Charge An Air Tank

Cylindrical metal tanks used to contain compressed air come in various sizes and handling capacities. Compressed air is used in pneumatic-air tools and mechanical devices. It is used to fill other components, such as a bicycle or vehicle tires. Properly charge your air tank to prevent personal injuries and possible component failure.


1. Transport the air tank to an automotive service station that offers an air compressor. Acquire a portable air compressor if you cannot readily transport the air tank.

2. Read the specifications, warning and filling labels affixed to the air tank. Note the maximum air pressure (PSI) specified on the air tank.

3. Examine the fittings installed on the air tank. Certain portable air tanks feature a fitting similar to a vehicle or bicycle tire. Larger, industrial-grade air tanks often feature a larger air hose connection used for charging purposes.

4. Check the amount of air pressure in the tank prior to charging. Certain air tanks feature an air pressure gauge installed on the top or side. Use a tire gauge to measure the air pressure present in tanks that do not feature an air pressure gauge.

5. Engage the air compressor. Attach the air hose to the appropriate fitting on the tank, as instructed by the instruction label. Certain air tanks feature a protective cap that must be unscrewed from the fitting prior to filling.

6. Hold the air supply hose firmly to the air-tank fitting; watch the air-pressure gauge. For tanks that do not feature an installed gauge, frequently check the air pressure in the tank with a tire gauge.

7. Detach the air hose when the air tank reaches the recommended pressure reading. Do not overcharge the air tank. If the temperature in your area rapidly changes, consider filling the air tank below the maximum recommended pressure.

8. Check the shut-off valve — and set the lever or knob to the “OFF” position — when transporting or storing the tank.