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How Long Can A Helium Balloon Last

How Long Can A Helium Balloon Last? Answered (2023)

Last Updated on January 30, 2023 by Kimberlee Johnson

Helium balloons are a popular sight at parties, weddings and other celebrations. But how long can a helium balloon last? 

That’s a question many people ask, especially when it comes to planning for a special event. 

With that, we’ll explore how long helium balloons can last and what you can do to make them last even longer. Read on to learn more.

How Long Can A Balloon Fill With Helium Last?

inflating balloon with helium

Generally, helium-filled balloons can last around 24 hours to three days, depending on the conditions and type of balloons you use. 

The balloon should remain inflated for this length of time, but it may start to look deflated or wrinkled after a few days. 

“The balloon seems to stand still in the air while the earth flies past underneath.” 

Alberto Santos, Brazilian Inventor

So, it is important to keep helium-filled balloons in a cool area. 

Additionally, you have to check the quality of the balloons used because poor-quality balloons will not last as long as high-quality balloons.

But how many balloons can a single helium tank actually fill?

How Can Helium Balloons Last For A Week?

Helium balloons can last for a week if they are properly cared for. An essential step is to ensure that the balloons are shielded from heat and direct sunlight [1]. 

If the balloons are exposed to direct sunlight, the helium will expand, causing the balloons to pop. 

Hi-floats are another option; they’re a liquid solution for balloons, especially latex ones. And that helps the balloons stay nice and smooth and last a full week. 

Plus, ensure the balloons are not exposed to sharp objects, which could cause punctures or rips. Keeping them away from moisture and humid air is also important. 

If the balloons come in contact with moisture, the helium will dissipate, and the balloons will deflate. 

Lastly, fill the balloons with the right amount of helium. Too much helium will cause the balloons to pop, and too little helium will cause the balloons to deflate quickly.

Which Do You Think Would Last Longer: Inflating Balloons With Air Or Helium

Inflating balloons with air would last longer than helium because air is much more abundant and, therefore, more cost-effective than helium. 

While helium does occur in nature, it is ultimately a limited resource. Because of this, helium is much more expensive than air, and it isn’t easy to replenish once used. 

Inflating balloons with air will still cause them to float, but the effect won’t be as dramatic as helium. 

The balloons will stay afloat for much longer than helium-inflated balloons, as the air is much denser. 

Moreover, helium balloons will start to deflate after just a few hours, whereas air-filled balloons can last for days or even weeks. 

This is because helium is lighter than air, meaning the helium-filled balloons will rise higher and faster than air-filled balloons, but they will also deflate quicker.

Check out the steps on filling up balloons with helium here.

How Far Can A Helium Balloon Float Before It Bursts?

floating white balloons

The highest a helium balloon can float before it bursts is usually around 20 miles or 32 kilometres above the Earth’s surface. 

However, this number is variable and depends on the size and weight of the balloon, as well as environmental conditions. 

For example, if the temperature is too cold, the helium will contract, and the balloon will have difficulty remaining afloat. 

As the balloon rises altitude, the air pressure decreases, and the helium expands, causing the balloon to expand. 

Eventually, the balloon will be so large that the outer rubber layer can no longer contain the expanding gas, and it will burst.

Besides, the balloon’s altitude will also play a role when the balloon bursts, as the higher the balloon floats, the thinner the atmosphere is and the less pressure the helium can withstand. 

Also Read: How Much Does It Cost To Get Balloons Inflated At Party City?

Do Helium Balloons Last Longer In Warmer Or Colder Temperatures?

Helium balloons last longer in colder temperatures, as the helium gas does not expand as quickly in the cold. 

The helium gas in the balloon is less likely to escape faster in colder temperatures, meaning the balloon will stay afloat for longer. 

Additionally, the latex or other materials of the balloon are less likely to degrade in colder temperatures, preserving the balloon and keeping it inflated. 

But the downside is that helium balloons shrink or become brittle when they float in a cold temperature [2] for a long time, which eventually pops. 

On the other hand, in warmer temperatures, the helium gas expands more quickly, meaning that the balloon will deflate faster. 

The latex in the balloon will also degrade faster in the heat, causing the balloon to lose shape and become less buoyant. 

While helium balloons can still last a decent amount of time in warmer temperatures, they will generally not last as long as in colder temperatures.

Also Read: 6 Easy Steps To Create A Balloon Bouquet Without Helium

FAQs

Are helium balloons safe to leave in a car for three hours?

No, helium balloons should not be left in a car for extended periods, as the heat can cause the balloons to expand and pop. 

But if you leave it in the car for such a short time, ensure that it is not too hot and that the windows are cracked to allow air circulation.

Why do helium balloons sink overnight? 

Helium balloons tend to sink overnight due to the cold temperature, which causes the helium molecules to escape the balloon and condense with the air molecules outside, causing the balloon to become heavier and sink.

Why should people avoid releasing helium balloons in the sky?

Releasing helium balloons in the sky contributes to environmental pollution as the balloons eventually fall back to Earth and can harm wildlife. 

It can also interfere with air traffic safety, as they can be mistaken for aircraft by air traffic controllers.

Wrapping Up

Helium balloons can last for days, weeks, or even months if the proper precautions are taken. 

With the right storage and handling techniques, a helium balloon can provide hours of joy and entertainment for any event. 

Whether you’re having a party to commemorate a big event or just a fun day out in the park, helium balloons are a fantastic complement. 

So, next time you’re looking for fun, why not try a helium balloon? Who knows how long it will last? 

References: 

  1. https://www.harpersbazaar.com/uk/beauty/skincare/news/a42181/what-happens-if-you-avoid-sunlight/
  1. https://www.insider.com/cold-temperatures-affect-body
Kimberlee Johnson
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