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A Guide to Filling Your PCP Airgun: Choosing the Right Equipment and Fittings

If you're a proud owner of a PCP (Pre-Charged Pneumatic) or HPA (High-Pressure Air) airgun or Airsoft gun, ensuring it's properly filled is crucial for optimal performance. In this guide, we'll explore the three primary methods of filling your airgun, the equipment you can use, the fittings you may require, and some essential tips to make the process smooth and efficient.

APOLLO PCP Air pump with female foster fitting fitted designed for airguns

1. Stirrup Pump: Affordable and Straightforward


  • Cost-effective

  • Simple to use


  • Physically demanding

  • May require more effort

Using a stirrup pump is a budget-friendly option for filling your PCP airgun. It's a straightforward method that doesn't require additional equipment except for the pump itself. For a detailed visual guide on using a PCP air pump, check out this video.

MDE Dive Tanks in various sizes with the Airgun Filling Jubilee Valve fitted

2. Air Tank: Quick and Efficient


  • Quick and efficient

  • Excellent for frequent use


  • Relatively heavy

  • Requires periodic testing every 5 years

Using an air tank is a fast way to fill your airgun. However, it comes with the consideration of weight and the need for periodic testing. To check the pressure in your air tank, consider investing in Quick Detach Upgrades and a test plug. Learn how to test pressure in air tanks with this video guide.

Hill EC3000 EVO PCP Air Compressor

3. High-Pressure Air Compressor: Convenient


  • Convenient and time-saving

  • Efficient for regular use


  • The initial investment can be expensive

While a high-pressure air compressor may have a higher initial cost, it proves to be incredibly convenient and time-saving, making it a worthwhile investment for regular airgun users.

Essential Tips for Filling Your PCP Airgun

Before diving into the filling process, ensure you have the correct equipment: a PCP pump, a 300 BAR dive tank, or a high-pressure compressor. If you have a modern fill probe with foster fittings, make sure you have the Female Foster Quick Detatch fitting on your filling equipment - For Quick Detach Filling, refer to the guide here.

PCP Airgun Fill Probe Fitment Types

Quick Detach (Foster) Fittings for Easy Use

Best Fittings Extended Foster Female Quick Detach Fitting

Consider upgrading your equipment with Quick Detach Fittings for a user-friendly experience. Many modern airguns come equipped with these couplings, or you can adapt older-style fill probes with a male foster fitting. Learn more about foster fittings in this video.

General Filling Tips:

  • Use the correct fill probe with the correct fitment and make sure its o-rings are in place and not damaged

  • Check the gun pressure is not too high already - overfilling an airgun is insanely dangerous

  • Always go off the gauge that reads the highest! when filling whether that is the gun or the filling equipment, if one says 200 BAR and the other says 150 BAR treat it as if you have 200 BAR (the highest reading) in the gun

Pump Filling Tips:

  • Ensure all bleed valves are closed.

  • Tighten the fill line and filling probes securely.

  • Follow the correct PCP Pump Technique Here

Tank Filling Tips:

  • Close all bleed valves are closed.

  • Use Quick Detach Filling for easy filling.

  • if the gun already has air in it, open the valve slowly and in stages.

  • Utilize a test plug to check the current air pressure. See the Test Plug Guide Here

Compressor Filling Tips:

  • Close bleed valves and select the correct air pressure setting.

  • Use a High-pressure compressor designed for airguns, reaching pressures up to 4350 PSI. Shop Compressors will not work

Conclusion: Selecting the Right Method for You

Choose the filling method that aligns with your needs, budget, and preferences. Whether you opt for the simplicity of a stirrup pump, the efficiency of an air tank, or the convenience of a high-pressure air compressor, ensuring proper filling is the key to uninterrupted shooting with your PCP or HPA airgun. Happy shooting!


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