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Care and Maintenance of Your Inflatable SUP

Care and Maintenance of Your Inflatable SUP

Investing in an inflatable SUP is a decision that should provide you with years of enjoyment.  Proper care and maintenance will prolong its lifespan and ensure optimal performance throughout its use. Here are the most important things you can do to keep your inflatable paddle board in top-notch condition.

Avoid Dragging Your Inflatable SUP

High-quality inflatable paddleboards are designed to be more durable than their hardboard counterparts, making them less susceptible to damage from accidental drops or collisions. However, inflatable boards have a unique vulnerability to abrasion. Dragging your board over rough surfaces like concrete or cement (particularly when folded) can wear through the material, potentially resulting in damage that requires patching.

To prevent abrasion damage, always use the carrying handle to lift the board completely off the ground when transporting it. When handling a deflated, rolled-up board, avoid standing it on its rolled edges, as the folded areas can easily be damaged by even small movements against rough surfaces. If you have no choice but to set your rolled board down on a rough surface, be sure to lay it flat and move it to a softer surface as soon as you can.

Rinse After Use - Every Time

Rinsing your board with fresh water after each use helps remove any elements that could degrade its materials. A quick hose-down removes salt, sand, and debris and prevents dirt from becoming ground in and causing unsightly stains.

While you have the hose out, it is also a good idea to rinse off your accessories. If you have an adjustable paddle, take it apart and rinse each section. This will dislodge sand and dirt and prevent binding of moving parts and joints.  Leashes, water shoes, dry bags, and other accessories should also be rinsed to keep them clean and free of odors.

Give It A Good Scrub Down Occasionally

Not all dirt will come off with a simple rinse.  A periodic soapy scrub-down will keep your board looking great and extend its life. A small amount of dish soap and warm water are all you need for basic cleaning.  

You can wash your board with just about anything - a sponge, towel, or scrub brush - but using the right tools can make it easier and more effective.  The most effective and comfortable way we have found to scrub a board is to use a soft-to-medium bristle brush mounted to a broom handle.  Scrubbing while standing puts less strain on your body and allows you to apply more pressure than you can with a  handheld brush.

Once finished, it is important to make sure to give your board a thorough spray to rinse off any residual detergent. 

Here is the news no one wants to hear: some dirt or marks won't come off. Period.  While nearly all components of a paddle board are non-porous there are chemical reactions that can take place when elements come in contact with EVA and PVC, causing discoloration of the surface layer.

The solution is to accept it, realizing paddle boarding is an outdoor activity and that your board, paddles and gear are going to pick up some dirt, wear and the surface marks during your adventures not matter how careful and diligent you are with maintenance. 

Limit Direct Sun Exposure When Not In Use

Ultraviolet rays from the sun can cause various issues that shorten your board's lifespan. Printed designs on the board surface and deck pad pigments may fade, glue joints can degrade, and intense heat can cause materials to wear or soften.  When off the water on a hot day, keep the board in the shade or place it face down to protect the deck pad and other components. For storage, an indoor location is ideal, but if keeping it outdoors, choose a shaded area protected from the elements.

On water, your paddle board won't experience issues with UV exposure to a level of concern. The movement of the board, changes in direction, and contact with the water help keep the board cool while in use.

Fold or Roll with Care

Inflatable SUPs are designed to be folded or rolled for storage and transportation. To avoid stressing the materials, don't roll the board too tightly or fold it in areas with components not meant to bend, such as fins, valves, and other attachments.

Boards are generally designed to be folded in a particular direction or sequence, and it is best practice to adhere to the specific instructions for your board if available.

Store in a Safe Location

Select a clean, dry, temperature-controlled space free of rodents for storage. A garage can be suitable, as long as the board is not at risk of being moved or dragged. Consider hanging the board from rafters or using kayak arms for wall mounting for added convenience and protection.

An inflatable paddle board can be stored safely either inflated or rolled, as long as it is in an environment of moderate temperature. 


Proper care and maintenance of your inflatable SUP are crucial for maximizing its lifespan and ensuring an enjoyable paddling experience for years to come. By avoiding abrasion, regularly rinsing and cleaning your board, minimizing unnecessary UV exposure, and storing your board correctly, your investment in a quality inflatable paddle board will continue to perform optimally and maintain its appearance and value.


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Pumped Up SUP is an online store specializing in high-performance inflatable stand up paddle boards and accessories. We're always happy to answer your questions - just give us a call at 1-877-777-1769.

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