For many brands, custom inflatable arches offer a unique advertising opportunity. Whether your brand uses your giant inflatable arch to mark the finish line at a charity 5k event or as a sports entrance way, these eye-catching displays can have a huge impact on brand recognition at events. Although custom inflatable advertising and custom inflatable entrance ways can be effective ways to increase brand recognition in your community, these giant inflatables also come with a price tag. When your brand makes this sort of investment in advertising, it’s important to know how to get the most out of your money. Proper care and cleaning techniques will help your custom inflatable arch live its longest possible lifespan, ensuring you get the most bang for your buck. Here’s what you need to know.
What’s the Projected Lifespan of Your Inflatable Arch?
Your inflatable arch’s lifespan depends largely on the material the inflatable is made out of. Typically, custom inflatable arches are made using either nylon-based denier polyester or a more durable PVC material.
Nylon-based denier polyester is the more budget-friendly material option for your custom inflatable arch, and typically comes in varying thicknesses like 210, 420, or 600. This material has an approximate lifespan of 2-5 years dependent on the denier grade you select. Denier polyester grade is like thread count on bed sheets - so the higher the number, the better and more durable the fabric will be.
PVC is by far the most durable material used for custom inflatable arches. While it’s a little more expensive than nylon-based denier polyester, when you purchase a PVC custom inflatable arch, you can expect it to last 5+ years. If you have the budget to do so, this can make it worthwhile to invest a little more capital in the more expensive PVC material upfront, knowing it may last significantly longer than nylon-based denier polyester.
Of course, just as important as the material that’s used for your inflatable arch is the production quality of your inflatable. Always purchase from a reputable brand with a known track record for success. You want to be sure that the brand you’re ordering from knows how to design quality inflatable advertisements that stand the test of time. Ask for samples of the materials the company will be using, check online reviews, and see what brands the company has worked with before purchasing custom inflatables.
Extending the Life Cycle of Your Inflatable Arch
There are a number of things you can do to ensure your inflatable arch lives its longest possible life. One of the most important things you can do is to always follow included set-up instructions.
1. Set Up in a Safe Space
First, clear the area where you’re going to be setting up your custom inflatable entrance way. Make sure there aren’t any sharp sticks or large rocks on the ground, as these can puncture your custom inflatable advertising.
2. Guide Your Inflatable
As your custom inflatable arch is inflating, help guide it upward with your hand. Your guidance is important as it keeps air from getting trapped in a kink as your advertising arch is inflating. Your inflatable will also set up more quickly with your guidance, which can help you be more productive as you prepare your event area.
3. Keep Your Custom Inflatable Advertising Arch Secure
Once your inflatable arch is fully inflated, be sure to secure it in place using the attached ropes. If you’re outdoors with soft ground, you can use the included stakes to attach the ropes to the ground. However, even if you’re on concrete or indoors, it’s important to secure your inflatable arch. In these instances, you can use weights, such as cinder blocks, weight bags, or water bags, to keep your ropes attached to the floor or ground. Alternatively, you can tie your inflatable arch to nearby buildings.
4. Pay Attention to Weather Conditions
Although inflatable arches are safe to use both indoors and outdoors, if you plan to use them at outdoor events, it’s important to pay attention to weather conditions before setting up your custom inflatable. Severe weather conditions like hail or dust storms can cause serious damage to your custom inflatable. Additionally, your inflatable arch should not be used outdoors if the winds will be over 15mph. While it may be hard to choose not to use your custom inflatable at an outdoor event when the weather isn’t ideal, that choice may allow your custom inflatable to last for many more events down the road.
5. Take Down Overnight
Even if you’re participating in a multi-day event, such as a charity walk that takes place over an entire weekend, it’s important to take your inflatable arch down at night and put it back up the next day. If you’re using a constant-air design custom inflatable, taking it down at night will give your air blower a much-needed break. For sealed-air designs, deflating and re-inflating not only gives your inflatable a break from the air pressure, but it also ensures your archway looks fresh and inviting at the beginning of each day.
