If you've ever inflated a beach ball, you know it takes some skill to plug it while maintaining an ideal air pressure and firmness. Air beds can be trickier to seal due to the size of the valve, especially if you've lost the original valve cap. To plug an air bed, use a pump or electric inflator, and then seal the valve with a universal plug to keep the air from leaking. You can find air bed replacement plugs online or wherever air beds and accessories are sold.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Air bed inflator/pump
- Replacement plug
Pull the tab on the mattress valve firmly toward you to fully extend the valve.
Insert the inflator or pump nozzle into the valve. Switch on the pump, and inflate the air bed to the desired pressure/firmness.
Push the valve back in firmly using the inflator/pump nozzle. You should feel slight resistance when pushing it in and hear a snap when the valve is completely in place. The top of the valve should be flush with the outer surface of the mattress.
Put your free thumb (the one not holding the pump) right next to the valve opening. Remove the nozzle from the valve quickly, placing your thumb over the valve just as quickly as you remove the pump so that very little air leaks during the transition.
Grab a replacement plug with your free hand, keeping your other thumb firmly over the valve. Wedge the pointed end of the plug quickly into the valve opening as you remove your thumb. Push and twist the plug into the mattress valve until it is secure.
Tips and warnings
- The more swiftly you can make the transitions between thumb, valve, and plug in Steps 4 and 5, the less air you will lose.
- Beware of blowing up a mattress with your mouth instead of the proper pump.