How Long Do Helium Balloons Last? Best Practice to Manage The Overnight

As you know, I LOVE balloons. They make a party, as they do in my opinion! I have blown up many balloons in my life and thought I’d share some advice on filling them properly.

It’s crucial to research balloon types before buying them and make sure that they keep floaty for at least a day or two. What I have found is that the longevity of the balloons varies depending on a few factors.

Helium balloons last 8 to 12 hours with latex balloons, while the larger ones can last up to 2-3 days. Foil balloons can last 3 to 5 days, but sometimes up to several weeks with Hi-Float.

A latex-filled helium balloon floats for approx 8 – 12 hours, but a helium-filled balloon can dwell for 2-5 days. Helium Hi-Float treatments will help your balloons survive up to 25 times longer.

Average Floating Times:

  • size 9-12”: time 8-12 hours
  •  size 18”: time 18-24 hours
  •  size 24”: time 24-48 hours
  • size 36”: time 2-3 days
  • adding hi-float: time 2-4x longer ·       
  •  Mylar/Foil: time 3-5 days in a  3 weeks

Some manufacturers, like Qualatex, have float times that differ from these. Here are their float times. But these times are a general average for most helium-filled balloons.

Here are the exact figures, and what we can do to make helium-filled balloons last longer than usual.

Can Helium balloons be used overnight?

How Long Do Helium Balloons Last

Yes, your helium balloons will last overnight, but they may not last long enough for an event the following day.

Foil balloons will last for a few days, but latex balloons won’t. If we’re discussing foil helium balloons, then we can tell you that they last overnight. Latex helium balloons may not, especially when kept outside.

It’s not good to have all the bling and style ready and have your balloon decoration in a mess.

Helium balloons last based on these factors:

  • Size of the balloon
  • Material of the balloon
  • Balloon treated with Hi-Float
  • Temperatures of weather
  • Shape of balloon
  • Quality of the balloon

It is a liquid used to extend the life of helium balloons. If your balloons are treated with hi-float then they will last overnight, and look good the next day as well.

A latex helium balloon lasts longer in an air-conditioned room. If you leave a small latex helium balloon outside in the heat, they will only last a few hours (up to 10h for the larger ones) and may even pop within an hour.

Also, larger balloons generally last much longer. If your latex balloons are made of high-quality latex and stay indoors, they will probably also last longer at night.

Can Latex Helium Balloons Last For A Long Time?

Latex Helium Balloons

Helium balloons can be great for your event, but the moment you fill them with helium, it begins leaching out fast. They will not be there if you do it the day before, or they may not look as nice.

Usually, the last 8 hours up to several days for the larger ones.

When you’re only using smaller ones, you don’t need hi-floats, so I suggest filling them up as close as possible before the event.

Even without pre-tenting with hi-float, these large latex balloons can float for 2-3 days if you use the really large ones. If you helium them inside, then these large balloons will float for even longer if you use the really big ones.

Latex balloons tend to last for a shorter time because they are porous, so the helium gets out quickly. Foils, on the other hand, are less porous, so they last longer.

What is the lifespan of foil Helium balloons?

For balloons with a diameter of 18”, foil (mylar) balloons typically last for 3 to 5 days, while larger ones last longer, lasting from a week up to several weeks.

It is safe to fill foil balloons from around 18” and larger since they usually last for more than three days.

But, if you want your foil balloons to look colorful, you need to buy 24-inch or larger balloons, otherwise, they won’t float. For example, 16” numbers and alphabet characters may not get inflated using helium. Use larger balloons for these types.

A lot of these other types fly at 25 inches, such as cartoons and movies, or baby shower characters.

A Helium Balloon and the Weather

Helium-filled balloon longevity is greatly affected by temperature.

During hot weather, the shorter its life, the less likely it is to be inflated. Keep your balloons inside, in an air-conditioned room, for the best possible results.

Let’s see how the environment affects the lifespan of the balloons.

How Long Will A Helium Billion Last In Hot Temperatures

In the hot sun, latex helium balloons typically last only 4 to 6 hours.

This is since helium expands in the heat, so it can escape more rapidly from the balloon. Helium balloons can pop if left in a really hot place, like in your car on a hot summer day.

Latex balloons will last much longer than Mylar/Foil in the sun, up to 24 hours or longer. However, the downside is that they could change color or sheen.

Helium balloons last how long in the cold?

Helium-filled balloons will also last roughly the same on cold and on chilled air, which is approximately 8-12 hours for a latex balloon 11 inches wide.

All they will look like is shrinking afterward, and they won’t be as big.

In areas between 45 and 50 degrees (or 7-10°C), helium gas contracts, causing the balloon to shrink. It looks like it’s deflated, but it just shrunk. Move it to a warmer place to revert to full shape again.

Helium Balloons in a box last how long?

In a box that’s colder inside, but hot outside, a 9-12” latex balloon will last 8-12 hours, perhaps even longer if it’s good quality.

Since the balloons will retain their helium molecules (that won’t shrink due to cold temperatures) and lose their helium molecules, chilled areas are better than hot or cold ones.

What’s the Best Way to Make Helium Balloons Last Longer?

Here’s how to extend the life of helium balloons:

  • Use the hi-float for long-timer solation
  • Don’t keep the balloon without AC
  • Round-Shapes balloon is good
  • Find the best quality manufacturers  
  • Avoid accessories

In a balloon containing Hi-Float, there is a coating that is inside the tube, a solution of a plastic material dissolved in water. It spreads on the inside and prevents helium from escaping as easily.

It’s the best way to make latex helium balloons last for the longest. The hi-float coating has no toxic ingredients and is best applied using a dispenser pump. You apply the glue to the inside of the balloon, and the helium will not escape as easily.


Inflating balloons is not an exact science; some of my suggestions may not work for others. When it makes her or him go up or down, there is a lot of variables – how well she or he stays up – and how she/he is stored.

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