What is Nitrogen?

Nitrogen is a gas that makes up 78% of the air that we breath. It is the seventh element on the periodic table and is a dry, non-corrosive, non-flammable gas that reacts slowly with other materials, making it an ideal gas for inflating tires.

Who uses Nitrogen in their tires?

In racing, drivers for NASCAR, Indy, Lemans, Formula One, and even riders in the Tour de France all use nitrogen in their tires. Commercial and Military aircraft also use Nitrogen to avoid having moisture in their tires which could freeze when flying at 30,000 feet.

What Are the Benefits of Using Pure Nitrogen to Inflate Tires?

You might not be driving for NASCAR or flying an F-14 Tomcat, but there are still several great reasons for using Nitrogen in your tires:

  • Convenience – Tires inflated with Nitrogen maintain their pressure better because a nitrogen molecular is larger than an oxygen molecule. Thus, Nitrogen permeates through the carcass of a tire 3 to 4 times more slowly than oxygen. This doesn’t mean you should ignore your tire’s air pressure, but Nitrogen is a good choice for people who don’t check their tire pressure frequently.
  • Improved Fuel Economy – By maintaining proper air pressure over a longer period, your vehicle will get better gas mileage than if it had been inflated with standard air. The difference is slight but adds up to substantial savings over the life of a tire.
  • Longer Tire Life – The steel and rubber components of a tire oxidize when exposed to oxygen causing them to deteriorate. This process is accelerated when water vapor is present under the high pressures and temperatures found inside a tire. By removing the oxygen and water vapor from inside a tire and replacing it with pure Nitrogen, the tire molecular bonds that hold the steel belts and rubber compounds together deteriorate less slowly, increasing the life of the tire.
  • Longer TPMS Life – The water vapor and oxygen found in standard compressed air, causes corrosion of the electronic parts inside TPMS sensors causing them to wear out sooner than they would if the TPMS sensor is installed inside a tire inflated with Nitrogen.
  • Sustainability – Because using Nitrogen in your tires reduces fuel consumption your vehicle will emit less CO2. Also, by extending the life of your tires you’ll be reducing demand for the natural resources and energy used to build tires. Mother Earth will thank you!

What if I Mix Standard Compressed Air with Nitrogen?

We realize that you may encounter a situation where your tire is low, and nitrogen isn’t available. Or, maybe you stopped for an oil change and they topped off your tires with “plain old air.” Until nitrogen tire inflation becomes more commonplace, regular air is still better than no air. However, the more air you put in the tire the less benefit you’ll get from the nitrogen that remains in your tire.

How Much Does Nitrogen Tire Inflation Cost?

Suburban Tire charges $9.99 to fill a tire with 95% pure Nitrogen. We believe this is a bargain considering the fuel savings and convenience over the life of a tire. If the tire gets low, refills and top offs are free for the life of the tire. This service is not available at all locations so please call ahead.