Our Top Pick for 2018: Topeak Joe Blow Sport II Floor Pump
Read our full review.
No bicycle owner is complete without a good tire pump. Inevitably, you’re going to roll over something- a nail, glass, screws, and all manner of hazards. So you’re going to need a good pump to get yourself back on the road. The trouble is there are so many different pumps on the market that it’s hard to know which is the best one for you. So we went out and did the research for you. We found four floor pumps that will give you the best bang for your dollar while still delivering the performance you need.
#1. Topeak Joe Blow Sport II Floor Pump
This is hands down the best bicycle pump out there for the price. Its durable steel construction ensures that this is the only pump you’ll need for years to come. It’s so easy to use it will make any tire you need to inflate; road, mountain, hybrid, or otherwise practically effortless.
The Sport II has a double-sided twin head that will work with Presta, Schrader, and Dunlop valves so there’s no need to swap out bits or use any adapters. The lock is of aluminum construction, which is clearly a step up from the plastic ones that can be common. Included are also ball and bladder needles for your recreational needs. There’s a handy pocket in the handle where you can store them.
It has a longer than average hose with a 360º pivot that allows you reach your tire’s valve no matter where on the wheel it is or where your bike might be. A dock for the hose is included so that it stays nicely tucked out of the way when the pump is not in use. Oversized, padded handles with thumb moldings underneath makes pumping more comfortable even when you’re pumping to higher pressures. An extra-wide steel base also gives your foot plenty of room while you pump, which means more stability and greater performance. So when you’re trying to inflate to 120 PSI or more your tire will fill quickly and easily.
Its durability is beyond imagination. Some have said that they have seen the Sport II run over by cars or endure other kinds of abuse, but it continued to work perfectly. Even after years of use, the valves continued to seal without fail and pressurization remained stiff.
This is the tallest of the pumps we found. At 26.6”, it allows riders of all heights to comfortably use it. The pressure gauge can measure up to 160 PSI and is mounted about a third of the way up from the base, which is a drawback. Its numbers are a bit small, but still very easy to read.
There are a few other, albeit minor, downsides to the Sport II. It’s the heaviest of the pumps we tried, a good half-pound heavier than the others. So if you’re someone who travels a lot with your pump then you might want to consider a lighter option. But keep in mind that the extra weight only adds to its stability and durability.
Some users have reported that they had trouble with the valves leaking on the Presta side of the head, but this seems to be prevented if you don’t unscrew the valve tip all the way. But if that doesn’t fix it then you can easily order valve replacement parts directly from Topeak. Most manufacturers don’t sell replacement parts, so this is a nice feature that Topeak offers.
Others have commented that they didn’t like the quality of the hose and wished that it had been a little bit longer, while others thought the twin head was too chunky to fit in between the spokes on their child’s bike. However, given the overall construction and durability of the Sport II these are relatively insignificant issues.
Topeak is a well-known manufacturer of quality bicycle accessories and they prove it again with the Sport II, which has been a top seller for almost a decade. It’s a great workshop pump that will provide you with years of service and performance. And for such a reasonable price, it just might be the last pump you will ever buy, which is why it gets our Gold Pick.
#2. Schwinn 5-in-1 Floor Pump
Winning our Silver Pick is the Schwinn 5-in-1 Floor Pump. Schwinn isn’t widely known for its bicycle accessories, but their 5-in1 Floor Pump would be a great addition to anyone’s tool box. Whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced rider, or even if you just need something to inflate your exercise ball, the 5-in-1 is worthy of consideration.
The 5-in-1 has a dual head, which means that the Presta and Schrader valves have separate gaskets within the same head. This makes switching between the two types of valves super easy and quick; however, some users were disappointed with how big the head is and wouldn’t fit on their child’s tires, pneumatic tires, or even between the rims of their car. While this can be a setback, keep in mind that dual heads are rather common and are worth having considering how easily you can use it on multiple types of tires if you have that need.
With a 25-inch alloy barrel, it’s not as tall as the Sport II, but it has an oversized pressure gauge that’s top-mounted which makes it easy to read, especially if you’re over six feet tall. Many users believed that the gauge was pretty accurate if not dead-on, although a few disagreed. One user commented that his gauge was off by as much as six pounds when he first received his floor pump in the mail, but by using a calibration adjustment on the side of the gauge he was able to easily correct it.
