As a company that installs poured-in-place playground surfacing and rubber tile playground and safety surfacing, of course we think wood chips should be off of every playground. However, it’s not just about the business for us, we’re parents of small children too! One of the primary reasons we choose to be in this business is we believe it’s important to have safe playground surfaces for our children to play on. We also believe these rubber playground surfaces make everyone’s lives just a little easier.
So, allow us to get on our soapbox for just a moment here to say…
No More Wood Chips on Playgrounds!
Okay, now that we have that out of our system, here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t use playground wood chips or mulch:
- They are a mess! Every playground we visit that has not made the switch to rubber playground surfacing, has wood chips everywhere. No matter what kind of edging or fencing is used to “contain” the wood chips, they will make their way on to the surrounding grass, parking lots, basketball or tennis courts, ball fields, and everywhere else. Cleaning this up day after day becomes really annoying.
- You have to keep replacing them. Wood chips constantly need to be replenished. Every year, wood chips decompose and get removed from the site. Replacing woodchip surfacing on a playground is at minimum an annual expense (in some climates they have to be replenished or replaced more than once a year). This is the case with cedar wood chips, pine wood chips, barkdust, etc. A poured-in-place playground surface is a one-time install and your problem is solved. No annual replacement or replenishment. It’s virtually maintenance-free.
- They’re not safe. Wood chips on a playground are a safety hazard. Woodchips are constantly moved or kicked around the playground. As a result, some areas have plenty of chips, but in other areas, there is almost no fall protection. This happens especially under swings and other high traffic areas where children play and can trip or fall. And then there’s the painful splinters that ruin everyone’s day… ouch!
- Children with disabilities cannot access your playground. Wheelchairs cannot be maneuvered on a woodchip surface and the loose material creates a built-in tripping hazard for everyone. Wheelchair-accessible playgrounds enable everyone to have fun.
- They look ugly. Wood chips are not aesthetically pleasing. Who wants an ugly brown playground? A rubber playground surface can provide you with a virtually limitless variety of different designs, including bright and vibrant colors, logos, and even games right in the surface itself!
Seriously… enough said! The good news is, we can help. Let’s work together to replace all those wood chips on playgrounds everywhere.
Alternative to Playground Wood Chips
Better Ground Cover for Playgrounds
Poured-in-place rubber playground surfacing is durable, safe (no splinters!), and doesn’t have to be replaced every year.
Here’s an example of a project we did to replace wood chips with poured rubber playground flooring.