Basketballs are designed to withstand your rough and tough play. It goes through plenty of wear and tear during a practice session and match day. Therefore, when your basketball tends to leak air, you won’t be that much surprised, or will you?
Damages do occur and if there is a leak, you need to act quickly before it gets more serious. Each time there is a leak, replacing it with a new ball may not be affordable. In this scenario, repairing the leak will be the ideal solution.
Suppose you enjoy fixing things by yourself or the ball has got some special meaning (first ball, birthday gift or else) to you. So you may choose to fix it rather than replacing.
But how to fix a leaking basketball valve?
There are several techniques to fix a leak in your basketball. Whether your ball itself springs a leak or the valve is leaking, hardly it matters. You will be able to fix it naturally.
Table of Contents
Things That Are Necessary To Fix
1. Bucket of water
2. Old dull knife
3. Open flame
4. Inflator needle
5. Hand pump
6. Repair sealant RL420
8. Key-shaped valve changer
9. Detergent/soapy water
Locate where the leak is
Step 1: Use a ball inflator or pump to inflate the ball.
Step 2: Take a bucket filled with water and submerge the ball.
Step 3: Look for bubble streams and where they are. Identify leaks and it’s location.
Remember, there is always air trapped between a panel and a bladder. So, a bubble can come out from the seams. This is not a leak. Once the trapped air is released, the bubbles will stop emanating. Still, if you see a continuous bubble coming through, then there is a leak and mark the ball where the leak exists.
Understanding of ball leakage
A. If you see bubbles are coming from the center of the basketball inflation valve, that means your valve is leaking and you have got a defective valve.
B. Otherwise, the bubbles are coming from the surface of the ball and then your ball is leaking.
To repair a basketball leak you can apply the following techniques
Problem 1: Leakage from the surface of the ball
if the leak is emanating from the surface, there is a small puncture in the bladder or surface, causing the leak.
Now, inflate the ball until it is 70-80% full. Buy a ball repair sealant RL420 and shake it well. Then wet the sealant can’s insertion needle with water and push it all the way into the valve. Spray the sealant into the ball for five to six seconds.
Inflate the ball totally. Bounce the ball 10 to 15 times. It will allow the sealant to be distributed evenly on the inside of the ball’s bladder.
Now, let your ball to sit for an hour to allow the sealant to settle.
Without sealant, you can repair a surface leak by heating. You need to heat the tip of a dull knife over an open flame. Now swipe the hot knife across the leak until vinyl shows any sign of melting. Then cool down the vinyl and solidify it for at least 5-10 minutes.
After that push an inflator needle into the valve hole. Re-inflate the ball by using a hand pump. Do not over inflate it.
Problem 2: Valve Leak
At first, insert a wet inflating needle into the valve hole. It helps to clean dirt. Do the same multiple times. If the leak persists, then insert a toothpick into the valve hole.
Finally break off the end of the toothpick. Now, your inflation valve for basketball is plugged.
you can replace the defective valve. How to replace the inflation valve on a basketball?
Use the key-shaped valve changer to remove the old valve. To do that you need to twist the valve changer slightly. Then slowly pull it towards you. Soak the new valve in soapy water or detergent.
You can use any valve inserter to insert the valve into the opening of the ball. After that, hold the head of the valve inserter with a cloth or towel and tightly screw the new valve into place.
Now inflate the ball and leave it for 24 hours. Recheck the leak next day. Hope everything is fine and now your ball is ready to play again. Phew! Game time!
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