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Best Inflatable Tent [2019]

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent
  • Air beams in the tent body and fiberglass poles for the porch
  • 2 blackout sleeping areas for sleep quality and cooler temperatures
  • Rated to be 100% waterproof


Coleman has a large presence in just about every outdoor equipment niche. When they produce a product, you know that time when into the design and material selection.

Their Valdes Inflatable Tent can sleep up to four adults. It has three integrated air beams in the body of the main sleeping chambers. There is also a porch area which is supported by traditional shock-corded fiberglass poles, that can be used as a vestibule or a sitting area for table and chairs.

The two internal sleeping areas are blacked out. This helps prevent early waking with the summer sun as well as reducing the solar heating effect that can occur during the day. Coleman claims that this can reduce the internal temperature of the sleeping area by as much as 25 to 40 degrees.

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent
  • Dome tent that sleeps up to 3 adults
  • Hand pump included
  • 190t Polyester fabric with a protective roof


The Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent was designed to be compact and lightweight. It has a 3,567 square inch footprint that measures in at 87-inches by 41-inches. Only weighing in at a total of 11-pounds, it also comes with a manually operated hand pump to fill the durable TPU air beams.

This tent uses 190T polyester material which has a PU coating, and B3 fine gauze with a tent cap designed to shed water quickly. The net result is the ability to withstand most moderate summer rainstorms. If there is a stronger rainstorm in the upcoming forecast, you might want to spray the exterior walls with some temporary waterproofing agent, or perhaps spread an improvised tarp overhead.

FoamMaker Geodesic Bubble House Inflatable Tent
  • 10-foot diameter geodesic dome designed for luxury camping
  • Included air pump inflates the tent in under 10 minutes
  • Ability to accommodate a small air conditioner


FoamMaker’s 10-foot diameter geodesic dome tent marries air tent innovation with futuristic visual appeal. It employs geodesic air beams created from durable PVC, which can be inflated in under 10 minutes. Its transparent walls provide a 360-degree view of the surroundings as well as late-night star gazing opportunities.

The exterior has been rated to be 3,000 mm waterproof, which gives it the ability to stand up to a very reasonable amount of rain. Yet this geodesic dome tent also adds functionality to the durable visual appeal. It can even be set up to accommodate a small air conditioner.

This tent is best used for backyard camping adventures, overnight guest sleeping accommodations, or times when you want to treat yourself to a little luxury camping. It’s probably not the best choice for getting away for some rugged primitive campsite.

How We Picked

Inflatable tents started out as an innovative way to set up camp quickly. Yet as time has gone on, they have evolved to also serve as a luxury camping option or a way to quickly set up a tent for an event.

Air beam construction is perhaps the most critical component. This is essentially a long capsule capable of holding high-pressure air. This allows the tent to flex, yet not break. It also helps to prevent things like collapse caused by excess rainfall like you sometimes find in traditional aluminum and fiberglass tent poles.

The basic structural shape was also something we considered. Tunnel tents and low domes tend to be the most common when it comes to inflatable tents meant purely for camping. With these two the tunnel style tents tend to be larger and cater to families or groups of friends who need to sleep more than two to three people.

Inflatable dome tents tend to be lower and have less total square inches. This makes them a better option for sleeping one to two people. They are more popular with couples or backpack hunters who need to set up quickly while traveling through the bush.

Ventilation can also be a factor with inflatable tents. The nature of the seams and their relationship to the air beams can reduce the amount of breathable wall space and the availability of ceiling mesh. This can lead to humidity build-up and condensation. This tended to be a problem in the earliest inflatable tents.

Fortunately, newer versions have started to address this issue with their refreshed designs. Still, we made a point to look out for thoughtful ventilation in the form of sealable windows or protected ceiling vents.

Waterproofing was also something we kept an eye on. Many inflatable tent manufacturers will trade off a rain fly, which can slow the total set up time, in favor of a special waterproofing treatment. This has some benefits and some drawbacks.

