There are several types of surface materials that could be used for your Austin playground installation. Deciding on what type of surface material to use depends on the type of playground you are building, accessibility, geographical location, maintenance, and budget. The types of surface materials have different levels of maintenance.
One of the more durable, yet more expensive surface material, is the pour in place solid rubber. These surfaces are able to be used indoors and outdoors and are low maintenance. This material is made of tiny granules of rubber that are layered into a solid surface. Sharp items should be kept off of the surface because the granules will chip off, and any holes should be patched immediately. Do not use metal brooms, power washes, or chemicals that dissolve glue to clean the surface. These types of surfaces need to have a sealant placed on them every two to three years.
Grass or Turf
Another popular surface used in playgrounds is artificial grass or turf. These create a more natural outdoor look and have minimal maintenance. These need to be swept monthly to remove any debris that might have accumulated. Rinsing once a week will keep the surface area clean. Also, be sure to clean up any accidents immediately that might have happened if an animal confused the artificial grass for the real thing.
Pea gravel is a material used playgrounds that has very little maintenance involved. It needs to be checked periodically to make sure that it is maintaining a depth of twelve inches at all times due to safety regulations. Other than that, it maintains itself and could be leveled as needed with the use of a shovel.
An economic material used for playground surfaces is rubber mulch. This is made from recycled tires. This also has very little maintenance and just needs a periodic rinsing with mild soap and water. A metal rake could be used to level uneven areas.
Engineered wood fibers is an inexpensive playground surface that requires ongoing maintenance. Because this type of material is made from wood fibers, it will need to be refilled often due to decomposition and compaction. It also will need to be raked after rain because it will get displaced with any overflow of water. This type of material also needs to be replaced every few years.
Another material that could be used as a playground surface is sand. This material is very high maintenance due to the need to be raked daily. This is due to the need for it to maintain twelve inches for safety regulations and sand surfaces are easily unleveled.
When designing playground equipment in Austin Tx, taking into consideration the maintenance involved in the surface area. Also, check your local safety regulations about the materials you are considering using. Some materials require certain parameters with regards to fall zones. Doing these things will help you decide what is the best material for your playground and how to maintain it.