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Old 03-30-2015, 09:34 AM
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Easy question that I can't seem to ask Google correctly: Nitrogen in tires

My brother pointed out to me the other day that air nozzle on my stock tires for my 3 day old 2015 JKU are green- i.e. nitrogen filled. I've come up with "about 201,000 results," according to Google. I read a bunch of them but they all just talk about the reason people are using nitrogen in tires. I'm getting new tires today, keeping the stock tires to resell and just wondering:

Are nitrogen tires different on the inside at all?

Is there something different about the wheel, the tire or neither? Should I have told the tire guy that the existing tires were nitrogen for any reason?

I was just thinking through my day and realized that he may have quoted me wrong if I didn't tell them that the existing tires were nitrogen. Thoughts?

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Old 03-30-2015, 09:46 AM   #2
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The green cap notes what they're filled with, no difference in wheel or tire construction.

Benefits of Nitrogen is widely debated in the car community. As for me and most other off road Jeepers, I check my pressure regularly and don't see the benefit for me. I air down on trails then air back up which is a barrier to running nitrogen.

YMMV

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Old 03-30-2015, 09:52 AM
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It seemed to me that the differences were minimal as well but I didn't want to step on any toes before getting the answer top my question

Thanks!
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:53 AM   #4
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Nitrogen is mostly about giving the dealer an additional way to make a profit. The benefits are contested but I've never seen a noticeable difference and as BBS mentioned, once you start airing down/up using regular compressed air, if there is a benefit, it's severely diluted. Plus, our air is already almost 80% nitrogen... hard to imagine the extra 10-15% is worth the markup.

Good reading here: Should You Fill Your Car's Tires With Nitrogen?
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:53 AM   #5
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:57 AM   #6
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Yep, nothing different with the tire or wheel.

Funny part is that unless you have a dual valve stem wheel, like many race cars where you can evac the air, you only end up with a little nitrogen any ways...
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:59 AM   #7
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One additional note... never pay for it. If the dealer adds it to a vehicle they are just trying to push you into buying their addon. Some less scrupulous ones aren't even filling it with pure nitrogen - they just put the green caps on. How would you even know? They will waive the fee if you balk. I've never paid for it.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:02 AM
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One additional note... never pay for it. If the dealer adds it to a vehicle they are just trying to push you into buying their addon. Some less scrupulous ones aren't even filling it with pure nitrogen - they just put the green caps on. How would you even know? They will waive the fee if you balk. I've never paid for it.
Good to know... the first time I needed to do anything about I was just going to start using air. I drive less than 5k a year so the already minimal benefits are totally lost on me.
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:11 AM   #9
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Nitrogen is used mainly because it resists pressure changes when the temperature increases. Therefore tires do not explode at high altitudes. And Nitrogen does not support combustion (NonFlammable) if the tire were explode, the nitrogen is non explosive/Non Flammable. Nitrogen is what forces Oxygen into our lungs when we breathe. Correct me if I am wrong. Try researching Scuba Diving and Nitrogen Poisoning. Nitrogen will do nothing that will increase the performance of your Jeep unless you start driving at altitudes greater than 30000 feet. Nitrogen in gasoline does nothing but confuse everyone. Its non flammable and is a waste of space. Cant wait for a response to this.
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:16 PM   #10
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Nitro filled tires on normal passenger vehicles is another dealer up-sell if they're charging you either up front or for later top offs. The benefit would only come into play for legit. race prepared vehicles. Check your pressure on a regular basis and use "air", which I believe contains 78% Nitrogen anyway, and you're fine. You can still use the green caps if you want to.
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Old 03-30-2015, 04:47 PM   #11
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I had nitrogen in my tires on my 2014....three weeks later when it got cold I got a TPMS error. I ended up just filling it up with my electric air compressor I keep my jeep.
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Old 03-30-2015, 05:43 PM   #12
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Nitrogen is used mainly because it resists pressure changes when the temperature increases. Therefore tires do not explode at high altitudes. And Nitrogen does not support combustion (NonFlammable) if the tire were explode, the nitrogen is non explosive/Non Flammable. Nitrogen is what forces Oxygen into our lungs when we breathe. Correct me if I am wrong. Try researching Scuba Diving and Nitrogen Poisoning. Nitrogen will do nothing that will increase the performance of your Jeep unless you start driving at altitudes greater than 30000 feet. Nitrogen in gasoline does nothing but confuse everyone. Its non flammable and is a waste of space. Cant wait for a response to this.
This. Also it doesn't expand as much when heated, such as when an aircraft tire touches the ground and instantly goes from stopped to 200mph. Aircraft also have extremely hot brakes that cause heat in the wheel.
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:15 PM   #13
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:26 PM   #14
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The #1 reason Aviation uses Nitrogen in AC tires is because of moisture. The nitrogen is a dry inert gas which will not allow any moisture to ice up and cause an out of balance roll when you take off or land doing 130 knots. Because it is a dry inert gas missing the moisture of air is what allows it to have a better tolerance to heat expansion. Learned this in A&P school.
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:37 PM   #15
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The #1 reason Aviation uses Nitrogen in AC tires is because of moisture. The nitrogen is a dry inert gas which will not allow any moisture to ice up and cause an out of balance roll when you take off or land doing 130 knots. Because it is a dry inert gas missing the moisture of air is what allows it to have a better tolerance to heat expansion. Learned this in A&P school.
Correct, its not the oxygen that expands, its the moisture that comes with it
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:18 PM   #16
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And Nitrogen does not support combustion (NonFlammable) if the tire were explode
Atmospheric air is also non-flammable.

