There are lots of different factors that can determine what is like to be the best choice when it comes to playground surfacing. From budget to performance and safety, each will have an impact over which playground surfacing is going to work best for your space. So that you know what all your options are, here’s an overview of the different types of playground surfacing that are available.
Wet pour surfacing
This is a continuous rubber surface that gets its name from the way it is installed – being poured onto an existing surface. Wet pour has a number of advantages, including high levels of shock absorption and the fact that it’s a porous surface, which means that it won’t collect water. Wet pour also offers a way to explore many different creative aesthetics and can be designed in a range of vibrant colours.
Artificial grass surfacing
When using artificial grass you can create a natural looking playground environment that is a lot easier to maintain than real turf. A foam underlay can be useful when it comes to improving shock absorption and this type of surface is non-abrasive which means no cuts and scrapes.
Rubber tile surfacing
Using rubber tiles in a playground can be a simple way to bring colour and interest to the space. They are also quick to install and have good shock absorbing qualities.
You’ll often find tarmac used where there is a need for the most cost-effective solution, as it’s pretty cheap to install. It also tends to be porous which – again – helps to avoid a build up of standing water. However, tarmac doesn’t look great and it can be very abrasive and has low shock absorption, which means injuries are more likely.
Bark mulch surfacing
Another great cost-effective option for playground surfacing that is very simple to install. However, maintenance can be high, as it will need to be raked back into place regularly.
Rubber mulch surfacing
This type of playground surfacing is made from shredded recycled rubber and can be a practical option where there is a need for a more rustic aesthetic. It’s available in many different colours, including a natural brown. Installation is extremely quick and simple, as rubber mulch can be placed over just about any other type of surfacing. Although it has good shock absorbing qualities its effectiveness depends on the rubber mulch staying in place. One of the big disadvantages of this as a playground surface is that it can move a lot.
Bonded rubber mulch surfacing
With this type of surfacing, a PU binder is used to hold the rubber mulch in place, creating a solid and seamless surface. This makes it a good non-slip surface that is ideal for playgrounds that feature a lot of equipment. Because it doesn’t tend to require a sub-base bonded rubber mulch also has cost advantages compared to other types of surfacing. It can also be installed in many different colours and patterns to create a more interesting aesthetic.
Playground surfacing is available in a wide variety of options with plenty of choice when it comes to finding the right one for your project.