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Why Won’t My Air Mattress Stay Inflated? (Incl. Helpful Tips)

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Whether you are an avid camper or in need of a temporary sleeping solution, you may find that at some point you will end up using an air bed.

Even though an inflatable bed is a great option for camping or unexpected guests they do come with issues such as losing air and being uncomfortable.

Why Won’t My Air Mattress Stay Inflated?

Many people’s negative experiences of air mattresses stem from finding themselves on the floor in the morning or feeling that the bed has lost a considerable amount of air overnight.

This can be for a variety of reasons.

Maybe you have exceeded the weight capacity, or you could have overinflated the mattress.

It is vital that when you notice any deflation you check for any leaks or punctures to prevent the problem from getting worse.

Here are some of the main reasons why this may happen to air mattresses and also why you may be having negative experiences when using your own.

To prevent deflation there are a few things that you can consider to ensure you are using it correctly and also what you need to look out for when choosing the right air mattress for you.

Buying An Air Mattress

There may be many reasons you are buying an air bed.

Overall they are the most versatile and practical items you can own when in need of a sleeping solution when away from home or for those unexpected guests.

Advantages to owning an inflatable mattress are:

  • Ease of use – These days people can inflate an air mattress in seconds and deflating has become just as easy.
  • Storage – If you haven’t got room for a guest bed or sofa bed then this is the best alternative without scrimping on comfort or taking up precious space.
  • Affordable – There are a huge variety of air mattresses within almost anyone’s budget these days. They can go from a few dollars to a few hundred but with an ever-growing market, you are sure to find one to fit your needs and budget.
  • Comfort – whether you are used to a firm mattress or soft, using an air bed can guarantee that you have the ideal support. Many come with customizable support at the touch of a button.

Now with the good always comes the bad, here are some disadvantages to owning and using an air bed.

  • Finding the right one – This is a difficult task, with such an enormous range to choose from on the market it can become overwhelming when looking at the different aspects and features each bed has to offer.
  • Inflation – Many beds have built-in pumps but over time you may find that the bed itself is not performing as it once was. You may find yourself wondering ‘how long should an air mattress stay inflated?’ Don’t worry we will answer this a little further down.

Things to look out for when choosing an air bed

When you choose an air bed you need to consider the following things:

  • Material – Is it durable? Will it stretch over time? Is it water-resistant? – Now you won’t be taking your mattress white water rafting but if you have little ones you know the day will come when an accident occurs. Being water-resistant may come at the top of your list. 
  • Height – Height is an important factor when choosing an air mattress. If they are too low it can make getting in and out of them a real chore. This is especially important if you will have older relatives potentially using it, therefore buying a raised bed is a really good option.
  • Price – As you research, you will find that some people will spend hundreds of dollars on their bed and others may only spend a few dollars. You need to ask yourself, is buying expensive really better quality? The proof is in the reviews my friend. Researching reviews will give you a better insight into what real people thought about each product.

Now let’s share some great handy hints and tips to ensure you get the most out of your mattresses. 

Top Tips For Keeping Your Air Mattress Inflated  

If you are struggling to keep your air mattress inflated then these top tips will ensure that you are doing everything right to prevent your mattress from developing any sudden leaks or deflating.

They will also help you and your guests get a great night’s sleep.

After all, owning and using an air bed is a super convenient way of getting your head down after a busy day. 

Watch out

Before inflating and laying the bed out it is vital that you inspect the area for any sharp objects that may puncture the bed.

If outdoors ensure that you are not too close to rocks or campfires and remove any sharp sticks that could become a hazard. 

The nature of materials used to create an air mattress can be susceptible to punctures and holes.

It is obvious that if this happens then the air pressure will decrease.

When at home it is important that you remove any ornaments or toys that could damage the outer layer.

It is no joke if you pull out the bed to find that granny’s antique has punctured the bed she may be sleeping on that night.

Inspection Time

Time to put those inspection skills to the test.

Don’t even think of inflating the mattress until you have checked over your bed.

As handy as these beds are they can become damaged in storage.

Maybe they were not packed away properly or left unused in a humid location for an extended period of time. 

Also, no one wants to sleep on a bed of mold.

Mold and mildew love growing in damp dark conditions and if you last used your mattress in the great outdoors then the chances of packing your bed away whilst it was still damp can be high. 

No matter what the situation is, it is important for you to spot any small punctures before inflating as these tend to be the main reason for a mattress losing air and you can repair these with a handy puncture repair kit.

Inflating them without noticing may cause further problems or the puncture to become worse.

If the puncture is not obvious to you then you can try putting pressure on the bed and listen to hear if any air is escaping, another way of testing this would be to put the bed in a bath of water.

If air is escaping through a puncture then air bubbles will be visible. 

Only when you are certain that there are no punctures should you continue your investigation as to why your air mattress is deflating.

