Although inflatable paddle boards have become quite popular, there are still concerns. For some people, it is hard to believe that a blow-up vessel is reliable.
Maybe you imagine your SUP bursting and deflating instantly while paddling. This wouldn’t be a happy situation, especially when alone on a remote lake, for instance. You would have no way of getting back and your gear would get lost in the water.
Another scenario: you leave your paddle board at the beach on a hot day to go get a snack or supplies. You come back, ready to hit the water, only to find an unpleasant surprise—a popped seam. And that’s how your entire day gets ruined.
Do inflatable paddle boards pop? Is this something that happens often?
Read on and find out.
Is It Easy to Pop An Inflatable SUP?
No. Contrary to what some people think, an inflatable board is not like any other pool toy.
Inflatable SUPs are built using military-grade materials, making them unbelievably durable. They feature a dropstitch core and a layer or more of military-grade PVC. The more the PVC layers, the tougher the paddle board will be.
The result is a virtually indestructible stand up paddle board that won’t pop easily. Once fully inflated, you can mistake it for a traditional rigid board.
Inflatable boards are quite long-lasting. This is one reason why they are becoming so popular.
They can handle more abuse than rigid boards. It is no surprise that they are the preferred choice for whitewater paddleboarding. While traditional paddle boards will get dented by rocks, inflatable SUPs bounce off them.
Just take a look at the wild tests that inflatable paddleboards are subjected to on YouTube. You will understand that it takes a lot to damage them.
As to the question of whether they can pop, the answer is yes. An inflatable board might pop.
This can happen when you over-inflate the board or leave it in the sun for too long.
Manufacturers state the recommended maximum psi for a stand up paddleboard. If you overinflate to three or four times that, then the SUP can burst.
But this is not something you should worry about.
First, it is almost impossible to overinflate your blow-up SUP using a manual pump. Even getting it to the recommended psi is a workout.
Electric pumps also have an auto-shutoff function and most of them cannot inflate past 20 psi.
Note: don’t use an air compressor to inflate your blow-up paddleboard. It is a bad idea. You can easily overinflate the board. According to some manufacturers, you also void your warranty once you use an air compressor.
All paddle boards should not be left outside under direct sunlight. This applies to rigid stand up paddleboards too.
The harsh sun can damage pretty much everything. It could also cause the air inside your inflatable stand up paddleboard to expand. This will stress the seams and cheap inflatables may pop as a result—but it is still unlikely.
Usually, inflatable boards that pop when left under the sun have faulty seams. So you can reach out to the seller and see whether they will send you a new one.
So inflatables can pop but the chances of that happening are very slim. Buy a quality board and you have nothing to worry about.
Will My Dog Pop an Inflatable Paddle Board?
Your dog cannot pop your inflatable SUP board. We actually recommend bringing your dog on your paddleboarding trips. He will love it and you will enjoy the company.
We have discussed the construction of inflatable paddleboards. They can handle being run over and thrown off a roof. It is highly unlikely that your dog will pop something that can handle rocky rivers.
An inflatable SUP is even better than a rigid stand up paddleboard for paddling with dogs. The former has a grippy softer deck that is comfortable for paws.
Here is proof that your dog won’t pop your inflatable SUP.
How Long Do Inflatable Paddle Boards Last?
Inflatable stand up paddleboards can last for many years. Their dropstitch and PVC construction is super tough and puncture-resistant.
While traditional boards can easily get dented when you hit a rock or drop them, most inflatables will handle the impact well.
The more PVC layers an inflatable SUP has, the sturdier it will be. Some manufacturers even have no trouble offering a long warranty period.
Red Paddle Co and Bluefin SUP Boards offer a five-year warranty on all their inflatable SUPs. This tells you that you can expect to use the paddle board for years.
If an inflatable paddleboard can’t be damaged when you drop it or bump into obstacles, then there’s little you can do to damage it.
The board will last even longer if you take good care of it.
Is It Bad to Leave an Inflatable Paddle Board Inflated?
You can leave your inflatable stand up paddleboard inflated. It is not a big deal. If anything, it saves you time and effort when going paddle boarding. Inflating a board can be quite the workout, especially when using a manual pump.
Storing your iSUP deflated and rolled up for a long time can also cause creases. But they will go away once you start using it again.
If you decide to store your board inflated, release some pressure so the seams can relax. This practice also keeps them from getting damaged when air expands.
Remember not to store your paddle board out in the sun.
ALSO READ: Do inflatable paddle boards lose air?
How to Take Care of Your Inflatable SUP
Inflatable paddleboards are amazing in many ways.
Roll your inflatable SUP up into the size of a sleeping bag, throw it into the large backpack and you can store it anywhere.
Inflatable SUPs are also theoretically indestructible, unlike rigid ones.
However, you still need to care for your board. Here are some useful tips to help you do that.
Keep your paddle board clean: this applies, whether you are deflating your inflatable board or leaving it inflated. Rinse out the dirt and saltwater with freshwater after every paddleboarding session. Use dish soap and a soft cloth/brush for stubborn stains.
Dry the inflatable paddleboard before storage: you can use a towel or leave it out for a while. Make sure it is completely dry before you put it into its storage bag.
Don’t drag the paddle board: just because inflatable boards are rugged doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful with them. Dragging your SUP over concrete, sand, or gravel could cause damage over time. It might also come into contact with a sharp object and get punctured.
Don’t store your inflatable SUP board outside: leaving the board exposed to the elements will wear it out. There is also the risk of your SUP getting stolen.
Wrapping Up: Do Inflatable Paddle Boards Pop?
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Inflatable paddle boards can pop but it is highly unlikely. They feature military-grade construction which makes them surprisingly durable. Even your dog can’t pop your iSUP.
Take good care of your paddleboard. Don’t leave it out in the sun for long when it is fully inflated. If you’re storing it inflated, release a little pressure to keep the seams from weakening.
The bottom line is that inflatable stand up paddle boards don’t pop easily. You have nothing to worry about.