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Pros & Cons: Rubber Tiles for Playground Surfacing

So you’ve got an outdoor area to cover, and you’re trying to figure out what material will work best. You’re considering the basics: cost, aesthetics, safety, maintenance, etc. 

Rubber Tiles - Adventure Turf
A muti-colored playground set with rubber tiles.

You’ve discovered rubber tiles: a great solution, especially for small and hard-to-reach areas! Patios, pool decks, and parking areas are some of the most popular uses. While we tend to recommend poured-in-place rubber as the top choice for playgrounds, rubber tiles are another great option. 

Let’s get your questions answered!

Safety

The safety aspects of rubber tiles are what makes them shine in these use cases. When installed properly, they are:

  • ADA compliant. This means they’re wheelchair-accessible, and safe for kids with physical disabilities and limitations to play on. 
  • Shock-absorbent. American Standard Testing Methods (ASTM), the institution that sets industry safety standards, ensures the tiles we use are safe for falls from 6 feet (for 2.5-inch rubber tiles) up to 8 feet (for 4.25-inch tiles).
  • Ideal for those with chemical sensitivities. Parents and administrators don’t have to worry about rubber tiling causing a reaction in those with skin sensitivities and allergies. The products we use only premium rubber made from natural materials, plus EPDM rubber (which helps the surface resist cracks due to severe temperatures and weather), and SBR rubber (which helps the surface stay flat and supple). These materials are free of metal, wood, harsh chemicals, and other irritating compounds.

Plus, they result in less falls. One of the big reasons we suggest rubber tiling for areas that will be in use while wet — for example, a pool deck or a playground after a rain shower — is because of its non-slip qualities. Due to the nature of rubber tiling’s porous surface, it remains a non-slip surface even when saturated with moisture. Plus, the way the tiles interlock makes for smooth seams that won’t trip seniors or sprinting kids.

Playground Install Adventure Turf
A sneak speak at the installation process.

Cost

The low maintenance costs of rubber tiles are one of their best assets. It’s easy to complete one-off repairs of tiles that are damaged — and it’s tough to damage them in the first place. Rubber tiling is durable, easy to clean, and will last for years before any type of maintenance is required, making it a budget-friendly option for your project.

Quality

These prefabricated rubber tiles measure 24×24 inches (which can be trimmed to fit into your space’s nooks and crannies) and come in two thicknesses: 2.5-inch and 4.25-inch. They’re available in a wide variety of colors, and can even be made into customized designs and patterns. Check out this playground in Brooklyn, New York to see an example. 

Rubber tile mats are great for indoor playgrounds and recreation areas, because the materials are easily transported and installed. And, they don’t create an overwhelming chemical odor. 

Next Steps

As for any big decision, you’re going to want to compare options and dive into the details in order to make a final selection. You can read more about all of the rubber playground flooring options from AdventureTURF, and read our responses to related FAQs. We’ve also created a gallery where you can browse some of the awesome designs we’ve completed across the country. 

You probably still have questions. Please don’t hesitate to contact adventureTURF for answers! And, if you’re ready to take the next steps, reach out to us to request a free quote. We’d love to help you design the best, safest facility possible!