How to Inflate A Dented Ping Pong Ball?

dented ping pong
dented ping pong

Fixing a dented table tennis ball is easy. You will need your dented ball and a glass of hot water. The water needs to be quite hot; otherwise, the dents won’t pop out properly. Now, put your table tennis ball in the glass and press down on it to increase the pressure around the ball.
Keep the ball down for around 10 to 20 sec. Hopefully, you should have your table tennis ball back in shape again and be ready for a game.

Theory Behind

The physic theory call on science can help you inflate and recover a dented ping pong ball back to its original shape. You can perform the task by harnessing the thermal expansion power to push the dented area of a ball from the inside out.


When the ball comes into contact with hot water, its surface starts to soften, and the air pressure inside the ball starts to get heated up and expand. The air inside the ball ends up expanding the dented side to its original shape.

Other Methods

Use a Round Stick

Use a round stick or something similar to gently and slowly press along the ball’s edge until the dented part pops up. This method works as long as there is no crack on the ball. If you can’t find a round stick, you can also use a round pen holder or a round pencil rod to roll it on the ball.

Making Use of Hair Dryer

With the same theory, you can use a hairdryer, turn it on and adjust the hairdryer to the high temperature, blow the ball from the bottom up (you need to make sure the wind blow from the hairdryer is strong enough).

Also, make sure the ping pong ball is not falling. After blowing for a while, the ball will return to its original shape.

[ hairdryer

Use Your Thumb

Another way is that you can use your thumb. Using the thumb’s joint, you can push the dented part of the ball up little by little. You can recover the shape of the ball with this method. I can guarantee it because I have used this method to recover quite a few dented ping pong ball.

Not All Balls Can Be Recovered

Even the methods that I shared with you can be worked for most of the balls, but some balls won’t work even you use all the above methods.

One thing you need to check is to look at the dent extent of the ball. If the dent is too deep, then even you can recover it, but it will not back to the exact shape as it used to be. There will be some minor indented part which cannot be recovered.

Also, you need to check if there is any crack on the ball. If you found a crack on the ball, no matter how hard you try, the ball won’t get back to its shape anymore. You should throw the ball away and buy a new one.

How to measure the volume of a dented ping pong ball?

Method 1 – Fill the Ball with Water

  1. First, make sure that there is no leaking with the ping pong ball. Once confirm there is no leakage, you can drill a hole on the ball. The hole no need to be too big as long as it does not affect the ball’s size.
  2. Pour water into the ball through the hole that you drill. Or you can also immerse the ball in a cup that filled the water. Wait until the ball is filled with water.
  3. Take the measuring cylinder and pour the water from the ball into the measuring cylinder. Since the ball’s thickness is negligible, the volume of water in the measuring cylinder will be the volume of the ping pong ball.

Method 2 – Drainage

  1. Take a cup and fill it with water to make the water level flush with the cup.
  2. Place the cup in a large enough container.
  3. Immerse the ping pong ball in the cup.
  4. Fill the measuring cylinder with the overflowing water, and the measured volume is the ball’s volume.

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Warren Davies

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