The O’Brien Super Screamer Inflatable Tow Tube is our best towable tube and it comes with 6 handles that each have EVA knuckle guards for protection. It also has 1 Boston valve and it can accommodate up to 2 riders. The tow hook has a quick connect design and it has a diameter of 70 inches. The towable tube is currently backed by a limited warranty of 1 year.
Our step-up pick is the SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 Super Mable Towable and its knuckle guards are included on each of the multiple grab handles. Being made from a nylon cover that is of heavy duty, it comes with a reliable zipper as well as EVA foam pads for safety and comfort. Deflation and inflation is a breeze due to the patented speed safety valve while the construction is unique with its back rest and front riser design. There are two tow points: one at the front and one at the back for that extra thrill.
The budget pick is the Airhead AHBL-12 Blast 1-Rider Towable and it measures 54 inches in diameter. It also has a speed safety valve for easy inflation and deflation and it can fit 1 rider. The knuckle guards are made of neoprene which is included with the 4 handles that are deluxe in design and are wrapped with nylon and the PVC bladder is a virgin heavy-duty with a nylon cover that has been double stitched for durability. It also has a striking red and yellow design.
A Little Background
Water sports are all about fun and excitement. Riding and cruising on the waters can come in a variety of formats. For the older teens and adults, they might resort to surfing, wakeboarding or jet skiing. While these activities pose some serious injury threats, getting more practice helps riders become more skilled in balancing and coordination, similar to learning a bike or a skateboard. Balance and coordination is best tested in the water because waves cannot be steady at all times and the waves add thrill to any water sport both as an exercise and as a form of leisure.
One of the most popular forms of water sports is a towable tube. A towable tube is a floating ride that lets a rider be towed from the back of a boat, e.g. a speedboat. Just like water inflatable objects that you see on the pool, a towable tube can be inflated and deflated just as conveniently, but are designed to take more beating than regular pool inflatable objects. This is because they are going to be dragged on the surface of the water and this will give them more pressure so a flimsy material for a towable tube is not advisable. They are usually made of super durable material that will be able to rip through the water, whether you use it on a lake, a river, a big pool or even the ocean.
A towable tube does have its safety concerns. Because a towable tube is only controlled by the boat’s speed, it is hard to stay safe because the driver is in control. If you toss and tumble about in the towable tube, it could lead to injury and accidents. Many of these have been documented all over the world due to improper use of towable tubes. To avoid such injuries, riders of any towable tube should adhere to the safety standards that a rider must follow. For instance, just like in riding a regular boat, the rider(s) should have safety vests in case they fall over the river, ocean or lake. Second, the rope used for towing should be extra strong and durable and will not fail during the event of a strong wind or current or motor force of the boat. Third, a towable tube should be manned by a boat at only around 20 mph at maximum speed to keep it safe.
However, a towable tube is fun summer leisure. It is no doubt that a towable tube is entertaining not just for kids but also for adults as well. Anyone who has a taste for adventure and thrill during summer, this is a form activity that will bring excitement to any person regardless of age. The fun that is brought about by splashing and speeding through the water is unmatched and it is just like surfing – only you are being pulled by a motor. Another very similar water sport that requires being towed by a boat is paragliding, which is another story altogether.
Whether you have your own cruiser or would like to rent one, towable tubes are definitely entertaining. Not everyone has their own boat, obviously. Speedboats take a lot of maintenance and budget to have, since it is a vehicle just like a car, but on the water. If you cannot afford a speedboat to tow your towable tube, you can also go for an option of getting towed by a rented boat which will make the most out of your vacation, whether on the lake, river or at the beach. The towable tube can be easily pulled by just about any speeding boat.
How We Picked
When it comes to choosing the best towable tube, we considered the following criteria in our judging:
Know how many people can fit in the towable tube. A towable tube can fit about 1 to 4 persons depending on the sizes. A solo towable tube is usually cheaper but if you want to accommodate more people, you should get a bigger towable tube that is very sturdy and large in diameter. Know if the towable tube can accommodate kids or adults in its size. Some towable tubes are meant for kids while some are for adults and teens. In some cases, a towable tube that can fit 1 adult may also fit 2 young kids depending on its weight capacity.
The diameter of the towable tube should also be considered. In accordance with how many people can ride the towable tube, you should know how much the towable tube spans at its length or diameter. But remember, a bigger towable tube may also be harder to tow and inflate. However, usually, towable tubes with bigger sizes are the ones that can accommodate more adults in the long run. Towable tubes can also come in a variety of designs – some have raised seats and some are just plain round tubes.
