RV Power Tank™ System FAQ’s
“What is a RV Power Tank™ and what is it for?”
The RV Power Tank™ is a revolutionary new tool providing high pressure, high flow air in a very portable package. The primary use of the RV Power Tank™ is to inflate high pressure tires common on RVs, trucks, and trailers quickly and safely.
“Why trucks and RVs?”
Although the RV Power Tank™ can be used to inflate any kind of tires -- from bicycles to passenger cars to tractors, it is more useful for those tires with much higher tire pressure and high volume requirements. This is because there are fewer means of inflating these kinds of tires quickly -- some as high as 135 p.s.i. It is also most critical that tire pressures in these hard working large vehicle tires be maintained at proper minimumpressures for safety and longevity.
“How safe is a tank of compressed CO2 in a vehicle?”
The RV Power Tank™ uses liquid CO2 gas as its energy source. CO2 is a great energy source because CO2 vapor is an inert, non-toxic, non-corrosive, and non-flammable gas. It stores a higher volume of “air” per tank than any other gas. Despite its high volume content, CO2 is a relatively low pressure gas, maintaining a tank pressure less than a third that of other common gases like nitrogen or scuba. Our aluminum tanks are D.O.T. (Dept. of Transportation) approved. This evaporative process slows the energy release rate meaning that a CO2 tank will not become a high speed rocket like a scuba tank would in the rare event of a valve decapitation.
“What if the tank is caught in a vehicle fire? Will it explode?”
No. There is a built in pressure release cap on the main tank valve which releases the pressure well below the burst pressure of the tank if it got too hot.
“Is the CO2 safe for my tires and wheels?”
Yes. Again, CO2, once it leaves the tank, instantly expands to a relatively dry inert vapor gas (non-toxic, non-corrosive, non-flammable). CO2 is present in the air we breathe and in the carbonated beer and soft drinks that we drink. In fact, our bodies produce and exhale CO2 into the air. CO2 gas has no ill effect on rubber, metals, or any other materials.
Will CO2 blow out my tires if they get hot?
No. The thermal expansion value of CO2 vapor is the same as air.
“Won’t CO2 leak out of my tires faster than air?”
No. The CO2 molecule is larger than a nitrogen molecule which is most of what is in air.
“Is the tank refillable?”
Yes. Liquid CO2 is used throughout the world. The most common sources of liquid CO2 are welding shops and fire extinguisher service shops. Other sources are beverage distributors (Coke, Pepsi, Coors, etc.) and paintball supply shops. The average cost for a 10-15 lb. fill is $12-$15.
“Why CO2 instead of nitrogen?”
CO2 in tires expands and contracts at the same rate as nitrogen (N2) with temperature changes (see “Nitrogen for Tires-Truth or Hype?” ). CO2 makes a great portable air system because it is powerful, easy to get refilled, safe to transport, and needs no electricity, There is no faster way to top off an RV tire than with a Power Tank system. If you wonder why we make our Power Tanks with CO2 tanks instead of nitrogen tanks here’s why: CO2 holds three times more volume of useable energy than N2 in the same tank size so a Power Tank will last far longer between fills. CO2 is a high volume low pressure gas which makes it more practical as a portable air system, a CO2 supplier is easier to find than an N2 supplier, and CO2 can be mixed with N2 or air without compromising the performance of the tire. CO2 is much less expensive than N2.
Most high-end RVers that we deal with are successful and often wealthy individuals with diverse backgrounds and are the most educated and articulate members of any automotive market. If you wanted to read what they think about N2 (nitrogen) for your tires click on the links here
“Can I use a Power Tank if I use Equal balancing beads in my tires? I heard CO2 might "condense moisture" in low temperatures and make the beads "clump"”
CO2 vapor does not “condense moisture” as CO2 vapor is dry. I think people assume CO2 is full of moisture because it is called a liquid gas when under pressure. Yes it does have weight but if you shake a half full CO2 tank you will not notice any sloshing like you would if it were like water. Nitrogen vapor, like CO2, is very dry although it too is derived from “liquid” nitrogen …you’ve probably seen liquid nitrogen trucks rolling down the highway? CO2 is so dry, in fact, that some use CO2 air straight out of our Power Tanks to spray enamel and lacquer paints through an airbrush. If you know anything about these paints you know that they would be contaminated with the slightest speck of moisture.
“Why can there be no moisture in the CO2 in my tires if CO2 is called a liquid gas?”
CO2 has the unique characteristic of being able to be stored in a dense amorphous liquid state under pressure (~800 PSI). When CO2 is at atmospheric pressure it goes from a solid (dry ice, -100F) straight to a gas (smoke on top of the Halloween punch bowl) and skips the liquid state. Don’t get CO2 confused with a more familiar chemical called H2O which goes from a solid (+32F) to a liquid and then to a gas. Does H2O condense moisture with temperature changes? Yes. Does CO2? No. Does CO2 cause H2O to condense more with temperature changes and cause Equal to clump? No and no.