Helium Set up and Balloon Inflation Procedures


safety helium equipmentThe most important safety requirement is to ensure that the helium cylinders are securely attached to a wall, bracket or cylinder stand. Proper helium equipment is a must! Always keep the cylinder cap on when moving cylinders from place to place.  Take extra care that the helium tank does not tip over.  Do not remove the cylinder cap until the cylinder is completely secure.




helium cylindersThe helium tank will arrive with the safety cap in place. You may be using a smaller aluminum tank that you have purchased.  These will not have a cap. Once the helium tank is secured, remove the cylinder cap by turning it counterclockwise. KEEP THE CYLINDER CAP CLOSE BY SINCE IT WILL BE NEEDED TO TRANSPORT THE HELIUM EQUIPMENT OR MOVE IT AROUND SAFELY.




helium tank with inflatorThe balloon inflator (also called a regulator) is now ready to be attached.  To attach the regulator, insert the threaded end of the regulator into the cylinder valve opening and turn the black hand tight knob (not all inflators will have this exactly) clockwise to tighten until the connection is firm. DO NOT USE A WRENCH TO TIGHTEN. Now you can open the valve on top of the helium tank.  You do this by turning the valve at the very top of the tank counterclockwise.  You will here the pressure make a small “pop” in the inflator.  The gauge on the cylinder guage (is you have one) should read 2000 psi if your tank is full.


BE SURE TO KEEP THE CYLINDER VALVE CLOSED WHEN NOT IN USE. Note, if you ever need to remove the inflator…close the tank valve and release any pressure in the inflator (tilt inflation tip slightly, any pressure still in the inflator will release)…now you can take loosen the inflator by hand.

You are now ready to fill your balloons!

How to fill your balloon will depend on the type of balloon inflator that you are using

Basics latex inflator

regulator to blow up latex balloons

To fill a latex balloon, insert the opening of the balloon onto the latex nozzle (black rubber tip). The latex nozzle is designed to release helium when tilted at a slight angle.  Inflate the balloon to the desired size (they should NOT look like light bulbs…too full!) Be careful to not overinflate because helium expands.  Also, under-fill balloons for use outside in the heat.  Helium expands in the heat and contracts in the cold.  It’s physics people….think about when planning your decorating so your balloons aren’t a flop!  Also, be aware of heating or AC vents for the same reason.

Dual tip foil and latex balloon inflator

BR4HG balloon inflatorYou may be using an inflator that also easily inflates foil balloons.  To fill a foil balloon, slide the balloon opening (you will find this opening on the neck of the foil balloon) over the brass push valve.  The push valve on the regulator is designed to release helium when pushed in. To inflate, hold the balloon while engaging the push valve.  DO NOT PUSH THE BALLOON VALVE TOO FAR INTO THE BALLOON (just insert it a little)…TO FAR AND YOU COULD CAUSE THE SELF SEAL VALVE ON THE BALLOON TO TEAR (not good…can’t fix this!).  The regulator is designed to stop the flow of helium when the balloon is fully inflated.

Happy inflating!