How Much Should I Inflate A Towable Tube?

With a sunny day and warm weather conditions, who don’t want to get out there and enjoy themselves. When it comes to outdoor enjoyments, nothing beats a beach. If the sea isn’t close by, a lake will do the trick. To top it all off and make the most out of your time, you need to take along your towable tube

If you don’t already have one, maybe it’s time to own one of those babies. So now you’ve got hold of a towable tube, the first order of business is – to inflate it! Being the cautious person you are, you go, “How much should I inflate a towable tube?” The brief answer is, enough to make it tight, but not too tight!

How Much Should I Inflate A Towable Tube?

Now, “Enough” is neither here nor there. The devil is in the details so read along. And pay close attention, you don’t want to miss out on this one.

Avoid Underinflation

An underinflated towed tube will visibly sag. Like many other saggings, this one is uncomfortable as well! More pull-force will be needed to drag the tube through the water. Whereas ideally it is supposed to be pulled across. 

Avoid Wrinkles

No wrinkles. Avoid those damn things like leeches! The wrinkles are the result of pressure imbalance and will result in structural deformity. In short, they’ll give the towed tube perfect spots to get ruptured. You definitely don’t want that and spoil a perfectly fun day.

Ensure Proper Sinkage

Too much sinkage of your towed tube is an obvious bummer. It will cause too much drag, make the tube bear too much tension. In other words, it’ll ruin both performance and durability. Ideally, the inflated tube is supposed to sink only a couple of inches (maximum 3) under the weight of a full-grown man.

Maintain Proper Pressure

All the points above can be made if and only if the proper pressure is maintained. And what is the proper pressure of a towed tube? Being a low-pressure and high volume item, the pressure a tube usually needs is 2 PSI. Check out the manual for your specific tube.

Don’t Keep It Overinflated

More is not always good, especially in the long run. If your towed tube is kept inflated for too long in a hot environment, it will get damaged. The same goes for the other way around. So if you put it aside for a few weeks, consider depressurizing it.

So, to round them all up – no wrinkles, no sagging, 2 to 3 inches depression, 2 PSI pressure, and finally no overinflation.  Ensure these and you’re good to go.

Inflate a Towable Tube

How To Inflate A Float Tube with A Manual Process?

Inflating a float tube with a manual process can be a non-starter for a lot of people. It can take a lot of time and more importantly the precious energy it sucks in could be otherwise put into more pleasurable uses. But for some of you brave hearts out there, this is how it goes:

  • Use a leaf blower to puff up your towed tube. It will only take two of you! One of you’ll hold the blower, the other the tube and that’ll do the trick.
  • Use a hand pump. It’ll take a long time and your hands may get tired. So take help from your buddy, it’ll increase both productivity and fraternity.
  • A foot pump is much easier to use than a hand pump. Because those leg muscles are much bigger and stronger. It’ll be a good exercise as well.
  • Improvise, use a bicycle pump. Who’s stopping you! It’s much sturdier and easier to carry. Hold it tight by your feet and keep pressing and pulling.

How To Inflate The Towable Tube With An Air Compressor?

Using an electro-mechanical means to inflate your towable is easy and enjoyable. So it’s highly recommended. An air compressor, if properly used, will get it done like a charm. Here’s how it goes:

  • Connect the air compressor to the electricity supply. Don’t switch it up right away.
  • As said earlier, the towed tubes usually operate at 2 PSI pressure. So set up the gauge accurately at 2 PSI.
  • Open the cap and spread out the tube. Make sure the bladder within it is lined up properly.
  • To ensure this lining up of the bladder, you may grab the valve and shake the tube ups and down a couple of times.
  • From a variety of attachments, choose the one that fits tightly to the speed valve.
  • Connect the attachment to the speed valve, make sure there’s no chance of any leakage. You don’t want to wait for more than needs be.
  • Switch the air compressor up and just sit back and relax. Before you know it, you’ll have your tube properly inflated. 
  • DON’T under or over inflate it!


Still have some questions? Let’s check the section below.

How much air do you put in a tube?

Put enough air in it to make it tight. It cannot be left sagging. Otherwise, it will cause too much drag and get damaged. Make sure there are no wrinkles. Wrinkles cause ruptures.

Why does my tube go underwater?

The towed tube going underwater is also known as, undermining. It happens due to either of two reasons. Underinflation or getting too close to the rope. An underinflated towed tube will naturally stay underwater due to buoyancy imbalance. Whereas the rider getting close to the rope and making it front heavy will also cause the water to flow over the tube.

How long should a boat tube rope be?

To avoid getting towed to the wake-crest, the rope is needed to be longer than 50 feet. Whereas a rope longer than 65 feet will hinder maneuverability. So the ideal is between 50 to 65 feet.


Towed tubing is one of those pleasure sources that need relatively less skill and you don’t have to make a white elephant of an investment either. Pleasant it may be but your enjoyment can be easily marred by the ill-maintained or poorly prepared towed tube. That’s where these tips and tricks come in.

So how much should I inflate a towable tube?

Well, it depends on many things.  Having all this info into your arsenal demands you go out and enjoy your towed tube. Be cautious and take good care of your tube. Always make sure you check the inflation of it before taking it out. A correctly inflated tube with a proper length of rope can magnify its performance and the joy that comes with it, manyfold.

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 18 Average: 4.7]

Leave a Comment