As time goes on the waterproofing characteristics can start to break down. This is often a natural result of use, as well as water exposure and microscopic degradation from solar fading. If a particular inflatable tent doesn’t include a rainfly in the purchase, or they don’t offer one as an accessory purchase, you might want to invest in a canister of waterproofing spray. They’re inexpensive and small enough to keep on hand in the tent bag kit.

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

Specs:

  • Sleeps up to four people
  • Breathable 170T polyester and taffeta material
  • Rain Fly made from 190T Polyester Waterproof with a PU 1000 mm rating
  • Tent Floor made from Waterproof PE 110g/SQM
  • Mesh windows
  • Breathable inner liner
  • Planted tree with every purchase

Ryno Tuff is a popular inflatable tent manufacturer who also has a reputation for being ecologically conscious. They even go so far as to promise to plant a tree through the National Forest Foundation with every purchase.

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent and pump

The walls are made from a special polyester and taffeta material which makes them lightweight. Though these side walls are not as puncture and abrasion-resistant as or Thermoplastic Polyurethane.

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent on a field

When fully assembled it measure in at 8-feet by 8-feet, with a 5-foot high roof. This means it’s meant more for sleeping two to three people, rather than hosting individuals who need room to stand up and walk around.

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent at night

This tent was designed for good ventilation for hot summer weather. The high-quality durable rainfly also has nearly full coverage to keep you dry when wet weather strikes. In colder conditions, the mesh windows can be closed to help hold heat in to keep you warm through the night.

What We Liked

The full coverage 190T Polyester Waterproof with a PU 1000 mm rated rainfly is certainly a nice touch. It was thoughtfully paired with the easy to use mesh windows to give you superior ventilation when you need it, and thorough rain protection when the skies open up.

You also shouldn’t overlook the fact that this tent comes with a foot pump or air bellows with the initial purchase. If necessary, you could find an adaptor for a battery-powered air pump which would allow you to connect the hose to the valve for truly effortless inflation.

Overall

This is a thoughtfully designed inflatable tent that has most of the features you want in a value-priced air tent. It’s a little on the small side with a low ceiling, making it a sleeping tent. There’s no vestibule for dirty shoes, but you see that reflected in the very friendly price tag.

Ryno Tuff Four Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

  • Full coverage rainfly with waterproof floor
  • Good ventilation options
  • 64 square feet to sleep up to four people

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent

Specs:

  • Geodesic “Dome” shape
  • Sleeps up to 3 adults
  • 190t Polyester fabric
  • Integrated water protective roof
  • Hand pump included
  • 11-pound total weight

The Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent is a compact unit that’s easy to pack and carry with you. It features a durable geodesic dome-shaped, which provides 3,567 square inches in a comfortable 87-inch by 41-inch footprint.

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent in carrying bag

When properly packed the Tangkula Inflatable Tent only weighs in at a light 11-pounds. It also comes with a manually operated hand pump to inflate the air beams.

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent on grass

This makes it a great option for times when you might want to take a light hike to a primitive campsite. Though the hand pump itself is a little cumbersome, so it might not be the best option for a long hike or an ascent campsite.

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent and a family

The 190T polyester material with a PU coating, B3 fine gauze, and TPU inflatable air beams are designed to shed water quickly. This tent can withstand the most moderate summer rainstorms.

What We Liked

The TPU air beams provide you with superior puncture and abrasion resistance. The 190T polyester material with a PU coating also adds a significant degree of waterproofing without having to install a secondary rainfly.

Depending on your personal preference and where you want to camp, the included hand pump is a nice touch. There are many people who prefer it for its efficiency over a more labor-intensive foot pump.

Overall

You get a lot of what you want for the price with the Tangkula Inflatable Tent. It is a little on the small side and is probably only best for a couple who need a versatile quick sleeping area at their campsite.

While the fabric is treated to be waterproof, it is not impervious to precipitation. If the impending forecast calls for heavy rain, you might want to spray an additional waterproofing layer or consider setting up a secondary tarp as an improvised rainfly.