Safety features should be included with the towable tube. Remember that riding a towable tube is never easy and it can run into many risks and injuries if not careful. The rider should be highly comfortable and responsible and the same goes for the driver of the speedboat. However, the ropes and handles of the towable tube should be very comfortable and easy to grip so that the towable tube rider will feel at ease while cruising through the water behind the boat. It is important that whatever the rider will hold on to the towable tube, it will be safe and guaranteed to keep the rider on board without many problems.
Know if the towable tube is a complete set with towing ropes. The ropes are the most important thing to be included in the towable tube as this is the mechanism that will pull up the towable tube from behind the boat through the water. In most cases, the towable tube ropes that are included are very sturdy and usually come in a set for easy setup with the towable tube. For extra thrill, you should get a towable tube that has two towing spots – one on the front and one on the back. This makes riding a towable tube more challenging and more exciting.
The towable tube should be easy to connect to the towing boat. Like we said, the towable tube should have two towing spots which add to the unique thrill of the inflatable. The rope setup and harness of the towable tube must be quick to set up so you can spend more time getting dragged by the boat rather than connecting the towable tube to the boat. In most cases, you will find a towable tube that has a quick connect system when it comes to towing it to a boat.
There should be enough comfort for the rider(s) of the towable tube. Foam material for the seat and padding adds to the best level of comfort of any rider of the towable tube. Aside from the foam pads, the handles should be easy to grip for the person or people who will ride the towable tube. Comfort goes hand in hand with the overall safety of the ride behind the boat. You have to make sure that people can sit comfortably or stand if it is a ski trainer or wakeboard trainer. If it is for kids then it must be extra comfortable for them to sit on.
The material of the towable tube should be highly durable. Usually, the knuckle guards as well as the overall tube material are built to withstand the waves of the water. Towable tubes are no flimsy matter – they are not just something that the rider floats on. They are designed to be towed at high speeds of up to 20 mph by a boat or speed boat cruiser.
The towable tube must be easy to inflate and deflate. When it comes to inflation and deflation, a towable tube usually has a Boston type valve so it is very easy to fill up or let out air. Of course, you should periodically check for air on the towable tube and make sure it does not get into bumpy surfaces to avoid holes. It is important for a towable tube to stay inflated so that the safety of the rider of the tube will not be compromised. Make sure it has been filled thoroughly but not too much – just enough.
The weight capacity should be considered, not just the seating capacity of the towable tube. For instance, a towable tube can accommodate 70 to 150 lbs for a solo towable tube and 400 to 600 lbs for towable tubes that can be ridden on by 2 to 4 persons all at once.
O’Brien Super Screamer Inflatable Tow Tube
Our best towable tube is the O’Brien Super Screamer Inflatable Tow Tube in which the tow hook has a quick connect design for better access and setup. The towable tube has a diameter of 70 inches and it also comes with 6 handles that each has EVA knuckle guards for protection. Moreover, for easy inflation and deflation, it has 1 Boston valve. This towable tube can accommodate up to 2 riders.
The O’Brien Super Screamer Tube has been made with PVC material that is 30-gauge and it is relatively easy to tow at only 18 lbs of weight. It also has a blue and black design and it is definitely guaranteed to make you scream while being towed in the water. On durability, the nylon cover is 420D in its quality and it is also enclosed with a nylon cover.
Being a very entertaining form of leisure, the O’Brien Inflatable Tow Tube can fit as much as 400 lbs of weight all at once. As a matter of fact, according to some Amazon users, you can enjoy up to 7 hours of water sports without failing. It is currently backed by a limited warranty of 1 year for manufacturer defects for a hassle-free experience.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
The only concern about the O’Brien Super Screamer Inflatable Tow Tube is that the back of the tube should have grips too and the grip handles should be tweaked a little so that they are not too far forward in distance for convenience.
SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 Super Mable Towable
The SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 Super Mable Towable is our step-up pick and deflation and inflation is a breeze due to the patented speed safety valve. Adding to that, there are two tow points: one at the front and one at the back for that extra thrill. Moreover, the knuckle guards are included on each of the multiple grab handles. The towable tube also comes with a reliable zipper as well as EVA foam pads for safety and comfort. Being made from a nylon cover that is of heavy duty, the overall construction is unique with its back rest and front riser design.
