When you own an inflatable paddle board, you don’t have to deal with many of the hassles that come with transporting and storing a hardboard, which can make life much easier. However, it also means that you have to deflate and inflate your board before and after use. Most boards will come with a stock hand pump, which should work fine, but if you don’t have the patience to deal with inflating up your board by hand, then upgrading to the best SUP pump can make all the difference in terms of how much time you’ll spend getting your board ready to hit the water.
I’ve reviewed many of the best-selling models available, and I’ve narrowed it down to the top seven on the market. I focused on the different features they offered and rated them based on specs and their overall performance.
I’ve also included an extensive buyer’s guide that will give you a closer look at the many features to choose from, how these pumps work, and which type will offer the best performance and faster inflation time.
Below, you’ll find a comparison chart that lists the similarities and differences between each model, which can help you to determine which pump will work the best for you based on your budget, SUP model, and inflation needs.
SUP Pumps Comparison Chart
|Sevylor SUP Pump||13 ft||6||15|
|OutdoorMaster SUP||4.5 ft||3||20|
|Etekcity Electric Pump||None||3||15|
|Missyee Wireless Pump||None||3||15|
|Sea Eagle BTP Mano Pump||7 ft||7||15|
|AIRHEAD Hi Pressure Pump||10 ft||1||18|
|Seamax SUP20D Pump||4 ft||1||20|
Best Inflatable SUP Pump-Sevylor SUP and Watersport Electric Pump
The Sevylor SUP is a compact, durable model that features intuitive controls that make this pump a breeze to use. The built-in features, combined with the simple setup allows you to quickly inflate your board in a matter of minutes. It also comes complete with a thirteen-foot long hose, which will give you plenty of room to maneuver and easily set up your board for a faster inflation process. Low-priced, easy to use, and designed to last, this model earned a top spot on my list for a number of reasons.
- Durable design
- Built-in safety features
- Thirteen-foot long hose
- Hose can leak over time
- Low max PSI capacity
Best Eelectric SUP Pump-Outdoor Master The Shark SUP Air Pump
This model by Outdoor Master comes with a higher than average PSI capacity of twenty, a lightweight, compact design that makes it highly portable, and a dual-stage inflation process that ensures your board is inflated at the exact desired PSI level. The automatic shut off feature will cut off the airflow to your board to prevent over-inflation, which is a handy feature to have, especially for beginners who are prone to under or over-inflating their boards. The board also features a deflation mode, which instantly goes to work deflating your board, allowing you to quickly roll up your board, pack it up, and head home. This is a versatile pump that’s perfect for inflating both high and low-pressure inflatables.
- High PSI capacity
- Lightweight design
- Automatic shut-off
- Deflation mode
- Highly portable
- Lacks automatic shut-off feature for deflation mode
Top Cordless SUP Pump-Etekcity Electric Air Pump
This model features a fifteen PSI level, which can be problematic if you have inflatables that have a higher PSI level requirement. However, most models of SUPs have a max fifteen PSI requirement, so this shouldn’t be an issue. This is a cordless, rechargeable pump, which means you can take it with you, wherever you go. This type of convenience makes the pump perfect for camping trips in the backcountry, or if you normally hike out to your paddling spot and don’t want to inflate your board until you’ve reached the water’s edge. This model also comes with a deflation mode, so you can quickly deflate your board before you make your hike back to your vehicle, further adding to the pump’s versatility.
- Highly portable
- Deflation mode
- Cordless design
- Fifteen PSI capacity
- Long charge time
Budget Paddleboard Pump-Missyee Wireless Electric Air Pump
The Missyee wireless electric air pump is another rechargeable pump that’s highly portable and will come in handy for the SUP rider who doesn’t want to carry an inflated board all the way to the water’s edge. The pump comes with a couple of chargers, so you can plug it directly into your vehicle’s twelve-volt outlet or use the included AC adapter and plug it into a standard house outlet. If you forget to recharge the pump, the vehicle charger will come in handy. This device has a fifteen PSI capacity, a large LCD display that allows you to monitor the PSI progress, and an automatic shut-off feature, which works by shutting down the pump once it’s reached the set PSI level.
