Tear-Aid

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Tear-Aid is watertight and airtight adhesive repair tape marketed for use in repairing outdoor products. I first found it when I was looking at options for repairing a tear in a self-inflating sleeping pad and read a recommendation of Tear-Aid from a former bouncy-castle operator. That real-world endorsement was enough to get me to try it and it has performed well for me.

I didn’t want to experiment with a liquid patch because I couldn’t be sure if the solvents would interfere with the composition of the sleeping pad, so this option was attractive. The instructions are clear and application was simple. After preppng the area with alcohol, I peeled the backing off and pressed the tape over the problem area. The tape is tough but flexible, and is transparent. It sticks very well and the sleeping pad now stays at pressure perfectly.

Tear-Aid Type A is for fabrics and Tear-Aid Type B is for Vinyl only. I have tried Type A, but not Type B. My local sporting goods store stocks the small repair kits for around $10, but the product is also available in rolls or by the foot from some vendors online.
The small repair kit I bought includes a 30 cm length of the 7.5 cm width material, as well as some small patches and a length of monofilament provided to add durability in making edge repairs.

This tape is useful, versatile, and compact, and I plan to keep it on hand for emergencies. You can get it from their website but it is widely available in stores that cater to camping, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.

-- Erik Hoover  

[This PDF instruction manual from Tear-Aid is helpful, and also includes a thorough list of materials that Type A and B work with. --OH]

Tear-Aid Type A (for fabric)
Patch kit, or 3″ x 5′ roll
$4-$35
Available from Amazon

Tear-Aid Type B (for vinyl)
Patch kit, or 3″ x 5′ roll
$9-$28
Available from Amazon

Manufactured by Tear-Aid