Engineered Wood Fiber: 6 Things To Know Before Installing It

Wood fiber

The most popular type of playground safety surface is Engineered Wood Fiber (EWF). Engineered Wood Fiber is the product for you if you’re searching for a low-cost, natural-appearing surface that also complies with ADA regulations.

EWF meets or exceeds all Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommendations as well as all American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) regulations, as do all of our playground safety surfacing products. The International Playground Equipment Manufacturers Association (IPEMA) has certified this product for fall heights up to 12 feet, and it is offered by the cubic yard.

Engineered wood fiber is made from hardwoods and softwoods. When properly installed, EWF acts as an impact absorbing surface, reducing the risk of injury from falls. Hundreds of surfacing solutions for children’s play spaces claim to ensure safety.

Engineered Wood Fiber (EWF) – An Example of a Processed Wood Surfacing Material

EWF is formed from the wood inside the tree, not the bark, unlike wood mulch. It has soft surfaces and no sharp edges. Engineered wood fiber is a preferred playground surfacing material because of its fibrous consistency.

However, being popular does not always imply that you are making the best decision.

As a park manager, you must select the appropriate play area surfacing to provide a hazard-free and safe environment for children.

In this blog post, we’ll go through the six considerations to consider while installing F in playgrounds.

Ensure safety

EWF is a soft, loose-fill surfacing material that has major safety problems. It does not meet the safety criteria set out by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Over time, it becomes compressed, reducing the shock absorbency. As a result, children playing on EWF surfaces may be exposed to a significant risk of harm from falls.

Quality and Durability

When compared to alternative playground surfacing materials such as safety rubber surfacing, engineered wood fiber has lower durability.

Because of its loose-fill texture, EWF cannot withstand wear and tear and splinters within a short period of time. When you use local surfacing experts for services such as raking, tamping, cleaning, and others, it can last up to five years.

Furthermore, engineered wood is not tough enough to withstand heavy foot traffic. Therefore, even with the greatest care, the material may fail to serve as a good playground surfacing option.

Installation Cost 

Because of its low installation cost, EWF is a very economical surfacing choice. Playground management must invest a significant amount of money in the post-implementation phase since play parks are prone to wear and tear.

Playground owners must add new layers of material at regular intervals in order to meet ASTM regulations and decrease the impact of falls. To allow the children to safely land from a ten-foot fall, they must maintain a layer with a minimum thickness of nine inches.

The cost of continuous maintenance is more than the initial cost of installation.

The Installation Procedure – Wood Fiber Insulation 

EWF surfacing may appear to be simple to install, but it is not.

A smooth installation necessitates proper layering and playpark measurements. Installation typically takes one day. The process may take several days depending on the size and area of the playground.

If you’re looking for a simple-to-install wood fiber insulation safety surface, we recommend consulting with a playground surfacing solution expert.

Design and Aesthetics

EWF surfacing material, unlike others, does not come in a variety of styles or colors. It has a natural, rustic appearance to it.

Examine the various EPDM granule colors available to match your overall design.

Maintenance and Care

When it comes to loose-fill surfaces like EWF, maintenance is a continuous operation.

The most difficult part is maintaining the proper depth of material to meet the fall-height requirements. Engineered wood fiber surfacing necessitates a significant amount of maintenance. After a year or two, it may need to be completely replaced.

We at Creative Recreational Systems understand how difficult it can be to choose the right playground surfacing for your project. In this part, we’ll use our years of expertise surfacing thousands of playgrounds to help you weigh your alternatives and examine the nearly limitless possibilities for reinventing your playground.

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