In this guide, we review the best SUP hand pumps I have personally tested thus far in my paddle boarding journey.
We selected a few different types to fit a wide range of paddlers. Whether you want a compact single-chamber manual pump or a double-cylinder pump that inputs more air, We’ve got you!
Read below as we dive into some of our top SUP Pump picks. But before I do that I want to say something about electric pumps based on personal experience.
Table of Contents
Why I Prefer Electric SUP Pumps
I have to have my electric SUP pump pitch here as I generally prefer them in almost every capacity. But everyone has a different opinion.
My friends at Sea Gods seem to love manual pumps because of the “pump” you get from the on-land workout of filling your board. So you may have a similar view.
“In my opinion, electric SUP Pumps save you a lot of time and effort. Which you can use for you know… The actual paddle boarding! Many people underestimate the effort it takes to pump up an inflatable paddle board with a manual pump, even if it is double-chambered. It gets harder as soon as you get into the 5-7 PSI range and you have to work to get those extra PSI’s in.
While the Electric Paddle Board Pump is working away pumping up that board to its set PSI, you can use this time to organize the items that you are bringing with you on your paddle.
You can also use this time to put stuff back into your car like SUP bags, extra pumps, straps, etc.”– Editors Notes
Pitch over, let’s move on.
Best SUP Hand Pumps
Below are the best SUP Hand Pumps that I have tested up to the date of this article. We picked a few different types to make sure that you find one that can fit your transportation needs.
1. Red Paddle Titan 2 SUP Pump
- Dimensions: 22″ x 5″ x 7″
- Weight: 6 Lbs
- Chambers: 2
- Pump Settings: Adaptive Knob
- Max PSI: 30 PSI
The Red Paddle Titan 2 SUP Pump was designed in-house specifically to make pumping up your inflatable SUP faster. It is also the most expensive on this list.
I can usually pump up boards in about 4-5 minutes with this pump depending on my energy levels.
It features two different-sized chambers. The bigger one is used to get the most air into the board quicker than most pumps due to the volume of the large chamber. The smaller one allows pumping the board to be easier as you get up to the mid-PSI ranges of 6-7. You do this with an adjustable lever. Just turn it to the right and it goes to single-action mode (one cylinder being pumped).
The Titan 2 offers an adjustable knob that allows you to pump from both cylinders for maximum volume to one as soon as you get within the 6-7 PSI range. As you switch the adjustable lever you get one cylinder pumping which makes getting air into the board easier.
This pump is bulky in size, so its best to use this pump when you have a car close by to store it. Despite this, the Titan 2 hand pump has reduced its size to 30% compared to its predecessor the original Titan pump.
- Pumps a large amount of volume into your board
- The pumping mechanism is smooth
- The 2 cylinders make pumping easier
- Made in-house at Red Paddle
- Heavier than other pumps
- It is not the best pump to have when hiking or walking long distances
2. Nixy Typhoon Hand Pump
- Dimensions: 25” x 9” x 6”
- Weight: 4.37 Lbs
- Chambers: 2
- Pump Settings: 3 Settings
- Max PSI: 29 PSI
In a world of navigating single-chamber pumps, you can imagine my relief when I found out that my Nixy Newport came with this pump! In my opinion, this is one of the better-designed double-chamber SUP pumps that comes with the SUP package.
The Typhoon hand pump comes with all Nixy paddle board packages and takes significantly quicker to fill your board up with air compared to single chamber pumps.
It takes me on average 5-7 minutes to fill up my board with this pump. Some people can probably pump faster but what can I say, I like to take pumping breaks :P.
The Typhoon has 3 action settings. The triple action setting can be used first to get the most volume of air out of the pump and into the board. It uses both chambers on the up and down strokes.
The double action setting uses one chamber that pumps air in the up and down setting but this time with the single cylinder. Finally, when you get to the last 7-5 PSI you can use the single action setting which pumps air on the down stroke only using a single cylinder.
The handles are detachable and the legs of the pump fold up to allow the pump to be less intrusive in your SUP bag. Thankfully if you buy a Nixy board you will usually have plenty of room to fit this pump in the bag until you get to the bigger models like the Monterey and Manhattan boards.
- A big upgrade on the single-chamber pumps
- I like the triple action setting as it helps speed things up
- Comes with all Nixy paddle boards
- I feel the pump is well-made and designed
- Takes up a good amount of room in the bag
- Is bulkier compared to many single-chamber pumps SUPs come with
3. Gili Triple Action Hand Pump
- Dimensions: 25” x 13”
- Weight: 4 Lbs
- Chambers: 2
- Pump Settings: 3 Settings
- Max PSI: 18 PSI
Another triple-action hand pump that I have to recommend is the Gili Triple Action pump. These pumps can be purchased separately or come with premium Gili models such as the Meno 10’6, 11’6”, and the 12’ models.
Like the Nixy this is a triple-action pump whose settings and instructions I found to be a bit more straightforward compared to the Typhoon. The pump has 3 action settings with a knob as opposed to 2 nobs that you have to turn in different positions.
This allows you to pump air through both chambers, 1 chamber on the up and down strokes or 1 chamber strictly on the down strokes when you get to a higher PSI.
The Nixy is rated higher as I felt it’s a more well-made model and the pumping time was just a tad quicker compared to the Gili Triple Action pump.
Unlike the Red Paddle and Nixy Typhoon pumps this particular model does not have a deflate setting which means you will have to most likely wrestle your SUP like Steve Irwin when letting air out of your board.
