Playground Maintenance and Repairs

Playground Maintenance and Repairs

CPSC Public Playground Safety Handbook #325

4.1 Maintenance Inspections

A comprehensive playground maintenance and repairs program should be developed for each playground. All playground areas and equipment should be inspected for excessive wear, deterioration, and any potential hazards, such as those shown in Table 3. One possible procedure is the use of checklists. Some manufacturers supply checklists for general or detailed inspections with their maintenance instructions. These can be used to ensure that inspections are in compliance with the manufacturer’s specifications. If manufacturer-provided inspection guidelines are not available, a general checklist that may be used as a guide for frequent routine inspections of public playgrounds is included at Appendix A. This is intended to address only general maintenance concerns. Detailed inspection should give special attention to moving parts and other parts that can be expected to wear. Maintenance inspections should be carried out in a systematic manner by personnel familiar with the playground, such as maintenance workers, playground supervisors, etc.

4.2 Repairs

Inspections alone do not constitute a comprehensive maintenance program. Any problems found during the inspection should be noted and fixed as soon as possible. All repairs and replacements of equipment parts should be completed following the manufacturer’s instructions. User modifications, such as loose-ended ropes tied to elevated parts, should be removed immediately. For each piece of equipment, the frequency of thorough inspections will depend on the type and age of equipment, the amount of use, and the local climate. Consult the manufacturer for maintenance schedules for each piece of equipment. Based on these schedules, a maintenance schedule for the entire playground can be created. This routine maintenance schedule should not replace regular inspections.

It is a good idea to have repairs and maintenance procedures inspect by a Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) to confirm compliancy with safety standards.