No, you cannot inflate a pool with water instead of air. Inflatable pools are typically made of a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and rubber composite that is built up in layers and they need to be filled with air in order to take shape and hold water.
To inflate an inflatable pool, you can use an air compressor, a shop-vac, a blow dryer with a water bottle, an electric pump, or even manually by blowing into the air inlet on the inflatable pool yourself.
What if I try to do it anyway? Is there anything I should be concerned about?
If you try to fill an inflatable pool with water instead of air, it will not inflate and it may even cause damage to the pool.
Water is much heavier than air and the pressure of the water could cause the pool to burst or rupture, potentially causing injury or property damage.
It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and only use air to inflate an inflatable pool.
But you can fill a balloon with water and it seems to hold up well. Why can’t it work for an inflatable pool?
While it is true that you can fill a balloon with water and it will hold up, the same cannot be said for an inflatable pool. Balloons are made of a different material than inflatable pools, and they are not designed to hold the weight and pressure of water.
Inflatable pools, on the other hand, are designed to hold water and withstand the weight and pressure of it. However, they are only able to do so because they are filled with air first, which provides the structure and support necessary to hold the water.
Without the air, the walls of the pool would collapse under the weight and pressure of the water, causing the pool to fail and potentially causing injury or property damage.
What are some of the proper ways to inflate a pool with air then?
There are several proper ways to inflate an inflatable pool with air. One way is to use an air compressor* with the correct pressure and volume capability for your pool.
*Some instruction manuals warn you to avoid using an air compressor because it is very easy to over-inflate the product if you don’t know what you’re doing. Taken straight from the manual: “Do not over-inflate or use high pressure air compressor since it may result in seam leaks.” And: “If there is any straining at the seams, the product is over-inflated.” You use a compressor at your own risk.
Another way is to use an electric pump, a shop-vac, or even manually by blowing into the air inlet on the inflatable pool yourself. Below, I share with you an easy and safe method that doesn’t require any of these products.
It is important to ensure that all hoses and attachments are firmly connected to both your air compressor and pool before switching it on and to turn off the air compressor when you are done.
Quick method to inflate your pool: no pump required
If you don’t have an air compressor or bike pump and you certainly don’t want to manually blow up the pool with your mouth, then with a plastic bottle, some tape, and a hairdryer, you can easily inflate your pool with air in around 1-2 minutes.
Check out the video below to see how.
For those whose prefer written instructions:
- Cut a plastic water bottle in half.
- Tape the top opening of the water bottle to the air inlet. The tape does not have to be leak-proof.
- Stick a hairdryer into the bottom opening of the water bottle and turn it on.
- Within 1-2 minutes, your inflatable pool will be fully inflated.