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toolbag 03-28-2005 01:39 PM

Rubber playground surface
Hi guys (and gals). Took my grandkids to the city playground this weekend and they had kind of a chopped up rubber surface under all the equipment. It looked like blacktop, but it was spongy when you walk on it. Well now the kids want to do this in their back yard under the swingsets. Where do you get this stuff at and is it hard to do? Expensive? Say for an area roughly 15 X 15 feet. It looks to me like a bunch of ground up tires and then mixed in some epoxy and poured it out and troweled like cement. Thanks.

Teetorbilt 03-28-2005 02:06 PM

The stuff is recycled tires. A friend of mine operates a day care center and used the loose stuff. See what you can find here.

pipeguy 03-29-2005 02:15 PM


Originally Posted by toolbag
Hi guys (and gals). Expensive? Say for an area roughly 15 X 15 feet..

Two years ago I got bids to do a basketball court sized area - they were alll upwards of $25K. Call whoever ran the playground (county, city?) and ask them who did it.

Floorwizard 03-29-2005 03:08 PM

There is the stuff that is chopped up and then smoothed out like a spongy mat.
And there is the stuff that is loose like barkdust, but it will not give you slivers.

ryaniniowa 03-29-2005 09:47 PM

What ever happened to good old gravel?

Teetorbilt 03-29-2005 10:03 PM

It gave way to litigation.

toolbag 04-05-2005 03:15 PM


Originally Posted by Florcraft
There is the stuff that is chopped up and then smoothed out like a spongy mat.

YES! This is the stuff I am talking about, can anyone give me any more information on it? It looks like ground up tires mixed in with some sort of epoxy and then spread out to make a nice smooth, one-piece, spongy surface that forms around all of the equipment and would not let any weeds grow up through it... Thanks.

Teetorbilt 04-05-2005 09:17 PM

Did you check out the link that I posted?
I'm not sure about the weed issue. The stuff that they use in the parks here is porous.

Kimmi 09-01-2009 01:37 PM

Any more luck with the smooth surface...I'm looking for the same thing?

Southengineer 09-01-2009 01:50 PM

I attempted to find the smooth stuff to see if I could put it on a geotextile for a sidewalk, I couldn't get anything.

However the loose stuff is great. A plus you don't often hear is that animals are not attracted to it. A sandbox is a great place for a pet to leave presents. That rubber, not so attractive.

Thurman 09-01-2009 04:29 PM

Here's what I know (not think, or suspect) about this product. Teetorbilt is on the money with his/her link. Look for the "Rubberized Asphalt Concrete", or RCA. Remeber that the pricing they are quoting is for road paving at a savings of $50,000 per lane/mile over asphalt. BUT- I also wanted to look into this product after seeing it on a playground within a municipal park. Through contacts with the local County I did find out who did the playground and called them. That particular company DID NOT do these surfaces for private playgrounds, or home swing set systems, only municipalities because of "product liability problems". Go figure! Sometime after all this I happened to be at a party and was introduced to a man who was a "Certified Playground Inspector" (who'd of ever thunk we needed such?) and we talked about this surface. He confirmed that the type asked about, the mixed and poured surface, was not availabe to the homeowner. The cut up tire chunks are available to homeowners in bags at local big box stores, can you say "KA-CHING $$, or can be bought in bulk in larger cities, such as Atlanta area where I've seen it affordably in bulk. I hope this helps. David

Willie T 09-01-2009 04:44 PM

Most of it seems to run $6.00 to $6.50 a square foot. And, believe it or not, that is in either 6" loose fill or 1/2" mat form. You'd think the loose stuff would be a lot cheaper. I've never seen stuff like that that's poured in place as a solid surface.

So you're looking at about $1,400 to $1,600, I'd guess.

Scuba_Dave 09-01-2009 05:09 PM

There are different "grades" of this stuff too
Chopped up tires = steel belted radials = metal mixed in
They have magnets that they run to pull metal out
But there have been "contaminated batches" that have gone out w/steel & glass
I'm sticking with wood for now
My kid sticks too much on his mouth or is face fits on the ground
I'd prefer he not be breathing/chewing ground up tires

SPS-1 09-01-2009 06:36 PM

I have seen interlocking rubber tiles made from recycled tires available at the big-box home centers. I don't recall the price, but i don't think they were expensive. That would appear to be the easiest way to go.

Loose round rubber playground material is available. Possibly they mix it with a hardening compound sometimes (Alberta Enviromental Rubber Products has a photo of a school track or their web site) but I'll bet that's not a DIY project.

storageman 04-18-2013 01:41 PM

Rubber Mulch
Here is a nice article on the right fall surface for play sets. I did some searching and found some links to buy rubber chips/mulch at some retail stores such as Lowes.

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