Which Inflatable Water Slide is Best?
Finding the best inflatable water slide for your needs is sort of like choosing the ideal car. There are a whole lot of variables. There are all sorts of performance and aesthetic choices you’ll need to make. But at the end of the day, it’s your needs and your environment that will ultimately help you make a decision.
I’m a parent. I want a car where I can get the baby seat in and out easily, leaving enough space for the bigger kids. Living in an urban area, I prefer smaller vehicles; I don’t want a big, tall SUV. I want something sporty and fun to drive when the kids aren’t with me. And living in Buffalo, I need a car that can handle the heavy lake effect snow our city is famous for.
Choosing an inflatable water slide? It’s a lot like buying a new car. You’ve got a toddler, an eight-year old, and a young teenager, so you want a slide they can all enjoy. You want it to fit in your backyard. You want to pick a gender neutral theme that all three kids will be happy with; a rainbow theme, or perhaps a tropical theme. Or maybe it’ll be something else entirely?
You may not be looking at fuel economy or how fast it accelerates from zero to 60. But like buying a car, buying an inflatable water slide is a big investment. And there are lots of things you’ll need to take into consideration before entering your card info. Let’s take a look at these common factors and see if we can find the perfect inflatable water slide to suit your needs.
Are You Better Off with an Inflatable Water Slide Rental?
Not every family needs a big inflatable water slide. Not every family has the time, the money, or the storage space to facilitate one. So before we get into all these factors that might shape the inflatable slide you decide to buy, let’s first take a moment to make sure you need to buy one in the first place.
If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, you may want to consider looking into booking an inflatable water slide rental. There are probably inflatable water slides for rent near you, and it might make more sense to book one than buy one. If you do answer “yes” to any of these questions but you still aren’t sure, give our sales team a call at 716-566-5806. We’re not going to try and sell you something you don’t need and we’re more than happy to help you decide if it’s better to buy or rent.
- Do you plan on using your water slide only once or twice per year? Can you realistically see yourself setting this up that often? Can you see your kids using it that much?
- Do you have enough yard space to accommodate an inflatable water slide?
- Do you have a spigot for a garden hose that can easily reach the area where you’d set up the slide?
- Will your kids continue to get value from the slide a few years from now?
- Do you have a place where you can safely and easily store the unit, without having to lug it up and down stairs?
Size Does Matter when Choosing an Inflatable Slide
The second big issue we’re going to want to figure out is the size of the inflatable water slide. How large a footprint is this thing going to need? These games can be really, really big. We’ll want to make sure you find a unit that can actually fit in the yard, park, or other space where this will be set up.
What’s the maximum amount of space you can use up with your inflatable slide? And what amount of space are you comfortable using? These aren’t necessarily the same thing!
It’s important to note that when you’re looking at products listed on Pogo Bounce House, you’re seeing the height of the unit in the product’s title, not the length. For instance, our 12’ Blue Marble inflatable water slide is 12’ tall, but it’s 23’ long and 9’ wide. That’s more than 200 square feet of real estate.
Meanwhile, a much larger Tropical Marble Dual Lane Inflatable Water Slide is 30’ long, 20’ wide, and 22’ tall. That’s 600 square feet. And at 22’ tall, you also need to worry about environmental impacts other than sheer space alone. Will the unit run into tree branches or utility lines? Is there anything above the inflatable slide that can cause an obstruction, or even damage your brand new inflatable water slide?
Larger inflatable water slides—ones in the 15’+ range— use long tethers that help prevent swaying, and these tethers are usually secured with 36” to 42” stakes. These longer stakes pose the risk of damaging underground utility lines, which can in turn be very dangerous. Be sure to dial 811 and make sure you’re clear to drive these longer stakes!
You’re Gonna Carry that Weight
The inflatable water slide’s footprint in your yard isn’t the only size-related factor. Larger inflatable games naturally weigh more, and that means you also need to consider how you’ll move the inflatable slide around.
An inflatable water slide can weigh as little as 100 pounds, or as much as 1,000 pounds. Yes, you read that correctly … 1,000! Of course, that’s for enormous commercial inflatable water slides designed to be set up by a team of people. If you’re one or two parents with no other help, moving something like that around is obviously a nonstarter.
We strongly recommend getting a heavy duty hand truck, or maybe a furniture dolly/appliance dolly. We also suggest you pick up some easy-to-use ratchet straps, which always prove useful when you’re trying to secure something huge—an inflatable water slide, for instance—to your hand truck.
The most important thing we can recommend when setting up an inflatable water slide: BE CAREFUL. These are large, heavy, and cumbersome. Don’t try to do it all yourself. Ask friends or family for assistance. If you’re hosting a party, see if any guests with whom you’re close are willing to stop by a little early and help you get set up. Your kids won’t be able to enjoy themselves if Mommy or Daddy are writhing in pain after pulling their muscles!
Who is Doing the Sliding?
Pogo’s Vinyl Crossover™ and commercial inflatable water slides are tough, durable, and resistant. Take good care of them, and they can last several years … the first inflatable water slide you ever buy could even be the last you’ll ever need.
You’ll of course want to get an inflatable slide that’s suited to your present-day family. But you’ll also want to take into consideration where your kids might be in three or four years. Think about how much bigger they’ll be (kids grow way too darn fast, don’t they?). Will they still get the same value out of the inflatable water slide you’ve chosen when they’re a few years older and a few feet taller?
As a general rule, bigger kids have bigger fun on bigger inflatable games. A 12 foot inflatable slide won’t be as fun for a 14 year old as it is for a nine year old. But a huge 20’ tall slide might be too scary for younger kids. Trying to strike that balance with your choice of inflatable water slide may be a little challenging.
Our suggestion here isn’t to ask a salesperson …you’re better off asking your kids. See what they think is too big or too small. And always remember the old adage of someone’s eyes being bigger than their stomach. Kids are always super stoked by the prospect of the ginormous, humongous, gargantuan roller coaster with death-defying mega loops and lightning fast corkscrew spirals ... right up to the moment they see it in person.
Still Need Help? Give Pogo a Call!
Once you’ve weighed all of these variables and figured out your needs, picking the best inflatable water slide for your needs should be a whole lot easier. But being easier doesn’t always necessarily mean it’s also easy.
Some of you may still need a little help finding the best inflatable water slide for your families. We’d love for you to call Pogo Bounce House today at 716-566-5806. We’ll do our best to try and find the perfect inflatable water slide that fits your budget and keeps your whole family entertained for years on end!