To fix a tear, find the hole by using soapy water and looking for the leak to create bubbles. Mark the hole, deflate and dry the hole in an inflatable top. For commercial grade, sew the hole shut. Next, apply a patch 1 inch larger than the tear with glue, allow it to dry, re-inflate and test to see if the leak is gone.
Inflatable water slides are a popular way to keep kids cool on hot summer days and birthday parties, but they can tear and leak air if not properly cared for. In this article, we will discuss how to fix a hole in an Inflatable Water Slide so it’s ready for the next pool party!
Looking for a New Water Slide?
Here is a list of our recommendations for the Best Commercial Bounce Houses & Water Slides.
How to Fix a Tear in an Inflatable Water Slide
Let’s go through all the steps for fixing the hole in an inflatable water slide.
Find the Hole
First, we need to find the hole in the water slides and do the repair. Make sure the slide is currently inflated, and use a spray bottle with a soapy water mix.
You will go around and spray it on the inflatable water slide until you see bubbles appear. What happens is the air coming out of the torn hole creates the bubbles and we can see the bubbles forming around where the vinyl needs a patch.
It’s at this point we want to mark the material so we know where to repair it. Using a black marker will work to circle the hole after you wipe away the soapy water.
Keep in mind the patch will cover the circle we just drew, so it won’t be visible later on.
Prepare for Repair
Once we have identified all the repairs needed for the inflatable we want to dry the area and deflate it. Make sure all the air is out and the material is completely dry with no water at all.
There are different methods and repair kits depending on what type of inflatable water slide you have. If you have one for many children in the home a regular patch should do the job.
If these are rental inflatable water slides, then you may need to do more. Let’s go into detail on these inflatable rental business options.
Repairing a Home Inflatable Water Slide
When we are referring to the home inflatable water slide we generally mean ones under $1,000. Once you go over this amount you can classify it as a commercial water slide below.
To repair this, you should have received a repair kit when you purchased it. Almost all inflatables have repair kits that come with them. If not, here is a repair kit we recommended [Amazon Link].
Simply take out a patch and apply small amounts of glue around the small hole with the patch. I like to spread small amounts and prepare the patch 1 inch bigger than the hole but you can do as small as 1/2 inch.
Then apply to the water slide again while dry, and check the instructions on how long it says to dry. Nowadays, these patches dry fast in high humidity, which is great, sometimes in less than 10 minutes, and you can then re-inflate it and see if the patch holds.
Check it to make sure no air is coming out before anyone uses it. There is another product that is popular for repairing torn inflatables and that is Gorilla Tape.
The reviews show the Gorilla tape does very well as long as you can apply it while the water slides are dry. People even use this to repair a torn pool liner. If you don’t have the patch kit I would recommend getting the Gorilla tape [Amazon Link] to quickly and easily take care of the torn inflatable slide.
Repairing a Commercial Rental Inflatable Water Slide
If you run a rental business and the inflatable water slides have a hole it’s a bit more work than just throwing a patch with glue on it. The strong inflatable slide material is the same stuff they make a bounce house out of and a bounce house can really withstand getting any tears.
This vinyl can sometimes be 2-6 times stitched, which is really a high grade, and that’s why a rental business would purchase these because they last for that rental business for a long time. We do have a guide on the best commercial bounce houses and water slides if you are interested in purchasing them, or you can continue renting them.
Again, when you purchased this it should have come with a kit to repair it. Try and search for the repair kit, and it should also provide a needle and thread.
You will want to sew the hole closed to start because this is such a large inflatable slide that it’s best to be careful. Try to make the stitches and small holes close together as you sew it shut.
Here is a quick guide on how to sew if you need tips. When this is finished, we will take the vinyl patch out, cut it bigger than the tear, at least 1 inch bigger, and spread small amounts of glue around the outside of the vinyl patch.
Then firmly push the patch to cover the hole shut all the air holes. Now wait the recommended time and this will repair the leak in all of your inflatables. Just continue to do the same thing.
An inflatable is very strong and, most of the time, will not ever see a slow leak again, especially if it is maintained correctly and is of a higher grade.
One of the biggest issues is people don’t put the inflatable away correctly, make sure to fully clean it, hose it down, let it completely dry, and then fold it up for storage.
Keep in mind a bounce house is not a water slide; bounce houses are not made to get wet.
Another option is to create your own backyard water slide that doesn’t require you to blow it up with air.
Please be careful and use at your own risk
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