Packing a CO2 inflator is a wise idea whatever journey you have planned, whether a long training ride is on the cards or you have a serious race coming up.
If your inner tube completely pops or slowly loses pressure and you need to replace or fix it, a CO2 cartridge and inflator can boost it back to life in seconds and get you back on the saddle.
Even if you don’t need to use it on your ride, it can be a confidence booster knowing you have one sitting in the saddlebag should the worst case happen.
So if you’re looking for a lightweight inflator you’ll barely feel in your pocket, a versatile head that can connect to multiple valves, or a manual pump that can inflate your tires should the cannisters run out, we’ve got you covered with our pick of the best CO2 inflators. All picks are based on in-depth research and analysis of user review.
Best CO2 inflators
Pro Bike Tool CO2 Inflator
Designed to be by your side whenever you need it, this CO2 inflator from Pro Bike Tool is said to fit a variety of cartridges ranging from 12g up to 25g. It also has a rubber sleeve in order to help protect your fingers from freezing when you’re filling up your tires on the side of the road.
A release lever is included to help you control the flow of the CO2 to make sure you’re giving the tire as much as it needs.
It’s worth bearing in mind this inflator doesn’t come with any CO2 cartridges included, so you’ll have to make sure you stock up before your next outing.
Lezyne Control Drive C02 Tire Inflator
Promising precision when it comes to inflating your tires, the Lezyne Control Drive has a control knob that you can twist to channel exactly the amount of pressure your tire needs.
It also comes with a neoprene sleeve to keep your hands safe from any cold release, and has a versatile head that’s designed to fit both Presta and Schrader valves.
Muc-Off Road CO2 Inflator Kit
If you need to quickly top up the air in your tire, this inflator kit from Muc-Off should give you a speedy boost in an emergency.
Two cartridges come included so you’ll be able to inflate without hesitation, with a handy press-down button designed to let you control the flow of the CO2 for a safe and accurate result.
With its vivid pink color you’re unlikely to lose this item when you really need it, and there’s even a protective neoprene sleeve on the handle to help stop your fingers from receiving a freeze burn when it’s in use.
Bontrager Air Rush Road Mini Pump
Designed to be both lightweight and compact, the Air Rush Road mini pump is just 72g and 15cm long, which means it can be easily stored in a pocket or small saddlebag, perfect to pull out for any mid-ride issues.
It comes with two cartridges of CO2 included, but even if you run out you can also inflate the tire by hand using the manual pump.
Birzman Zacoo CO2 Inflator
With a grippy rubber handle you’re unlikely to drop this inflator when you’re quickly restoring your pressure with little risk of freezing your fingers as well when it’s in use.
The set comes with three cartridges and is compatible with all threaded c02 cartridges, which means once you’ve made your way through these it’ll be easy to source more.
Weldite Jet Valve Tire Inflator with Air Cannister
Made from a combination of metal and rubber, this inflator is designed to be a durable companion when you head out on your next ride.
Weighing 100g, it’s a lightweight item that won’t slow you down and will be ready to re-inflate your tires at a moment’s notice. It’s said to be compatible with both Presta and Schrader valves.
LifeLine Hybrid CO2 Mini Pump
Said to be small but sturdy, the LifeLine Hybrid mini pump is made from a durable alloy but remains lightweight at just 64g, so it can be easily stored out of sight until it’s needed.
It uses standard threaded canisters, which should make finding a matching CO2 cartridge easy, and is compatible with Presta and Schrader valves.
The item comes with a pressure dial attached and has a magnetic closure to avoid any leakage. If in a pinch and without a CO2 cartridge, you can also use this as a manual pump.
Topeak Airbooster Micro
This inflator is the lightest on the list, coming in at just 15g. It’s fair to say, then, that you’ll probably forget it’s there until your tire starts to deflate. Then it’s ready to restore your riding pressure and get you back into the race.
It comes with a CO2 cartridge included making it ready to use right away, and is designed to accept all threaded CO2 cartridges, so finding a replacement shouldn’t be too challenging.