Tangkula Inflatable Instant Camping Tent

  • TPU air beams
  • Hand pump included
  • Only weighs 11-pounds

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

Specs:

  • Sleeps up to four adults
  • Air pump included
  • 210T Oxford cloth, PU2000 with Glue Strip Material
  • TPU air beams
  • Treated with a high-quality waterproofing agent
  • 4 sealable windows
  • Weather protected ventilation
  • Windproof guidewires

The IHUNIU 4 Person Inflatable Air Tent was designed to give you a comfortable sleeping space that can be sealed to hold heat in or open wide for maximum ventilation.

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

This includes four large sealable windows to let you enjoy the surrounding vista on pleasant summer camping trips.

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent in the garden

It’s made from 210T Oxford cloth with PU2000 Glue Strip Material seams. It has minimal roof protection that mimics a small rainfly, to shed the water away from the weather-proof upper ventilation.

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

The Oxford cloth material has also been treated with a special proprietary waterproofing agent.

What We Liked

One of the common complaints you find with a lot of inflatable and tradition tents is the general inability to enjoy the sights and smells of the outside world. The weather-proof vents with the four large windows are a nice touch for times when you really want to take in the view and the smell of the natural world.

It’s also worth noting that the air inflation valve is up off the ground, which helps reduce problems with dirt and debris interrupting the seal.

Overall

This is a small, yet very functional inflatable tent. You can tell that a lot of thought went into designing it to be convenient to set up and use. The lack of a rainfly could be an issue in the long-term waterproofing of the side walls. The trade-off for this is the ability to look through all four large mesh windows.

As time goes on you might notice some minor water problems where objects touch the sidewalls. When this happens, you might want to try treating it with some spray-on water repellant.

IHUNIU, INC. 4 Person Inflatable Camping Air Tent

  • Four large windows with weather-proof vents
  • Waterproof treated 210T Oxford cloth
  • Air pump included in the initial purchase

FoamMaker Inflatable Transparent Bubble Tent

FoamMaker Inflatable Transparent Bubble Tent

Specs:

  • 13-foot diameter
  • Semi-transparent bubble
  • Waterproof PVC
  • Air pump included
  • Inflates in 3 to 5 minutes
  • For garden parties and overnight camping

The Foammaker Inflatable Transparent Bubble Tent departs a little bit from the world of camping to embrace more backyard and special event interests. Their 13-foot diameter igloo-shaped dome can also accommodate special LED lighting features that are exclusively available through the manufacturer as a separate purchase.

FoamMaker Inflatable Transparent Bubble Tent

It includes an electronic air pump that was designed for nearly silent operation. Yet it can fill the semi-transparent PVC bubble’s walls in as little as 3 to 5 minutes. The double-spherical dome is surrounded by a special buckle that maintains a reliable level of structural integrity. The 210T waterproof fabric includes a pressure-resistant waterproof layer that provides it with the waterproof coefficient up to 5,000 mm.

This tent is designed to be used more in the backyard or for a special event like an outdoor wedding. Though it does have the durability and aesthetics to also support you for a “Glamping” tent out.

The manufacturer supports the 13-foot bubble tent with a 1-year quality warranty. There are also some online retailers who offer a special 3 or 4-year protection plan at a very affordable price point.

What We Liked

This dome/bubble tent is visually appealing. Especially, if you want to contact the manufacturer about the optional LED lights. The fact that it was built with waterproof materials and a rapid inflation air pump is also a nice touch.

Overall

This isn’t the type of inflatable tent that you want to prioritize for a rugged hiking adventure or more than say a one or two-night stay at a campground. It’s more of a special event or stargazer tent that you can take camping from time to time.

It’s backed by a minimal one-year warranty, which you want to see. It would be nice if the manufacturer offered a longer support program at this price tag. If you would like a little more insurance for your investment there are some online retailers who offer a very affordable three or four-year additional protection program.

