Photo: RecycleMan (Shutterstock)
Buying, maintaining, and insuring a car can get pretty costly, so it makes sense to save money when you can—including when it comes to putting air in your tires. As we discussed in a previous Lifehacker post, while there’s been some hype about filling your tires with nitrogen, its marginally better performance isn’t worth paying at least $5 per tire.
The cost of filling your tires with the traditional compressed air—like the kind you’d find at a gas station—is much lower, running about $1-2 for enough time to fill all four tires. While that’s pretty reasonable, getting that air for free is even better. Here’s where to find it.
Where to find free air for your tires
While spending $2 to fill your tires with air probably won’t have a major impact on your finances, many times that’s not the issue. More and more gas stations are getting air pumps that allow you to pay by credit card, but many are still coin-operated. Planning ahead and topping up your tires for free when you can means you won’t be stuck needing both air and coins.
Here are a few of the places where you can fill up your tires for free:
Gas stationsGATEGetGoHoliday StationstoresHy-VeeKrogerKum & GoKwik TripQuickCheckQuikTripRoyal FarmsRutter’sSheetzStewart’s ShopWawa
Tire shopsAtlantic Tire and ServiceAmerica’s Tire/Discount TireBig O TiresFirestone Complete Auto CareGoodyear Auto ServicesLes Schwab Tire Centers Just TiresNTB (National Tire and Battery)
Like their discounted gas, the free air is limited to members only:CostcoSam’s ClubBJ’s (but only in their gas stations)
StatesCalifornia: Gas stations provide free air to customers with purchase of gasConnecticut: Gas stations provide free air to anyone, purchase or notFlorida: State rest stops provide free air
Additionally, some dealerships will fill customers’ tires for free.
You can also use the online map tool on Free Air Pump to get a list of locations that offer free air near you, based on your ZIP code.