PlaySmart’s Guide to Playground Maintenance

Maintaining your playground flooring doesn’t need to be expensive or difficult! With regular inspection, monitoring, and playground maintenance, you can catch small problems early, stopping them from requiring more extensive (and expensive!) playground repair.

Here are PlaySmart’s top tips for playground maintenance and your guide to seeking playground repairs on some of our most popular playground flooring options.

Regular Inspections and General Playground Maintenance
Hosing down a dark red coloured patch of PlaySmart’s Jungle Smart bonded rubber mulch playground flooring to maintain and clean it

As we approach the Summer holidays it is important to take care of your play area to keep it up to the playground safety regulations UK playgrounds are required to maintain. Keeping a clean surface with minimal damage can reduce risks of injury as you remove trip hazards and worn safety surfacing with limited effectiveness.

Regular playground maintenance includes

  • Inspection for debris, moss, weeds, or other foreign objects
  • Regular sweeping
  • Removing oil and chewing gum
  • Occasional low-pressure washing of rubber surfaces
  • In areas with natural grass, occasional gentle watering
  • Playground equipment paint and rust checks

Each playground surface has different maintenance requirements, but it is most important to be aware of the state of your playground. On installation, you should never compromise on quality so that you get longer-lasting flooring that costs less in the long run and gives you less playground maintenance to do.

Artificial Grass Maintenance

How to look after artificial grass is one of the most common questions our experts receive. Artificial grass maintenance is much simpler than real grass as it doesn’t require mowing, watering, feeding, or weeding. However, there are some problems with artificial grass care to look out for to keep your lawn looking great all year round.

Green Frog Artificial Grass is guaranteed to last at least 8 years if properly installed on the appropriate ground and receiving proper artificial grass maintenance. Over the years, weather changes and especially heavy wear can cause rips, burns, or thinning if not checked and maintained every so often. Ultimately, however, artificial grass care remains much less extensive than natural grass maintenance.

Artificial grass build up of debris or other material can block holes in the porous surface, causing artificial turf drainage problems that can lead to water pooling if installed on the water permeable ground. Therefore, semi-regular checks and cleaning should be done, especially in high-traffic areas of artificial grass surfaces. Sweeping and cleaning should be done with a gentle pressure hose or broom, not a rake or any sharp implements as this could cause lift and uproot the fixings artificial grass uses for stability.

Close up artificial grass
Rubber Mulch Maintenance and Repair
Playground surface with colourful designs

Bonded rubber mulch like PlaySmart’s JungleMulch is a safety surface that requires minimal playground maintenance, making it a popular choice for high-traffic areas. Rubber mulch maintenance and repairs are much less common than in loose-fill counterparts which can experience surface breakdown and require more regular top-ups.

To clean rubber mulch, a low-pressure hose with warm water is all that is needed. The water permeable surface with proper installation has great drainage capabilities, especially if installed near plant life. Rubber Mulch accommodates tree growth and limits weed growth, but care should be taken in inspection around these areas to address any weed issues before they fully take root.

If extensive damage is experienced in bonded rubber mulch, the worn area is cut away and replaced with a new patch. In especially high-traffic areas like take-off or landing areas near playground equipment, PlaySmart recommends JungleMulch be replaced by EPDM wet pour wear pads. These can be used to enhance the design of the play area with a bright shape against the existing rubber mulch colours but more importantly, increase the surface’s longevity due to its higher tensile strength and durability over time.

Rubber Wet Pour Cleaning and Repair

How to clean rubber wet pour surfaces is very similar to the method to clean rubber mulch: sweeping and a low-pressure hose give your playground a clean wet pour finish removing grime and debris build up.

Over time the main wear to look out for is the edges lifting and cracks appearing, causing tripping hazards and impacting the surface design of your playground. Luckily, this is very easy to repair! On damaged areas we recommend a band of coloured EPDM rubber which provides better protection to at-risk areas, preventing further erosion. After removing especially damaged sections if necessary, the installation of the EPDM rubber is quick and simple, continuing to be a low-maintenance product for years to come.

Rubber surface with purple EPDM rubber band around the edges and yellow EPDM wear pad at the base of a slide

Another benefit of this method of wet pour rubber maintenance is that it actually adds to your design! A brightly coloured band around a pathway or piece of equipment is a great way to revamp an older playground, and you can even incorporate a design into your play area with the EPDM!

How PlaySmart can help your Playground Maintenance and Repair

With our over 20 years of playground installation experience, we are able to provide you with all of the quality aftercare advice you need. From how to maintain artificial grass to how to clean rubber surfacing of all kinds we have the answers!

PlaySmart’s No Quibble Guarantee gives you the assurance that if anything unexpected happens to your playground surfacing our experts are happy to assess the damage, and repair or replace anything where necessary.

Get in touch with our experts for a free quote or for advice on playground maintenance or playground repair, fill in our handy contact form. PlaySmart is here to help!

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