FoamMaker Inflatable Transparent Bubble Tent

  • Semi-transparent double-spherical dome
  • Special event type tent
  • Optional LED accent lights are available

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent

Specs:

  • Sleeps up to four adults
  • 3 air beams in the tent body
  • Fiberglass poles in “Porch Area”
  • 2 blackout sleeping areas
  • Rated 100% waterproof

Coleman is a trusted name in outdoor tents, gear, and appliances. So, it would’ve been odd for them to not offer at least one inflatable tent model.

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent

Still, the Valdes is a little bit of a hybrid, as it has three innovative air beams for the body and main sleeping chambers. Then it also has a porch area which is supported by traditional shock-corded fiberglass poles.

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent side view

The two internal sleeping areas have been specially treated to be 99% blacked out. Not only does this help you get better sleep in the early sunrise of summer, but it also helps reduce the solar heating effect that is a problem with many other tents. The net result is an internal temperature of 25 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than similar tents.

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent interior

The Groundsheet is PE welded and fully integrated with the sidewalls. The porch area can also serve as a vestibule. However, there is no floor. So, if you intend to use it for shoes and storing soiled items you might want to use waterproof plastic totes.

What We Liked

This tent offers the best of both worlds. You get a spacious porch area that can accommodate a small table and chairs or serve as a vestibule area for storing soiled items.

The blacked-out interior sleeping rooms shouldn’t be underestimated. Some of the most common complaints you find from tent campers are the early rising of the summer sun that wakes them up, and a sleeping area that is overheated by the long day sun.

The ability to sleep in, while enjoying cooler temperatures will go a long way toward helping you enjoy your tenting adventures.

Overall

Coleman is a relative titan in the camping industry. They are known for bringing high-quality items to the market. Which you will find with many of the features and benefits of their Valdes air tent. It is a little on the expensive side, but you get what you pay for in a tent-like this which is rugged enough to serve you for many long years to come.

Like a lot of their other products in the outdoor equipment space, Coleman backs the Valdes inflatable tent with a one-year warranty.

Coleman Valdes Inflatable 4-Person Tent

  • Air beam internal structure
  • Fiberglass pole porch area
  • Blackout internal sleeping area

FoamMaker Geodesic Bubble House Inflatable Tent

FoamMaker Geodesic Bubble House Inflatable Tent

Specs:

  • 10-foot diameter geodesic dome
  • The air pump is included in the purchase
  • Transparent walls
  • PVC air beams
  • Visually appealing
  • 3,000 mm outdoor waterproof rating
  • Can accommodate a small air conditioner

FoamMaker has slowly been carving out a niche for itself in the world of luxury inflatable tents. Their 10-foot diameter geodesic dome tent steps into this arena sporting a futuristic visual appeal, blended with enough durability and comfort features to let you camp out in luxury.

FoamMaker Geodesic Bubble House Inflatable Tent

The geodesic air beams are made from durable PVC. The high-quality air pump included in the purchase can inflate the tent in under 10 minutes. The transparent walls allow for a 360-degree view which is ideal for enjoying your natural setting, as well as late-night stargazing.

It’s rated to be 3,000 mm waterproof. If you like, it also can be set up to accommodate a small air conditioner. This is a great way to maximize your comfort if you want to lounge in the backyard or treat yourself to a little luxury camping at a campground that offers electricity access to shore power.

What We Liked

The geodesic dome structure of this tent gives it stunning visual appeal. It can be just as at home luxury camping, as it is for stargazing in the backyard or for hosting a special event. The fact that it can accommodate a small air conditioner is also a nice touch.

Overall

As you can imagine, this isn’t perhaps the kind of tent you will prioritize if you are looking for a backwoods sleeping accommodation. If you want to bask in a little camping luxury or you need a tent for a backyard adventure, then the FoamMaker Geodesic inflatable tent fits the bill nicely. It could even be the sort of thing that impresses an overnight guest.

The one-year warranty is a nice touch. Still, for the luxury price point, it would be nice to see a little bit more substantial backing from the manufacturer.

