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How to Repair and Replace Inflatable Tent Tubes

Nov. 08, 2021

If you're an experienced camper, you know that your gear and equipment can break, just in case something goes wrong. From repair tape to spare tubes, you shouldn't leave home without them. So, what should you do if you find a perforation or damage?

 

Why should I buy a spare air hose for my tent?

There is only one answer to this because you never know when you might puncture or damage the tent's air beam.

Inflatable tents are manufactured to incredibly high standards and are no less reliable than their polarized alternatives. Just like regular tents, inflatable tents can take quite a beating, but they can be damaged if not properly maintained.

Puncture wounds are extremely rare in air tents. When you pitch your tent, you just need to be aware of any specific sharp objects. Make sure you are on a level surface, clear of rocks and any other objects.

If your tent gets punctured, you can use a kit to repair it on-site or buy a replacement tube that fits your needs.

A good question is "Would you ride a bike without a spare inner tube?". The difference here, however, is that while the tube will be replaced under warranty, at least you will always have a spare tube.


Air Tent

 

How to repair a tent air tube

◮ First, you'll need to deflate the tube - wait until the air is completely gone - and then remove it from its protective sleeve.

You should not open or remove the air tube unless you are sure it is leaking and needs to be repaired.

Remove the internal airbag from the sleeve/housing. Your air tube consists of two parts, the internal air bladder, the plastic tube you inflate, and a case that zippers closed. The case shapes the air tube and protects the bladder.

You can check that your valve is working properly and if it is, you can continue to use it. When you are done, you can remove the air bladder from the case.

◮ Then, find your puncture or leak point in the plastic air bladder tube.

Stretch and flatten the tube as much as possible on a flat surface, then apply - in this case, and in most cases - tape. Make sure the tape firmly adheres to the plastic airbag and that there are no air bubbles in the tape.

You have now repaired the air tube and can put it back into the sleeve for the air tent.

 

How to replace the air tube

If you try to repair your air tube with tape and find that it does not work or is too damaged, you will need to replace it.

Deflate the air tube to be replaced as described above, then pull it away from the inside of the outer tent. Once deflated, remove the plastic liner from the outer tube/shell.

◮ Lay the new liner flat on the ground, parallel to the outer sleeve tube/casing. Then, insert it into the sleeve, making sure not to twist it. Secure the liner in place by connecting the valve through the outer sleeve to the socket and into the internal air pocket. If the liner is twisted, it may cause the beam to clog or deform.

◮ If you reach the other end of the tube and have excess liner leftover, carefully fold or roll it to fit the length of the sleeve. Do this instead of tying everything into the casing/bushing. You can tape it in place if desired.

It is common for inflatable tents to have different-sized beams, so always use the longer tube as a backup. You can easily shorten it to fit the shorter one in the area where it would normally go.

◮ Zip up the shell/casing to make sure you don't hang the new internal airbag on it.

◮ Then, insert the air tube back into the tent cover or outer tent. You can gently inflate the tube so you have a useful shape to make installation easier.

◮ Insert the tube and align the valve properly. You can then close the air tube around the tent sleeve and fully inflate it.

 

Field Repair Tips

◮ Do not inflate the air tube until it is protected by the sleeve - and never loosen the sleeve while the air tube is inflated.

◮ Once the repaired air tube is in its sleeve, slowly inflate it.

◮ Check the air pressure periodically to minimize repair pressure.

◮ Repairs are temporary, so contact us for a replacement tube as soon as possible.

◮ The tape will usually cover all repairs - tents, airlines, or valves.


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