To stay safe, regularly inspect and then replace or repair trampoline parts

Trampolines are fun. Kids love them; adults love them. That's why you see so many of them dotting backyards across America. Not only are they fun, but you can get a great workout on a trampoline. Using one improves motor skills and provides a number of benefits: balance, agility, timing, rhythm, good posture, flexibility, muscle strength and bone health. You'll enjoy getting in shape more on a trampoline than in the garage using weight sets. Trampolines take a lot of wear and tear because so many people use them so often. So you need to regularly inspect the trampoline and repair or replace parts.

Wear and tear on mats

Follow the owner's manual for regular care instructions. If rings are missing, replace them right away. If you notice a hole in the trampoline mat, you need to repair it immediately to prevent further damage to the mat and possible injury to the users. One rule of thumb is if a hole is smaller than one inch or a tear from loose stitches is less than two inches, you can repair it. Refer to the manual for information about repairs and parts you need to buy. If the hole or tear is bigger, you'll need to replace the mat.

All mats are not created equal. It might be the right size, but it could be the wrong type for your trampoline frame. So check the manual or the mat for the model number and size of mat you need before you go shopping. The pads needed to be inspected, too. Since they protect trampoline users from being injured from the springs and the frame, you need to ensure they are in tip-top shape.

Troubleshooting problems

If you hear a squeak when someone jumps on the trampoline, take a quick look at the frame. The joints may need some oil. If pads flap up and make a noise, the straps probably need to be a little tighter. The springs can be stretched over time, especially if a lot of people use the trampoline or those of larger sizes use it. Sometimes landing near the edge will stretch a spring. If you notice the trampoline feels differently when you're jumping or you can visually see a spring's stretch, order a replacement part.

A frame up

If the frame is slightly damaged during a storm or in some other way, you can try to find a part to fix the frame. You need to know the brand of trampoline and the model. If you've lost the manual, call the manufacturer and then search the Internet for a new frame. 

Know your limits

If you cannot find the exact parts, avoid buying one that's similar. Close won't cut it. Likewise, if you don't feel comfortable making repairs to the frame, springs, mat or whatever, seek out the help of a professional.

When you have a piece of outdoor play equipment as fun as a trampoline, you can count on it getting plenty of use. Make sure you regularly inspect yours, and be sure to make repairs and replacements as needed.

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