How To Blow Up An Inflatable Without A Pump

Recently on vacation, I purchased 2 inflatable rubber rings and couldn’t blow them up with my mouth!

Some inflatables are not designed to be blown up with your mouth alone.

This can leave you in a predicament of not being able to use your inflatables when you want to. Here we’ll show you some ways to blow up your inflatables without a pump. 

One method you can use to blow up an inflatable without a pump is by using a hairdryer in its cold setting. Cut up an empty water bottle in half, place and seal the bottle opening to the opening of the inflatable, then place the hairdryer and watch it inflate. You can also use a shop vacuum to quickly fill up the float. As a last resort, you may be able to use a bike pump to fill the float with air. 

It can be upsetting when a small thing like a pump is forgotten. However, there are things you can do to make sure those inflatables are usable.

This article will discuss how you can inflate inflatables without an electric pump.

My inflatables were blown up with a hairdryer!

Can You Blow Up an Inflatable/Paddling Pool with a Hair Dryer?

So you have an inflatable, but you have no pump to blow it up. Now, what do you do?

If you have a hair dryer then you have the perfect tool to blow up your inflatables. As long as your hair dryer has a cold setting you’re ready to get started. 

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to use your hair dryer as an inflatable pump, and a video at the end to show you exactly how to do it. 

StepsDirections 
Gather SuppliesFor this method, you’ll need your hair dryer with a cold setting, an empty disposable water bottle, a pair of scissors or a knife, and tape. 
Cut Water BottleUsing your scissors or knife, cut the water bottle in half. You’ll be using the end where the cap goes. Remove the cap from the top. 
Place the Tape Place a strip of tape around the top of the bottle. Use the tape to attach the bottle to the inflatable. It doesn’t have to be a perfect seal, just strong enough to hold the bottle in place to fill the inflatable. 
Put in the Hair DryerIn the large opening, add the hair dryer. Turn the hair dryer on its cold setting. Sit back and watch as the inflatable begins to fill with air. 
Table showing how to inflate an inflatable without a pump

Here is a YouTube video where you can watch how to do this process.

Can You Blow Up a Pool With a Hoover? 

If you’re looking for a quicker way, with fewer supplies then perhaps using a vacuum is a better option. The vacuum will need to have a blow function, which means that an ordinary house vacuum won’t work.

Shop vacuums are a good choice because they have a blower on them for more versatility. If you don’t have a shop vacuum then you get a small one, like the Craftsman Shop Vacuum. 

To use a vacuum to blow up inflatables all you need to do is put the hose on the blower spot instead of the suction. Put the hose over the inflatable’s filling port and watch as it quickly blows up. You can get a reducer for your vacuum to fit directly onto the inflatables, but it isn’t necessary. 

For a more detailed look at how to use a shop vacuum like this check out this YouTube video.

Can You Fill an Inflatable Pool with Water Instead of Air?

You can fill an inflatable with water, but it’s not a good idea. Water is heavier than air and the inflatable won’t function the way it’s supposed to. In some cases, you may even destroy the inflatable by creating a giant water balloon.

Inflatables are designed to hold air inside of them, and adding water creates more pressure for the inflatable. 

You may be thinking, but what about waterbeds? Those are filled with water. Water beds aren’t designed to have air in them, and they are made with a material that inflates with water. Air mattresses on the other hand are made with vinyl and aren’t strong enough to hold the pressure of filling them with water.

Instead of filling your air inflatables with water let’s discuss another method you can use to fill them with air. 

Can a Bike Pump Blow Up an Inflatable?

A hand or a foot pump, like a bike pump, is an excellent way to pump up an inflatable. It will take a little longer for the inflatable to blow up, but it does work. However, they don’t work on every type of inflatable, especially inflatables that need a specific PSI.

Bike pumps won’t work well on inflatables like inflatable paddle boards because they don’t have the right attachment to get good air pressure into the board.

They are designed to put air into balls and tires, and other types of inflatables may be more difficult to inflate because of the type of stem they use. 

Pool toys and other inflatables that have an open stem will be easier to fill with air using a bike pump. Inflatables with a stem that is incompatible with the bike pump won’t work correctly.

Unless you have an inflatable that needs something specific to it, then a bike pump will work on most other inflatables, like toys, inflatable rings, and even inflatable pools. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Blow Up a Float Without a Pump?

If you have a large pool float that you need filling there are a few ways to fill it. If you don’t have a pump you can use the hair dryer method mentioned above.

You can also use a shop vacuum to quickly fill up the float and begin using it. As a last resort, you may be able to use a hand pump, like a bike pump, to fill the float with air. 

Can You Use a Hair Dryer to Inflate a Pool?

As long as you have a hair dryer with a cold setting on it then yes. You’ll need a disposable water bottle to use a director of the air. Use the steps listed above in this article and watch the video to see exactly how to do it. All you need to do is tape the water bottle to the pool and use the hair dryer in the cold setting to fill the pool with air. 

How Do You Fill an Inflatable Tube With Air?

The quickest way to fill an inflatable tube is with a pump, or if you don’t have a pump, then a shop vacuum. The shop vacuum can use the blower and blow air quickly through the hose and into the tube. However, some tubes won’t be able to do this because of the type of stem it uses where it fills with air. You may have to use a bike pump, depending on what kind of stem the tube has. 

Final Thoughts 

Not having a pump to fill your inflatables can be frustrating, but it doesn’t mean you can’t use it. We enumerated a few methods you can use to make the most of your inflatables! One tried and tested method is using a hairdryer, use our article as a guide and watch your inflatable come to life. Have fun!