River Rafts: Which Valve Should I Use?


Hobbies 2022


River rafting is one of the most popular ways for people to enjoy waterways. There really is nothing like enjoying a fun rafting trip down a river to feel alive and energised. It can also be a great day out for the family and help you get back out into nature.


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Of course, the raft itself is one of the most important pieces of kit for any trip. A river raft is made up of many key components and the inflation valve is certainly one of these. The top two choices in this area are the C7 and D7 air inflation valves, but which should you choose?

C7 Inflation Valve

The C7 valve is stylish, has a smooth profile and comes in a choice of colours for both cap and valve. This makes it an ideal choice for high-end river rafts due to its quality, or if how the valve looks is important to you. It also comes with a rugged construction and is 100% leak tested when being produced.

The valve seal also cleans the seal surface as it operates, thus stopping dirt from causing leakages. All this means it’s a valve that you can rely on and which should not leak. The low profile it comes with is also handy for protecting raft fabric from snagging on the valve when deflated. Hard-wearing and simple to use, raft manufacturers can even put a company logo on the C7 for a bespoke look.

D7 Air Inflation Valve – How Does It Compare?

The main thing to know is that the D7 valve is an updated version of the C7 valve. As such it has all the features and benefits which the C7 delivers – but with some added extras!

The D7 for example has improved inflation/deflation speeds which makes it faster to use than the C7. There has also been an O ring seal and innovative clamping method added to the D7’s valve core, to even further reduce the possibility of leaks.

The D7 comes with a shorter internal profile than the C7 and this makes it better for rafts with smaller diameter tubes.

In addition, both the C7 and D7 are manufactured from ACETAL (POM) parts which gives them extra strength and chemical resistance.

C7 or D7 Air Inflation Valve – Which Should You Choose for river rafts?

The simple fact is that both the C7 and D7 inflation valve are both good choices for river rafts. As such, either would be a great choice – it really comes down to personal preference. It is true to say though that the D7 air valve is the later model and thus offers extra features which the C7 does not. If these extra features are desirable for you, then the D7 is the best choice.

At Leafield Marine, we can supply both the C7 and D7 valve to order for river raft manufacturers. Get in touch via the online quote form on our website or email [email protected] today for more details.

For valves for raft repairs and upgrades, please contact our Distributors.