When I first began paddle boarding, inflatable boards were a fairly new invention, and it made sense that different manufacturers (there weren’t many at the time) would have different ways of inflating their boards. Over time, the technology has kept evolving and with that constant improvement of technology, we’ve gotten to the point that the valves are better, and inflating a board is much faster, and we are very close to having a dominant type of valve on the market.
Are inflatable paddle board pumps universal?
Paddle Board pumps are not universal, but there are only a few very common air valve types these days, and many pumps will come with adapters to work with just about every new board sold. The H3 valve by Halkey-Roberts is by far the most commonly used valve, according to the rental shop pros we talked to.
“Our boards have the Halkey-Roberts valve, and our hand pumps work for 99% of the boards out there.”Jamie from SUP California. Folsom, CA
Below are a few basically universal SUP pumps, and some additional recommendations from the rental shop pros that I spoke with.
“Universal” SUP pumps the pros suggest.
|Name||Where to buy||Notes|
|OutdoorMaster – The Shark||Amazon here||Up to 20PSI, 12v car connection, works with C7 & H3 valves. Recommended by multiple rental shops.|
|Red Paddle Co – Titan Pump||Amazon here||Multiple rental shops, and Sports Basement use Red Paddle Co and like their manual Dual Action pump.|
|Bravo High-Pressure 12v Pump||Amazon here||Up to 15 PSI, comes with 8 valve adapters|
|Tower Paddle Board Pump||Amazon here||Another electric pump recommended by multiple shops.|
Common types of valves
Halkey-Roberts New Short, Summit 2 and H3 valves.
These are by far the most common valve types, and most pumps designed for paddle boards will use this type of valve. You also can find adapters for these valves very easily on Amazon. (click here to see on Amazon)
Leafield Marine C7/D7
The D7 valve is designed to replace the very successful C7 valve, and has a shorter internal profile than many other valves. Often used in Kayaks and other inflatable boats.
Can you repair or replace an air valve on your SUP?
You can repair or replace the air valve on a paddle board fairly easily. The most commonly used valve is a Halkey-Roberts valve, which has two main pieces that screw together on each side of the board fabric to create a tight seal. Separating the two sections and checking for blockages should be one of the first things you do to troubleshoot a board that is deflating.
The most recommended SUP pumps
I surveyed 10 rental shops from around the US to find out what type of pumps they use and recommend. The most common recommendation was to purchase and use the pump that comes with your board. This may not always be an option, particularly for those of us that are looking to buy paddleboards used and save some money.
How do you fix a paddle board pump?
The most common issue with manual pumps will be the O-ring failing. For these kinds of pumps, a few screws and an inexpensive replacement part will be all you need. If the hose on your pump breaks, or the gauge doesn’t seem right, replacement parts for common pumps are fairly easy to come by.
How much does a SUP pump weigh?
The average paddle board pump weighs about 6 pounds. Some electric powered pumps get up to 14 lbs, with the manual pumps being 3-5 lbs on average. Some of the pumps come with a carrying case, but many do not.
Can you inflate a paddle board with an electric pump?
You definitely can use an electric pump to inflate your paddle board. Look for a high quality electric pump, and more importantly, a brand with a reputation for good customer service. Any electric device can have defects, so look for pump makers with good warranties and reputations. Red Paddle Co, and iRocker brands are known to have good return policies if anything goes wrong.
How long does it take to inflate a paddle board?
On average, you’ll need 12 mins to pump up your SUP. If you have a manual pump, plan for 15-20 mins to pump up your paddle board, and 7-15 for an electric pump. The first 5-10 psi go much faster than the final few psi as the board gets very rigid and the pressure builds.