FoamMaker Geodesic Bubble House Inflatable Tent

  • Designed for luxury camping
  • Included air pump inflates the tent in under 10 minutes
  • Ability to accommodate a small air conditioner

Vango 6 Person Odyssey Air 600 Tent, Epsom

Vango 6 Person Odyssey Air 600 Tent, Epsom

Specs:

  • Sleeps up to 6 adults
  • Air beam structure
  • Angled for maximum internal space
  • Protex waterproof polyester flysheet
  • Dual-chamber for a vestibule

The Vango Odyssey inflatable tent uses a tunnel style architecture with durable high-pressure air beams. This serves as a solid support system for their Protex 70D 4,000Mm hh waterproof polyester and flysheet that is proprietary to the Vango brand.

Vango 6 Person Odyssey Air 600 Tent, Epsom vent windows

This tent has two separate chambers. If you like you can use them as separate bedrooms, or you can use the first chamber as a porch area and vestibule. This is a great option for storing boots and other dirty items without having to bring them into the main sleeping area.

Vango 6 Person Odyssey Air 600 Tent construction

Both rooms employ a special ventilation design which allows fresh air to pass through the tent while also minimizing condensation. This makes it a great option for sleeping comfortably in hot, humid weather.

The groundsheet is integrated with the side walls. There is also a special Vango TBS II tension band system that you can use for added stability in windy conditions.

What We Liked

The vestibule room is certainly something to appreciate. With some basic protocols of “Tent Rules” in place, it allows you to store dirty boots and other items to keep the sleeping area clean.

The proprietary Protex polyester with waterproofing qualities and the TBS II tension band system also help keep you comfortable in a rainstorm.

Overall

This is a nice inflatable tent for families who want to sleep in comfort. It’s a great option for a single parent who needs to set up camp in a hurry yet doesn’t have the help of another adult. The 12-month warranty is also a nice statement of quality in design and materials.

Vango 6 Person Odyssey Air 600 Tent, Epsom

  • Family size air tent
  • Special weatherproofing features
  • Designed to maximize internal space

Buyers Guide

Inflatable tents are a modern-day answer to the age-old frustration of putting up a traditional pole-based tent. For decades, if not centuries people who wanted or needed to camp out, had to pack not only the tent canvas material but also a gaggle of heavy, cumbersome poles. Not were these tents heavy to pack with you, they also tended to take a long time to set up. They often left you with sweat on your back and doubts about the trip you decided to embark on.

Now, there are some people who will hear the term “Inflatable Tent” and wince worrying about the durability. Fortunately, modern manufacturing and engineering have gotten past this often-knee-jerk reaction to provide inflatable tents that can withstand much the same conditions as their traditional counterparts. Yet they do so at a fraction of the weight and set up in a fraction of the time.

They do this by essentially replacing aluminum or fiberglass poles with chambers of pressurized air. You layout the tent and pressurize the internal system which is sewn directly into the tent’s fabric walls. Some high-quality inflatable tents can be ready to use in under five minutes, without all the hassle of installing poles.

That being said, there are a few things you want to keep in mind while considering a tent, this includes key features to make sure that the one you choose truly meets your needs. As you might imagine, there are many factors that are similar to traditional pole-based tents, as well as a few that are unique to this increasingly popular niche.

The Size And Number Of People The Tent Sleeps

This is a pretty basic factor that you need to keep in mind at the start of the process. If you’ve ever slept in a traditional tent, you will notice ratings like “Sleeps Four” tends to mean that the laws of geometry will fit four people on the floor.

Most people don’t want to be packed into a tent just like sardines in a can. Especially families and groups of adults who prioritize privacy. The rule of thumb with just about any tent is to subtract two from it to give you a basic number of how many people you can realistically sleep.

If you have larger members of your family, or elbow room is a priority for more than one of you, then you might want to even consider subtracting four from the number of people a specific tent will sleep. After all, there are very few times when you are going to stretch out in a tent and say, “I wish I had less space!”

Ventilation

Admittedly, this is an area of common complaint with some inflatable tents. The nature of their design and structure can sometimes limit the amount of airflow compared to their traditional tent counterparts. When shopping for an inflatable tent, try to keep an eye out for one that boasts good airflow, multiple vents, or other ventilation options. This is especially important if you plan to be camping in very hot, humid conditions.

