Hypalon or PVC



To differentiate between the two, look at the assembled parts of your tube :

- a welded assembly gives a brilliant appearance to the fabric assembled on PVC

- parts glued to neoprene hypalon can sometimes "taper away" a little on the edges. There may be yellow along edges where glued areas means, from environmental or UV exposure.

There is very little difference to the touch; depending on the grade, PVC fabric can be a little grainy, but a good quality PVC fabric can be very smooth too.


Hypalon is a trademark for a series of chlorosulfonated polyethylene (CSPE) synthetic rubbers (CSM) made by DuPont Dow Elastomers. It has many known applications in a range of industries due to its excellent air holding capabilities and outstanding resistance to the deteriorating effects of temperature extremes, ozone, oxygen, weather, oil, and chemicals.

Neoprene is a Zodiac fabric that is a brand style of fabric used on Zodiac boats. Achilles CSM Hypalon is what is used on there own style of branded boats. Orca/Phillipe Hypalon fabric is usualy used on other branded style boats.

Hypalon is a natural product, it is a fabric weft that is rubber coated.

The qualities of the hypalon vary according to 3 characteristics: the dyes that are used, the thickness and weight of the coating, and lastly the weave.

The weave: there are single and double weaves. Double weave is the most resistant.


  • It has excellent resistance to abrasion and other mechanical abuse.
  • It is unaffected by extreme temperatures and ultraviolet light, so it won’t harden even if left out in the sun.
  • It is highly resistant to oil and a wide range of harsh chemicals which means spilling fuel or oil in it won’t be much of a deal.
  • It doesn’t get brittle and deteriorate over time.
  • Repairing it is rather easy as you can apply a patch while in the field.


  • Since it is the most expensive coated material, inflatable boats made from Hypalon are priced much higher than boats made from PVC.
  • It gets dirty more easily because of its porous finish.
  • It is more labor intensive as it should be cold glued by hand.
  • Its color fades when left out in the sun.


PVC, or polyvinyl chloride, is a synthetic plastic polymer. It is known to be significantly less expensive than Hypalon. It has so many applications ranging from house siding, sewage pipes to furniture, toys, and of course, inflatable boats.

The main advantage of a PVC tube is its price: it is two of three times cheaper than hypalon or neoprene. This is because it can be assembled industrially in a factory.

Its second advantage derives from how it is assembled. PVC needs to be welded, whereas a hypalon fabric can only be assembled by gluing. Welding is a process that can be more reliable than gluing, since it is a fusion of material, whereas gluing consists of adding an adhesive, which has its limits in time. Once the fabrics are welded, they cannot separate.

Polyurethane material offers four times the abrasion resistance and greater tear or tensile strength compared to Hypalon and is much stronger than traditional PVC. Polyurethane fabrics have excellent welding properties.

Vinyl facric is generally used on watersport pool toys, toy inflatable boats and other like style concepts. Very thin, offers great weight savings, but tears and punctures easy.


  • PVC is the most economical choice of material for inflatable boats.
  • It makes a more lightweight and portable inflatable boat.
  • Because it is a type of plastic, the seams of inflatable PVC boats can either be glued or thermobonded.
  • It comes in a wider array of colors compared to Hypalon.


  • When dry, PVC is not resistant to abrasion.
  • Compared to Hypalon, it does not respond well to extreme temperatures.
  • It is also not resistant to the deteriorating effects of chemicals, ultraviolet light,
  • Inflatable PVC boats deteriorate over time, so they have shorter life cycle, if not cared for.