The SPORTSSTUFF 53-2223 can fit up to 3 people all at once. It also has a striking red and orange design and it measures 75 by 73 inches when inflated. What’s more, it has two inflating spots to give you more convenience. The side walls are air cushioned to meet comfort standards and the foam handles went through double webbing for durability.
The nylon cover is fully double stitched as well and the towable tube is easy to tow at only 20 lbs of weight. The PVC bladder is a heavy duty K80 and the SPORTSSTUFF Mable Towable comes with drain vents that are self-bailing. Being ideal for use on any lake, pool, river or beach, the towable tube is backed by a frustration-free 1 year limited warranty.
Airhead AHBL-12 Blast 1-Rider Towable
Our budget pick is the Airhead AHBL-12 Blast 1-Rider Towable which has a striking red and yellow design. The inflatable measures 54 inches in diameter and the PVC bladder is a virgin heavy-duty with a nylon cover that has been double stitched for durability. It can fit 1 rider and the knuckle guards are made of neoprene which is included with the 4 handles that are deluxe in design and are wrapped with nylon.
Moreover, it has a speed safety valve for easy inflation and deflation. Priced economically, the PVC bladder is not just heavy gauge but also with RF welded seams.
It is very light at only 7 lbs and it comes with a Boston valve for quicker setting up. Moreover, it also includes a self-draining floor vent while the internal tow harness is reinforced for safety and security. The seams have been electronically welded on the PVC bladder. Do know that despite fitting 1 person, it can fit 2 smaller kids as well.
Best 4-Rider Towable Tube
RAVE Sports 02325 Mega-Storm 4-Rider Towable
If you want a towable tube that can fit up to 4 persons, you can check out the RAVE Sports 02325 Mega-Storm 4-Rider Towable which has a quick connect tow point. As a matter of fact, this towable tube has an anti-chafe guard. Its max rider weight is up to 680 lbs and it can fit up to 4 riders all at once. It also has a thrilling and eye-catching design and you can board while on the water at any depth with the easy to access low profile deck.
The RAVE Sports 02325 Towable has been made from sturdy PVC material. The towable tube weighs only 23 lbs and it measures 76 inches in diameter. Overall, if you want a heavy duty towable tube, you can depend on the RAVE Sports Mega-Storm Towable.
Best Solo Towable Tube
O’Brien Solo Screamer Inflatable Towable Tube
For solo riders, the O’Brien Solo Screamer Inflatable Towable Tube is what you want. This towable tube is equipped with a nylon strap for safety and the knuckle guards are included with the 2 grab handles. Adding to that, the nylon is a 420D quality that fully covers the 24-gauge PVC bladder for durability and quality.
Moreover, the O’Brien Solo Screamer Tube measures 56 inches in diameter and it also has a red and black design. The Solo Screamer Inflatable Towable Tube uses a Boston air valve for easy inflation and deflation. It is also easy to tow at only 15 lbs and it is a budget option that is definitely perfect for those who want to do solo riding. The towable tube has a weight capacity of up to 175 lbs and it is also backed by a 1 year limited warranty.
Towable Tube that is Steerable
World of Watersports 12-1050 Zigzag Inflatable
With the World of Watersports 12-1050 Zigzag Inflatable, the PVC construction is 100 percent heavy-duty and this towable tube is easy to inflate and deflate with its speed valve. It does not have fancy tow points or fragile fins when it comes to performing tricks like barrel rolls, standing, kneeling, sitting or just laying down and it is easy to steer due to its wings that function as a rudder.
Even when the boat goes straight on, you can jump the wake and perform various tricks while steering. The knuckle guards are included with the foam handles that have been double webbed and the steering is a breeze due to its flex-wing system that is patented. It uses EVA foam pads for protection and comfort and it can fit up to 2 people all at once.
The World of Watersports 12-1050 is super lightweight at only 13 lbs and it can be towed at speeds of about 15 mph for kids and 20 mph for adults.
Best 2-Rider Towable Tube
SPORTSSTUFF 53-1780 Chariot Warbird 2 Towable
With the SPORTSSTUFF 53-1780 Chariot Warbird 2 Towable, PVC bladder is of heavy gauge. In fact, there are two tow points for this towable tube: one for the front and one for the back. It also uses an aluminum quick connect tow system for easy setup and the full nylon cover is of heavy-duty.
The wing span is widely constructed and the nylon cover has a reliable zipper. The recumbent seating has a high back design and the SPORTSSTUFF 53-1780 Towable can take up to 2 riders all at once. The towable tube has a diameter of 90 inches and it is currently backed by a 1 year limited warranty.
