Safety is the first thing on the mind of most parents when they send their kids to the park. Jungle gyms and other playground equipment can cause fleeting moments of anxiety when your children play. With playground safety flooring, those moments of sheer terror can be placed to the side knowing that your child will be safe. At RubberFlooringInc, we offer a wide rage of materials including rubber mulch, rubber tiles and rubber mats; all of which serve the purpose of keeping your child safe while at play.
Playground tiles are the most popular safety surfacing we sell. These tiles come in many different colors and thicknesses. Because playground tiles are porous, they allow water to easily penetrate through the floor, ensuring a dry playing surface even after a heavy rain. Installing playground tiles is very easy and can be done by any weekend warrior. Maintaining your playground tiles is also a breeze. All you need is a blower and a garden hose or broom to bring them back to their novelle glory.
One of the first things you want to consider when picking a playground tile is the fall height rating. This rating is determined by the density and thickness of the tile. A general rule of thumb is, in most instances, the thicker the playground tile, the higher the fall rating. Now you ask, what is a fall height rating? Well that is a rating that is given to a safety surface which indicates the height in which you can fall before you hurt yourself. So what are some typical fall height ratings? Below are typical fall ratings for various tile thicknesses.
- 1” - 1.5' fall height - Residential playground
- 2.5” - 6' fall height - Commercial playground
- 3.5” – 8' fall height - Commercial playground
- 4” – 10' fall height - Commercial playground
For most residential playgrounds, a 1.5’ fall height is enough. For commercial playgrounds, a 6' fall height is typically required.
Playground tiles are very easy to install and can be installed by any DIYer. How they are installed depends on the thickness. Let’s start with a 1’ tile.
1” tiles are typically installed with a dowel system. Dowels are little plastic pegs that are inserted into the playground tile. This is very similar to putting together IKEA furniture, and everyone knows how fun and simple that is!
2.5” and 3.5” tiles are typically installed with a some type of clip. Some playground tiles use a piece called a tile clip, while others use a clip called a quad block. No matter the name of the clip, the playground tile installation will still be the same. Place the clip underneath the tile and lock it around the feet of the adjoining tiles. For the Quad Blocks it is recommended to add a little adhesive to the clip. This just ensures a tight hold and also helps to minimize expansion and contraction of your playground floor.
For tiles 4” and above, it is recommended that the playground tiles be glued. Since most applications of these tiles are outdoors, these tiles would need to be glued to each other at the seams. For indoor applications, the tiles can be glued from underneath with the appropriate trowel and glue. We recommend a Polyurethane Glue for rubber playground tiles. These tiles are definitely the hardest to install, but can be done by anyone. Since this thickness and safety rating would only be necessary in extreme instances, a professional install is typically recommended.
For all thicknesses of playground tiles, glue can be used and may be the best way to install in certain instances. If you have further questions about any installation, please feel free to contact any of our flooring heroes and we would be more than happy to assist you with your playground flooring needs.
The last installation type that we offer is interlocking. Interlocking playground tiles are by far the easiest playground tiles to install and don’t require any glue or extra tools for installation. We do recommend, to help alleviate movement in your floor, that a small bit of adhesive be placed in the interlock. This will ensure a tight bond between the tiles and will help to reduce expansion and contraction.
Since these rubber playground tiles are so thick, the number one question we get is asking how these tiles can be cut. For sawing, it’s best to use a bandsaw. If you’re using a knife, we recommend a large bread knife. Now, I won’t kid you with the bread knife, but it does work with a lot of elbow grease.
All of our playground tiles come with accessories that make it easier for everyone to enjoy. Playground accessories include ramps, corners (both inside and outside) and ADA ramps. All of these playground tile accessories are not required; they are only needed on a case by case basis.
Rubber mulch is one of the most economical playground flooring options. Rubber mulch is made to replicate the old wood chips that were used back in the day that would give you splinters. And how we all hate splinters! I think I got one just by writing that. The benefits of rubber much are that it is environmentally friendly, using old tires and it does not have to be replaced on a yearly basis. Also, animals will not see it as a giant litter box which is a win for all of us. Rubber playground mulch is very easy to install and maintain, and don’t worry, it will not blow away in high winds or when cleaned.
Rubber mulch, like our tiles, can be made to fill to a certain depth range that will fall into a certain fall height rating for playground safety. Below are thicknesses and what they are typically used for.
- 2” - Recommended for landscaping.
- 3” - 6’ fall height, recommended for residential playgrounds.
- 6” - 17’ fall height, recommended for commercial playgrounds.
So now that you know the thickness you want to go with, you now need to know how many bags you will need. Below is a breakdown of how much one bag covers.
- 1” - 16.5 sqft.
- 2” - 12.83 sqft.
- 3” - 5.5 sqft.
- 4” - 4.12 sqft.
- 5” - 3.29 sqft.
- 6” - 2.75 sqft.
Now if math is not your thing no worries, please feel free to contact one of our flooring heroes and they will be more than happy to do the mental legwork for you!
Rubber mulch is very easy to install in just a few hours on a bright and sunny Saturday! When installing mulch, there are a few things that you will want to keep in mind. We do recommend putting down a weed barrier underneath the rubber playground mulch to help keep weeds from growing in your new playground. There is nothing worse than having a beanstalk growing out of your new playground and giants messing up your new playground equipment. Dang you Jack! But in all seriousness, this will help to keep your play area looking nice all year long. Another item that we recommend using when installing mulch is borders or timbers. These will help keep the mulch contained in your playground during installation and also when children are at play. No one wants to wake up one morning and see all of their rubber mulch all over the yard leading up to the house. That would not be a fun mess to clean up.
Our rubber playground mats come in various sizes and thicknesses and have been designed to serve different functions around your playground. The rubber playground mats that we carry are high quality and very heavy, which is great when it comes to theft.
Swing and Slide playground mats are made to be used under swing sets or slides. These playground mats are thick and heavy, and help to protect the flooring that is underneath the swing or slide. If the playground surface is wood mulch, rocks, rubber mulch or dirt, these mats will help to protect that surface ensuring your playground looks great for a long time.
We offer a wide range of rubber court tiles great for basketball courts, tennis courts, inline hockey and much more. The sport tiles can be easy installed both indoors and out. So easy, in fact, a child can do it.
Our outdoor basketball court tiles feature holes in the plastic flooring that allows liquids to easily pass through the flooring surface. This ensures that the court flooring surface stays as slip resistant as possible.
Our indoor basketball court tiles are solid tiles and do not have pores. Since these tiles will not be exposed to the elements, pores are not necessary. Indoor basketball court tiles are still slip resistant and will allow a basketball bounce and roll as needed.
Our playground flooring is heavy and most orders ship via freight delivery. For more information on freight delivery, please contact one of our sales representatives to get the low down, as it varies on a case by case basis. Don’t worry though - you will not be asked to take your new playground flooring off the truck. We cover the cost of lift-gate and curbside. You are only responsible for getting the flooring to your new playground and enjoying it!