Best-In-Class playground rubber mulch


The Scoop

on The Jelly Bean 20 Year Degradation Warranty

When dealing with the surface on which children play it is important to understand how it will settle, perform, and exist over time. It’s equally important to understand what your warranty covers, and what it does not.

The video below highlights all the benefits of the Jelly Bean warranty, and showcases the issues commonly found in other popular play surfaces like rubber tire mulch. Further, you’ll learn about costs you might incur from play surfaces that don’t offer comprehensive degradation coverage like Jelly Bean.

Watch the video interview below what makes our product and warranty so unique.

Playground Rubber Mulch
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Read The Transcript of Our Warranty Interview Below

Clark: [00:00:00] OK great. Hey it’s Clark here with Nick Campesi from Jelly Bean Rubber Mulch. Nic how are you?

Nic: [00:00:08] Fantastic, how are you Clark?

Clark: [00:00:09] Oh I’m doing excellent thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to answer a few questions today about the warranty on Jelly Bean. But first let’s start with this, can you tell me a little bit about the Jelly Bean Rubber Mulch product. What it is and why it’s unique?

Nic: [00:00:26] Yes. So the big difference of the Jelly Bean Rubber Mulch product over the other rubber mulch products that are in the marketplace is that we do not use tire rubber. Everyone else is using an old dirty tire where we’re using pre-consumer virgin rubber.

Nic: [00:00:41] That is initially compounded for a child to play on. So these are rubber tiles that are safety tiles that are, we’re taking the excess the trimmings the tiles that weren’t perfect or didn’t meet spec, we run them through a chipper. And that’s what we make our product out of. So we’re getting a product that is guaranteed 100 percent wire-free guaranteed not to have any red list chemicals or any contaminants that could be found in products like tire mulch from the roadway. And there’s also paint that’s on the product so you don’t have to worry about paint coming off on the on the kids like you do with the tire mulch. So it’s just a much cleaner alternative and it comes in at less than half the price of a unitary surface such like a pour-in-place or turf and so it’s so really good sweet spot product in the marketplace to get good clean surfacing for kids to play on.

Clark: [00:01:34] Absolutely absolutely. And what is the warranty on the product?

Nic: [00:01:41] So we warranty the Jelly Bean Rubber Mulch for 20 years against the degradation of the rubber.

Clark: [00:01:47] Oh wow so 20 years. And that’s that’s if the rubber is degrading?

Nic: [00:01:52] That’s correct. Yeah, we’re going to warranty that it’s going to hold up for its head impact rating for a period of 20 years.

Clark: [00:01:59] And do you deal with a lot of warranty claims? And if not why?

Nic: [00:02:05] You know fortunately in ten years we’ve yet to have a warranty claim on degradation. And the reason why is because we have a 60 year test on the product. You know one of the things about rubber is once it’s vulcanized it really holds its shape and it doesn’t break down and that’s really one of the hard issues that causes you know the disposal to be an issue of rubber and that’s why you know you try to keep rubber out of a landfill because it doesn’t break down. And so are our product will not break down. And so we’re very confident to be able to offer a 20 year rating on it because we have the 60 year test that we know it should hold up for at least that long.

Clark: [00:02:47] Yeah that’s excellent. That’s excellent. So you know and that’s amazing you have not had anybody call it in warranty but if someone were walk me through a scenario that you could see someone having to call in this warranty what might happen?

Nic: [00:03:01] Yes so in the event that they had some surface degradation something was happening then we could ultimately have a have a test performed on the rubber to see what’s going on with it. We would also be able to test the head impact attenuation on the surface to see where it’s at to try to understand you know what’s causing the issue and ultimately you know it’s an issue that the product is breaking down. We would replace enough material to make sure that it gets back into specification.

Clark: [00:03:32] For 20 years?

Nic: [00:03:34] For a 20 year period.

Clark: [00:03:36] That’s excellent. Let me ask you about this. Does Jelly Bean stay put or does is it prone to loss because when you think about mulch you think about you know maybe natural mulch and how it might degrade. So does Jelly Bean stay put?

