How To Deflate A Basketball: Step By Step Guide 2022

How To Deflate A Basketball Without an Air Pressure Gauge? Repairing Basketball Leaks

Whether you need to pack your basketball for storage or transportation, you’ll need to know how to deflate it first. Deflating a basketball is relatively easy, requiring only a few household items.

Let’s be with Red’s Army to learn how to deflate a basketball with different tools. You can have your basketball deflated and ready to go in just a few minutes.

Why Would I Need to Deflate a Basketball?

Why Would I Need to Deflate a Basketball

Although it is far less frequent, there are some circumstances in which you might need to deflate a basketball.


Overinflation is the most frequent cause of the need to deflate a basketball. Basketball will be more challenging to play if the ball has too much air in it since it will rebound higher than expected and be more challenging to manage.

This may make dribbling the ball appear a little bit simpler, but it will also cause your bounce passes to travel further than you had anticipated and your shots to bounce too hard against the backboard and rim, causing you to miss shots that you would normally make. Although dribbling might initially look simpler, the high bounce makes it more likely that you will lose control of the ball.

You might be wondering how your basketball got too inflated. The most likely explanation is that it was overinflated when you or another person pumped it up.

The air pressure in your basketball can also be impacted by air temperature and height. The pressure within the ball will rise and it may become overinflated if you initially inflated it to the right pressure outside on a cold day and then a few days later, it is very warm outside.

Altitude can also cause this. The air pressure within my ball will rise, and it could become overinflated if I inflate it in Indianapolis, Indiana, where the elevation is roughly 715 feet, and then transport it to Denver, Colorado, where the elevation is 5280 feet. After then, the ball will unquestionably be overinflated if I carry it over Vail Pass, which is at an elevation of 10,666 feet.

Transport or Storage

A basketball may need to be deflated in order to be stored or transported. By inflating it less, we may make it smaller, and it will fit more compactly in a drawer, luggage, or another container.

Using a fine leather or synthetic ball to deflate it could potentially harm it, so be careful. Complete deflation can occasionally lead to the leather or synthetic panels separating, ruining the ball. Although it is not a certainty, it is something to be on the lookout for. Just be sure to deflate it gradually and watch the ball. For all rubber balls, there is no need to worry about this.

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How to Deflate a Basketball Without an Air Pressure Gauge

How to Deflate a Basketball Without an Air Pressure Gauge

If you don’t have a pressure gauge or are deflating the ball for storage or transportation, use this method.

Step 1: Verify The Ball’s Pressure.

Check the air in your ball by dropping it from about breast level and seeing if it bounces back up to about your waist if it feels a little life and you think it needs to be deflated a little. A higher bounce indicates that it is likely over-inflated.

You can omit this step if you are only deflating it for storage or transportation.

Step 2: Moisten The Inflation Needle

To wet the needle, use saliva or even water. This is crucial because lubrication makes it simpler to insert the needle and guards against air valve damage.

Step 3: Place The Needle Into The Air Valve.

Put the needle into the ball’s air valve without using an air pump. As seen in the illustration, push the needle all the way into the ball.

Step 4: Allow Air To Escape.

You should now be able to hear the air leaving the ball. If you want to deflate the ball for storage or transit partially, you might need to squeeze the ball. More air will escape thanks to this.

You don’t want to leave the needle in for too long if all you’re attempting to do is lower the air pressure. Depending on how much air needs to be removed, it might only take a second or two.

Step 5: Remove The Needle

When you believe that you have released enough air, take out the needle by drawing it straight out of the air valve.

Step 6: Double-check The Air Pressure

You can omit this step if you are deflating the air mattress for storage or transit. Check the air pressure if you are adjusting the inflation level. Repeat this procedure beginning at step 2 if the reading is still too high.

You might need to use a pump to add more air if you released too much air and the tire is now underinflated.

Up until you get a good bounce, keep doing this.

How to Use an Air Pressure Gauge to Deflate a Basketball

How to Use an Air Pressure Gauge to Deflate a Basketball

Step 1: Wet The Pressure Gauge’s Inflation Needle.

To wet the needle, use saliva or even water. This is crucial because lubrication simplifies inserting the needle and guards against air valve damage.

Step 2: Insert The Pressure Gauge’s Needle Into The Air Valve.

Put the needle inside the basketball while it’s still connected to the air pressure gauge.

Step 3: Let The Air Out.

To start releasing air, depress the release valve on the air pressure gauge. When the desired pressure is obtained, release the release valve while keeping an eye on the pressure as the air departs.

Other Ways to Deflate A Basketball

Basketball Deflation Using an Inflation Pin

Basketball Deflation Using an Inflation Pin

Perhaps the simplest, safest, and most acceptable method for deflating a basketball is this one. It’s even less of a concern because brand-new balls nearly always come with an inflating pin or needle. Here are a few things to remember.