- Automatic shut-off feature
- Comes with two chargers
- Fifteen PSI inflation capacity
- Deflation mode does not have automatic shut-off feature
Beginner-Friendly-Sea Eagle BTP Electric Turbo Pump
The Sea Eagle pump features a two-stage inflation process. The first phase quickly inflates the board almost all the way up to the desired PSI level but switches automatically to the second phase once resistance is detected. This allows the pump to precisely inflate the board, providing a board that’s perfectly rigid. It also offers a fast inflation time of eight minutes, which all paddlers will appreciate. This package includes a total of seven attachments, so it will work for any type of low or high-pressure inflatable.
- Seven attachments
- Two-phase inflation process
- Automatic shut-off feature
- Fast inflation time
- Air can leak around gasket
- Low PSI max capacity
Best Dual-Stage Pump-AIRHEAD Hi Pressure Air Pump
This high-performance air pump features one hundred and twenty volts of power, comes with two air ports, one for inflation, and a second one for deflation, features a pressure release adapter that will switch the pump off once it’s reached the desired PSI level and a ten-foot long hose that allows you to easily set up your board, without causing tension in the hose. The pump comes with an interchangeable adapter, that can limit you in terms of how compatible it is with other types of inflatables. This model connects directly to your vehicle’s engine, for a more powerful performance. The eighteen PSI capacity allows you to use this model with most types of compatible high-pressure inflatables. Most competing models have a fifteen PSI capacity, so this higher capacity is a big deal.
- High PSI capacity
- Ten-foot long hose
- Low price
- Highly portable
- Single air port
- Long inflation time
Tech-Heavy-Seamax SUP20D 20PSI Double Stage Electric Air Pump
This is another best-selling dual-stage pump that comes loaded with some great tech designed to precisely inflate your board in a matter of minutes. The automatic shut-off feature will stop the inflation process once the internal sensors have detected that the board has reached the desired PSI level. The large LCD display allows you to closely monitor the pump’s progress and adjust the settings accordingly. The intuitive controls make this one of the most beginner-friendly models around. The sensors will monitor the inflation process in real-time, which is a great extra safety feature to have and one that will ensure your board does not get over-inflated.
- Dual-stage inflation process
- Reasonable price
- LCD display
- Automatic shut-off feature
- Deflation mode
- High PSI capacity
- Comes with one adapter
SUP Pumps Buyer’s Guide
Buying a pump for your paddle board may not seem important, or it may not even be a big deal to some, but once you’ve tried one out, you’ll realize how much time one of these powerful models can save you.
If you’ve decided you’re ready to make the switch from a standard hand pump to an electric model then you’ll need to learn more about the key features to look for in order to make an informed decision, to help you choose the perfect pump designed to meet your needs. The pump you buy must be compatible with your SUP. Because of this, you’ll need to pay attention to the possible adapters and the pump’s valve design. The PSI range the pump covers will also be important. Does the pump have one or two inflation stages? Is there a built-in feature that will prevent your board from over-inflation?
A pump’s power specs will tell you a lot in terms of the type of power source it will work with and how fast it can get the job done.
If you want to get the most out of your pump, then it has to be compatible with your SUP. This will involve the pump’s adapters and valves. Most SUPs have a Halkey Roberts valve, which is commonly referred to as H-valve, HR valve, or an H3 valve. These valves are designed to hold a very high level of pressure and are very easy to service and replace.
The military valve has a similar design. Some boards may come equipped with a bravo, double lock, pinch, Boston, or Leafield valve. Make sure you buy a pump that features a valve design that matches your board or the other inflatables you want to use it with.
An electric pump will have either one or two inflation stages. Models that are one-stage will blow air into the board until the desired pressure level is reached. The speeds tend to vary and will depend on how powerful the model is.
Two-stage pumps work much differently. First, it will inflate the board using a high volume, then in the second stage, it increases the pressure ratio in order to reduce the time it takes to fully inflate the board.
