Advise On Leaky Air Pad

AK Wonderer

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One of my winter to-do's is to find the slow leak in my Big Agnes Air Core pad and get it fixed before spring. The problem is I can't find the leak. I inflated the pad to 75% so I could still bend it around and dunked it in the bathtub looking for bubbles. I spent 15 minutes dunking small sections and looking for bubbles but couldn't find a thing.

Anyone have any other ideas on how to locate the leak?
 

Snyd

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What type of valve does it have? My first Big Agnes pad did not have the brass one. I had a leak but could not find it. I called BA and sent it back. They sent me a brand new pad for nothing with the "new and improved" brass valve.
 

wykee5

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Soap it

Soap it

I am not familiar with the big agnes, but I had the same problem with a thermarest. I made up a solution of dishsoap and water and brushed it on sections at a time, being careful to not make too many bubbles as I put it on. The leak should show up in the form of a growing bubble or bubbles. Fill the pad up to push as much air out the hole as you can. Good luck with it.
 

LuJon

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I agree with the soap, also check the valve like snyd said. Just a side note it is possible that there is no leak depending on how much air is leaking. Any air filled pad is going to get somewhat softer over night depending on the temp change. You blow the thing up with your warm breath and then it sits out and falls to ambiant temp causing the air moleules to become denser which will give the appearance of a deflating pad.
To test I would blow it up nice and tight, then use a spray bottle to hit it with a soap and water solution while sitting on the pad to increase the pressure. good luck! I have a lot of nights in the field with my BA pad and no leaks for me so far.
 

AK Wonderer

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It's definately leaking and not just temperature change. I guess I'll give soap a try, just wasn't sure how much more effective this would be than the old water dunk. If you cover with the soap mixture you could give it some time though and allow it to do release enough air to bubble.

My pad has the plastic valve with o'ring. I had read about some faulty valves a while back. If soap doesn't do the trick I'll give BA a call.
 

Snyd

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..My pad has the plastic valve with o'ring. I had read about some faulty valves a while back. If soap doesn't do the trick I'll give BA a call.

It's the valve. I'd bet money on it. I betcha BA will give you a new pad. They upgraded the valves a few years ago cuz they leak. I could get mine to show a bubble either when I tested it.
 

Matt S

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It sure could be the valve. If the soap trick does reveal the leak you would be surprised at how long a bit of duct tape will hold it. I taped a gash on my therma rest while out camping only hoping for one night out of it. 3 years later it's still going strong. Gotta love duct tape.
 
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