The Chariot Warbird 2 Towable uses EVA foam for its seating pads and the foam handles have been double webbed. It is a large and heavy duty towable tube to consider.
Ski Trainer Towable Tube
Airhead AHEZ-100 EZ Ski-Trainer Inflatable Tube
The Airhead AHEZ-100 EZ Ski-Trainer Inflatable Tube can be towed up to 10 mph maximum and its seat is inflated for training beginners on a water ski. Moreover, it has a weight capacity of 70 lbs and allows for 1 rider and it is a great starter inflatable water ski towable tube.
It is a highly rated towable tube on Amazon which spans at a length of 46 inches and indeed very stable and suitable for beginners. The Airhead EZ Ski-Trainer Inflatable Tube is also equipped with ski bindings and wooden water ski trainers.
It is in fact the official Youth Water Ski Trainer of USA Waterski and it is known for having a durable full nylon construction. Moreover, the EZ Ski-Trainer Inflatable Tube already comes with the towing ropes and it also has a canvas cover. it is relatively easy to tow behind at only 14 lbs of weight and very comfortable for children who are learning to ski for the first time while having fun at the same time.
Wakeboard Trainer Towable Tube
AIRHEAD AHEZ-300 EZ Wake Trainer
A great trainer towable tube for wakeboard beginners, the AIRHEAD AHEZ-300 EZ Wake Trainer can be towed at a max speed of 10 mph or more, depending on your capability and confidence. The towable tub fits 1 rider at 70 lbs of max weight capacity. It is deemed very stable and comfortable for any rider and you can remove the body board for advanced wakeboarding or use it at the beach.
The EZ Wake Trainer weighs only 9 lbs so it is easy to tow and carry around and you can easily learn the basics of wakeboarding, wakeskating, wakesurfing and kneeboarding with this reliable and amazing towable tube. The towable tube already comes with a tow rope set as well as the handles.
Best 3-Rider Towable Tube
Rave Sports Warrior 3 Person Towable
The Rave Sports Warrior 3 Person Towable is our pick for a 3-person towable tube which has a diameter of 88 inches when inflated. In fact, this towable tube can fit up to 510 lbs of weight and accommodate 3 riders all at once. It is truly a very thrilling towable tube for adventure seekers and it has a recumbent style design for maximum water sport thrill, comfort and safety.
The Rave Sports Warrior has a fabric which uses Stay-Brite for easily repelling water and dirt to make cleaning and maintenance a breeze. Conveniently, it also comes with 4 handles and it uses high quality polyester material.
Adding to that, the Warrior 3 Person Towable can be used for lakes or just about any body of water and it uses a quick connect tow point for easy setup. It also has an easy attachment for its tow rope and is backed by a 1 year limited warranty.
Other towable tubes out there did not match our criteria due to being flimsy in material and can’t fit a lot of people on it. A towable tube with safety features is highly important as well as comfortable components to make effective summer leisure.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the advantages of a towable tube?
A: According to AirHead , towable tubes are sturdy and heavy duty because they are built to endure the crashing waves of the ocean, lake or river and should not be flimsy in material. In adding to that fact, they also provide comfort and security to the rider. Moreover, in general, towable tubes are fun water activities for the summer. As a matter of fact, some towable tubes have 2 tow spots so you can choose whichever position you want for your adventure.
Q: What should you know before riding a towable tube?
A: According to Rave Sports , you should make sure you only ride at a safe speed, especially for beginners and riders should always wear protective gear such as a life jacket. Also, the strength of the towing rope should be inspected. You should also make sure the towable tube is properly inflated. Adding to that, just like in driving a car, you shouldn’t drive a boat while under the influence of alcohol or other substances.
In general, riders and boat drivers should have communication using hand signals. Moreover, a rear view mirror is important for the driver to check the condition of the rider. The recommended speed is max 20 mph and anything above that is deemed dangerous, especially for inexperienced riders of the towable tube. You should definitely make sure riders sit still to avoid injuries and it is recommended to tow only one towable at a time to avoid injuries. Kids should definitely be guarded carefully and not pull too fast.
Wrapping It Up
To wrap it up, the O’Brien Super Screamer Inflatable Tow Tube is our best towable tube that will bring the fun in any summer activity. Whether it is just cruising through the waves of the water or learning how to ski or do wakeboarding, towable tubes are very fun activities to consider during the summer season in general.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.