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Before inserting the pin into the ball, make sure it is moist. Applying saliva, some lubricant,

or momentarily submerging it in water can all be used to do this. The use of saliva by licking a pin is obviously not advised because it is unhygienic, but in situations where there are no other options available, you might have to do it to finish the task.

Remove the air pump from the ball and let the air escape if you need to deflate it completely. On the other hand, it is best to leave the air pump attached to the needle if you overinflated the ball and simply want a small amount of air to escape.

Simply push the needle down until you hear air escaping from the ball if you plan to deflate the ball using the inflating pin alone without an air pump. Again, only perform this method for a second or two if you do not want to entirely empty the ball of air.

Remove the needle from the ball as soon as you believe you have released enough air.

Squeezing the ball firmly may be necessary to speed up the deflation process if you want to deflate the ball fully. Most of the time, a quick check with your hands will suffice if you’re only releasing a small amount of air pressure.

How To Let Air Out Of A Basketball Using A Paper Clip

How To Let Air Out Of A Basketball Using A Paper Clip

There is the best way to deflate a basketball, and there is a method that requires careful consideration.

One of those situations where you have to consider your options is deflating a ball with a paperclip. Of course, we understand that desperate means must be taken in dire situations, but if the choice is between a real inflation pin and a paperclip, always choose the former. So, if you find yourself in a pinch and cannot locate a pin, think outside the box and try it.

Here’s how to use a paperclip to deflate a basketball:

  1. Do your best to straighten the paper clip. The clip should be as straight as a needle, moistened with water (or something else) before being slowly inserted into the valve.
  1. To avoid puncturing the bladder inside the ball, it’s crucial to place the clip precisely in the center.
  1. As gently as you can, feel your way through the middle. When the air disappears, measure the air pressure and slowly remove the paper clip when it reaches the right level.

Note: Just keep in mind that this method has virtually no room for error, making it the worst possible technique to deflate a basketball. Just be cautious and take your time; if you accidentally pierce the ball from the inside, you won’t be able to continue playing.

How To Deflate A Basketball With A Pen?

Deflating a Basketball With A Pen

This is the trickiest technique since, seriously, who would have thought a pen could help you deflate a ball? Additionally, you would require some equipment, such as a knife or a pair of scissors, and it would be best if the tube was empty of ink. What you should do is as follows:

  1. Remove the pen’s tube and check if it has any ink. If there is remaining ink, wash it out with warm water.
  2. Cut the tube at a distance of 1.5 to 2 inches from the bottom.
  3. Since most of the ink tube’s valves are detachable, the next step would be to remove them.
  4. Use a paper clip as you would normally. Just make sure the ink tube’s diameter is less than the ball’s valve’s diameter.
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Repairing Basketball Leaks

We could have bad luck and cause leaks in a basketball if we are not attentive enough. In any event, if you don’t want to spend money on a new basketball, you can fix it yourself with the help of the following supplies:

Vinyl. To hide leaks or tiny holes in the ball itself, use vinyl. You can locate the leak by immersing the ball in a water tub (or water pail) and rotating the ball while looking for air bubbles. Once the hole has been marked, warm a dull knife over an open flame.

Place the vinyl over the leak and use the hot knife to dab the area until the vinyl melts. Allow the vinyl to dry for at least five minutes. The ball should be inflated to the desired air pressure.

A repair kit for bikes. If you don’t have the vinyl but do have a bicycle repair kit, you can use the directions there to fix leaks on a basketball if you follow them.

Sealant for repairs. Basketball leaks can also be fixed by using a repair sealant. Inject the sealant into the hole using a syringe and the sealant.


Does Heat Make Balls Deflate?

Does Heat Make Balls Deflate?

Gas molecules become more compact as the temperature drops. They become less energetic and move more slowly as a result. So, a lesser pressure causes the ball to bounce less. That is why a fully inflated ball could appear deflated if the temperature decreases significantly.

How To Deflate A Basketball Without A Needle?

Finding something to fit in the tiny air hole is the most challenging aspect of blowing a ball up without a pump or needle. A compressed air canister is an ideal choice as a result. Air Compressed You can easily blow air into the ball since the little needle will fit within the air hole.

Watch this video:

How to deflate a basketball without a needle/pump! (@the airport)

Do Basketballs Lose Air Over Time?

When unused and over time from regular use, basketballs tend to lose a little of their air. Basketballs require the proper amount of air pressure to bounce properly. The ball’s size, series, and materials may differ between manufacturers.

How Long Does It Take For A Basketball To Deflate?

There isn’t a broad response to the query. Since each ball has a specific capacity. While some retain their air for 3–4 months, others start to lose it after 5–6 months. However, in addition to the quantity and quality of the ball, it also depends on how you handle it.


Playing basketball is a great way to exercise, but sometimes you must deflate the ball for storage or travel. Red’s Army hopes that you can find it helpful in this article. If you have any questions, feel free to leave your comments below. We’re glad to hear from you.

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