Bike Pump / Air Mattress Valve Adapter




Introduction: Bike Pump / Air Mattress Valve Adapter

I purchased this Coleman brand, Quickbed air mattress in 2016. I didn't want to purchase a proprietary pump which was useless for anything but an air mattress, and I already had a perfectly good bike pump.

There ARE some pre-made adapters out there, but I couldn't find one in a store, and didn't have time to wait for one from e-Bay.

(Also, I'm cheap and like a good DIY project)

Step 1: Measure Inside-diameter of Mattress Valve

Ideally, use calipers to measure the inside of your mattress valve.

I did not have calipers, so I checked by coin size: a Canadian dime was too small, a nickel (pictured) fit fairly snugly inside the soft rubber orifice.

Step 2: If You Live in the USA, Consider Purchasing an Adapter

My online research suggested that many air mattresses, inflatable boats and toys use a "Boston" valve and sometimes have pre-made adapters available. The one pictured goes under the brand names of "Airhead" "Airheads" or "Kwik Tek".

In the USA, you may be able to purchase a ready made adapter. I couldn't find any in Canada, so I can't be sure if one like the one pictured would work.

Step 3: Gather Parts: Old Bike Tube, PVC Plumbing Parts

I used the following:

  • Schedule 40 (SCH40) PVC Union / Coupling. This is a 3-part compression cuff joint, into which the bike-tire valve is inserted.
    • ...The union is 3 parts - the 3 white pieces pictured above.
    • ...The one pictured is 1/2 in [half inch] female thread x female thread with Buna o-ring union; made by XIRTEC or IPEX. Available at RONA or Home Depot.)
  • Rubber o-ring (this may be optional; mine was about 3/4 in diameter)
  • Bike tire valve with excess rubber around the valve, approx 1.5 in diameter
    • I cut a larger rubber piece, placed it inside the PVC joint, and traced the PVC to get the right diamter
  • 3 inch or 4 inch long, PVC pipe
    • Check the outer diameter of the pipe with your coin or calipers. The one pictured was 1/2 inch diameter
    • Checked that it fit into the union at the hardware store
    • Check that it fits into your air-mattress valve - mine "threads" into the un-threaded soft robber valve easily
  • Pink Teflon tape (rated for gas-line use)
    • White Teflon tape, or some other sealant may work.)

Step 4: Put O-ring on Upper Part of PVC Union / Coupling

This will help minimize risk of leakage and cracking from over-tightening the union.

Nuff said

Step 5: Assemble Parts

Assemble and test it out!

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    DIY Hacks and How Tos

    Nice DIY adapter. This would work a lot better than my usual method of wrapping it in duct tape until it works.