Tips For Deflating Your Kayak

Tips For Deflating Your Kayak

We covered tips for inflating your inflatable kayak in a separate article, but how to deflate your kayak correctly is just as important. It’s not something I’d given a lot of thought to previously, so I decided to do a little research and find some tips for deflating your kayak.

This brief article will give you some hints and tips on deflating your kayak, ready for it to be stored until its next use. 

Find a Good Spot to Get Your Kayak Out of the Water

Before we talk about deflating your kayak, we need to get it out of the water. A simple enough process that can be made difficult by choosing the wrong location.

The best location is a dock, but there’s not always space available, so the next best is a gently sloping shore, where you can step out into shallow water. 

Wherever you end up bringing your kayak ashore, make sure you have plenty of space around you and that the ground is free from anything that might damage the kayak.

Empty and clean out the kayak

Remove anything you can from the inflatable kayak, such as the seat, paddles, dry bags, etc. Next, flush everything with clean water, starting with the inside of the kayak, before flipping it over and doing the underside. This way, as much of the water as possible, drains away.

Don’t forget to hose down the seat, paddles, and anything else you took out of the kayak.

Thoroughly dry your kayak

This is an essential step and worth taking your time over. It is much easier to dry your kayak while it is inflated, so do as much as possible now.

To speed the process along, use a towel or t-shirt to soak up as much of the water as possible. Now, if you have time and the weather is good, leave the kayak in the sun to air dry. Turning the kayak around and over occasionally will help get water out of the nooks and crannies.

If the weather isn’t so good and you can’t find it anywhere undercover, then remove as much water as possible, deflate the kayak, and plan to dry it properly when you get home.

Deflating your kayak

Deflating your kayak is best done in a particular order. Unless the manufacturer specifies anything different, start with the sides and then move on to the floor.

  • Start by initially opening the valves a little to release the pressure before removing them completely.
  • You’ll need to apply gentle pressure to the compartments to force out most of the air.
  • Loosely refit the valves to prevent unwanted dust and dirt from getting into them.
  • Now we need to fold the kayak while continuing to push out the remaining air.

Folding your Kayak

As you fold, more air will escape, so it’s essential to leave the valves exposed. Folding the kayak to put the valves inside the folds will prevent the air from escaping. Continue folding, and removing air, until you have got as much air out as possible. Now close the valves and put the kayak into the storage/carry bag.


Deflating your kayak correctly is essential to protecting it and giving you years of trouble-free enjoyment. Following a few simple steps will protect your investment and mean the next time you inflate your kayak, it will be ready to go and in perfect condition.

This article was last updated on March 2, 2021 .

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Categorized as Kayaking
Martin Parker

By Martin Parker

Martin Parker is a freelance content writer with a passion for offshore sailing, snowboarding, camping, and motorcycles. He regularly writes articles and reviews about camping and the outdoors to fund his passions.