mildew in floatation bags

Ok this is kinda gross. I have mildew growing inside the inflation tubing of my floatation bags. (maybe they should make the tubing opaque so I can’t see it!) What should I do? Thanks

Close your Eyes
When blowing up the bags. :slight_smile:

If it really bothers you, roll the bag up until there is very little space between the bag and the inflating tube. Then remove the value, and pour in some lightly mixed solution of chlorine and water into the tube. Use a thin baby bottle cleaning brush and go to it. If the tube is longer than the brush, wrap the wire handle of the brush to a coat hanger and push through.

When you put the value back on, put a dap of marine goop or sealant around the area that goes into the tube and then re-insert.


Didn’t your boat float before the bags?
Throw them out…

Paddle easy,


Jeeze, Caffeine Guy…
if you can’t give useful advice, at least don’t give bad advice… If you don’t want (to buy) float bags in your craft, that’s your choice. The man has 'em already. I mean… I know you like inexpensive but, even for you, throwing away bags one already has would be more than frivalous, wouldn’t it? :wink:


Thanks Sing

– Last Updated: Jul-01-04 8:13 AM EST –

Thanks for the advice and your response to 'caffeine guy'. Very tactful.

I pretty much figured that would be the advice. It doesn't bother me enough to take the bags apart and risk ruining them. I'll just have to blow up the bags for my friends that get grossed out by it! :-)

I will not be throwing them away- Yes my boat floats without them but it's alot easier to empty the water if a large portion of the boat has bags to displace the water! I know I'm new at this but I'm sure even the most experienced paddlers can get swamped.

Thanks again Sing.

Having chased(and eventually recovered) a 9’ boat with no flotation through a set of rapids yesterday, I can confirm that using flotation bags in whitewater is a Good Thing.

Go get a cheap pool toy inflatable raft pump from Wal-Mart and use that to pump up your bags.

No need to put your mouth on the nasty tube, and its easider than crawling into the bow of the boat head first.

Same Happened To Our Group
in white water rescue class. One guy flipped on the run after class. He had no floatation. Hmmm… after all that talk about how useful floatation is. Anyway it took two us through two sets of rapids to finally corral that boat.

Early spring run down Millers – 7 mile stretch with no road access – somebody swam and his boat had not floatation. We were on the bank on a break and watched as the guy’s partner tried to corral a cleopatra needle of a boat going down rapids. Was a good 1/4 mile away from the swimmer before the guy was able to nudge the boat anywhere near shore…


Try taking some TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) and disoving it in water, then pour it into your fill tube. Pinch the fill tube where it meets the air bag so that it will not flow into the bag. If you give it enough time, the TSP should completly kill the mildew. Rinse well.

Hope this helps.