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What's the difference between PVC & Hypalon or CSM inflatable boats?

Almost all inflatable boats are constructed with either PVC material or Hypalon/CSM material. Hypalon was discontinued by it's manufacturer (DuPont) an is now sold under it's slightly different formula and new name "CSM" or Chlorosulfonated Polyethylene Rubber.

PVC Inflatable Boat - Pros

  • Much less expensive than Hypalon or CSM.
  • More abrasion resistant. More resistant against scratching, scuffing, & damage caused from running up on shore.

PVC Inflatable Boat - Cons

  • Will not last as long as Hypalon/CSM when exposed to direct sunlight. The extended exposure to direct sunlight will cause PVC material to turn dry, brittle, discolor, and lose it's flexible properties. Extended exposure to direct sunlight will negatively affect all boats constructed with PVC. However, this negative property is easily remedied by not leaving the boat exposed to the elements for extended periods of time.

Hypalon/CSM Inflatable Boat - Pros

  • Much greater resistance to extended exposure to direct sunlight. A boat constructed with Hypalon will last much longer than a boat constructed with PVC, if they are both left out in the direct sunlight for an extended period of time. Once again, this is easily remedied by not leaving the boat out exposed to the elements for extended periods of time.
  • Greater resistance to chemicals.

Hypalon/CSM Inflatable Boat - Cons

  • - Almost 3x the cost of PVC. Costs are much greater as well as the supply of this material is much more limited.

In summary, there is one major difference between PVC & Hypalon/CSM inflatable boats. This difference is how they react to extended exposure to direct sunlight. For PVC boats that are poorly cared for and that are left uncovered, this difference will be noticed. However, for properly cared for PVC boats, and for PVC boats that are stored out of the elements during extended periods of non-use, this difference will be virtually unnoticeable.