Onboard Air

How we installed an onboard air setup on our van, and how we get good use out of it!

We learned early on that our van handles washboard and rutted forest roads much easier when the tires are aired down. It’s a heavy van, and driving on washboard gravel roads is unpleasant when the tires are inflated to highway pressures. Our general rule of thumb is to take ~40% of the air out of the tires when we encounter unmaintained roads with either intense washboard or ruts and holes.

Our gear guide mentions the Staun deflators that we highly recommend for quickly deflating the tires to a set pressure, but for getting the tires back up to pressure when returning to pavement we’ve been using the VIAIR 300p portable compressor (also mentioned in our gear guide). It’s worked great for us, but we decided to take on the project of installing an onboard setup on our van! Huge thank you to Van Compass who makes an air mount for easy install, as well as provides a blog post detailing the install they did in their shop van.

Anyway, to cut to the chase: here’s an install video as well as a parts list in case you decide to tackle the project yourself!


Watch the video above to get a better idea of where each of the parts are used!

That should be everything you need to level-up your van with an onboard air setup! Do you have any questions about any of the steps? Leave a comment below!

Make sure to check out our YouTube channel for install guides and other van content!

3 thoughts on “Onboard Air

    1. David

      Hi Matt, I actually picked up the covers at a hydraulic supply store. I brought my quick connect port and they picked the cover that fit.

      I can’t say that this will fit with 100% certainty, but they have the same part number that is on my cap (Pioneer 5209-4M) – https://www.shopcross.com/parker-5209-4m-molded-nipple-dust-cap-12-series-5000-qc

      However, I’d recommend going to your local hydraulic supply store to grab them! You’ll be able to avoid shipping costs and confirm fitment.


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