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Wetpour Vs Rubber Mulch

If you’re considering surfacing options for playgrounds or outdoor areas, you may have come across the terms Wetpour and Rubber Mulch.

In this article, we will dive into what exactly Wetpour and Rubber Mulch are, how they are made, as well as the pros and cons of each.

We will also explore why Wetpour may be the better option for certain facilities, considering factors such as safety, durability, versatility, maintenance, environmental impact, and cost-effectiveness.

Let’s explore Wetpour vs Rubber Mulch to determine which is the superior choice.

What is Wetpour?

Wetpour is a popular choice for playground surfaces due to its safety features and versatility. It is a type of safety surface commonly used in playgrounds and play areas to provide impact absorption and slip resistance.

During the installation process of Wetpour, a base layer is laid down, followed by the application of the wet rubber crumb and binder mixture. This mixture is poured on-site, allowing for a seamless and customisable surface.

The benefits of Wetpour extend beyond safety, as it comes in a range of vibrant colours and designs, enhancing the aesthetics of playgrounds and creating visually appealing play spaces for children.

Wetpour is frequently used in various playground projects due to its superior safety standards and aesthetic appeal.

Its versatility allows for the creation of themed play areas, educational designs, and interactive layouts that engage children and promote physical activity.

How is Wetpour Made?

The process of making Wetpour involves mixing EPDM rubber granules with a polyurethane binder to create a seamless and durable surface suitable for various applications.

This combination results in a rubber flooring that offers both safety and vibrant colours.

There are various types of rubber granules used in the production of Wetpour, including EPDM, SBR, and recycled rubber. These granules come in a wide range of sizes and colours, allowing for customisation of the final surface appearance.

The binding agents play a crucial role in ensuring the rubber granules adhere together to form a strong and flexible surface. Polyurethane binders are commonly used due to their excellent adhesion properties and resistance to weathering.

Once Wetpour is installed, regular maintenance is essential to prolong its lifespan and performance. This involves routine cleaning to remove debris and dirt, as well as periodic inspections to check for any signs of wear or damage.

What is Rubber Mulch?

Rubber mulch is a common alternative to traditional wood mulch for playgrounds, made from recycled rubber materials. It is known for its durability and ability to provide a cushioning effect on impact.

This type of mulch can withstand harsh weather conditions and does not deteriorate over time like natural wood mulch.

Due to its shock-absorbing properties, it is considered a safe option for playgrounds, reducing the risk of injuries from falls.

Recycled rubber mulch is also non-toxic and resists mould and mildew growth, making it a low-maintenance choice for outdoor spaces.

Its environmentally friendly nature appeals to those looking for sustainable solutions for landscaping projects.

How is Rubber Mulch Made?

Rubber mulch is produced by shredding rubber tyres to create rubber crumb, which is then processed to form the final mulch product. This process ensures excellent fall protection and impact absorption.

Once the rubber tyres are shredded into crumb-sized pieces, they are carefully processed to remove any contaminants and ensure the material is safe for use in playgrounds.

The rubber crumb undergoes a colouring process to achieve the desired appearance before being compacted into the final mulch product.

This meticulous manufacturing process guarantees that the rubber mulch maintains its shock-absorbing properties, providing a soft surface that effectively cushions falls and reduces the risk of serious injuries.

Pros and Cons of Wetpour

Wetpour offers several advantages such as durability and low maintenance requirements, making it a popular choice for playgrounds and recreational areas. It can be prone to fading over time.

Despite its initial appeal, the long-term durability of Wetpour is a significant asset. This rubberised safety surface is known for its ability to withstand heavy foot traffic, extreme weather conditions, and regular use without showing signs of wear and tear.

This makes it a reliable option for playground projects that require a lasting solution.

The low maintenance nature of Wetpour adds to its appeal as it requires minimal upkeep to keep it looking fresh and inviting.

One of the potential downsides of this material is its susceptibility to fading over time, especially when exposed to harsh sunlight and UV rays.

To combat this issue, regular maintenance and periodic refurbishments may be necessary to restore the vibrancy of the surface.”

Pros of Wetpour

The advantages of Wetpour include excellent impact absorption, slip resistance, and the ability to customise vibrant colours. These features make it ideal for ensuring safety on playground surfaces.

Wetpour is a popular choice for playgrounds due to its ability to provide a cushioned surface that minimises the impact of falls, reducing the risk of injuries for children at play. Its slip resistance properties offer extra stability, preventing slips and falls even in wet conditions.