This type of dual-stage inflation works to ensure your board is safely inflated to the correct PSI level. Think of is as another important safety feature and one that will prevent over-inflation. Over-inflating your board can lead to serious damage and may even pop your board, in which case, you would need to replace it. So, as you can see, this type of extra safety feature is very important, especially if you’ve invested in a top of the line board.
Some models will also have a reverse airflow feature that allows you to quickly deflate your board. This can save you plenty of time and prevents you from having to manually deflate your board.
Because most manufacturers assume SUP users will transport their boards by car, the pumps are designed accordingly. These pumps will either connect directly to the car’s battery or via the cigarette lighter plug. Some models will feature a direct connection to a twelve-volt battery, or they may come with an external battery pack. Rarely you’ll find a model that’s designed for regular power outlets.
You can keep the engine running if you’re worried about the pump’s power consumption draining your vehicle’s battery. Leaving your vehicle running during inflation can help to improve pumping speed and will increase the output.
A built-in pressure gauge will allow you to closely monitor the inflation process. These pressure gauges can come in a variety of designs including digital, needle, dial, or analog. Most models will combine the pressure gauge with a safety feature that allows the user to choose the target PSI level. This will cause the pump to automatically stop the inflation process in order to prevent over-inflating the board. It will also allow the user to focus on other tasks, instead of waiting close by to keep an eye on the pressure gauge.
Make sure you read your SUP’s user manual to find out what the recommended PSI is, then compare it to the pump you’re interested in to ensure that the pump is designed to deliver that type of PSI level. On average, a manufacturer will recommend a PSI level between ten to fifteen. Inflating your board to the correct PSI is crucial. The PSI is determined by the manufacturer and is based on the paddle board size and weight capacity. But why?
- A board that isn’t inflated properly will sit lower in the water
- The board will have plenty of drag
- You will not be able to paddle faster
- The board will have a lower weight capacity
As you can see, when not inflated correctly, your board will experience a significant dip in performance.
Pumps will come with a variety of hose lengths. If you’re planning on using the accessory outlet, then you’ll need to measure the distance from your car to the ground and determine if the pump’s hose is long enough to comfortably reach your board.
Most models on my list will connect right into your vehicle’s cigarette lighter outlet, but there are some pumps that feature a cordless design and run on powerful batteries. A cordless model will allow you to take pump with you, when you don’t have access to power, allowing you to use it to inflate your SUP, kayak, air mattress, and other types of inflatables, wherever you are. It will also save you the hassle of carrying a board that’s fully inflated, all the way to the water’s edge, which can be difficult for those SUP riders who hike more than a mile or two to their destination spot. These devices are more versatile, but often don’t have the same type of power that you’ll get from corded models. They also have a limited operation time ranging from twenty minutes up to one hour. However, if your board can be inflated in as little as five to eight minutes, then you’ll get plenty of use out of the pump per charge and won’t need to recharge the battery very often. Portable models such as this can be pretty pricey, but they’re often worth a higher price tag when you consider how handy they are and how much use you can get out of them.
Many pumps will also come with their own carry bags, which will come in handy if you don’t have enough room in your SUP bag. Make sure the bag comes with a shoulder strap, which will make it easier to transport.
If you’re only going to pump up one board, then how fast the pump is able to fully inflate it may not even matter. However, if you’re planning on paddling with other SUP users, then you may want a model that offers a faster performance, in which case, you’ll want to look for a model that has a high cubic feet per minute rating. Most models can deliver one PSI per minute. On average, a powerful pump can inflate a board in five to ten minutes. A manual pump can take as long as fifteen to twenty minutes to fully inflate a board.
The more powerful the pump is, the louder it’s going to be. If noise is an issue and you’re worried about scaring off wildlife, then look for a model with a low noise level rating.
How to Use a Sup Pump
Most board owners will air up their board once they’ve arrived at their destination since it allows them to easily transport it. While most beginners start off using a manual hand pump, they quickly make the switch to an electric model once they learn how long it can take to inflate a board manually. In order to inflate your board with an electric pump, you’ll begin by removing your board from its carry bag and completely unrolling it, lying it flat on the ground. Make sure the valve’s yellow pin is placed in an upright position before you start inflating the board. This means that the valve will be closed, which will prevent the loss of air, which can rush out as soon as you’re done with the pump.