The base and the handle are both nylon plastic. The base isn’t as wide as some might like and the handle isn‘t padded like the Sport II, but it’s still plenty wide enough and comfortable enough to hold the pump steady and give you great performance. In fact, many users have commented how easy and efficient the pumping is.
The 5-in-1 accommodates both Presta and Schrader valves for your bike plus Dunlop valves for your car. A ball needle and an inflation cone are also included, which is why this pump is called a 5-in-1. The attachments can be conveniently stored in a nozzle compartment.
While the 5-in-1 isn’t a top-end bicycle pump, it has all the essentials for the average rider at a great price. If you’re looking for a pump that can inflate every tire on every bike your family owns plus a few balls and maybe even your car without turning your pockets inside out, the Schwinn 5-in-1 Floor Pump is a great buy.
#3. Serfas TCPG Bicycle Floor Pump
As Amazon’s #1 best-selling floor pump, the Serfas TCPG Bicycle Floor Pump is an excellent choice, especially if you are new to bicycling or have to inflate tires fairly often and you’re looking for a pump that’s super easy to use.
Similar to Topeak, the TCPG has a steel barrel, nylon base, and comfortable nylon handles that allows you to pump any tire up to 160 PSI, including the biggest road bike tires. The pressurization is stiff and efficient, which makes inflating incredibly easy. You’ll fill your tire with minimal pumps.
The TCPG has a single, universal head containing both Presta and Schrader valve attachments so you don’t have to remove or change any parts internally or switch between two separate heads. We didn’t find any evidence that it has a Dunlop valve attachment, though. The seals are fairly consistent, although some have commented that the gaskets failed after a period of time. It seems to be a rarity, however. The lock is of nylon construction.
Ball and accessory attachments are included with the TCPG, which gives it some versatility, although we didn’t find any evidence that it has an attachment for Dunlop valves. A secure hose attachment provides storage, so even when you’re on the go you can still strike up a quick game of basketball or soccer.
Although not as effortless to use as the Topeak Joe Blow Sport II, it still has a lot of ease in pressurization and will inflate to your desired pressure fairly quickly. The gauge is about one-third of the way up from the bottom of the barrel but is still fairly easy to read. Serfas’ gauges are pretty well known for precision and accuracy in measuring pressure and is considered among the best.
With its light weight and at only 23 inches long, the TCPG’s compact design is perfect for traveling and will fit easily in your suitcase or backpack. However, because it’s more designed for portability, the base is not as wide as a rider might like and is made of nylon rather than steel. While still stable, the smaller base isn’t as sturdy as some of the other pumps out there.
Replacement parts are difficult if not impossible to find. However, many users commented that their TCPG lasted for several years before any troubles came up. Even so, keep in mind that Serfas provides a limited lifetime warranty on all its pumps, which is not common in the floor pump market. It gives you some assurance that Serfas believes in its product and they will back you up if you discover that your pump has a defect.
All in all, the Serfas TCPG is a great pump with nice features at a decent price. And if you’re prone to taking your bike when you travel, this is the pump you want to have with you.
#4. Bell Air Attack Floor Pump
If you’re on a budget but still need to get your tires inflated, you should seriously consider the Bell Air Attack 500. It’s a reliable floor pump made by a reliable manufacturer that’s been in the cycling industry for years with a great reputation for quality.
The Air Attack 500 has a single, universal head that accommodates both Presta and Schrader valves (sorry, no Dunlop valves), which means you can use it on just about any bike you own without having to change any parts or use any adapters. The alloy barrel has plenty of volume and can inflate up to 120 PSI, which is more than enough for the average rider. However, most users have commented that the Air Attack 500 is better suited for tires requiring lower pressures like mountain or children’s bikes since the valve can become unsealed at the higher pressures. And if you try to force the higher pressure in you risk breaking the pump altogether. So if you’re an advanced rider with a high-end bike but you’re living on a budget, you still may want to spring for a more expensive model like the Air Attack 900 that has a 160 PSI capability.
The gauge is mounted near the top of the pump and is very easy to read. This is a great feature so you can easily measure the pressure you’re putting into your tire even in low light. Many users have commented that the gauge is very accurate.
The base and the handle are both nylon and textured. The texture on the base helps to keep your foot from slipping while you pump, and it’s wide enough to provide great stability so that your pumping is unforced. The textured handle provides comfort and also has dual-molding and a TPR insert.
