Considerations for using inflatables

Considerations for Using Inflatables

Not all inflatables have the same use and upkeep requirements. There are several important things to consider when selecting, using, operating, and displaying your inflatables.

How Do I Fill My Inflatable?

Most commercial and consumer inflatables use either a commercial blower or an air pump. An inflatable or commercial company will likely list the right product for the specific inflatable you select. There are also types of commercial inflatables that are sealed, meaning that a continual source of power and a blower isn’t necessary. It’s always important to check that inflatables are well-secured before inflating them.

Continuous or Cold Air Inflatables

Continuous inflatables are structures that require an attached blower to retain their inflation. These are the more commonly seen form of inflatable. There is a steady input of air into the structure, which is necessary for large-scale inflatables that accommodate people in and on them. The air in these inflatables isn’t required to be cold, but the terminology makes the use distinct from hot air balloons. The constant flow ensures ambient or static pressure in and outside the membrane, keeping the inflatable filled.

A continuous inflatable requires a power source to ensure that the blower works constantly. For some events, a power source may not be available, so this form of inflatable would not be useful in those situations.

Noncontinuous or Sealed-Air Inflatables

Sealed inflatables can be filled once and then do not need additional inflation afterward. Depending on the size of the noncontinuous inflatable, it may be able to be inflated by mouth, hand pump, or electric air pump.

A benefit of a noncontinuous inflatable is that a power source may only be needed for the initial inflation. A continuous power source is not necessary, which is a great benefit for certain venues. However, sealed inflatables are often made of less durable materials than cold air inflatables, and they are better suited to decoration.

What to Be Careful of When Using and Setting Up Inflatables

To have an eye-catching inflatable for a fun event, it’s essential that care and safety measures are taken when setting out the inflatable.

  • Surface: Uneven ground is not ideal for basing the inflatable. You want flat, even, and level ground. Clear any debris or objects on the ground before setting it up.
  • Overhead: There shouldn’t be any tree branches, electrical lines, or other obstructions over the spot where the inflatable is being placed. This can be dangerous in any situation, but it can be especially hazardous if the height of the inflatable is misjudged.
  • Exits: If the inflatable is interactive and has exits and entrances, these must all be clear locations that are not obstructed by trees or buildings.
  • Secure: It’s essential to properly secure an inflatable to the ground, typically with sandbag weights and/or metal stakes.
  • Weather: When there are outdoor inflatables, always monitor changes in the weather. In case of thunderstorms or high winds, have a plan to quickly and safely deflate the inflatable.
  • Length of Use: For continuous inflatables, the blower generally should run the entire time the inflatable is in use. However, if this is a long period of time, there is a possibility of a commercial blower overheating. Allowing the blower to turn off and rest for 10 to 15 minutes every few hours can help prevent this.

How Do I Make My Inflatables Stand Out?

Safety is the most important feature of erecting an inflatable, but there are also other things to consider. You’re getting this inflatable to catch people’s attention and stand out—so make the most of it:

  • Lighting: Spotlights, LED lighting, and other effective techniques can ensure that your inflatables stand out, even in the dark. Some inflatables have built-in lights.
  • Movement: Some structures, like inflatable tube dancers, move, attracting more eyes.
  • Hanging Banners: Certain inflatable archways or other structures have velcro or d-rings to add banners, which can add color and movement.

An Instent custom inflatable replica or archway is a great addition to an event, and our inflatable tables have built-in LEDs.