York Air Compressor Installation
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York Air Install for Jeep TJ- Part 1

Note: This article refers mostly to '97-'99 TJs. 2000+ TJ's will vary slightly

I have camped all my life, and most of the time we brought an air mattress and a goofy little foot pump that, when my dad used it, made him look like a dog scratching his side with his rear leg. What a riot! Well, these days, camping usually involves taking the Jeep and doing some form of off-road driving during the trip. As you probably know, having an air pump for wheeling is a huge benefit…but the foot action just won't cut it.

The ritual of airing our tires up and down, locking diffs, the occasional necessity of an air powered tool, inflating a raft, the old air mattress, and in my case, the need of a blended beverage, all contributed to my decision to install a York air compressor in my TJ. Why a York? It moves a lot of air in a short amount of time, and is not something that must be packed into the Jeep. Lord knows I overload my Jeep as it is for these trips!

Compressor Choices

  • Hand/Foot Actuated: Like Dad's old manual pump, these relics are great for a small air mattress or a raft, but that's about it. These have no business taking up room in a 4x4.

  • 12V Handheld: These are available at your favorite outdoor or department store, and are quite powerful. Again, great for mattresses and rafts, but nothing else. They are very compact and plug into the lighter socket, which is a nice bonus.

  • 12V Mounted: These permanently-mounted compressors are nice. I have many friends with them and they never complain. These things are workhorses, take up a small amount of room, and can also run lockers. For my needs, though, they don't have the output. I have watched friends spend 30 minutes airing up their tires…then spent another 30 using their compressor on my tires. No thanks.

  • Gas-Filled Tank: These portable CO2 tanks are really great. They are self-contained, and can fill about 40 tires before needing a re-charge. They can power air tools and fill rafts and can power air lockers with special additional hardware. They also take up a lot of room.

  • Rotary Belt-Driven: This is a York or other automobile compressor. What's nice about the York is that it pumps pure air, meaning that it has an internal oil reservoir for lubrication. Many cylindrical automotive compressors pump Freon and use a heat exchanger to separate the cold air from the ever-circulating lubricant. The York is permanently mounted out of the way, and the air system can be plumbed in an un-obtrusive way. The volume of air is enough for all of my requirements, and the system is CHEAP!


Some information courtesy of the Jeep Tech pages.

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