Children love plastic slides; those are fun to play and brings a smile in their face. But plastic slides get dirty in time, and after long use, they can get broken. If you are someone with a broken or damaged plastic slide, this article is for you. Plastic slides are expensive, and you don’t want to buy a new one every time it breaks.
It is very possible to restore a plastic slide back to a newer condition. All you need is patience and some time to spend on it. And yes, you need some tools to buy before starting to work on your plastic slide. If the repair is done carefully, the plastic slide should look like a new one.
So, you are convinced that you can repair a plastic slide, it’s time to do the work. Do not hesitate to read the whole article. I will describe how to restore a plastic slide by yourself in the easiest possible way.
Repairing A Plastic Slide
Before starting to repair your plastic slide, you need some stuff to get started. Here is the list of the items you need to repair and restore your plastic slide.
- Nitrogen Plastic Welder
- 10”x10” square polyethylene sheet
- Polyethylene 3/16” diameter round rod
- Airless Plastic Welder
- Polyethylene ribbon
- Carbide Ball Burr
- Aluminum Tape
- Heat gun
Managed to buy those stuff? It’s time to start repairing your plastic slide. Follow the step-by-step guide to restore your plastic slide back to a new condition.
Step 1: Determine damage area
In your plastic slide, locate the damaged area and measure it. I told you to buy a 10”x10” square polyethylene sheet before, but if your damage area is bigger, buy a bigger sheet. Although repairing a damaged area bigger than 10”x10” is worthless. However, it’s up to you.
Step 2: Measure the patch
Lay that polyethylene sheet as the patch of the damaged area of your plastic slide. Now, use a marker to trace the area of that patch so that you can cut it later. Remember to cut the patch down before if your damaged area is smaller than 10”x10”.
Step 3: Cut the damaged area
Use a jigsaw to cut the area you have traced before. You need to apply the patch in that area so try to make a near-perfect cut.
Step 4: Weld the patch
If you want a strong repair, you must weld the backside of the polyethylene sheet. The plastic slide is hollow, so cut a window from the outer shell so that you can access the backside. Later, you will have to close that window again.
Step 5: Apply tape
Use aluminium tape to seal the corners. This tape will keep the patch steady and support it. As a result, the patch will not fall to the ground every now and then.
Step 6: Insert the patch
Insert the patch on the hole you have built before. You may try using a heat gun to match the patch with the hole. Just make sure the patch has fitted in that hole successfully.
Step 7: Tape again
Use that aluminium tape for holding the flush with the plastic slide. While you weld the backside, this tape will keep the patch in position.
Step 8: Patch the backside
Bring the nitrogen welder and the polyethylene ribbon so that you can patch the backside of your plastic slide. The ribbon will help you connect the patch and the plastic so that it does not look like a repaired plastic slide.
Use the welder for the corner tape first for better output. Then remove the tape and complete welding the corners. When you complete doing this task, the ribbon should fuse the patch with the plastic.
Step 9: Time for the carbide burr
Use that carbide burr you bought to grind a v-groove to the outer area of the patch. Grind only the edges and make sure you grind all the way around it.
Step 10: Nitrogen weld the polyethylene
Bring the nitrogen welder again. This time, you need to weld the v-groove with polyethylene. Yes, you guessed it right, you need to fuse those two materials.
Step 11: Smoothing the weld
Just after finishing the nitrogen weld, bring an airless welder while your nitrogen welder is still hot. Use the welding tip on the plastic surface to smooth the weld. You need to do this very slowly with the airless welder. This smoothing will help it look like a new plastic slide.
Step 12: Bring sandpaper
Wait until your welds are completely cooled. Use sandpaper to smooth the weld to its perfect condition. If you find a spot that is not welded properly, weld that again and use your sandpaper at last. Try to make the plastic as smooth as possible.
Step 13: Finishing the repair
Now you need to do the smoothing process for the last time for perfection. Use your heat gun to melt the surface fuzz. Remember the window you had to cut off in step 4? Close that window using your welder so that you leave no traces of repair.
Polishing A Plastic Slide
If you have repaired the plastic slide, Congratulations. For the longevity of the plastic slide, it is also recommended to polish it regularly. These are the stuff you need to start polishing your plastic slide:
- Warm water
- Dish detergent
- Hand towel/Abrasive rag
- Wax paper
- Sandpaper (optional)
Ready to polish your plastic slide? It’s time to get started. Read the following instructions for a perfect polish of your plastic slide.
Step 1: Prepare a cleaning solution
Boil some water and let it cool down a bit. The water should be not cold and not too hot. Mix some dish detergent with it. This solution will help to scrub the plastic slide. A good scrub will clean the dirt off quickly.
Step 2: Scrub the slide
Bring a hand towel or an abrasive rag first. Scrub the plastic slide from top to bottom using that towel/rag. Use that cleaning solution you prepared for better scrubbing. You might need to change the cleaning solution again and again until the slide is perfectly polished.
Step 3: Dry the slide
As you have used a water-based solution to scrub the slide, you need to let it dry for some time. In the next step, you need to apply wax, so you must dry the slide before starting. Make sure there is no moisturized portion in your plastic slide.
Step 4: Wax the slide
If you want to make your plastic slide slippery, you must wax it properly. Rub the wax paper properly to the entire slide. Using wax paper is always better than spray-on-wax. If you prefer a spray-on-wax, make sure it is nontoxic. You don’t want your children to get in contact with toxic elements, do you?
Step 5: Sand the slide surface (Optional)
After completing the wax, rub your hand on the surface of the slide and check if it’s slippery enough or not. If it’s not, use sandpaper to sand the slide so that it becomes more slippery than before. Your child will not find it good to play with if it is not slippery enough.
If you have read the whole article carefully, you know how to restore a plastic slide by yourself. Wish you don’t have to go to the store every single time your slide gets dirty or broken. Let your child play with it and Good Luck.
If you’re thinking of building a DIY playground for your kids and want to save money by bringing in a used slide, I recommend reading this article to see the value that a playground will add to your property. If you are not yet ready to repair the slide, you might want to create a basic tyre swing, which you can learn how to do by visiting this link.
I encountered a few YouTube videos that you could find interesting in your quest to repair a plastic slide. For the first video click here for using Epoxy Resin, and for the second video press this link for a handy cheap DIY solution using Spray Paint.
Hope this article was able to help you repair and restore your plastic slide to be as good as new. Thanks for reading and until next time, farewell.