Do you want to buy a bounce house to keep your child busy, happy and active? This comprehensive list will serve as your guide, providing you with a checklist of 10 things to look out for when making your purchase. Quality, value, safety, and durability, are of course your primary considerations. However, there is more than that to buying, utilizing and maintaining a residential bounce house. Below are questions you must find answers to before you click on the “Buy now” button:
Is the price of the bounce house within your budget?
First and foremost, fix your budget for buying a bounce house. There is such a wide variety of bounce houses available in the market today, with as many features, themes, and add-ons, that it’s easy to get lost in the sea of it all. Factors that will impact your budget decision-making are:
- Desired size of the bounce house
- Materials used
- Any specific features that you want
- Time period for which you think the bounce house will be in frequent use (could be months or even years)
Avoid having your child set his heart on an inflatable bouncer that you cannot afford. Also, avoid getting confused by the assortment of bounce houses available, by looking at only what falls within your budget. Your goal must be to buy quality at a reasonable price. A good quality residential bounce house is easily available in the price range.
Is the bounce house safe for your child?
This is any parents’ primary concern- bounce house safety! Only look at products offered by a safety certified bounce house company. Ensure that the bounce house comes with manufacturers’ guidelines and recommendations regarding height and weight limit, and how many children can be in the bounce house at one time. An instruction manual or DVD will also provide guidance regarding the setup area, suitable weather conditions for when the bounce house can be set up, how to clean and sanitize the bounce, and more. Other safety measures that you must check for before you buy a bounce house are:
- A substantial safety net or mesh that encircles the jumping and sliding areas
- Solid stakes and anchors that can hold the inflated bounce house and the blower securely to the ground
- A certified strong blower that constantly blows air into the inflatable
- Velcro or hook and loop fasteners at all entry and exit points
- Check if the bounce house is made of puncture resistant, durable material that is free of lead or phthalates
Will the bounce house stand the test of time?
Check for the durability of a bounce house by making detailed inquiries about the quality of the materials used to construct it. A bounce house must be made of a strong material like Oxford nylon, or PVC, so that no rips and tears develop when a few kids try to bounce the air out of it. Likewise, a bounce house will be right for you if it is constructed with double, triple, or quadruple stitching, and has a balanced weave throughout. That way it will never come apart at the seams and make for a safe playing zone for your child.
Is the bounce house easy to use?
Most bounce houses are easy to use. They take a couple of minutes to set up, inflate, and be ready for use. They are equally simple to deflate and roll up, and move. Most bounce houses also come with a compact carry bag, which enables convenient storage.
Does the bounce house have a theme that your child will continue to enjoy for a long time?
Is your child a Disney fan? Does your little girl love playing a princess in her castle? Whatever it is that most engages your child, it is available out there as a theme for a bounce house, be it animals, jungles, zoos, TV, movie and cartoon characters, rainbow colors, fairy-tales, cars, or sports. You and your child will certainly be spoiled for choice!
What is the recommended age-range, number of kids that can play at one time, and the allowable weight?
Each bounce house is designed for children of a certain age, height, and weight, and comes with very specific guidelines regarding the total number of children that can safely play in a bounce house at a given time. Make sure to scrutinize these details in your prospective bounce house. A bounce house is an ideal space to bound about when the occupants are all of a comparable age, height and weight. Look for specific instructions, such as: “This bounce house can accommodate up to 5 kids, with a total weight of 500 pounds, each weighing no more than 100 pounds.” The peril of exceeding the weight limit is that if all the children happen to bounce on one side of the inflatable, it may topple over.
What size is the bounce house, and can it be set up indoors as well as outdoors?
The size of the bounce house that you’ll buy would depend on how many children, of what size and weight, do you anticipate playing in it, at one time. A second and equally important consideration is that of the space available, indoors or outdoors, such as your backyard or your basement, where you can comfortably set up a bounce house.
Ideally, bounce houses are best used outdoors, where they can be staked to the ground. However, a smaller bounce house, may be recommended for indoor use. Available bounce houses in the market come with specific dimensions when inflated, along with the complete area covered by the design elements, and the specific jumping area. This helps when choosing a bounce house for your basement. Additionally, bounce houses for indoor use usually do not have slides, and are meant for kids under 4 years of age, with an allowable limit of 3 children.
What extra features are included in the bounce house?
Other than a sturdy bouncing floor, and all the others factors we’ve already covered in this article, there are a few extra attachments that you may want for your child’s bounce house:
- Bouncy slides
- Basketball hoops
- Water features
- Climbing walls
Net pockets available on the outside to store shoes and other items.
These are all fun add-ons that provide kids with an alternative way to exercise and have fun within the bounce house. Of course, the more extras in a bounce house, the more it will cost.
What accessories are included in the bounce house kit?
Once you buy a bounce house, you’ll need extra equipment to inflate it, to keep it inflated while the children are playing, to keep it stable and secure, to maintain it in good shape, and to also mend it when required. Therefore, here is a list of accessories that must be included in your bounce house kit:
- Strong anchors or stakes for the inflated bounce house, and for the blower
- A powerful air blower with a GFCI plug
- Repair kit
- At least a one year warranty
- An instructional manual or DVD
- A carry bag
Does the bounce house come with a suitable warranty?
Some bounce houses come with a 90 day limited warranty and others carry a one –year warranty. Air blowers that come with these inflatables also carry at least n years’ warranty. If possible, acquiring an extended warranty on your bounce house is a good idea, especially if it is going to be used on a regular basis.
If you’ve checked off each of the above questions in your preparation to buy a bounce house, you are all set to make the purchase! Exciting, active, playful and bouncy times await!