The vibrant colours available for Wetpour allow for endless design possibilities, creating an engaging and visually appealing playground environment that can stimulate children’s creativity and imagination.

Cons of Wetpour

Whilst Wetpour is durable, it may require periodic maintenance to prevent issues like fading. Concerns about its environmental impact due to the use of polyurethane binders have been raised.

One of the drawbacks of Wetpour is that its surface can be prone to staining and discolouration, especially in high-traffic areas. This can detract from its visual appeal and require more frequent cleaning to maintain its aesthetic quality.

The polyurethane binders used in Wetpour can release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the environment during the installation and curing process, posing potential health risks and contributing to air pollution.

These environmental concerns have led to a growing preference for alternative surfacing options in certain facilities.

Pros and Cons of Rubber Mulch

Rubber Mulch offers benefits like excellent impact absorption and cost-effectiveness compared to traditional surfacing materials. It may have limitations in terms of colour options and customisation.

One of the standout advantages of Rubber Mulch is its superior impact absorption properties, which make it a safer option for playgrounds to reduce the risk of injuries from falls.

Its cost-effectiveness in the long run, due to its durability and low maintenance requirements, makes it an attractive choice for budget-conscious projects.

Pros of Rubber Mulch

Rubber Mulch meets stringent safety standards for playgrounds and offers the flexibility to create bespoke pieces for unique playground design projects. Its impact absorption properties are also commendable.

Implementing Rubber Mulch in playgrounds not only ensures compliance with established safety standards but also provides a cushioned surface that effectively absorbs impact, reducing the risk of injuries during play.

This material’s versatility allows for the creation of bespoke design elements tailored to each playground’s specific needs, making it possible to add personalised touches and unique features to enhance the overall aesthetic appeal.

The durability and weather-resistant nature of Rubber Mulch make it a long-lasting and low-maintenance choice for playground surfacing, adding both practicality and safety to any outdoor space.

Cons of Rubber Mulch

One of the drawbacks of Rubber Mulch is its potential lack of slip resistance in certain conditions. It may not be suitable for all types of playground equipment due to its composition.

Another concern with Rubber Mulch is that it may not be as effective in preventing injuries from falls compared to other safety surfaces like wood chips or engineered wood fibre.

Rubber Mulch can deteriorate over time under harsh weather conditions, losing its shock absorption properties and attractiveness.

Its dark colour can also absorb heat, making it hot to touch in sunny weather, which can be uncomfortable for children playing on the playground.

Why Wetpour is a Better Option for Certain Facilities

Wetpour stands out as a superior choice for certain facilities due to its ability to meet critical fall height requirements and its relatively lower environmental impact compared to alternatives like Rubber Mulch.

Furthermore, Wetpour offers a seamless, non-slip surface that reduces the risk of accidents, making it ideal for playgrounds, schools, and recreational areas where safety is paramount.

Unlike Rubber Mulch, which can degrade over time and require frequent replenishment, Wetpour’s durable nature ensures long-lasting performance, minimising maintenance costs and hassle.

In addition, the customisable design options of Wetpour allow for creative and engaging play spaces that can incorporate vibrant colours, patterns, and even educational elements.

Safety and Durability

The safety and durability of Wetpour, especially in Rubber playground flooring applications, make it an ideal choice for facilities prioritising fall protection and long-lasting surfacing solutions.

One of the key safety features of Wetpour is its impact-absorbing properties, which provide excellent cushioning to reduce the risk of injuries from falls on playgrounds. This high level of impact resistance is crucial for protecting children and ensuring a safe play environment.

Along with its safety benefits, Wetpour is known for its exceptional durability, even in high-traffic areas. Its resilience to heavy foot traffic, harsh weather conditions, and UV exposure makes it a cost-effective long-term investment for playgrounds.

The longevity of Wetpour is further enhanced by its non-slip surface, which helps prevent accidents caused by wet conditions. This slip-resistant feature adds an extra layer of safety, especially in areas prone to wet weather or water play activities.

Versatility and Customization

The versatility and customisation options offered by Wetpour allow for the creation of bespoke pieces tailored to specific playground projects. This flexibility in design sets Wetpour apart in playground surface options.

Wetpour’s adaptability lends itself well to innovative and imaginative design concepts, making it a popular choice for creating one-of-a-kind playground elements.

