Mike Parody is President of UltiPlay Parks & Playground, a Playworld provider based in Uxbridge, MA. With over 27 years of experience selling, installing, and maintaining playground equipment throughout New England, Mike is something of an expert when it comes to cold weather playground maintenance. Read on to learn his tips for protecting your playground this winter!
- Prevention is key. Give your playground a once-over at least twice a year; before the first snowfall, and again in the spring. Do a field check for loose hardware. If you have water play equipment, make sure to clear and drain the lines. Some playgrounds have loose play items, especially early childhood and daycare providers. Gather all of these items and store them for the winter so they’re ready to be played with again in the spring.
- Inspect your surfacing before harsh weather comes. Some of our clients do a regrading of loose fill and general cleanup because of heavy traffic, leaves, and debris. If you have poured-in-place surfacing, patch any cracks or holes so they don’t get worse with the snow and ice.
- Protect your poured-in-place surfacing throughout the winter months. Don’t use anything corrosive, such as salt or sand, on your playground surface. When it snows, make sure to use a plastic shovel instead of a metal one. And resist the temptation to use a snow blower unless you have a model that lets you adjust the height. I’ve seen them cause serious damage to playground surfacing, at incredible expense to repair.
- Don’t forget to remove and store your shade canopies. We do this for about 40-50 customers each winter. Shade canopies are designed to withstand over 100-mile-per-hour winds, but not heavy snow loads.
To learn more about UltiPlay, visit their website at https://www.ultiplayus.com/index.html