Also keep in mind that windows can also help improve ventilation, but might not necessarily be advertised as part of the tent’s ventilation system. Larger windows tent to increase the viewable space during the day as well as improve airflow.

Securing Method

This is only a minor factor in the modern generation of inflatable tents. These days most come with the same kind of stakes, pins or guidewires that you find holding traditional tents to the ground. This ensures that the inflatable tent will hold where you want it to be against even the strongest winds.

It’s also worth noting that the lack of rigid poles inside the tent fabric alleviates concerns about accidental collapses and punctures in severe weather. An inflatable tent might jiggle and rumble around, but you can trust it not to collapse or tear apart on you at the worst possible time like a pole-based tent could.

Tent Shape

Just like their traditional counterparts, inflatable tents are available in different shapes and dynamic styles. This can influence the number of sleepers the tent can comfortably hold as well as the internal layout of the sleeping area, gear storage, and shoe space.

A tunnel-shaped tent is arguably the easiest to inflate and set up. Many of the popular version includes simple room dividers to provide family members with the feeling of their own private sleeping quarters. A lot of tunnel-shaped tends have permanently attached air beams for superior rigidity.

A dome-shaped inflatable tent isn’t as common as tunnel and bubble tents. Though they have started to grow in popularity for being roomy, light and easy to take with you from home to campsite.

Bubble-shaped inflatable tents are geared for backyard use, or specialty purposes more than camping. For homeowners, they can provide you with an attractive sunshade or covered pergola for times when you want to entertain friends or dine outside. Some of them are designed with a geodesic shape that is visually attractive as well as incredibly stable. A few manufacturers even offer playful inflatable tents for kids to play in when you need to get them out of the house.

On a professional scale, there are also some inflatable tents that cater to special needs. Things like portable spray booths or wildlife observation stations with a minimal footprint top the list of possible options.

The Location Of The Inflation Valve

Dirt and debris that gets into the inflation valve can damage it or lead to an improper seal. If possible, try to prioritize an inflatable tent that’s up off the ground. When taking putting it up or taking it down, take a moment to inspect the valve to make sure it’s clean.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How Do You Set Up An Inflatable Tent?

A. To set up an inflatable tent, you simply lay it out in the location and orientation you want. Then open the valves and fill them sequentially. This can be done manually, or via a special pump. Once all the air beams have been fully pressurized, you spread the rain fly and secure all the attachment stakes or guidewires.

Q: Does An Inflatable Tent Need Constant Air Pressure?

A. When you hear the term “Inflatable Tent” it might draw your mind to things like bouncy castles and air trampolines that need constant air pressure from a compressor to maintain their inflation. Fortunately, this is not the case with modern-day inflatable tents where the air beams are specifically designed to hold and maintain high air pressure.

Q: Are Inflatable Tents Vulnerable To Puncture?

A. Most inflatable tends are made from a material called TPU or Thermoplastic Polyurethane. It has mildly elastic and abrasion resistance properties for superior durability as well as puncture resistance. In its thicker iteration, you see this same material being used by popular cell phone case manufacturers.

When it’s deployed in the backyard or the campsite the tent is as durable if not more resistant to damage than a traditional tent. However, improper storage is the most likely cause of rips, tears, and punctures. Be mindful to pay attention to how the tent comes out of the bag, then try to replicate a similar folding pattern when putting it away again. Make sure to pack the back away from possible sharp objects.

Q: Is An Inflatable Tent Right For Me?

A. Inflatable tents appeal to just about anyone who needs to set up an outdoor living accommodation. They are increasingly popular with hikers where every ounce of weight matters. They are also deeply appreciated by parents or individuals who may need to set up the tent without the help of another adult.

At the same time, inflatable tents are also becoming popular for luxury campers, as well as professionals who need an outdoor event tent that’s quick and easy to set up.

Q: Does Weight Matter?

