The term ‘self-infating’ has been around for about 30 years ever since Thermarest developed the original idea back in the 70’s. It describes the open cell foam inside the mat expanding in much the same way as a bath sponge pops into life from a unclenched fist.
However these are not magic pop-up mats: you can buy a three second tent but no one makes a three second mat. All our mats are stored in our warehouse tightly compressed: if they weren’t we would have to charge more for them as it would cost us more to transport and store them.
This means there are a few things you need to do the first couple of times you use your mat in order to prime the foam and get the best out of it. The foam inside your mat will need a little exercise before it regains its full self-inflating power. For this reason we recommend following these 5 steps before taking your mat camping.
1) Unroll your mat and undo the valve(s)
2) Leave for 15 mins as it starts to suck in air and inflate
3) If it’s a Dozer, close one of the valves
4) Blow into the mat until solid and close the valve. Do not use a mechanical pump
5) Leave for 24 hrs
Once this has been done you should find that upon deflation and re-inflation, the thicker mats will take about 5 mins to draw in enough air for you to sleep on. To make your mat firm you will always need to add extra air by breathing into it. This ranges from one big breath to inflate a Little Kippa and about six for a Dozer, another 3 or 4 if you like it really firm.
To deflate your mat open the valve(s) and roll the mat from the opposite end to expel all of the air. Close the valve to stop the mat from reinflating itself.
To give the mat the best chance of self inflating, it needs to be stored open with the valves open. By following this advice you can ensure the fastest possible inflation time on your campsite.
Sleep with the Alpkit logo facing up, your head at the valve end and your feet at the opposite end.. zzzzz
Living with your Alpkit goodies and looking after them.
Some frequently asked questions and help topics to keep your Alpkit goodies in tip top order.