It's just a dealer add-on to increase their profit margin. Be wary if a dealer tells you it's "required" or "they just come that way"

When shopping around for my Willys a few weeks ago, I had one dealer who lost my business because he insisted that "Auto Guard" was a required add-on and could not be waived. When I inquired what that was, exactly, he explained that they etch the VIN# into all the windows, and that it's a theft deterrent, insurance companies give you a discount if you have it, it's non-negotiable yadda yadda yadda...it's also $495. I told him that since my SOFT TOP jeep would only have ONE glass window (the windshield), that I was certainly not going to pay $495 to have one VIN etched on one glass. He stuck to his guns and I walked.

Point is, keep a very questioning attitude about any dealer add-ons and fees. Nitrogen in the tires is of dubious value.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:46 PM   #17
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As SoCalRider mentioned earlier, the main advantage is lack of moisture. I'm pretty sure that nitrogen gas CAN contain moisture in the form of water vapor, but since it almost always comes from bottles that have been filled under controlled conditions, it usually doesn't.

When I'm topping off tires at the local gas station, I always vent a little air from the hose into the atmosphere before filling the tires - to see how much water there is in the system. Occasionally there is so much water coming out that it looks like I have a squirt gun in my hands! If I get *any* actual "drops" coming out, I move on down the street to another station.

Anyway, as has been pointed out, the air we breathe is 4/5ths nitrogen and there is NO difference in the tires, the wheels, the valve stems etc.
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Old 03-30-2015, 07:57 PM   #18
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Atmospheric air is also non-flammable.

It's just a dealer add-on to increase their profit margin. Be wary if a dealer tells you it's "required" or "they just come that way"

When shopping around for my Willys a few weeks ago, I had one dealer who lost my business because he insisted that "Auto Guard" was a required add-on and could not be waived. When I inquired what that was, exactly, he explained that they etch the VIN# into all the windows, and that it's a theft deterrent, insurance companies give you a discount if you have it, it's non-negotiable yadda yadda yadda...it's also $495. I told him that since my SOFT TOP jeep would only have ONE glass window (the windshield), that I was certainly not going to pay $495 to have one VIN etched on one glass. He stuck to his guns and I walked.

Point is, keep a very questioning attitude about any dealer add-ons and fees. Nitrogen in the tires is of dubious value.
Same goes for the AutoNation package they add to every vehicle. They really do it but the policy is to let you refuse to pay for it and you just don't get the warranty. I think it was $600 or something and I got a good chuckle.
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Old 03-30-2015, 08:03 PM   #19
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Old 03-30-2015, 08:36 PM   #20
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78% nitrogen in room air on average. Air does not burn, oxygen supports combustion. Believe me when a tire burns the vehicle is junk at that point. The tire will pop and I am 100% certain the nitrogen will not put the fire out.

Pure Nitrogen in the tires is B.S. It is especially B.S. for a Jeep.

Even hard core crawler guys put CO2 into their tires with no ill effects.

So my A.D.D. scatterbrain answer is run your nitrogen until you need to refill the tires and then use the same stuff we are breathing. Its free and it works real well for those of us who dont buy into the snake oil that increases dealers profits.
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Old 03-30-2015, 09:38 PM   #21
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:21 PM   #22
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Nitrogen is used mainly because it resists pressure changes when the temperature increases. Therefore tires do not explode at high altitudes. And Nitrogen does not support combustion (NonFlammable) if the tire were explode, the nitrogen is non explosive/Non Flammable. Nitrogen is what forces Oxygen into our lungs when we breathe. Correct me if I am wrong. Try researching Scuba Diving and Nitrogen Poisoning. Nitrogen will do nothing that will increase the performance of your Jeep unless you start driving at altitudes greater than 30000 feet. Nitrogen in gasoline does nothing but confuse everyone. Its non flammable and is a waste of space. Cant wait for a response to this.
A Deepsea Diver from way back and retired now.

Our air here on this planet is appox. 79% nitrogen and 21% oxygen (O2). So, lets round up: the air we breathe is 80% nitrogen. So what is the advantage of putting an extra 20% of nitrogen into a tire?

Nitrogen doesn't support oxidation/corrosion. There are all kinds of stories about the O2 seeping out between the molecules of the rubber, blah, blah, bla. The tire is still going to heat up on the road and expand/contract. If it burst, it will still blow and scare the hell out of you!

I wonder why they don't use helium to inflate the tires at the dealers and claim the car is now lighter....... Oh, I forgot helium is really expensive that is why.

I have used CO2 for years to inflate my tires when I come off the trail for one reason and one reason only. I can get it by the bottle and it is cheap to buy for filling tires from a compressed bottle (same as the stuff we use to push the beer out of a keg or soft drinks).

I will say this, stay away from the quarter a tire pumps in the gas stations as they many times draw a lot of moisture into your tire along with the air they pump. Any real air pump that is worth it's salt will have a drier/ separator to remove the moisture or any oil before it gets to the outlet.


Of course, it is the water in the air that promotes the corrosion and possible rusting of the rims. Nitrogen isn't all bad as an inert gas of course but I have seen stickers where the dealer has charged $300 extra for nitrogen filled tires on new cars! I would demand CO2 as it runs so much cooler

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