Nic: [00:03:51] It really does. Now ultimately you know you could have a situation where you may have to add a ton here and there. You know there’s a couple of thing that we recommend. One we always recommend that you seal up the subbase meaning that you don’t want the rubber compacting into the subbase so you want to have a weed barrier fabric down a heavy duty one you know one is rated for at least 20 years. We recommend at least 30 or longer on these fabrics. And that’s going to keep the material from going into the subbase and in addition you need to have a good border system around the sides to make sure that the mulch isn’t really being kicked out by kids. Ultimately you could have a little bit carried off here and there. And you may have to add some. However the cool thing about our product because it doesn’t have wire in it. We’re able to cut it into different sizes. One of the issues with the tire mulch is that it all kind of has to be about the same size uniform piece where we triple screen our product. So we have some smaller pieces some medium and some big and it makes a very dense surface which helps the material stay put because it doesn’t get kicked around as much. And so interesting enough we actually passed the ADA test for accessibility for wheelchair accessibility. And it’s hard to do that with most loose fill surfaces because the pieces tend to migrate where ours tend to stay put. And you know that’s not something that we’ve kind of figured out in the office.

Nic: [00:05:18] You know we actually tested this with multiple different playgrounds and we looked at two or three different ways of putting it in really big pieces small pieces medium pieces and then we found the best performance for head impact attenuation accessibility and the material staying put was this triple screen design where we have multiple size pieces. I always tell people think of it this way you know if I give you a five gallon bucket and I said fill it up with baseballs you have a lot of airspace in there and it would tend to kind of move around some whereas if I gave you some marbles and golf balls to kind of all mix in you’d have a heck of a lot less air space. And that’s the concept of why our product is different than a lot of the other loose fill materials on the marketplace.

Clark: [00:06:07] Yeah that’s really interesting. And you mentioned that there is more density to it so you’re in Houston right?

Nic: [00:06:16] That’s correct.

Clark: [00:06:17] Did the recent hurricane floods cause a lot of issues for your clients?

Nic: [00:06:23] Well you know here’s the interesting thing. We had one client that we had we had several that did take on water. You know some several feet over the playground. And this wasn’t the first time this past hurricane. We’ve had people going all the way back to 2008 with the hurricane that hit. The floods in Baton Rouge in 2016 had several customers flood. And interesting enough I’ll I’ll I’ll tell you almost every playground. Most of the rubber is still there even after having several feet of water. Over the top of the playground. And it’s because our product does not float. And so it’s not going to really disappear. Now the only drawback there is some issues that were caused with the hurricanes where some people had problems with you know contaminated water getting on a playground so they had to go through different steps to remediate to get this rubber clean or either top dress it and all because they had other contamination issues. But as for the rubber moving that’s one of the best things is that there was a playground that I had to see with my own eyes to believe it. It flooded in 2015 2016 and 2017 three times. About three to four feet of water on top of every every playground each time. It was two to three different playgrounds on site.

Nic: [00:07:54] And I walked in to look at it and I couldn’t believe it I mean the playground probably would’ve passed specification.

Clark: [00:08:02] That’s amazing. Now it is really interesting because you have this unique product. It does hold up really well but I think some people would wonder if they go about financing the product because if you’re going to build a big playground costs could get could add up. Would there be any kind of less warranty or other issues if they finance the product?

Nic: [00:08:30] Absolutely not. No. If you finance it pay cash credit card in any way it does not change. The terms at all whatsoever.

Clark: [00:08:40] OK great. That’s excellent. So what do you see as an average warranty for say the other kind of rubber playground surface out there rubber tire mulch?

