Each of the different plugs has a matching coupler. If you have that specific Air Quick Coupler, chances are it will only accept a plug with the same style. Although I found some industrial only style couplers will accept V-style plugs, I wouldn’t count on it.
The problem is most of the couplers look the same on the outside, so they are harder to identify than plugs. There is an somewhat accepted way of identifying them via counting the number of thin and thick “stripes” on the body of the coupler, but it’s pretty useless because not everybody adheres to it.
Also unless you have two couplers from a single manufacturer, one company’s thick stripe can look like another companies thin stripe. Plus you have to remember which marking are which style and the plugs don’t have matching markings.
Then there are universal couplers. Some claim they only work with industrial and automotive style plugs, but others claim they work with industrial, automotive, and ARO type plugs.
There is also the Milton V-style coupler. It is designed to be the high flow mate to the Hi-Flow plug. Milton says that they are also designed to accept A, T, and M style plugs (if you are paying attention that’s ARO, automotive, and industrial plugs).
I found that another company’s high flow coupler would also accept automotive and industrial plugs, but that was in store and not under pressure. I don’t want to make a claim if I can’t find documentation.
I’ve also read that some universal couplers are not as reliable as single-style couplers – that they are more prone to leakage especially if there’s sideways pressure applied to the plug.
M Style and Universal Couplers
Top: Manual Coupler, Bottom: Automatic Coupler
Another feature of couplers is that they can be either manual or automatic. You can tell the difference by looking at the photo above, the automatic coupler has the sleeve pulled back when there is no plug inserted.
With a manual coupler, you have to pull back the sleeve to insert the plug and make the connection, but with an automatic coupler you just have to push the plug into the coupler and it will automatically make the connection. With both types you still need to pull back the sleeve to release the plug.
As far as I can tell, only universal and V-style couplers are available in automatic styles.