How to Let Air Out of Tires in 2024

Maintaining a recommended tire air pressure may be the simplest car-related DIY task by far for a safer, more comfortable drive.

Having over-inflated tires can be tiresome since they become stiff and brittle, causing a lot of vibrations.

To let the air out of tires, simply press the thin metal pin inside the valve stem with a blunt tool, such as a long-nose plier or screwdriver.

To avoid puncturing your tires or damaging your wheels, you should also take extra precautions such as measuring the tire’s air pressure before and after letting the air out.

Your tires might need air letting out

Over-inflation, caused by situations like accidentally putting too much pressure in the tires or believing a rock hard tire improves gas mileage, is the most common reason why tires need to be inflated.

Additionally, certain events can also change air pressure, such as a warmer season when air expands.

Overinflated tire due to heat

Molecules bump into each other when heated, expanding their surface area. During warmer seasons, this phenomenon is prevalent, and your tire is not exempt.

Moreover, friction between the rubber and the road, especially at high speeds, could heat up the molecules.

Can Inflated Tire Improve the Average of fuel?

There are numerous experiments that have disproved this belief, which can be seen online through videos or detailed articles like this one.

Overinflated tires result in compromised handling, control, and unnecessary tire wear, which outweigh the small gains.

Replacement of tires

It is standard procedure to fully deflate your tires or wheels before upgrading or replacing them.

Why vehicle is stuck on sand

As inflated tires have a wider footprint, they won’t sink in as deep, and they may be able to help you get out fast if you get stuck. If you’re lucky, you’ll get out in no time if you let out at least 15 psi of air.

The best way to fully deflate tires

You can completely empty your tires by removing the metal pin from the stem valve. To prevent damage caused by weight redistribution caused by deflated tires, you need to lift your car. 

The following tools are required:

  • Jack stand and lift jack
  • Pliers with needle-noses


Tires and other mechanical parts can be irreparably damaged if they are deflated completely when not suspended in the air.

To lift your car, locate its jack points, located on each side of your vehicle, behind the front tires, and in front of the rear tires.

This is the strongest point in your vehicle’s chassis. Place the jack below these points and raise the car until you can slide the jack stands to all four corners.

Once the jacks are removed completely, the car will be placed securely and independently by the stands.

Identify the valve stem

It is necessary to unscrew the metal pin on the valve stem in order to let the air out completely.  Wheels usually have this stem located between the spokes sticking out of the inner rim.

The valve stem cap should be removed

A cap made of plastic, rubber, or metal prevents dirt and dust from entering the valve. The metal pin can be accessed by unscrewing the cap counterclockwise. 

Take out the metal pin

Taking out the metal pin will deflate the tire faster by letting all the air out at once. Grab the pin with a needle-nose plier and rotate it counterclockwise to remove it.

Reinstall the metal pin in the valve

Once you’ve let all the air out of the tire, screw the pin back into the valve so you don’t lose it.

The best way to let the air out of tires to the recommended air pressure

You don’t have to lift your vehicle if you only need to let out a fraction of air pressure on your over-inflated tires to reach their recommended level.

You only need a tire pressure gauge and an air compressor or inflator on top of a long, blunt tool to effectively and safely let the air out of tires.

The following tools are required:

  • Gauge for tire pressure
  • Long blunt tool, such as a screwdriver
  • Inflators or compressors

Identify the valve stem

As mentioned above, the first step is to locate the valve stem seated between the spokes of your wheels. 

In order to place the valve at the desired position, move the vehicle forward or backward a bit, if possible, to make it easier to complete the remaining steps.

The valve stem cap should be removed

Rotate the cap counterclockwise to remove it. The air pressure can be adjusted by adjusting the metal valve, which includes a metal pin inside.

Make sure the air pressure is correct

Attach the tip of a tire pressure gauge to the metal valve. Regardless of the gauge you use, the result will be expressed in pounds per square inch, or PSI.

Check the result against the recommended air pressure. For newer cars, this is usually listed on a sticker inside the driver’s side door frame. You can also find tire specifications in the owner’s manual.

For accurate results, allow the tires to cool down before measuring the PSI since warm air expands.

The metal pin should be pressed

The most common tool you can find is a Phillips head screwdriver. The long neck makes it easier to reach hard-to-reach valves and the blunt point prevents damage to valves, though any tool of this type will work.  Your tires will hiss as they release air.

When pressing the pin, be careful not to apply too much force as you may slip the tool and cause punctures or scratches.

Remove the tool from the metal pin by lifting it

All you need to do is press the metal for a few seconds. After a while, remove the tool from the metal pin so that the tire does not completely deflate.

Check the air pressure again

To find out how much pressure you’ve lost, attach the tire pressure gauge again. You may have let out too much air in the previous step, but don’t worry, you can just use an air compressor or inflator to inflate it until it meets the recommended PSI.

Tire inflation key points

Secure Metal Pin When you let the air out of the tire

Keep the metal pin secure when letting the air out of your tires. You won’t be able to reinflate the tire again without it. While the replacement may be cheap, ordering it will definitely take time.

The stem valve cap must be cleaned in the same way. A missing cap does not significantly contribute to air loss, but contaminants can build up and damage the entire tire valve, causing leaks. 

Don’t Check the air pressure when the tire is heated

It’s good to act quickly when you notice something is amiss, but this time, allow your tires to cool down. Warm air expands particles inside your tires, giving you false readings. If the outside temperature is also high, give at least an hour.

Final thoughts

The process of letting the air out of your tires is relatively easy, but you’ll need the right tool so you can get an accurate reading and proceed quickly.

References and Resources:

Video Explanation of Letting the air out of the tire

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