From vibrant colours to intricate patterns, designers can unleash their creativity and bring unique ideas to life using Wetpour.

Whether it’s incorporating themed designs, interactive games, or educational elements, Wetpour can be customised to fit any playground vision with precision and durability.

Maintenance and Longevity

The low maintenance requirements and long-term durability of Wetpour, including eco smart surfacing provision, make it a cost-effective choice for facilities seeking sustainable and reliable playground surface solutions.

Wetpour surfaces are known for their ability to withstand heavy foot traffic, extreme weather conditions, and frequent use without losing their quality.

This durability not only reduces the need for constant repairs and replacements but also ensures a longer lifespan for the playground surface, making it a wise investment in the long run.

The eco-smart features of Wetpour, such as being made from recycled materials and being fully recyclable themselves, contribute to its sustainability profile.

Environmental Impact

Wetpour’s reduced environmental impact, especially in outdoor gyms and playgrounds, makes it a preferred choice for facilities aiming to minimise their ecological footprint and promote sustainable surfacing solutions.

The eco-friendly features of Wetpour, such as being made from recycled materials and its permeability that reduces water runoff and helps prevent flooding, contribute significantly to its positive environmental impact

This makes it an excellent option for areas where sustainability is a top priority.

One of the key advantages of Wetpour in outdoor gym settings is its durability and low maintenance requirements, leading to fewer replacements and less overall waste.

By choosing Wetpour for such applications, organisations are not only investing in a long-lasting solution but also demonstrating their commitment to environmental responsibility.


In terms of cost-effectiveness for playground projects, Wetpour presents a viable long-term solution that balances quality and affordability, making it a practical choice for facilities with budget considerations.

One of the key value propositions of Wetpour lies in its durability and low maintenance requirements.

This versatile surfacing material not only offers a safe and cushioned play area for children but also proves cost-effective over time, reducing the need for frequent repairs or replacements.

The long-term benefits of Wetpour extend beyond its initial installation cost. Its resilience to heavy foot traffic and various weather conditions ensures that playgrounds stay visually appealing and safe for years to come, translating into significant savings for playground project budgets.

Conclusion: Wetpour vs Rubber Mulch – Which is the Better Option?

When comparing Wetpour and Rubber Mulch for playground equipment surfacing, Wetpour emerges as the better option due to its superior safety features, customisability, and long-term cost efficiency.

Wetpour’s cushioned surface provides excellent impact absorption, reducing the risk of injuries during playtime.

Its customisable design allows for various colours, patterns, and even educational motifs to be incorporated, enhancing the aesthetics of the playground.

Moreover, Wetpour proves to be a cost-effective solution in the long run, as it requires minimal maintenance and has a longer lifespan compared to Rubber Mulch.

This durability translates to savings on repair and replacement costs over time, making it a sound investment for playground owners.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between Wetpour and Rubber Mulch?

Wetpour and Rubber Mulch are both popular options for playground surfaces, but they have distinct differences.

Wetpour is a rubber surface made from a mixture of rubber granules and polyurethane binders, while Rubber Mulch is made from shredded rubber pieces.

Which is more durable, Wetpour or Rubber Mulch?

Wetpour is generally considered to be more durable than Rubber Mulch.

Wetpour has a longer lifespan and is less likely to wear down or become dislodged with heavy use, making it a better choice for high-traffic areas.

Is one surface safer than the other?

Both Wetpour and Rubber Mulch are designed to provide a safe surface for playgrounds.

However, Wetpour is considered to be the safer option due to its shock-absorbing properties. Wetpour can cushion falls from greater heights and offers better protection against impact injuries.

Which surface is easier to maintain?

In terms of maintenance, Wetpour has an advantage over Rubber Mulch.

Wetpour is a seamless surface that can be easily cleaned and sanitized, while Rubber Mulch can accumulate dirt, debris, and bacteria over time, requiring more frequent maintenance.

Is one surface more cost-effective than the other?

Rubber Mulch tends to be less expensive upfront than Wetpour, but it may require more frequent replacement due to wear and tear.

Wetpour, on the other hand, has a longer lifespan and may be a more cost-effective option in the long run.

Which surface is better for certain facilities?

Wetpour is a better option for facilities that prioritize safety, durability, and ease of maintenance. This includes schools, parks, and childcare centers.

Rubber Mulch may be a better choice for facilities on a budget, such as community playgrounds, but it may not be suitable for high-traffic areas or areas with strict sanitation requirements.

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