Next, you’ll insert and twist the pump’s hose into the valve to start the inflation process. The PSI gauge will not be able to register a reading until it has reached a minimum of seven PSI. It should take approximately ten minutes to fully inflate your board. Once the board is almost inflated at the correct PSI level, take the cap off the pump in order to make the process go faster. Continue to pump until the board reaches the recommended PSI. Pumps that have a 7-8 HR valve adapter will work for most boards. In most cases, you’ll want to stop the pump once it reaches a twelve or fifteen PSI.
If you want to deflate your board using your electric pump, make sure you wash off your board and allow it to dry completely first.
Next, you’ll attach the electric pump, using the same process as you would to inflate it. Most pumps will come with a reverse feature, which basically quickly sucks the air out of the board. Deflating the board manually is not very time consuming, but some paddlers argue that using an electric pump for the process removes more of the air compared to manually doing so.
To deflate the board manually, you’ll remove the valve cap and press the yellow pin down, twisting it to lock it in the open position. You’ll immediately notice air begin to rush out. When most of the air is out of your board, you can roll it up. Make sure you roll the board from the nose to the tail. Doing so will ensure that all of the air is pushed out of the board. Make sure you position the fins on the outside of the board when you’re rolling up the board. Once the board is rolled up, use the included strap and strap your board together to prevent it from unrolling during transport.
The Importance of PSI and Air Pressure
When you’re learning about electric pumps and how to inflate your new SUP, you’ll run into a lot of information pertaining to a board’s PSI. This refers to the pounds per square inch, which tells you how much air is needed in order to correctly inflate your board. This can vary from model to model, so you’ll want to closely read your board’s user manual to find out the correct PSI level.
The PSI can range anywhere from ten up to twenty PSI, but twelve to fifteen PSI is the most common. The higher the PSI number, the firmer the board will be. When your board is inflated at the correct PSI level it will perform the way it should, is more stable, and will not flex in the middle. It also ensures that the board can handle your weight. Since these inflatable boards are very popular, manufacturers are making them firmer and more solid than ever before. Most people that have never used an inflatable model before are surprised at how rigid they are. If you’ve found that your board tends to flex or dip in the middle, then the odds are you aren’t inflating it up to the correct PSI level. This is a common problem people have when using a basic hand pump.
But pumping up your board to the right PSI by hand can be very difficult. Of course, it’s also important that you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations in terms of the PSI level since going over the PSI can cause the board to pop, which will do some serious damage. If you have a high-performance electric pump, then you should have no trouble quickly and efficiently airing up your board.
Beginners often wonder if their board is rigid enough, especially if they’re having a hard time getting paddling straight or making tight turns. These changes in control are due to a lack of pressure. If you’re inflating your board and decide to inflate it at a lower PSI than what’s recommended, then you’ll notice a major change in the board’s performance. Many users, even those with SUP experience, will fail to inflate their board correctly because doing so by hand can be uncomfortable, difficult, and time-consuming. But a board that’s not inflated correctly is more susceptible to tears and will be sluggish in the water. You won’t be able to turn or guide the board correctly, and you will also sit much lower in the water. Upgrading to an electric pump is an affordable and easy solution and one that will ensure that your board is ready to hit the water.
So, remember, under-inflating your board and over-inflating your board can lead to serious performance problems, can make your board prone to tears and serious damage, and will make it difficult for you to control your board, especially if you’re paddling against a current. For safety reasons, and if you want to get the most out of your board, upgrade to an electric pump.
If you’re ready to make the switch from a manual pump to an electric model, then you’ll find the best SUP pumps on the market in my top seven lineup. The goal here is to find the right pump, based on the type of SUP you have, and a model that’s powerful enough to quickly and efficiently inflate your board, saving you both time and the hassle that comes with pumping up a board manually. I hope my buyer’s guide and my in-depth product reviews have helped you find the right pump based on your inflation needs, board style, and power requirements.