There are various types of backyard playground equipment that are ideal for a Do It Yourself project. The material that playgrounds tend to be made out of consists of plastic, wood, and metal. All three options differ in price, age range, durability, and ease of installation. A Do It Yourself playground benefits the end-user since it makes for a more simple and affordable project. For example installing rubber tiles for surfacing playground areas allows for a professional rubber play floor to be placed in residential setting at a fraction of the price. Below we will delve in more detail into the functionalities and the benefits of each type of back yard playground equipment type.
Consumers tend to choose plastic backyard playground equipment over wood or metal primarily because it is cost efficient. Many playgrounds that are made out of plastic are made out of recycled plastic, like high-density polyethylene, HDPE, or milk jugs. Sometimes forgotten is this fact that plastic play equipment also makes for an eco-friendly end-result. They can also be made from virgin vinyl compounds such as PVC. This makes for a durable product that can be produced in a variety of colors and styles. Plastic playgrounds require low maintenance and can be cleaned easily. Some are even graffiti resistant as graffiti can easily be wiped away with a rag. Plastic has ability to be molded without any splintering or breaking, and unlike wood, it does not pose a safety risk due to weathering. One of the other useful reasons why people consider a plastic playground set is because it does not get hot in direct sunlight the way metal does. Compared to a material like metal, plastic tends to remain cool to the touch. Plastic backyard playground equipment also does not corrode like metal equipment does, which also makes it cost efficient because you are not wasting money on maintaining and replacing equipment. Plastic does not allow rust to form on its body, a byproduct that is common to materials made from metal. A plastic playground is a great option for a Do It Yourself project for any home because the installation is simple. Some equipment only requires that you connect plastic panels together and tighten all bolts, whereas some only require the plastic panels to be connected. The price range for plastic equipment can vary from a single slide playset for $35 to a clubhouse that is attached to a slide and swing set for $1,300. Smaller sized playground equipment, such as playsets consisting of one slide, are often only made for one child at a time, whereas the bigger playgrounds allow for a maximum of six children on it at a time. For the smaller equipment that is specified for one child it only requires one person to assemble to the product. The larger equipment may require two or more people assembling the playground together. Plastic backyard playground equipment is usually lighter in weight than metal and wooden playground equipment so it can easily be moved from one location to the next.
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Backyard Playground Equipment: DIY Options
Consumers really take pleasure knowing that their wooden playgrounds are versatile. When it comes to wooden playgrounds they have the ability to be customizable, which allows for new features to be added. Parents that choose these playgrounds find that the layout is forever evolving making for a vast number of options. Consumers that choose this backyard playground equipment are given options that are nonexistent for most metal playground equipment, such as “forts, climbing walls, and built in sandboxes,” (http://www.doityourself.com/stry/the-pros-and-cons-of-wooden-playground-equipment#b/). Another benefit to owning a wooden playground is that they possess a natural rustic look. There is a sense of elegance to a wooden playset because of their natural appearance. Parents prefer a wooden playground since they are able to blend into the landscape, unlike plastic or steel. It is rustic and has a natural feel, which makes for a wonderful aesthetic additions outdoors. Another reason why parents buy wooden backyard playground equipment is because the material is stable. Wood does not bend, corrode, nor rust, which are common characteristics of metal. It is also more durable than plastic equipment, which tends to crack when it is left out in the sun. Wood is also sturdier than plastic too since it is able to support more children and carry more weight. With wooden playsets the repairs are easy as well, there is no waiting for the manufacture if a wooden board needs to be replaced. The installation for a Do It Yourself wooden playground usually requires a level, measuring tape, an open wrench, a screw driver, a cordless electrical drill, drill bits, a hammer, and a ladder. The price range for wooden backyard playground equipment on the lower end is roughly from $500 to the higher end of about $7,000. The average age for children to play on a wooden playground is from age three to eleven years. It is recommended that since wooden playgrounds consist of heavy material that an adult with an adult helper assemble the equipment. There are many different woods that wooden playsets can be made out of, with the three most common being pine, cedar, and redwood. Cedar, Chinese-cedar, and redwood act as a natural bug repellent. Parents do not need to worry about buying additional bug repellent to protect their wooden backyard playground equipment if their playground is made out of one of these woods.
