Inflate basketball

A basketball is a great way to have fun with your friends and family. It’s also an excellent exercise for people of all ages. But inflating, deflating, and tuning up a basketball isn’t so easy! Luckily, the steps are laid out below in this blog post that will help you inflate your ball just right every time. We’ll give you tips on how to deflate it too if needed! And once you’re finished inflating or deflating, don’t forget to check the pressure of the ball!

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How to Inflate a Basketball

There are many ways to inflate a basketball. You can use an inflator, you could take it to the local gym and have them fill your ball for you. Or maybe even put some muscle power into inflating it yourself with a pump! All of these steps must be done correctly so we’ll break each one down below:

inflate basketball

Inflate basketball using inflator ($15-$20)

  • Make sure needle is attached properly to hose
  • Turn inflator on and place nozzle inside valve opening
  • Hold basket upright while inflating (this will avoid dirtying/damaging the ball surface)
  • Remove inflator once full inflation has been reached (~12lbs pressure) **Do not overinflate as this can damage the ball

Inflate basketball using a pump ($20-$25)

  • Make sure needle is attached properly to hose
  • Place inflator on top of valve opening. And turn inflator handle to inflate (while holding basket up). Some pumps come with a pressure gauge, if yours does not one can be purchased separately for around $30
  • Remove inflator once full inflation has been reached (~12lbs pressure). Do not overinflate as this will damage the ball

Do NOT use a hand pump or foot pump to fill basketball past recommended breakpoint!  This is dangerous & could cause serious injury! Only use air compressor/blower found at sporting goods store/gas station.  

How to Deflate a Basketball

In rare cases, you may need to deflate your basketball. Maybe it’s too firm or maybe it’s just flat! Follow these steps below:

  • Deflate basketball by placing a sharp object inside the valve opening and pushing down to release air. Be careful not to damage the ball.
  • Or use an inflator and push the inflator nozzle onto the valve opening to release all of the air insides
  • Remove inflator once full deflation has been reached (~12 lbs pressure)

Deflation time will vary depending on how much air there is in the ball. Do not over-deflate as this can damage your basketball’s rubber bladder or seams which could lead to an accident!

After you’ve deflated it, what should be left is a round object that weighs less than 24 ounces. Remember though, if either inflation or deflation takes place too quickly (overinflating/underinflating), serious harm may come to both players and objects alike!

That’s why we recommend using an inflator for quick inflation times and taking extra precautions when inflating or deflating.

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inflate basketball

Always Check the Pressure of The Basketball!

Now that you’ve inflated and/or deflated your basketball. You should check the pressure of it before playing to make sure everything went smoothly!

If there is too much air pressure (overinflated) then wait around 15 minutes for some of the air to seep out. If needed use an inflator nozzle inside the valve opening until desired PSI has been reached (~12lbs).

On the other hand, if there isn’t enough air in your ball (underinflated), attach needle tip onto hose on inflator and inflate until full inflation has occurred (~12 lbs). Your basketball now awaits its next game with you which can be played without fear of injury due to over-pressurization.

How to Check the PSI of a Basketball

There are several ways to check the PSI of a basketball. One way is to purchase a pressure gauge from your local sporting goods store. This will be able to let you know how much air pressure there is inside the ball. As well as if it’s over or underinflated.

Another method that doesn’t require anything other than what you already have on hand would be inflating and deflating the ball several times in succession until desired measurements are reached (12 lbs).

What is the Right Amount of Air Pressure for a Basketball?

You must check your basketball every so often to make sure it is inflated properly. There are many ways to do this but we recommend using either:

A basketball tester ($20-$25), or a needle/pin which goes inside the valve opening and pops back out displaying the pre-measured amount of air in the ball (this is very accurate and requires no inflator)

Please do NOT forget to check your basketball pressure if it drops below 12lbs/50psi. If this happens, you must re-inflate your basketball as soon as possible so that it can be used safely!

Why Does my Basketball Keep Deflating?

If your basketball is deflating, it could be because of many reasons!

One reason is that you are playing basketball outside and the ball has been exposed to extreme elements such as rain, snow, or ice which can cause your air pressure to drop.

Another reason for deflating balls is if they have not reached their full inflation after inflating them with an inflator (15-20min wait time should do).

This may also happen due to overinflating/underinflating where too much air inside the basketball can lead to either a lack of proper form when holding the ball. Or too little air leads to poor bounce back speed once dribbled on or used in other ways.

The last, and most obvious reason why your basketball has deflated is due to punctures. This can happen if you accidentally step on the ball (on accident) or hit it against something hard which could rupture parts of the air bladder inside, causing all of its pressure to leak out quickly!

If this happens, simply re-inflate your basketball and make sure you check for any leaks before inflating again because a quick fix from an inflator will not stop leaks from becoming bigger in time.

inflate basketball


If you follow these steps when inflating or deflating a basketball, not only will you get good use out of your new toy but also prolong its life by preventing damages caused due to overinflation or underinflation.

Remember everyone loves playing with inflated basketballs but make sure they are always at their optimal pressure levels for maximum safety! When inflating any kind of sports equipment please remember all inflators are different and you will need to adjust your inflator accordingly to the size of valve opening, PSI settings etc.

We hope this blog post has been helpful in explaining how one can inflate or deflate a basketball along with other important information which is crucial for safety reasons! We look forward to future comments from our readers so please leave us feedback on what could be added/changed!

Here are Some of our Favourite Basketball Sneakers

Here we will be giving more of an opinion, rather than facts. Are the sneakers worth the price that they are being sold at? Should you upgrade from your current sneakers, depending on what boots you own? What features stand out on these sneakers? If any. Does it do the job? Speed, control, stability etc. Depending on your needs/preferences. We can also mention its durability, if we have collected enough data on the specific sneakers.

What did we expect vs. what we got. Is it maybe overrated/underrated?


Here’s our pick from the very best of the bunch.


On your way to the pro leagues? Here’s our pick.


Want something to start with? Have a look at our pick.

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