Request an Appointment

Nitrogen Article


Make Your Car a Green Machine: Inflate your Tires with Nitrogen

Betsy Armour
Get Nitrogen Institute

Nitrogen in tires is becoming a popular replacement for standard compressed air. Nitrogen is a harmless gas that is all around us. The air we breathe is made up of 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen and the rest is small amounts of other gasses. When it comes to tire inflation, nitrogen has a number of advantages over oxygen.

Nitrogen is a cleaner, safer and better alternative than filling tires with standard compressed air. Nitrogen has been used for decades in all kinds of industries such as heavy construction, mining and commercial trucking. NASCAR, the United States military, NASA and the FAA require nitrogen tire inflation, because of its many benefits. So, what makes nitrogen a better choice for filling tires? One major advantage of nitrogen is better pressure retention. Nitrogen permeates tire walls up to 40 percent slower than oxygen. With enhanced pressure retention comes better tire handling, control and gripping ability which makes a tire safer. Nitrogen has been found to also extend the life of a tire rim by slowing internal tire oxidation and preventing rim rust. These are problems that are related with oxygen due to the higher moisture content found in regular compressed air. It is proven that if you do not check your tire pressure monthly, like 85% of Americans, the time you make it in for your 3 month oil change, you my have lost 6psi (2psi per month average). This causes your engine to work harder. When you drive on under-inflated tires, it is like driving your car through sand.

An environmental advantage of nitrogen is that it will improve fuel economy, depending on the vehicle, between 4 – 10%. This is an enormous help for the environment. For every gallon of gasoline burned there are 20 pounds of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses released into the atmosphere. 220 million vehicles are on the road in the United States. They burn approximately 375 million gallons of gas per day which is the equivalent of almost 800 million barrels of crude oil per day. If only 85% of those 220 million vehicles in America rode on tires with nitrogen they would burn at least 6.4 billion fewer gallons of gas annually. This translates into cutting nearly 128 billion pounds of greenhouse gasses each year.

Due to nitrogen's big advantages over standard compressed air there are over 9,200 locations that offer nitrogen service in the United States. For more information about the benefits of nitrogen and where you can find a nitrogen dealer near you, please visit