Many people buy inflatable SUPs because they are easier to transport and more compact for storage. However, they take time and effort to blow up. So, how long does it take to inflate a paddle board?
In short, it can take as little as 3 minutes and up to 15 minutes to fill up an SUP with air. Below, we show you how to make this job easier and faster…
1. Use an Electric Pump to Inflate Your SUP Fast:
First of all, you want to look at the efficiency of your air pump. For example, an electric pump can inflate an SUP faster than a dual-action manual pump, and a single-action pump is even slower.
That said, you’ll pay more for an electric pump compared to the manual version. You’ll also need a power source for the electricity (although most pumps simply plug into your car’s 12V outlet).
Check out the chart below summarizing the estimated time it takes to inflate an average size 11-foot paddleboard to 12 psi using different types of pumps.
(Note that fill times vary depending on specific pump model and user’s strength.)
|Pump Type||Estimated Inflation Time to 12 PSI|
|Single-Action Hand Pump
(usually included in cheaper SUP packages)
|Dual/Triple-Action Hand Pump||5-10 minutes|
|12V Electric Pump||3-5 minutes|
Overall, while the single-action hand pump is the most affordable option, it takes the longest time to inflate an inflatable SUP.
The dual or triple action hand pump is more efficient, but still requires some physical effort. Lastly, the 12V electric pump offers the quickest and easiest option, but also costs more.
Note: Not all manual air pumps are designed to blow up paddleboards, so don’t get a cheap pump for air mattresses. You need a high pressure pump rated for at least 15 PSI, preferably 20 PSI+, otherwise it won’t have the power to fill your SUP.
2. Smaller Paddleboards Take Less Time to Inflate:
Furthermore, board size matters. In other words, a 14-foot long SUP will take more time to inflate than a 10-foot long board.
Thicker paddleboards can also take longer because they typically have a higher PSI rating, so you can pump more air into them for extra rigidity. Keep in mind that over-inflating or under-inflating your paddle board can affect its performance and stability.
3. Can You Leave Your Paddle Board Inflated?
Alternatively, you can can leave your paddle board inflated. In other words, you may not have to deflate your paddle board after each use.
For example, if you usually use your SUP in one location, you may not need to pack it for travel. Plus, if you drive a truck, van or SUV, you may be able to secure it in the back of your vehicle without having to deflate and re-inflate it. And, if you live right on a lake, bay or waterfront, you can simply carry it to the water.
I personally leave my paddle boards inflated year round. That said, I make sure not to leave them in direct sun while not in use, because hot air can expand inside the board.
Alternatively, you can partially deflate SUPs between uses. This can cut your inflation time in half, plus it allows you to fold your board in half for easier and more compact storage.