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DS floor blowout

Posted: Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:37 pm
by Phiba
We tried our 2014 AE1007 DS (Drop Stitch floor) for the first time last weekend. The previous owner said they only used it once, then put it away for 4 years, so it looks like new. I pumped the boat to 1-2psi and the floor to 5psi, and we had a wonderful paddle around the lake.Then we took a lunch break, pulling the kayak up on the shore, but still in the sun. After about 1/2 hour we heard a loud bang, and found a large blister had formed in the forward middle of the the floor. It was only then that I saw the little paper tag next to the floor valve that says, "When not using the floor, remove the plug if in the sun", or something to that effect. Needless to say, I deflated all the tubes a bit, but for the floor, it was too late - an expensive mistake.

Which leads me to these questions: 1) Would the spring valve in the DS floor have worked as a pressure relief valve if I had removed the plug? 2) Is the same true for the spring valves in the other tubes? 3) I read that the standard floor since 2016 includes a pressure relief valve (in addition to the inflation valve). Does the current DS floor come with a separate pressure relief valve as well?

The DS floor is very nice, lightweight, and stiff, but if the standard floor has a pressure relief valve and the DS floor does not, I think I'll go for the standard floor for the replacement.

Otherwise, it is a very fun boat, both for one and two paddlers!

Posted: Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:13 am
by Phiba
I guess I'll run these questions by AE Customer Service and see what they have to say. I'll report back to this group what I find out. Cheers!

Posted: Fri Aug 03, 2018 3:25 pm
by Phiba
One thing I can say is that AE's Customer Service is very responsive! :)

Here is what I have learned:

1) The spring valves in the main tubes and the floor (standard or DS) do not act as a pressure relief valve even if the cap is removed.

2) The main tubes and DS floor should be deflated a little if the kayak is left out in the sun and out of the water.

3) The standard floor (since 2016, I think) now includes a separate pressure relief valve that protects it from over-inflation. The DS floor does not have a PR valve.

I hope this information is helpful. I wish I had known this before blowing out my DS floor.

Posted: Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:12 pm
by PJohanson
I would add that for any inflatable kayak, if you're going to leave it onshore in the sunshine for a while -- Let Out A Bit Of Air! It is easy to puff the boat up again, and it reduces risk of over-inflation or damage.