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Fix a Camelbak Bladder

waratah's picture

By waratah - Posted on 23 August 2010

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

Hi Guys,

My camelbak has devloped a small hole near the top. No idea how I got it?? I'm thinking of just trying some duct tape to repair, any other ideas or experience?



xtc's picture

You could possibly try one of stick on tube repairs, if they work that good on tubes under pressure they'd have to be ok for the bladder.?

moggio's picture

If you use the gaffa tape make sure its Nashua or no point really.

I agree tube repair.

Maybe some silicon sealant over the hole too might work?

sponge's picture

Had the same problem myself and found out that a good dob of super glue will be an everlasting cure.

If the bladder is a roll type just slide one hand inside it and apply the super glue to the exterior of the bladder until the hole and surronding area is adequately covered. Allow glue to dry before removing your hand and DON'T place your finger under the hole for the obvious reasons!!!!!

This may take a couple of goes to build up a layer or two depending on the size of the hole to be repaired.

If bladder is of the Camelbak, Nalgene etc style, seal the bladder then lightly inflate it by blowing back through the drink valve. This prevents the inside bladder surfaces coming into contact with each other.

Then cover the hole/s with super glue and allow to dry.

This repair has lasted me for years.

Remember to store your bladder in the freezer (emptying of course) after use. This stops mould and bacteria breeding in the bladder, hose and bite valve. Temperature is tooooo cold for them to sustain there disgusting existance.

The glue will not be effected by the temperature either.

Just another little tip:- Store your super glue tubes in the fridge. Stops them from drying out.

waratah's picture

Thanks for all this advice guys, appreciate it.

moggio's picture

... yes, but what did you try and what worked so future generations of punturers can be the wiser?

waratah's picture

Nothing as yet, but will try the super glue once I get a chance. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.

BTW - I emailed Camelbak to enquire about warranty and they replied that I needed to send it back via the retailer Torpedo 7. A repair just seems simpler.

waratah's picture

Well I tried the super glue but it only seemed to creat a hard "scab" over the hole. This didn't bring me confidence so I just put on a glue-less tube patch. It seems to have worked fine.

BTW - whilst researching, I found what seems to be a strong case against using the "freezer" technique to keep the bladder clean. On another forum a mtbiker/microbiologist exaplined how this will only serve to slow the reproductive rate of germs, not kill them. He reccomended using a heavily diluted bleach solution or the commercial tablets to clean the bladder. Other tips included never putting anything but water (no sports drink) into the bladder as this will only create food for germs.

moggio's picture

I use just water and never empty it or do careful storage... its fine as long as I use it every second day or so, which I usually do. Every few months the hose gets a little yucky and it gets a Milton or bicarb clean. Maybe it has bacteria and I can't tell because I have an iron stomach, but there is noticeable "growth" inside it.

Sports drink on the other hand, will turn turn it into a fish tank within days.

J the B's picture

For repairing flexible materials, I'm a big fan of Seamgrip. You can usually buy it at outdoors shops (e.g. Mountain Designs, Paddy Pallin, Summit Gear, etc). It's flexible when it dries (more like silicon than super glue). I've used it to repair thermarests, tents, Platypus drink bladders, stuff sacks, etc.

Never tried it on a proper hydration bladder, but I reckon it would be just the thing. If the hole or tear's big, I'd firstly put a strip of sticky tape over the hole on the inside, then remove it once the glue's dry (don't know if tape residue on the inside of the bladder would worry you, but I'm sure it would be removable).

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