Chapter 62: How to Repair an Air Mattress or Inflatable Pad

You don’t need to throw away your air mattress or inflatable pad when it develops a leak.

It’s usually a small hole and a fairly easy fix. We talked about using McNett Seam Grip and nylon tape in the previous chapter.

Sometimes the hardest part is finding the leak. To find it, fill the pad completely with air. Place it in a tub of water and press firmly on the pad to find a small trail of bubbles where the pad is leaking. Sometimes you have to press hard to find a small hole.

Mark the hole and let the pad totally dry.

I like to rough up the surface a little with sand paper. Then clean it.

Apply a drop of McNett Seam Grip. Let it totally dry. Then, add a thin layer of McNett Seam Grip in a pattern just smaller than your patch, and attach nylon tape. This gives you double coverage and should stop any leak. Be sure to use a tape that is urethane- coated or waterproof so you’re adding a waterproof, air-sealing layer.

Trim the corners of the tape before you apply it so there are no square corners to catch on the patch and put extra stress on it.

Good luck with all your gear repairs.