A great way to help out the environment and your wallet is to reuse old Mylar balloons. If carefully deflated and stored, these balloons can be reinflated and used for multiple events. Because they are designed with a self sealing valve, Mylar balloons can be reused as long as the valve is not damaged and the seal remains airtight. Reuse of Mylar balloons takes some advance planning, however, and must begin with proper deflation and storage at the time of their first use.
To deflate the balloon in preparation for storage, run a long straw carefully back up through the self-adhesive valve and into the main body of the balloon. It is very important that you do this slowly and meticulously; if you are in a rush and puncture the balloon in the main body or the stem, the balloon is ruined.
Let the balloon mostly deflate out the straw on its own, then gently squeeze it until it is a flat sheet. When you cannot squeeze any more air out of the balloon, use your mouth to suck the last of the air out of the balloon and create a balloon that is completely flat and vacuumed out. Remove the straw before storage.
Store the balloon in a cool, dry place. If the balloon gets too hot, the sides of the balloon will adhere to one another and be ruined. Balloons can be folded and stored; however, if stored for too long or in inappropriate temperatures, they are likely to crack or tear at the creases. Ideally, they should be stored flat.
To reinflate Mylar balloons, you can do one of several things. The most cost-effective option is to reinsert a straw into the stem and blow it up with your mouth. This will not float like helium, however. You can also take your balloon to a local florist or card shop; most will reinflate a balloon for minimal cost. Finally, you can buy a disposable helium tank and reinflate the balloons on your own.
After reuse, the process can be repeated and the balloon can be used again and again until the seal gives out or is accidentally damaged. When this occurs, look for a Mylar recycling location near you, or look online for other great recycling crafts.