Small Punctures Are Easily Repaired

If you suddenly notice that your inflatable is a bit low on air, it can certainly mean that you have a pinhole or small leak somewhere. The very first step is to locate the leak. If you are not currently underway, this can be done quite easily with a bit of soap and water. Work in segments, so that you do not miss the hole. Simply wet the boat panel, then lather it with soap. The air escaping through the hole will cause the soap to bubble. Once found, dry the spot off and you can begin inflatable boat repair.

If you are underway and you find that you notice a leak, you can still take care of that repair job, without disembarking or deflating the boat any further. Once you have found the leak, you’ll just need the repair kit that came with your boat. All manufacturers include one of these kits at the time of purchase and you should ensure that the kit remains in your craft at all times. If you purchased your inflatable used and do not have such a kit, it is highly advised that you purchase one immediately.
You will find that inflatable boat repair kits are made for either PVC or Hypalon, but not both. These kits work the same way, but they cannot be used interchangeably. Therefore, make sure that you purchase one that matches your inflatable boat material. Make sure that you follow the repair kit instructions, including sanding the area prior to putting on the patch.

Of course, it is simpler to accomplish inflatable boat repair when you are stationary, so you should check your boat thoroughly before taking it out on the water, every time. If you do find a leak, having the right set of tools and products on hand will help you. What should you have? Your repair kit should include the following:

  • Manufacturer’s patch kit
  • Masking tape
  • Glue eraser
  • Metal-bound, short-bristled glue or paint brush
  • Sandpaper (to prep the surface, including removing old glue from previous patches)
  • Liquid soap (to help locate the leak)


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