The Professional's How to Guide for Rooftop Installations of Inflatables
Rooftop installations of cold-air inflatables are not something to be taken lightly. They are not the same as helium rooftop installations or ground installations. Because of the sheer height involved and the special considerations a rooftop installation entails, you'll need to be extra cautious. This article will outline the necessary steps for rooftop installations. However, if you own an inflatable or are thinking of buying one, I strongly suggest you hire a professional to conduct at least your first install.
Step 1 - Make Sure You Have the Necessary Equipment
Before you begin, check to be sure you have:
- Blower System
- Set of Double Cambuckles (minimum 4)
- Caribiner Clips
- Anchors and eyebolts
- Tether straps
- Extension Cord
- Hammer Drill
- 3/4” Masonry Bit
- Lead Anchors (minimum 4)
It is NOT recommended that you attempt inflation in winds that exceed 20 mph.
It may also be necessary to get a permit because rooftop installations are not allowed in every city. Always check before proceeding. If you choose to use a professional installation company, they will generally secure the permit for you.
Step 2 - Inspect the Rooftop
Take time to walk the rooftop and make mental notes. Are the walls brick or cement? These make the best anchor points. Is there a good line of sight for passing traffic? If so, that's where you'll want to place the inflatable if possible. Are there tree limbs or power lines that will interfere with or come in direct contact with an inflatable? If you can't cut limbs or avoid power lines, choose another location. Either could seriously damage the inflatable and/or you during the installation.
Step 3 - Find the Electrical Source
Cold-air inflatables are able to remain upright because they use an internal blower. These blowers require electricity to operate. Most inflatables require a 20-amp circuit breaker, preferably on a non-switched power source. Is there a suitable power source on the roof? If not, contact the landlord of the building or a qualified electrician. The best option will be to wire the roof with a constant flow of power that is not turned off at night. If it is not feasible to install a permanent power source, a generator may be used.
Step 4 - Locate the Best Anchor Points
The anchors are the devices that hold your inflatable in the location you choose. In order to insert the anchors, you will need to locate sturdy anchor points. As I mentioned earlier, the best anchor points are in concrete block or the mortar between bricks. You will need to place each anchor at a 45º angle between the top tether strap of your inflatable and the surface. When you anchor to block or mortar, you eliminate the need to mar the roof's surface while still keeping your inflatable in place.
WARNING: Never connect tether straps to air-conditioning units, gas pipes, or electrical lines!
Step 5 - Install Lead Anchors
That's it! Just connect the anchors to the balloon, inflate it as usual and you'll have a sight that can be seen for miles around! Need help peforming a ground installation? Our ground installation video will show you how.
A hammer drill with a 3/4” masonry bit for pre-drilling holes for lead anchors is preferred. Measure approximately 12” down along the wall of the building for hole placement. Next, install the anchors into the holes by using a hammer or mallet. Finally, screw the eyebolts onto the end of each anchor. Always wear safety goggles and follow safety precautions.