Parents are inclined to buy a metal playset because they believe it offers a few advantages that wood equipment cannot. Consumers like that metal playgrounds are more affordable in price when compared to wooden playsets. They are also more affordable to maintain. All the owner has to do is apply oil or grease to the bolts to insure that their metal backyard playground equipment does not suffer from rust of corrosion. The maintenance for wood is a bit more complicated, the owner has to periodically paint and stain the wood to prolong its lifespan, but even that does not guarantee that the wooden playground will last. Consumers of metal backyard playgrounds like that they do not have to worry about their playset deteriorating, splintering, or even being an area where wasps and bees tend to nest like their wooden playset counterparts. They also find it relieving that the installation process is a lot simpler than wood, especially considering that there is wooden backyard playground equipment that do not come with wood in the package and the owner has to spend time cutting boards for the playground. The assembly processes for a metal playground varies. There are some that are on the more affordable end, ranging from a few hundred dollars, that can be put up in a day with a two-person assembly crew, whereas the more expensive equipment, ranging from mid to high thousands, that requires a few days to install due to waiting for the concrete to cure, (http://bestreviews.com/best-swing-sets). With the expensive equipment it also requires two strong adults for the installation. The tools that the parents will need for installing a metal playground in their backyard are usually going to be a shovel, a wheel-barrel, a digging pick, an Allen wrench, open end wrenches, measuring tape, a ladder, a ratchet wrench and sockets. What metal backyard playground equipment is made out of varies between galvanized metal, non-galvanized metal, metal that is covered by polyvinyl, metal that is powder coated, and metal that is thicker more durable. Metal playground equipment is typically for children that are from two years old to ten years old. Parents also like that there is a wide variety of colors that they can choose from when considering a metal playground equipment.
Rubber Surfacing For Playgrounds:
Plastic, metal, and wooden backyard playground equipment can be transformed into a safe play area by installing rubber interlocking tiles. Rubber surfacing for playgrounds are a safer option compared to loose-fill materials and perfect material to use for a Do It Yourself project. The reason why rubber is used for surfacing playground areas is because it was made to protect children from falls. Some interlocking playground tiles even allow for a 6 ft. fall height and also been ASTM tested. For a Do It Yourself project there is no easier material to install than rubber surfacing for playgrounds. It is a simple DIY installation that a single person can do or a few friends on the weekend can accomplish. It only requires a few connector pins to be inserted to each side of the interlocking tiles and maybe a rubber mallet to make the job easier. There is no need for adhesives, which means no worrying about running around and finding an adequate glue or tape that may or may not work with the rubber. Not needing any adhesives is also an added benefit when installing tiles for surfacing playground areas because that means it is less costly in the long run. In the need that one tile needs to be replaced all one needs to do is simply remove it and install another. There is no hassle of removing adhesives in order to install a rubber tile or ruining multiple tiles. It also means that there is no wasting time or energy in the removal of surfacing playground tiles and cautioning off areas that make it harder for the children to enjoy their backyard playground equipment. When purchasing rubber surfacing for playgrounds the consumer becomes aware that rubber tiles are cost efficient. There is no more squandering of money with refilling loose-fill material, there is no sweeping up unwanted loose-fill material in areas where it is not supposed to be, and there is no worrying about the product separating and breaking apart like what is common with fill in rubber. Consumers also enjoy that interlocking playground tiles come in a variety of colors which gives the owners the ability to customize their playground area to match their favorite color or sports team.
Rubber interlocking tiles are simple and easy to install. They are the perfect bet for any Do It Yourself project that someone can have. They are made with safety in mind so children can be children and play on their plastic, metal, or wooden backyard playground equipment. Some considerations when purchasing backyard playground equipment are:
- Age of the children
- Installation costs
- Durability expectations
- Footprint of the playground
- Number kids using the play set
A Do It Yourself playground benefits the end-user since it makes for a more simple and affordable project.