UV Degradation and Discolouration of EPDM Wetpour
Lots of children’s playgrounds have EPDM Wetpour surfaces installed to provide a colourful atmosphere with added safety qualities. The designs of this play surface can be varied as there is a variety of bright colours to choose from. However over time the coloured rubber can be affected by UV degradation and discolouration. These are processes which occur when the flooring is exposed to high levels of radiation from the sun, and they can lead to changes in the overall appearance.
Some colours of wetpour surfacing are more prone to higher levels of degradation from UV (ultraviolet) light exposure. This means that certain colours in the manufacturing process of the rubber can fade over time because they have been exposed to ultra violet radiation from the sun. Generally speaking, the brighter colours are more prone to UV Degradation and during this process the sunlight radiation attacks the synthetic polymeric within the EPDM material, leading to a loss of the original vibrant colour. Check our our full wetpour colour range to see all of the different options we have available. The colours which are generally more susceptible to this deterioration include Purple, Bright Yellow, Pillar Box (bright) Red and Orange and we recommend that these colours are used as smaller design features rather than used as main background colours. However different factors in the surrounding outdoor space will also have an impact on the overall affects. Please contact us and speak to a member of our team if you have any questions or you need some advice on a coloured wetpour play area design.
During the installation process for EPDM play surfacing, the rubber granules for the wearing course are mixed with resin before being laid onto the base course. A process of UV discolouration can occur when the resin reacts with the ultraviolet rays, causing it to turn a yellow/brown shade rather than clear. This can then affect the appearance of the surface colour, of the laid rubber crumb and can mean that they do not truly represent the chosen colour design. The discolouration can happen with all colours of EPDM however, some show a more visible change than others. For this reason, we often recommend using certain colours more than others to ensure that every playground we install has a high quality, long lasting finish. Large areas of Blue for example should be avoided as bay lines can be more visible than on other colours.
Many schools, nurseries and public parks have vibrant play area facilities installed to capture children’s imaginations. These can include numerous design features and graphics which are completely customisable for each client. We always aim to complete our work to the highest possible standards and ensure that any aftercare maintenance is carried out where required.
The effects of UV degradation and discolouration will vary depending on a number of factors for each different site. Things like location, area size, chosen colour and surrounding features such as buildings and trees will all have an effect on any weathering from sunlight. Please feel free to speak with a member of our team by filling in the contact form if you would like some further details on the EPDM play surfacing we supply . We would also be happy to send you over some more information regarding the colour Degradation and Discolouration, or speak to you about this personally.