How long can you keep an inflatable kayak inflated?

Assume you don’t have any storage issues. You have a garage that you don’t use.

Could you save time by only putting it together and inflating your kayak once, then storing it inflated on your garage floor?

It would be far more convenient to simply toss it in the back of your pickup truck, secure it, and drive the short distance to the nearest lake with it already inflated.

This helps you get out on the water faster by reducing the time it takes to inflate and deflate your kayak. If done correctly, storing an inflated kayak is safe and does not cause any damage.

As long as the temperature in the garage does not significantly change, you can do so. However, keeping it fully inflated for an extended period of time is not recommended. It’s a good idea to let your inflatable kayak deflate a little before storing it. Applying constant pressure to the seams is not a good idea.

It’s not a good idea to keep an inflatable kayak fully inflated in the storage area.

It’s easy to move these kayaks around when they’re three-quarters full. If you’re storing your kayak inflated, make sure it’s only 75 percent full. It isn’t completely inflated, to be sure.

Hose down your kayak, wipe it down with a towel, and let out at least 20% of the air before storing it.

Because air expands inside inflatable kayaks in the sun, allow more air out if it will be in the sun for about 30 minutes to dry.

You could also leave it to dry in the garage for a few hours.

Fold it up or leave it with only three-quarters of its original volume of air when it’s dry. Inside the garage as well.

Caveat!

Do not keep the kayak fully inflated for long periods of time to avoid valve damage and extra strain on the skin.

The air in your kayak can expand as the temperature changes, potentially rupturing one of the internal septums.

Storing your inflatable kayak wet is not a good idea. Make sure your kayak is completely dry before storing it. Mice are attracted by water and chew on wet objects.

Your inflatable kayak will last for many years if properly cared for.

Effects of temperature on Inflatable Kayaks

Temperature changes affect the pressure inside an inflatable. You can get it to the right pressure on the bank, but it will soften in half an hour if you launch it into cold water. Carry an air pump with you at all times so you can haul out and top off if necessary.

If you take your boat out of the water in hot weather and it is firm enough to paddle, you must let some air out; otherwise, it will harden with the heat and may burst a seam if there is no water cooling.

Rolling a boat up is probably preferable to leaving it partially inflated in the truck, but if it’s fully inflated, don’t leave it unattended.

Inflatable Kayak Maintenance Tips

Because inflatable kayaks are so convenient to use, it’s all too easy to fold and store them when they’re not in use. Unfortunately, especially if you’ve been kayaking in saltwater, this can cause damage to your inflatable kayak. Take the following steps after you’ve finished paddling:

Remove any debris: It’s a good idea to clean your kayak after each use to remove any debris like sand, dirt, algae, or anything transferred from you to the kayak, such as sunscreen.

Small amounts of grit can cause your inflatable kayak’s surface to debraid, removing UV protection and increasing the risk of a leak.

After you’ve removed the debris, rinse your kayak to remove any remaining water. This will keep your inflatable kayak safe from a variety of hazards that could shorten its life.

Remember to close all the valves on your inflatable kayak while cleaning it to prevent water from getting inside and causing mould and mildew to grow.

Rinsing your kayak after a sea kayaking trip can help prevent salt erosion. It can also protect your kayak from chemicals found in the water.

In rivers, you’ll find diesel, fuel oil, industrial, and agricultural chemicals, all of which will shorten the life of your kayak if not washed away.

If you clean and dry your kayak after each use, mould and mildew will not grow on the outer skin. Mold and mildew can degrade the skin of your kayak, making it thinner and more vulnerable to punctures while also being unsightly.