A playground is a major investment, so it makes smart financial sense to protect it at all costs. By regularly inspecting and performing needed maintenance on your playground, you can extend the life of your equipment. Most importantly, proper inspection and maintenance ensures your playground remains safe for everyone.
Below are some tips for properly maintaining your commercial outdoor play equipment.
Schedule Regular Inspections
Playgrounds should be inspected at regular intervals depending on their usage and location. There are two types of inspections:
Low Frequency Safety Inspections
Low frequency safety inspections are done by a playground inspection company or a professional certified safety inspector who goes through a checklist to uncover wear and tear from regular use or mechanical issues. These inspections are usually done monthly, quarterly, or bi-annually, depending on how much they are used, to ensure the playground equipment is safe.
There is no hard and fast rule for how often you should have your playground inspected, but the more often you can do it, the better. This allows you to catch problems early and repair them on the spot. For example, a swing chain "S" hook can be replaced or loose bolts can be tightened during a routine safety inspection.
High Frequency Inspections
Routine inspections or high frequency inspections are done more often, possibly weekly, to discover litter or debris issues such as broken glass, playground surfacing that needs to be raked or replaced, sanitation problems, vandalism and more. These issues can often be corrected on the spot, or the entity that manages the playground will be contacted to fix the issue.
Maintain the Playground Safety Surfacing
Playground safety surfacing serves an important function - it offers exceptional fall protection and prevents critical injuries. It also adds beauty to an existing playground and adds play value. Regardless of the type of surfacing you choose, each material needs to be maintained. Loose fill options like rubber or engineered wood fiber need top-offs, or to be raked or fluffed as it can be easily displaced while unitary options like pour-in-place rubber may require a patch for a tear, or after a couple of years it may need to have a topcoat rolled on.
It is also a good idea to have your safety surfacing tested as well to make sure it still provides the proper fall impact attenuation. Maintaining the integrity of your safety surfacing is just as important as maintaining the playground equipment.
Proper Playground Maintenance is Essential to Safety and Longevity
When you make the investment to build a community playground, it's important to factor in the time and costs associated with maintenance. By regularly inspecting and monitoring the playground equipment, you can identify potential problems early, fix them on the spot and provide a safe place for kids to play. For recommendations on safety inspections and necessary playground maintenance programs, contact Cunningham Recreation today.