How Cold is too Cold?

Temperature is also one of the main culprits in bed deflation.

Throughout the evening air particles can shrink as the temperature drops and leaving you with a bed that looks as if it has lost air.

Be sure that the room you are sleeping in has a constant comfortable temperature as if exposed to extreme cold weather you may be left on the floor in the morning. 

On the other hand, you need to ensure that the bed is not too close to any heat source.

Radiators, campfires, etc can cause distress to the material of the bed and increase the stretch of the PVC.

Remember that over stretching can put stress on the seams.

Keeping your bed in a well-ventilated warm environment will help any deflation that may occur during the evening. 


Looking at the manual is important as each air mattress will have its own maximum user capacity as well as the maximum inflation capacity.

Inflating the bed to its capacity is the best course of action and in fact, many manufacturers recommend that this be done a few times before its first use as this can help iron out any stretching issues.

Over time the materials can stretch and feel underinflated after use.

This is perfectly normal once you use the bed a few times the stretch will ease and you will be able to fill your mattress to your desired firmness.

Do make sure that you do not overfill as it can put pressure on the joints and seams of the bed.

Weakened seams can let the air escape. 

Dress to impress

When using an air bed we want it to feel as comfortable as our beds at home.

Take the extra step to dress your bed.

Using the correct bedding will allow the mattress to be protected from skin cells, night sweats, and accidents if not water-resistant.

Also laying on sheets will make your air mattress more comfortable for the user.

Whilst this is more of a tip for comfort rather than solving deflation you need to ensure that the user isn’t sitting on the air bed as if it were a normal bed.

By doing this pressure is placed on one section forcing the air to other parts of the bed.

Think of a balloon when you place pressure on one side it is more susceptible to bursting the opposite side.

The air will pressurize in the other end and eventually burst. 

So while dressing your mattress to look and feel like a real bed it is imperative that the user understands it will need to be treated accordingly.

How long can you leave an air mattress inflated?

The answer to this question is dependent on the user.

Some mattresses require additional pumping every so often to ensure the maximum comfort level is achieved every evening.

Overall there is no recommended time for how long a mattress should stay inflated.

Just be cautious whilst it is up it may become a trip hazard or take up space.

Let’s face it these days they can be inflated and deflated in seconds.

Putting your air bed to bed

When not using your mattress it is important that you store it correctly.

Before packing it away it is vital that you inspect it to make sure it is clean and dry.

As you fold it away you will notice that you may require more patience than you have as some beds can be fairly awkward.

It is here you may wish to check the folding instructions as the frustration may grow and you will just feel like stuffing it away in any old shape STOP! Doing this can increase the stress on the mattress and also add to your frustration the next time you use it.

To help, ensure that the mattress is fully deflated, this will make folding it into its box/storage bag a lot easier.

If your inflatable mattress does not come with a storage solution then any sturdy box will suffice.

Make sure that your bed isn’t near any extreme heat or cold sources that can damage the material and weaken them over time.

You may find that you don’t want to pack the bed away completely because it is going to be reused.

If this is the case then it is important to understand that children and pets may be attracted to the new bouncy feature in your home.

If you leave your air bed unattended then you can pretty much guarantee that children will think of it as a bouncy house.

From the point previously discussed it is no surprise that having children bouncing on the bed will cause distress to the bed material and put additional pressure on joints and seams.

Pets are another issue when it comes to an inflatable mattress as they will enjoy trying to get comfy on the new addition in the room.

Just by walking their claws can puncture the membrane and cause deflation in seconds. 

Nowadays many manufacturers create flocked top beds – these are more hard-wearing but you still will have to take care.


There you have it! Hopefully, we have disclosed many of the reasons why your mattress may be deflating and some helpful handy hints to help you keep your mattress in tip-top condition.

Remember that following the above tips will help you get to the bottom of why your air mattress won’t stay inflated.

It will also ensure that it can provide you with a comfortable night’s sleep and help you feel better prepared for when you next use your air mattress. 


Is It Ok To Keep an Air Mattress Inflated?

The simple answer to this question is yes.

You can keep your mattress inflated even if you are using it for long periods of time and it won’t affect the quality.

However, if you have a busy household with pets and children you will need to be careful as they may love to use the mattress to bounce and this can impact the durability. 

How Do I Stop My Air Mattress From Deflating?

Air can expand and retract at different temperatures.

With this in mind pay close attention to the temperature of the room that the mattress is in.

Be careful not to overfill the mattress as this can cause a slow puncture and if you have exceeded the weight capacity of the bed it can also damage the coils and seams allowing air to escape. 

Is It Normal for Air Mattresses To Lose Air?

As with any purchase over time materials can wear and products may not work as well as they did in the first instance.

Environmental factors such as temperature can affect the air inside your bed. 

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