Inspecting and Maintaining Playground Equipment
How to Inspect and Maintain Your Playground Equipment
Playgrounds need to be kept to a high maintenance standard. There is much more to them than meets the eye when it comes to playground maintenance!

Playgrounds can have hidden dangers that could put children in danger or make their experience less enjoyable. Regularly inspect the play area for hazards.

Playground Maintenance Is Important
Rotting wood, rusted screws, and peeling paint can all be a threat to the safety of adults and children. They could also make the play areas look less appealing.

Maintaining your playground equipment to a high standard, you will ensure its safety and appearance plus extend its life.

Crucial Inspection Points on Playgrounds

Inspect your ropes frequently by checking for friction wear and frayed ends. Also, check the rope's strength by tugging at it with some force.

Handrails and Rails
Check your handrails and rails that there is no excessive rust or weather damage. Rot and corrosion makes them thin and weak in spots and particularly dangerous.

The Playing Surface
Check the playground's surface ensuring it is free of any cracks or gravel that could cause danger or hazards to those moving around close to the playground.

Maintenance and Inspection Tips

Use Trained Professionals
Playground equipment should never be adjusted by anyone other than trained professionals. Playground sets always require special maintenance after installation, including regular inspections.

Do Regular Checks
You should walk through your playground at least once a day doing a visual inspection. Look for anything out of place or any signs that repairs are needed.

Read and Understand the Playground Manuals
When buying any playground equipment, make sure it is fit for purpose. Read the product information on the boxes and manuals before purchase and understand what maintenance is required to keep that item in top condition.

Keep your equipment clear.
Keep your play area clear of anything that children might trip over, including toys or items that people left behind.

Do Repairs Immediately
Rope off the equipment and attend to its maintenance as soon as possible delay causes injury and could involve legal action.

Create and Implement a Replacement Plan for Old Equipment
It is important to think and plan your playground’s future. A regular maintenance and replacement program should be in place to get rid of older equipment replace with new popular equipment which matches your budget.

Sometimes you can get away with refurbishing your equipment that is still in good shape, but sometimes this option will cost you more than buying new equipment.

Cleaning Playground Equipment
Clean your play equipment from time to time. It will help with implementing playground maintenance and ensure your playgrounds longevity. You might use a pressure washer, steam cleaner, or even a damp cloth and some soapy water.

Add in Protective Covers
Some equipment, like climbing logs and swings, can be damaged by the elements. If there is extreme weather conditions experienced seasonally, consider protecting these items with protective coverings.

Use heavy-duty tarps or purpose built covers to protect them during seasonal or extreme weather conditions. It is also an excellent way to keep children away from damaged equipment that could cause them harm.

Deal with rust when you see it.
Rust can quickly develop on metal items, check your equipment frequently for any signs. Clean and remove rust as soon as it occurs to prevent it from spreading or causing other problems.

Disinfect play Equipment
Regularly disinfect any play equipment that children come into frequent contact with. Use a purpose made disinfectant for this job as children can absorb chemicals through their skin or touch their eyes after being in contact with disinfected items.

Generally speaking, you should only use products and procedures approved by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) since they work well with most play equipment and won't cause unnecessary potential risks.

Use a Shade Cover
If your playground equipment is in direct sunlight, put up a shade so the equipment can be protected from harmful UV rays. In addition to inspecting and maintaining your playground equipment, there are a few other things that will help you keep it in good shape for as long as possible. By following these tips, using specific equipment, and providing a safe environment for kids to explore, you will help your children stay active and enjoy the outdoors.

Provide Good Surfaces
The most important thing is to have a good surface nearby that is free of rocks, crevices, or other dangerous items that might harm children when they're playing on the equipment. If there isn't anything suitable available, then it's best to plant grass where possible or install some mulch in an area with space.