How to Clean Your Inflatable Arch
One of the most important ways to ensure your inflatable arch looks amazing every time you pull it out is to clean it after each use. Especially if you use your inflatable arch outdoors, you may find that it gets dirt and debris by the end of the event. Luckily, your inflatable arch can be easily spot-cleaned.
Use a gentle cleaning cloth and a little bit of warm, soapy water to spot treat your advertising inflatable. Never use harsh chemicals like bleach or magic eraser, as these can ruin your full dye sublimation printing, damaging, dimming, or even smearing the look of your advertisement. After you’ve wiped down your inflatable arch, spread it out and leave it to air dry.
How to Store Your Inflatable Arch
Storing your inflatable arch well is one of the most important steps you can take to extend the lifespan of your inflatable advertising. Before you store your inflatable arch, it’s first important to make sure your arch is completely dry. This may require you to lay your arch out flat on a dry surface while it air dries. Ensuring your advertising inflatable is completely dry before you put it in its storage bag will prevent mold and mildew from accumulating.
Once your inflatable arch is dry, roll it up and place it in its storage bag. Store it in a cool, dry location. Extreme temperatures and moisture can ruin your custom inflatable over time.
Additionally, it’s important to wrap your stakes before storing them or to store your stakes separate from your inflatable. This will prevent the stakes from puncturing your inflatable when your inflatable is not in use.
How to Care for Your Air Blower
Your air blower is a key component of your inflatable arch. Whether you have an internal blower or an external blower, it’s important to keep it clean and dry to increase its lifespan. Here’s everything you need to know about caring for your air blower.
Internal vs External Blowers: Which One’s Better?
Internal blowers can be a convenient choice for many businesses because you don’t have to keep track of a second piece of equipment. However, if an internal blower is damaged, it may be harder to replace than an external blower and may leave your inflatable arch completely out of commission until it can be replaced or repaired. External blowers are easy to replace, and you can use the same blower for multiple pieces of inflatable advertising.
Caring for Your Air Blower While in Use
Your air blower is a piece of machinery. Like all machinery, it’s important that it’s used in a dry location. If you’re going to be outside, consider placing your air blower under a tent in case it rains throughout the day.
Similar to a vacuum, your air blower works by sucking in air from the environment and blowing it into your inflatable. Keeping the fan of your air blower clear from things like curtains, shrubs, or tall grass can keep the blower from catching on these materials and overheating while it’s in use. If possible, it’s best to use your air blower away from dirty, dusty surroundings, as any dirt in the air may become caught in the vent of your air blower.
If you’re using your air blower outdoors, it’s important to use plugs that are certified for outdoor use. Continual flow inflatables require constant power. You may need your inflatable to be set up near a safe outdoor power source, like a portable generator.
Caring for Your Air Blower While Not in Use
After using your air blower, it’s a good idea to gently clean your blower. Just as you would clean dust off a fan at home, you should clean the surfaces of your air blower. A cool, damp cloth can be used to wipe dust or debris away, leaving your air blower in good condition for the next time you use it. Dry your air blower completely before storing it.
When your air blower is being stored, it’s important to keep it in a cool, dry area. Moisture or heat can damage your air blower, preventing them from working correctly the next time you need them. Keep power cords safely wrapped and don’t place anything on top of them so that the tines of your plugs don’t get bent or misshapen.
It may be a good idea to wipe down your air blower again before using it at your next event. This can get rid of any dust that has collected while the air blower was in storage, ensuring the dust doesn’t make its way inside your custom inflatable entrance way.
Caring for your custom inflatable advertising can help it lead its longest life. It doesn’t take a lot of extra work on your part to keep your inflatable arch clean, dry, and safely stored. However, paying attention to these tips can help your inflatable last years longer than if you neglect these tips. Those are years of event attendance and increased brand recognition that, ultimately, will help you receive the greatest return on investment for these large advertising inflatables.
At MVP Visuals, our goal is to help you get the most out of your advertising products. That’s why, when you contact our customer service team, you’ll always get a real live person, not a machine. From choosing the right material for you to deciding between sealed-air or constant flow designs, we’re happy to walk you through the purchasing process to make the most logical choices for your particular brand, your particular goals, and your particular budget.