How to Maintain and Repair Your Home Trampoline
Taking care of your trampoline will increase its lifespan and considerably reduce the risks of accidents caused by failing equipment. A failing frame or a mat tearing could result in a very dangerous situation for your children!
Care and maintenance for your trampoline are easier than you think. Preventive maintenance will go a long way, and there are some small repairs you can do yourself to prevent more serious problems.
What to Watch For
A big part of trampoline care consists in inspecting your trampoline regularly and looking for signs of damages. Let your children know that they should tell you right away if they notice an issue with the trampoline.
Here are some signs that your trampoline needs maintenance:
- Look for tears, rips, holes, and fraying on the mat. Check the stitching of the mat. Pay attention to sagging or tension in some areas of the mat.
- Check around the mat to see if some clips are missing, broken, or disconnected.
- Inspect the springs very carefully. Broken springs are easy to spot, but you should also look for signs of excessive stretching and rust.
- The frame might have some signs of rust, there might be missing C-clips or some rods might be bent.
- The net enclosure can easily get damaged when your children jump. Tears should be easy to notice but look at rods and rod holders too.
- If a trampoline has a ladder, test it to make sure the steps are sturdy.
- Look for signs of UV-damage like discoloration on the mat or plastic covers.
Ideally, you should perform a quick check every time you let your children jump on the trampoline. Schedule a more thorough weekly or monthly inspection of the trampoline depending on how often your children use it.
You can reduce wear and tear and make your trampoline safer by following a few simple rules. Never let more than one child use the trampoline at a time, and always have your children take their shoes off when they use the trampoline.
Keep sharp objects away from the trampoline and do not leave any clear plastic items on the surface since this material can magnify sun rays. Do not store anything under the trampoline since this could be dangerous when your children jump on the trampoline and it could cause damage to the mat.
Place your trampoline in a shaded area to reduce exposure to sunrays, even if you purchased a model with a UV-resistant mat. However, be careful not to place your trampoline directly under a tree since branches and debris can cause damages to the mat.
Keep your trampoline away from grills, fire pits, pools and sprinklers. If there is an area that you need to water regularly, keep your trampoline away from it to avoid rusting.
Cleaning Your Trampoline
Dirt and debris can accumulate on the surface of your trampoline. This increases wear and tear on the mat and debris can also affect the springs.
You can clean the entire trampoline, including the frame, springs and mat with some warm water and some soap. Use a soft brush to get the debris out of the springs. Clean your trampoline once a month and spray it with a hose to get rid of dirt on a weekly basis if you need to.
Alternatively, you can use a broom to brush dirt and dust off the mat.
Snow can build up on your trampoline mat and the weight will cause unnecessary wear and tear on the springs. Proper winter trampoline maintenance consists in using a brush or a broom to remove snow regularly.
You need to do the same thing with leaves in the fall. Always use a broom or a brush since using a shovel or a rake could damage the mat.
Ideally, you should use a cover to protect your trampoline from humidity, debris, snow and frost in the fall and winter. If you can, store your trampoline in a dry place for the winter. You can store the frame and springs and leave the covered mat outside if you need to.
Replace Damaged or Missing Parts
You can easily shop for trampoline parts by looking up the make and model of your trampoline. Some trampolines come with spare clips and springs.
Replace missing or broken springs, V-clips, C-clips, rod connectors, and other elements that show signs of damages. Think about buying a new enclosure if yours is torn or about replacing a damaged ladder. You can also purchase additional padding and covers to make your trampoline safer.
How to Prevent Rust
Rust can appear on a trampoline exposed to humidity. It can affect the frame, springs, and the rods holding the enclosure net up.
First of all, you need to reduce exposure to humidity as much as possible by keeping your trampoline away from sprinklers and by covering it when it rains. Secondly, you can prevent rust by choosing a model with a galvanized steel frame and with galvanized steel springs.
However, even a galvanized steel frame can rust if water gets inside of the rods. You will need to use a trampoline cover whenever your children are not using it to keep humidity away from the springs and frame.
You can also protect your trampoline from humidity with a spray-on water repellent. Any product that you can use on metal will work on the frame and springs of your trampoline and increase its longevity. Note that you might need to re-apply water repellent once a year or so.
If you can, store your trampoline in your garage during the colder months to reduce exposure to humidity.
You need to treat rust spots quickly to prevent further damage. If there is a lot of rust on a part, you might have to perform a more advanced trampoline repair and replace the rusted part instead of trying to get rid of the rust.
You can get rid of most small rust spots by brushing a mixture of salt and lime juice on the area. Mix half a cup of salt with the juice of two limes. Apply the paste on the rust spot and wait for three hours. You can then use a small brush to scrub the rust spot. Rinse the area and let it dry.
You will need to use a brush-on rust remover if there are larger rust spots on the trampoline. A rust soak won’t be easy to apply unless you can take the trampoline apart. Check the instructions of the rust remover you choose to use to find out how long you should leave it on to get results.
How to Repair a Damaged Mat
A trampoline mat goes through a lot of wear and tear and the mat is probably the first thing you will have to replace. Trampoline mat repair is something you can do yourself, but you might need a sewing machine depending on how serious the rip is.
If you notice small holes in the trampoline mat, you should be able to cover them with a piece of heavy-duty duct tape. This will protect the area and prevent the small rip or hole from getting any worse.
If there is a more noticeable hole in your trampoline mat, you will have to use the patch kit that came with your trampoline or purchase a patch kit. You can find trampoline repair kits with small patches of vinyl that you can glue onto the mat with some vinyl cement.
Vinyl patches and vinyl cement kits are a good way to fix most rips and holes, but this solution is not as durable as sewing a patch over the rip.
Sewing will also be necessary if you need to re-attach a V-clip on the side of the trampoline mat, or if you need to fix the enclosure.
Here is how you can fix a damaged mat with a sewing machine:
- Remove the trampoline mat.
- Cut a piece of the patch to cover the hole or rip.
- Check the instructions that came with your trampoline to find out what kind of stitching you should use on the mat.
- Use a sewing machine to sew around the patch and cut any excess fabric.
If there is a large rip or tear in your trampoline mat, your best option is to replace the mat. Contact the trampoline manufacturer or shop for a new mat. Pay attention to the diameter, the number of springs and the system used to connect the mat to the springs.
Not maintaining your trampoline represents a safety risk and will reduce its lifespan. Trampoline maintenance is fairly simple but it requires you to inspect your trampoline regularly and to take action as soon as you notice an issue.
Remember to take good care of your trampoline during the winter, to reduce exposure to humidity, to clean debris and dirt and to remind your children to always take their shoes off!
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