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Old 04-19-2010, 08:38 AM   #1
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Rubber mulch Vs. Kids Carpet mulch for backyard play system


I am in the process of taking down and old, extremely unsafe play system and replacing it with a new one. In researching what to use for the "Floor" under the system I have priced out both rubber mulch and a wood mulch made specifically for play systems called Kids Carpet.

I will have an area of 900 sq. feet for the new system. I have decided to fill the area 3" deep which will cover a 5 foot fall height. In pricing them out the cost differences between the two are fairly staggering -- the rubber mulch will run between $2500-$2700 and the Kids Carpet will be $500-$750 (I am assuming closer to $750)

The major difference from what I can tell is that once you buy the rubber mulch there should be no need to add more each year but with the kids carpet I will definitely need to top it off each year. Even with the cost to top off each year (under $100) over a 10 year period I will be in around $1800 Vs $2500 for the rubber.

Looking into the wood products I found another brand called wood carpet and am waiting on a price quote for it. I also see that for the wood I probably need to prepare a drainage base for the wood products to avoid faster deterioration and potential mold due to lingering moisture.

Does anyone have any experience with either (or both) of these? Any information and/or recommendations would be appreciated. As of right now I am leaning heavily toward the kids carpet product
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J
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Old 04-26-2010, 10:22 AM   #2
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Rubber mulch Vs. Kids Carpet mulch for backyard play system


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Originally Posted by whataboutj View Post
I am in the process of taking down and old, extremely unsafe play system and replacing it with a new one. In researching what to use for the "Floor" under the system I have priced out both rubber mulch and a wood mulch made specifically for play systems called Kids Carpet.

I will have an area of 900 sq. feet for the new system. I have decided to fill the area 3" deep which will cover a 5 foot fall height. In pricing them out the cost differences between the two are fairly staggering -- the rubber mulch will run between $2500-$2700 and the Kids Carpet will be $500-$750 (I am assuming closer to $750)

The major difference from what I can tell is that once you buy the rubber mulch there should be no need to add more each year but with the kids carpet I will definitely need to top it off each year. Even with the cost to top off each year (under $100) over a 10 year period I will be in around $1800 Vs $2500 for the rubber.

Looking into the wood products I found another brand called wood carpet and am waiting on a price quote for it. I also see that for the wood I probably need to prepare a drainage base for the wood products to avoid faster deterioration and potential mold due to lingering moisture.

Does anyone have any experience with either (or both) of these? Any information and/or recommendations would be appreciated. As of right now I am leaning heavily toward the kids carpet product
Thanks
J
I went the wood chips designed for playgrounds...don't recall it had a "brand name" though...suspect that's just marketing gimmic to charge more. Anyway...had it a few years...will replenish this year..and been pretty happy with it. does get some tree seedlings come through in the spring from maples..and an occasional weed but for the most part its been maint free and pretty natural looking.

Given the prices you quote above....the rubber may have a slight performance differential in a fall...or not....but if there is I suspect it's only slightly better...and any other benefits at least to me could not justify such a higher price. And while you may not need to top it off every few years like wood chip version....I'm thinking you will end up wanting SOME level of refresh before 10 years or so is up. Our kids are 5 and 7...so I'm figuring I got maybe 7 or 8 years to go...max. I can get the wood ship stuff for around $35 a yard and need about 3 yards or so every 2 or 3 years. No brainer for me. good luck.
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