The Air Attack 500 is a great pump for either home use or on the go. At only 22.6 inches long and two pounds in weight, it’s light enough and portable enough so you can take this pump with you wherever you go. And the hose has a built-in clip mount so you can tuck it out of your way when you’re not using it.
Probably one of the best features of the Air Attack 500 is its three-year limited warranty. Not all bicycle manufacturers offer this especially on accessories, which makes this pump an even more attractive choice. The drawback here is that the warranty is ONLY good for the 500 series and not any of the others. Bell would do well to offer the same courtesy on all of its models.
Another drawback is that the Air Attack 500 provides no accessories. There’s no ball needle or inflation cone or Dunlop valve that is found on other models. Then again, this is a pump on a budget. If you need pump accessories, they’re really inexpensive and can be easily found most everywhere.
If you’re shy about venturing into a bike shop, have no fear. Bell is a common brand of bicycle accessories that can easily be found at your local Walmart. But if you want the Air Attack 500 specifically and if Walmart doesn’t have it, then you need to gather your courage and visit your friendly local bike shop or buy online.
Before you head out the door to a local bike shop or start looking online at bicycle pumps, there are a few features that should be at the top of your considerations. The first is that you should look for a pump with a top-mounted gauge. Unless you like stooping over and squinting your eyes to make sure you can see the numbers clearly enough from over two feet away, a top-mounted gauge will go a long way to making sure that you’re inflating to proper pressures without throwing your back out. The Top-mounted gauges will often have a holster or clip nearby to store your hose too, which is a plus.
Single Head with a Universal Gasket
Even though dual heads are common, a single head that contains one gasket for both Presta and Schrader valves will save you a lot of time and headache as you switch from one kind of tire to another. With a universal gasket you have fewer parts to worry about breaking too. A bonus to look for is if the manufacturer offers replacement parts. A good, quality, name brand probably will and you should take advantage of it if you don’t know how to make the repair yourself should the head gasket fail. If you have trouble getting a pump with a single, universal gasket, definitely go with a dual head. It beats having just a Schrader valve any day.
All Steel Construction
Using steel throughout the construction of the pump is ideal especially if you are someone who inflates tires often. Amateur and pro riders use all steel construction for its reliability and durability, as do commuters. A steel base will give you more stability and will have less instance of cracking or breaking loose from the barrel. Nylon can be a fine choice and many have done well with it. But if you’re looking for a pump whose quality will withstand the test of time over the years, look for a pump with all steel construction.
Extra Long Hose
For many, the quality and length of the hose tends to be an afterthought. But there is a good chance that you might yourself in a situation some time where the bike or car valve is just out of your reach. Almost all manufacturers will say that their hose is long, but look for a hose that’s extra-long (more than 30 inches) and is made of decent rubber, not plastic. Such a hose will add more versatility and long life to your pump.
Brand Name with a Great Reputation
Different people have different needs. If you’re just a casual rider who just needs a bicycle pump that you might use only occasionally, or you’re just looking to keep your kids on the move, then you probably don’t need too many bells and whistles. But if you’re a serious rider, or even half serious rider, then it makes sense to look for a solid pump made by a well-known manufacturer with a long history of quality. If you know anything about bicycle parts and accessories and you find a pump made by a certain company that you didn’t know even made pumps, run the other way. Stick with a brand that has a solid reputation of excellence.
Brand Name with a Great Reputation
You ought to consider price as well. Sometimes you do get what you pay for. Living on a shoestring is fine, but be ready to get a pump that might not last a year unless you use it sparingly. Opt instead to make an investment in something decent that you know you can depend for years to come without fail. There are many brands that make a quality pump that won’t break the bank.
Conclusion (Wrapping it up)
Of the brands we reviewed, the Topeak Joe Blow Sport II is the absolute best choice and is worthy of being the #1 Gold Pick. Topeak has been around for years and is highly known for making great products without emptying your wallet. The Sport II is durable, reliable, sturdy, and pumps like a charm. No corners have been cut in its construction and its performance is top notch. It has most of the features you should look for plus a few more like its extra height, high pressure capability, solid seals, comfortable handle, and included accessories. Although it doesn’t have a universal gasket as is recommended, its double-sided head makes it easy to fit into tight spaces and inflate every tire you have. Plus you can order replacement parts if you need them. All in all, the Topeak Joe Blow Sport II is a solid choice and a great tool to have in your garage or workshop that will give you years of service.