A. An inflatable tent tends to weight less than its traditional tent counterpart. If you are going to be driving up to your campsite, then the weight of the inflatable tent isn’t really going to be a factor. On the other hand, if you are planning to take it on a back-woods hiking trip or as a sleeping accommodation after an ascent, the you might want to pay attention to the total weight.

Q: Do I Need A Rainfly?

A. One possible feature flaw that you find with some inflatable air tents is the lack of a rainfly or a minimal rainfly. You get the feeling that some manufacturers do this to help promote the fast easy setup. They compensate with special waterproofing treatments.

While most of these treatments will handle modest summer rainfall, they tend to not be as impervious to water as a traditional rainfly. With some, the waterproofing treatment can gradually start to degrade with use and prolonged sun exposure.

One of the earliest signs of a problem like this is pooling or water transfer where interior items touch the sidewalls. For example, an air mattress that where the corner presses up to the wall material might develop a damp stop on it. If you notice a problem like this starting on one camping trip, you should move items away to prevent further water intrusion.

Once the exterior of the tent is thoroughly dry. You can spray it with a secondary waterproofer like Kiwi Camp Dry Heavy Duty Water Repellant, Aqua Armor Fabric Waterproofing Spray, Nikwax TX.Direct Spray-On Waterproofing.

There are also some manufacturers who note this minor inconvenience and will offer an inflatable tent with a substantial rainfly in the purchase or as a secondary accessory.

Q: Do I Need A Waterproof Floor?

A. Inflatable tents don’t necessarily have the same type of “Bathtub Floor” that you see with high end “Waterproof Floors” of traditional pole-supported tents. This is largely related to the way the bottom sheet attaches to the sidewalls and the air beams.

Still, most inflatable tent manufacturers are making a point to use waterproof materials to help prevent water intrusion. When in doubt try to pitch your tent on the campsite’s highest ground. Laying down a tarp in advance is also a wise insurance policy if rain is in the forecast.

Q: Will An Inflatable Tent Float On Water?

A. If you live somewhere that experiences freak flooding, or you are interested in estuary camping, an inflatable tent isn’t a good option. The air beams themselves might make the tent buoyant, which could be a factor if your campsite is struck by a flash flood. Unfortunately, there simply isn’t enough air volume to support the weight of gear and individual campers.

Q: How Do I Prevent Punctures And Tears?

A. Proper storage is critical for maintaining the integrity of the TPU air beams and tent materials. Some manufacturers will include folding and storage information in the owner’s manual. If possible, take a time to snap some pictures with your phone the first time you take the tent out of the packaging.

Also, bear in mind that proper deflation is key. Even a modest amount of air left in the air beams can suffer excess pressure when pressed and folded. Even if it only took 5 minutes to inflate, be prepared for it to take 10 minutes to meticulously deflate the air beams.

Conclusion

Inflatable tent materials and design features continue to evolve to meet consumer needs. The versatility and flexibility of these units allow them to cater to a wide range of needs. If you need a basic camping tent, you might prioritize a smaller unit. If you a quick sleeping accommodation for an overnight guest, you might want to prioritize a larger bubble tent.

It’s best to start by thinking about the size of the tent you want in terms of the number of people you need to sleep. Then carefully dial that number back by two to three, to make sure that everyone has the elbow room they need to be comfortable.

Also, bear in mind how shape affects height. Dome tents tend to have a lower ceiling and set up quickly. Tunnel shaped inflatable tents are taller, but it might take a little longer to fully inflate the structural air beams. If you want a lot of headroom, to stay in luxury, you might want to adjust your focus toward bubble tents or visually stunning geodesic domes.

While considering units, keep an eye out for things like ventilation, and the size or presence of a rainfly. Sometimes inflatable tent manufacturers will treat these things as a tradeoff. A large rainfly can impede ventilation, while good ventilation often compromises the tent’s overall water resistance. You might want to move a specific tent up your list if they include a rainfly or some type of superior waterproofing along with thoughtful ventilation.

Product Boxes: Last updated on 2020-10-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API