I bought a large inflatable water slide for use by the pool:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
This is a pretty cool slide. It appears to be very well made. The
material (vinyl?) is very heavy.
But I was not prepared for the setup and, especially, the take-down
time. It took me well over half an hour to inflate the slide using a
small portable compressor.
I am now trying to deflate it and not having a lot of success. If
anyone has a better way, I'd love to hear about it.
The large chambers (there are 4) have what the manufacturer calls a
This is a 2-part valve. The cap opens a one-way valve that lets air in
but not out. There is another "nut" that removes the valve entirely
leaving an unobstructed opening about 3/4" wide. I opened all 4 Boston
valves. The large chambers deflated about 90% in a few minutes. That
last 10% is not going well.
With an air mattress, I would just roll it up from one end and force
the air out. This thing is too complicated and too heavy for that.
The small chambers (also 4) have the standard plug valve with a flap
to keep most of the air from escaping. This is fine for inflating, but
difficult for deflating. I have to stick something into the valve to
hold the flap open.
I tried using the vacuum cleaner. It works reasonably well on the
large chambers with the Boston valves, but not so well with the
smaller valves. I don't have anything that I can use to prop the valve
flap open that won't either block the opening or get sucked up by the
I see that Amazon has a bunch of "inflator/deflator" gizmos. Most of
them have no reviews. Doesd anyone know if any of these are any good?
That is, better than the vacuum cleaner?
Here are a few:
Rave Sports Hi-Speed Inflator. Reviewers say it is fast and powerful,
but runs hot and may not be able to inflate more than one large item.
Sevylor 110 Volt Mini Inflator/Deflator. $18. I can't tell if it comes
with a hose.
Metro Vacuum 110-IDAR 110-Volt Magc Air Inflator/Deflator. $50. This
looks like the right tool if it works.
Marine inflater/deflator. $73. This is 12V only, so not convenient for
Black & Decker makes an inflater, which I thought about buying, but I
don't think it can deflate.