Air mattresses are great when you have people staying over at your place; they make a great guest bed, and you will rarely find your visitors complaining about their sleep when you see them the next morning. Another great thing about these types of bed are the portability; you can carry them around when going for a sleepover, or for camping trips, and generally use them wherever and whenever necessary. But, there is one thing that can make the job of using air mattresses somewhat challenging, which is the sometimes manual and challenging task of inflating it with air.

Most of the best air mattresses are provided with built-in pumps that can be switched on to inflate the material automatically. They just need a power source to function and is the most hassle-free way of blowing up an air mattress. But for models without this facility, you need to use external means. There are various different types of pump available to purchase for this exact task, and at a reasonably cheap price too. However you may not have one of these pumps immediately at hand, and perhaps aren’t in the position to purchase one at that moment in time. In this case, let’s see what ways we have at our disposal to help do the job.

1. Using An External Pump

How To Inflate An Air Mattress You can use various external pumps to fill air into the mattress. There are several kinds of pumps available including electric automatic ones, or manual hand pumps and foot pumps. Most of these are made specifically for the use of inflating an air bed and are available for purchase from almost any hardware store or are abundant online. To use these, simply open the protective cover of the valve on the mattress, and place the nozzle of the pump into it. If the nozzle is too big, use duct tape or some other material around the nozzle and valve opening to make it airtight. Then turn on the pump or use your hand or feet to inflate depending on the pump type. Continue the process until the mattress inflates to your preference. Then remove the nozzle and close the valve cap. When it comes to using anything other than a built-in pump, this is the best method.

2. Using Home Appliances

For the more fun but not so conventional methods, different types of home appliances with air blowing function can be used too. The list can include hairdryers, vacuum cleaners, leaf or snow blowers, etc. But the main problem with method is that those devices are not necessarily made to fit the nozzle. You have to use duct tape or melt some plastic around the nozzle to close the air gaps. This isn’t exactly safe if the air blowing out is anything but cold.

Hair Dryer

There are some precautions you need to adopt while using these appliances. For hair dryers, make sure the option is set to blow cold air. Otherwise hot air going into the mattress may melt the material or cause permanent damage to it. Also if you have used duct tape to create a vacuum, it may melt the tape.

Vacuum Cleaners

Ordinary vacuum cleaners without the blowing function can be converted to inflate the mattress. Take out the dirtbag and use a pipe to connect your mattress valve and the hole to which the bag was connected. Air will pass through the pipe and begin to inflate.

3. Using Garbage Bags

This is a unique but a slow way. Use long heavy-duty trash bags and swing them around to catch air inside them. Then grab and hold the open end of the bag tightly. Place the end around the valve opening, keep holding it tightly and press the bag with your body to push the air inside. You can apply pressure using your whole body. After a dozen attempts, depending on its size, your mattress should be inflated sufficiently for use.


These are some of the simple ways through which you could inflate your mattress very easily. Some are more effective than others, but in all honesty, nothing beats a purpose-built external air mattress pump. As you can see, most of the methods are easy and can be done in your home yourself, however, you must ensure that whichever method you use, there should only be cold air.

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