One of the most useful and versatile tools that you will ever own is an air compressor. More than just a tyre inflator, it can be used to power your spray gun, nail gun, power wrench, and so much more.
When shopping for an air compressor or tyre inflator, you will notice that there are two standard types of air compressors on the market: piston-type compressors and portable compressors. The most common is the portable compressor, although the piston type is usually found in a commercial-garage setting or in the home garage of someone who does a lot of automotive repairs.

The piston-type air compressor or tire inflator has a tank that is used to store compressed air. The motor will shut off whenever the tank is full, and restart whenever the pressure inside the tank drops. The portable air compressor is small, compact, and perfect for use as a tire inflator. It doesn't have a storage tank, and runs continually to provide air for inflating tires, sports equipment, pool floats, and so forth, or for powering smaller spray guns and other small air tools.

Choosing the right unit for your needs is important. If you will use it as a basic tyre inflator, then you will be fine going with a portable unit that you can store in the boot of your car and that probably plugs into the opening for your cigarette lighter.