It’s a question that’s been asked by campers and RVers for years – can you over inflate an air mattress? The answer, as it turns out, is yes. And if you’re not careful, it can happen quite easily. In this post, we’ll take a look at what happens when you over inflate an air mattress, and how to avoid it.
Can you over inflate an air mattress?
Yes you can over inflate an air mattress. Too much air inside your air bed will actually make it feel less comfortable than lower air pressure. Also, if you over inflate your air mattress you are at risk of permanently stretching and damaging the material of the air bed. This can lead to cracks and holes appearing, shortening the lifespan of your air mattress.
What happens if you over inflate an air mattress?
Damage the mattress material
When you over inflate an air mattress, the first thing that happens is the material starts to stretch. This can cause the seams to split, or even tear open. If this happens, you’ll have a big hole in your mattress, and all of the air will start rushing out. Even if you don’t cause an immediate hole in your air bed, over inflating will damage the material of the mattress which in turn will lead to cracks appearing over time.
Noisy air bed
In addition, when overstretched the material can start to crinkle and make noise, which can be quite annoying.
Uncomfortable air bed
The other thing that happens if you over inflate your air mattress is the mattress will become very firm. This can make it uncomfortable to sleep on, and it can also make it difficult to get in and out of bed. In addition, the firmness can cause the mattress to bounce, which can be dangerous if you’re not careful. In fact, sleeping on an over inflated air mattress can hurt your back.
Can an air mattress burst?
An inflatable mattress won’t usually burst directly from being over inflated. However, you may ‘pop’ the seams if you regularly over inflate your mattress before use.
Normally, a pump used for inflating air mattresses will actually stop pumping air into the mattress before you get to the stage where the air bed would ‘pop’ or burst as the air inside the mattress will be a higher pressure than the pump can produce. Carrying on pumping at this point will just blow air out of the pump nozzle.
Most modern air mattresses come with a build in electric pump which will also stop pumping air inside the mattress once it reaches the maximum pressure.
However, if you put too much air into your inflatable mattress (think over 80% capacity) then you run the risk of putting too much pressure on the seams and this will eventually cause a rip in the seam which lets the air out of the mattress and ‘bursts’ the mattress.
Can you inflate an air mattress while laying on it?
You should never try to fill up your air mattress while laying on it. Doing so prevents the mattress from being able to inflate properly. Electric pumps may also burn out if you continually leave them on while you place extra presssure on your air bed. Also, you risk doing damage to the fabric of the bed by pushing down on it while the pump is attempting to force air into it.
How much should you inflate an air mattress?
Electric pump mattresses
For a self inflating mattress with an electric pump you are normally able to tell when the air bed is getting too full as the motor noise will change to a slight whine. At this point, open the air valve and remove a little air before you use the bed.
If you are using a foot pump or other method, the easiest way to tell how much you should inflate an air mattress is to measure the width of the mattress before you start to inflate it, and then add about 1 inch. Once the inflated width of the air bed reaches that measurement you should stop inflating it.
How to tell if your air mattress is full?
If you want an easy way to tell how much air you should put inside your mattress, simply pump it up so that it has just started to fill out and then sit on it. You should almost, but not quite, touch the floor. Remember that when you actually lie on it your weight will be distributed accross more of the mattress.
How long does it take to inflate an air mattress?
Air mattresses that come with built in electric pumps will only take around 3-4 minutes to fully inflate. If you are using a foot pump or hand pump then you can be looking at anything up to 15 minutes to fully inflate your mattress, depending on your pump and work levels!
How long should you leave an air mattress inflated?
If you are going to be using a mattress for more than one night you should leave it inflated if possible, to avoid the stress on the fabric of inflating and deflating the air bed. However, you will likely need to top up the air inside your mattress before each time you use it, as most air mattresses will naturally deflate slightly during each use.
Conclusion: Can you over inflate an air mattress?
Inflating your air mattress is easy, but it’s important to be careful not to over inflate it. If you do, you could end up with a hole in the mattress, or an uncomfortable and dangerous situation. So, use an air pump with a pressure gauge, or measure the width of the mattress before inflating it, and you’ll be sure to have a good night’s sleep.