Any cyclist who doesn’t want to be stranded helplessly by the side of the road or trail needs to invest in a pump. Fortunately, a good-quality pump needn’t break the bank.
We’ve rounded up the best cheap mini pumps, track pumps, CO2 inflators and tubeless inflators reviewed by the BikeRadar team.
What type of bike pump do I need?
Mini pump — best for stuffing into a jersey pocket, storing in a saddle bag, chucking in a backpack or strapping to a frame. Slow to inflate, particularly with mountain bike tyres, but very compact
Track pump — a pump with an inbuilt stand that is best left in the house or back of a car. Quick to use but bulky
CO2 inflator — a small inflator with a head that uses screw-in, one-shot CO2 cartridges to quickly bring tyres up to a usable pressure. Emergency use only
Tubeless inflator — a specialist high-volume chamber that can be pressurised to give a powerful blast of air to seat tubeless road or mountain bike tyres
Cheap bike pumps: our favourites for 2020
Topeak Roadie Dax
The Topeak Roadie Dax pumps on both directions of its stroke. Topeak
Best for… taking with you on a road ride
As the name suggests, Topeak’s Roadie Dax mini pump is primarily designed for road tyres.
This pump’s party trick is that it inflates on both directions of its stroke, significantly reducing the time it takes to get a tyre up to pressure.
There are outright cheaper pumps out there, but a little bit of extra outlay now will more than pay for itself in improved longevity and ease of use in the long run.
Otherwise, the Topeak Roadie DA is a slightly lighter, smaller and cheaper version of this pump, but won’t inflate your tyres as quickly, while the Topeak Peak DX II is compatible with both Presta and Schrader valves.
Topeak Joe Blow III
Track pumps enable quick inflation but are quite bulky, so best reserved for use at home. Topeak
Best for… leaving at home or in the car
The Joe Blow has been in Topeak’s lineup for donkey’s years and is now on its third iteration.
The Joe Blow has a well-deserved reputation for being one of the best value track pumps on the market. It’s compatible with Presta, Schrader and Dunlop valves, can inflate to 160 psi (11 bar) and has a 3-inch analogue gauge.
The pump can also often be found with healthy discounts on RRP.
Specialized SWAT Mini CO2 inflator
The Specialized SWAT Mini is available for less than a tenner. Russell Burton
Best for… emergency roadside inflation
If you want a small, lightweight and inexpensive CO2 inflator for roadside emergencies, the Specialized SWAT Mini ticks all three boxes.
It only works with Presta valves but is easy to use, with a good flow rate. Cartridges and sleeves costs extra.
Specialized Air Tool Blast
A tubeless inflator is a worthwhile investment if you have a tubeless setup on your road or mountain bike. Reuben Bakker-Dyos / Immediate Media
Best for… seating troublesome tubeless setups
In an ideal world, a swift stroke of a track pump would seat every tubeless tyre, but this is not an ideal world, making a tubeless inflator an invaluable investment.
This simple model from Specialized is just the chamber itself, with a separate Schraeder-head pump used for inflation. At just £45 RRP, it was the cheapest to feature in our test but the build quality exceeds that of far more expensive models.