RI4-120G cordless inflator, comes with one 2Ah battery. However, if you need the extra battery capacity and longer battery life, you might optionally get the bigger 3Ah battery (for an added cost), which allows you to work for longer. And, even better, it’s able to interchange with each tool without adapters or accessories, fully plug-and-play.
Really Clever Design And Thoughtful Usability
At the bottom of the Ryobi RI4-120G cordless inflator, which is where the battery slots in, by the way, you can also find a handy little compartment to stow away the included accessory pieces, such as the included needle adapter. Just as cleverly designed is the RI4-120G cordless inflator’s flexible tube, which attaches to a Presta valve adapter, which is included in the box.
When not in use, the rubber tube could be tucked away to the side of the inflator, further cutting down its footprint, hence retaining its compactness, even in storage. The length of the rubber tube, at its full extent, is around 18.5cm, which is pretty good. Moreover, you can detach the rubber tube, and ergonomically, the entire inflator falls into my hands just as nicely.
The Ryobi RI4-120G cordless inflator is really only as big as it needs to be, with a simple thumb button and a screen that shows the air pressure readings. Just under that, you’ll find a small LED light, which lights up green if there’s enough charge, or red if you need to swap out or recharge the battery. The LED readout is accurate too, measuring to an accuracy of 0.5 (either in PSI or BAR).
In my case, it shows every 0.5 PSI, which is more than accurate enough for most things like checking what my tyre pressures are. A simple flick of a switch on the valve lets me release pressure from the tyres, and it can inflate up to 100PSI with just the press of a button. As such, it makes the process of measuring, adding, or releasing pressure from my car’s tyres really quick and easy.
The Best Tool For Regular Tyre Maintenance
Personally, this is the very tool that I’ve been looking for, for a very long time, because I’ve dealt with, and I’ve got an abundance of them in my garage, various tyre inflators that can expedite the inflation of a flat tyre. These are tyre inflators that feature high airflow rates, at the expense of added weight and size. This is where Ryobi’s RI4-120G cordless inflator falls short for some folks.
Its rated flow rate is only 6 litres per minute, so it’s actually quite slow by comparison, compared to others such as Ryobi’s own, bigger tyre inflators. Consequently, the RI4-120G cordless inflator is not designed for high-pressure tyre inflating. Instead, it’s more of a general-purpose inflator, and in the case of my car, it’s the best tool that I’ve come across for checking and managing my car’s tyre pressures.
If you think of this more as a maintenance tool, then Ryobi’s RI4-120G cordless inflator is a great tool. The best use-case that I have for this is making quick adjustments to my car’s tyre pressures, like prepping my car for a track day. In this instance, needing to fine-tune and tweak each PSI for the optimal levels of grip, such as going from 33PSI to 35PSI, or dropping a couple of PSI.
Or, you could also use it for regular day-to-day use, such as making sure your car’s tyre pressures are at their optimal levels. Crucially, the Ryobi RI4-120G cordless inflator is very accurate and precise, and with how speedily you can check and fine-tune your tyre pressures, all rechargeable from a power bank, and when you take into account its ease of use, for £59.99, I’d highly recommend it.