How to Patch an Air Mattress in Emergency (with tape or Kit)

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Because air mattresses aren’t that expensive and might not be something you use all the time, you might not think of them as something that you might spend time fixing.

However, knowing how to patch an air mattress can be an incredibly important thing. It can also be incredibly easy as there are many different kits out there that you can use.

First Find The Leak!

The first thing you will want to do when you feel an air mattress leak is find the leak on the mattress. This is really hard to do sometimes as they might be impossible to see. You may need to inflate your air mattress and list for the leak.

You may also be able to feel the leak by putting water on your hand and putting your hand near the mattress. When you feel the cold air on your hand, you’ll be able to tell where the air mattress is leaking from. If you have time, you can also use soapy water to see where the bubbles form because of the leak.

Which method you use will depend on where you are. If you have time, you might be able to use some of the more complicated methods. However, you will want to check the valve first.

If the leak is there, then you might not be able to patch it. If it is elsewhere on the mattress, then you should still be able to repair it.

Use Emergency Patches

If you go out camping or are planning to be somewhere unusual, you will want to know how to patch an air mattress with an emergency patch. This is especially important to know before you go somewhere so that you can pack the right materials to be able to patch the air mattress.

The main material that you will want is actually duct tape. This tool has been handy for fixing all kinds of things in our lives, but it is an especially great material to be using when it comes to down to an air mattress.

As great as duct tape is, it is only a temporary patch. The glue on the tape will not hold as long as the patches that are sold specifically for air mattresses. If you have to do an emergency patch, then you should plan to do a more permanent patch or be prepared to throw away the air mattress shortly.

Here is a popular tape available on Amazon to patch up Air mattress>

tape to patch air mattress

Long Lasting Patches

If you want a longer lasting fix, then you will want to look for an actual patch kit. Some companies sell kits specifically for their air mattresses. Sometimes you’ll get a kit with the purchase of an air mattress. If you don’t, then don’t fret. These kits can be found in many stores that sell camping supplies.

Here is a very popular Kit available on>

air mattress repair kit

A kit generally consists of the patch material, glue (which you may have to purchase outside of the kit), and sandpaper.

You will use the sandpaper only if the air mattress that you are repairing has a leak on a side that has fabric or velvet-like material on it. Sanding away the material makes sure that the patch has a flat surface to stick to when you put the glue on the mattress.

In order to get the most out of a patch, you will have to completely deflate the mattress. This is to make sure that your air mattress won’t have any air bubbles getting stuck in the patch. You will sand the spot if necessary, then you will get out the patch material.

Some kits have pre-cut pieces and some provide raw material so that you can cut it to the right size yourself. Regardless, you should pick a patch or cut out a patch that allows for at least a
little bit of extra space beyond the tear.

Then you will apply glue to the tear and then place the patch. You will want to let the patch dry for several hours. If possible, you will also want to put something heavy on the patch to make sure that it will be pressed down.

After you’ve applied the patch, check it by inflating the mattress and seeing if there is a leak still coming from the area. Hopefully, this will be the end of your problems and you will be able to use your air mattress for a little bit longer.

How to Patch an Air Mattress: the DIY Route

If you don’t have a patch kit and don’t want to spend money on it, then you may want to try to create a patch with materials that you have. You may want to avoid doing this just because it may void your warranty on the air mattress if there was one. It may also not hold for as long.

You will follow generally the same procedure as you would for a normal patch. You will still need to sand away any velvet material. Then you will need to get a piece of material for your patch.

The material you should be using will be a thin kind of plastic like a shower curtain. You will glue the material down and make sure that the mattress is left alone for several hours. After that time, you will be able to test the mattress and see what happens.

However, there is a note here. Do not use hot glue as the glue for your air mattress patch. While many crafty people have this at their disposal, the air mattress may develop a bigger hole or disintegrate because of the heat.

You will need to still use a glue that you would otherwise find in a kit or would be suggested by the manufacturer of your air mattress.


Knowing how to patch an air mattress is an incredibly important skill for anyone to have.

You will be able to make sure that the air mattress you have lasts for a long time.

Of course, if your air mattress has a leak, you will probably want to replace it sooner rather than later. But a patch can make sure that you can get a couple more days out of the air mattress.

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