- The pump has a narrower depth compared to the Typhoon
- Will be about 30% faster than a standard double-chamber pump
- Instructions and nob are straightforward with a diagram
- High price tag
- Does not have a deflate option
- Feet and handles do not fold or come off
4. Atoll Hand Pump
- Dimensions: 22” x 6” x 4”
- Weight: 2.5Lbs
- Chambers: 1
- Pump Settings: 2 Settings
- Max PSI: 20 PSI
When it comes to single-chamber pumps we found the Atoll hand pump to be the best in terms of our testing. It pumped the fastest by a hair clocking in at 7 minutes and 22 seconds. Compared to some of the other manual pumps that clocked in at just over 7 minutes and 50 seconds and above.
While I am not a massive fan of single-chamber hand pumps. I do see what attracts people to them. If you were wanting to go off on a hike the other 2 above picks would not be as attractive of a choice due to their bulkiness.
These single-chamber pumps also take up a lot less room in the bag which makes putting them back inside a breeze.
This pump has a black pin attached to it which allows you to switch from double action (air being pumped out on the up and down stroke) to single action (air being pumped out on the down stroke).
- Fits in most SUP bags easily
- Very easy to use
- One of the fastest single-chamber pumps we’ve used
- Relatively cheap to buy
- Will not be as fast as the other 2 picks
- Takes longer to pump up
- Feet and handles could be collapsable for better storage space
How to Choose the Top SUP Hand Pumps
Below is a quick guide on how you can choose what SUP hand pumps best suit what you need. Perhaps the most important aspect to look at is..
Below we will be talking a lot about double-action and triple-action pumps. The action refers to the pump settings which use different cylinders on the up or down stroke.
Double Action Pumps: Usually are the ones that come with the SUP and have one pumping cylinder. These pumps have 2 settings. Pumping air on the up and down stroke and pumping air on the downstroke.
Triple Action Pumps: These are more bulky and have two cylinders that allow you to output more volume of air. These pumps have 3 different pump settings. The first stage usually uses both cylinders and pumps on the up and down stroke. The second stage will use both cylinders that fill air on the down stroke. The last stage just pumps air from the one cylinder on the down stroke when you start getting into that mid PSI range.
How Well is the Manual SUP Pump Designed?
Often I find (especially with budget or many Amazon boards) that the company puts very little effort into the hand pump which often leads to it malfunctioning. Look at things such as the handles and the bars of the pumping mechanism to see how strong it is.
Another thing to think about is how tall you are. In my experience manual pumps often don’t care about taller people as a result if you are over 6’0 you are often bending over awkwardly which is no bueno for those with back issues (hint over here!).
How smooth is the pumping action? Most importantly, does the pump still smoothly pump as soon as you get to the 5-6 PSI range? Most pumps have at least 2 action settings to make the pumping easier as you get to those tougher PSIs. If they don’t stay clear as you will have a hell of a time trying to get air in the board.
Another thing to look at is if you want the pump to have a deflate option or not. The deflate option (often the hose goes on the other side) allows you to suck air out of the board to make it easier to pack away. And believe me, it does. But if you like wrestling the board like a crocodile while taking the air out then by all means you don’t need the deflation option.
Triple Action or Double Action?
In my experience, triple action is way better at getting the volume of air into the board quicker. Triple action pumps usually have two pumping cylinders that can use both cylinders to pump air with its first setting. They allow you to ease into pumping up the board by simply changing the action settings to make it easier to pump up the board as soon as you get to 5-7 PSI.
I would use double action pumps for things like getting a “good pump” before paddle boarding, keeping costs down, or bringing a board on hikes. These pumps will do the job but lack efficiency compared to triple-action pumps.
How Compact is the Pump?
The most compact pumps will be the double action pumps that have one cylinder. Often when you buy a paddle board and it’s all nicely wrapped in the bag, you underestimate the amount of effort it will take the first few times to get it back in. And pumps certainly add to that problem.
Look for pumps that have removable handles and legs to help save space in your SUP bag, especially if it’s a tighter fit.
So if saving space is a priority you may want to sacrifice the couple of minutes you can save and just get a smaller double action pump.
Below are some common FAQs I often get about hand pumps. I’ve seen a lot of people struggling out there! Pushing the last bits of air into their boards.
Can You Over-Inflate a SUP with a hand pump?
You cannot over-inflate a SUP with a single chamber hand pump as you need a lot of power behind it. This is one of the advantages of having a manual pump over an electric pump.
How Long Does it Take You to Manually Pump Up a SUP?
It can take anywhere between 3 and a half minutes to 8 minutes. This is dependent on the kind of manual pump you are using and how many breaks you take! Most times pumps with 2 cylinders take less time to pump up compared to single-chamber manual pumps.
How Do I Know My Paddle Board is Inflated Enough?
You will know your paddle board is inflated enough when you follow your paddle board guidelines to what the proper PSI is. Often 13-15 PSI is the recommended amount for cheaper to mid-tier boards while 20 PSI is recommended for high-quality ones that are more expensive.
Can I Leave My SUP Inflated?
You can leave your paddle board inflated although you should not leave the board fully inflated in the off-season. Air pressure can provide some wear and tear to the board if it is stored inflated for longer periods.
If I’m keeping the board inflated I often like to burp some of the PSI out of it. Especially if it’s outside as heat tends to expand the PSI by a degree or two.
Is An Electric Pump Better Than a Manual?
For those who have access to a power bank or car and don’t have far to go to the shore, I highly recommend spending the extra $100 + and getting an electric pump. It makes life a heck of a lot easier.
Manual pumps are best for hiking longer distances to get to the shoreline or keeping weight down.
So What’s The Best SUP Hand Pump?
The best SUP hand pump if money is not an issue is the Titan 2 by Red Paddle Co. For those who want a smooth triple-action pump, the Nixy Typhoon is a great choice.
For those who want a lighter weight single cylinder hand pump, then I’d recommend the Atoll Hand Pump.
What Are Your Thoughts on Hand Pumps? Discuss here.
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