I have an air mattress with a hole and am trying to use vinyl cement to fix, well patch the hole. The cement I have is not in it's package so I had to use the this other glue, but it doesn't work. How can I fix it with the vinyl cement I've got? The floor is not cool to sleep on.
By Cheyenne from Lafayette, LA
In my experience, it sort of depends on where the leak is. If you have a pin hole size leak, find a piece of plastic like the bed, smear some goop brand glue on it and put it on the hole. Set a weight on it and let it sit overnight. Obviously you need to remove the air first!
If the hole is along a seam, you can try the same method but use a larger piece of plastic, perhaps 2 or 3 inches in a round shape. Square edges have a habit of coming loose on the corners.
All in all, the best way is to not get holes in them in the first place (grin). For camping, I always put a ground cloth down before placing my air mattress on it. (09/05/2010)
If you know where the hole/leak is you can use an inflatable boat patch kit found at sporting stores or in the sporting aisles of stores like Wal-Mart. (09/07/2010)
To me finding the hole is much more difficult than fixing it. Soap water is recommended, but liquid soap doesn't always do well with finding the tiny leaks. The best "soap" I have found for this is the stuff made for kids to blow bubbles. It has glycerin in it, which helps to form a strong bubble. This is similar to what professionals use to find leaks in air conditioners.
Mix the bubble solution into a spray bottle with water, 50/50, and gently spray the inflated mattress paying close attention to seams. Do this in small sections and be patient. Circle any leaks you find with a marker and continue until you have gone over the entire mattress. Deflate the mattress, remove the soap residue and clean around the hole with rubbing alcohol. To repair the hole I personally like to use Goop. You can find it at most large retail stores. Just apply Goop directly over the hole and rub it in. Allow to cure overnight.
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