Hot air balloons are used during the summer months mostly, but this doesn't mean the balloons hibernate come winter time. They are used throughout the year to ensure the balloon is safe and ready for public use in the summer. Wherever you run balloon rides, all balloons must be inspected before the season starts to ensure all balloons are in tip top condition. Read on for more hot air balloon maintenance tips!
Cleaning Out Your Balloon
Although balloons are always in the air and floating in the wind they tend to collect lots of dirt and grime. They have to be cleaned at the end of every season and right before the new one starts. This is done by the pilots and ground staff. Cleaning the basket is a common task as this must always be presentable for the balloon riders. Whether it's woven or aluminium the baskets are extremely durable and need replacing rarely.
Sticking And Stitching: Repairing The Balloon
There are some repairs that can only be made by professionals. This applies to any amendments made to the balloon's envelope. The 'envelope' is the name given to the actual balloon and is made out of lightweight fabrics. They are extremely strong but need repairing when the fabric is ripped or torn. This is an important job and best practice is to use a professional balloon expert. This way you will be assured that the envelope of your balloon is repaired correctly and to the standards required by European legislation.
There Is No Flight Without Fuel
The balloon is dependant on the fuel cylinders for its movement. So these need to be protected during take off and landing. They are usually clothed in a protective fabric which also keeps the tanks warm during preparation before take off. Fuel cylinders must be kept clean to ensure they work correctly during each flight. Any damaged fuel hoses must be replaced and if any stick or leak they cannot be used for flights until they have been repaired or replaced. Get Your Balloon Checked Out Regularly
Once all of the checks and any necessary repairs have been made, your balloons are ready for take off! Every balloon should be inspected by an independent firm every 12 months or after 100 flights. This way you will be sure that your balloon passes the standards set by European legislation on hot air balloon safety.