Nic: [00:08:52] So the tire mulch will have a similar warranty as us. You know they are going to be pretty close in the timeframe against degradation. Once again you know they’re dealing with vulcanized rubber the same as I the difference which you see with their rubber though is you know they’re warranting a paint coating sometimes for 12 years on average. And if you read the fine print you know they’re saying that all of the paint won’t come off or half of the paint won’t come off. I mean they’re telling you the paint is going to come off. I mean it’s no secret you can ask people over time you know the paint will come off of tire mulch. You know it’s you know I always tell people if you could find paint that’s going to stay on rubber and not come off I’d love to know because we would implement that. But it is difficult to get paint to stay on rubber and not to bleed off on the kids.

Clark: [00:09:46] And is your product painted?

Nic: [00:09:49] It is not you know that’s one of the big differences you know we choose not to paint the product just because we know that over time we don’t want the coating fading on the product.

Clark: [00:09:59] Sure sure. So what are some issues other than the paint fading that people might have with rubber tire mulch instead of say the Jelly Bean rubber?

Nic: [00:10:12] So one of the big things kind of just to touch on that painting you know a lot of the reason why they paint tire mulch is because it’s so filthy to begin with. And you know we have a little higher durometer rubber it doesn’t leach and so we really don’t have to paint it. And that that should be noted you know because tire mulch if you don’t paint it you’re going to have kids running around with black streaks all over their clothes and this stuff is just filthy. And then a lot of the issues that I hear customers coming back and buying my product after they have purchased tire mulch. Or perhaps maybe a something I hear you know someone looking for an alternative is wire because these guys you know they find wire and you know these tire guys you know they’re not saying 100 percent wire free they are saying 99.99 you know they’re guaranteeing it’s going to have some wire in it. And so it’s a real issue you know whether you get a lot or whether you find it it’s in there embedded. And ultimately that has that has been a big difference between the tire company and us is that we can truly say this is a 100 percent wire free product because we never had any to begin with in the product.

Clark: [00:11:26] Sure and for the other type of play surfaces how does the Jelly Bean warranty line up compared to those that someone were to install poured-in or a natural surface etc.. How does the Jelly Bean warranty line up against those?

Nic: [00:11:45] So you know if we’re going to go with like the bottom line you know you’re really not getting a warranty on a wood mulch product because you know it’s going to rot as soon as you put it down. You got to keep adding it and then you step up into like the real higher end stuff above what I would consider you know the three times the price that the Jelly Bean rubber mulch falls is like unitary surfacing. You know some of it you know could be less like pour-in-place. You’re going to see warranties on that product like it’s three to five years on a pour-in-place product. Now the challenge with it is you know that’s usually not a DIY fix that’s something someone has to come back out and mix up some some binder and rubber together and fix and let me give you an example. You know there’s a very large school district that we do some work with and they had purchased quite a bit of pour-in-place before we became a business. And you know they shared with us that they basically had someone running around in a circle fixing pour-in-place. Now this is a big school district. But they got a guy that you know every few months has to go somewhere and just kind of do a repair to it you know and the stuff just picks off it’s just one of the issues that’s why it’s typically only warrantied for three to five years. You get into a little higher end surface like a tile a tile is going to be manufactured under controlled circumstances in a factory. And so you’re going to get a better finished product but ultimately tiles do buckle and they have issues as well. Even the best tiles you know they’ll have like a 15 year prorated warranty.

Nic: [00:13:25] So say you make it to year 14 and we determined that you know these tiles aren’t functioning and that there is some flaw. You know you may get like a 10 percent discount on the purchase of a new tile system or so. So it’s not you know a true 15 years you know hey we’re going to replace the whole thing. You know it is a prorated warranty on a lot of the tile systems and some of them aren’t even near 15 years. A lot of tiles are only warrantied for about five years and then I’ll touch on turf as well. You know a lot of turf. Some of it. Eight to 10 years you see in the marketplace.

Nic: [00:14:07] You know turf has its own issues as well.

Nic: [00:14:09] You know you do have to make repairs whatnot for it but it’s a lot of money to have to possibly replace it in eight to 10 years.

Clark: [00:14:21] Right. And I was going to ask is there any product like Jelly Bean on the market I mean do you have a competitor or anything?

Nic: [00:14:28] There’s really not. And the reason why is because you know we have a small amount byproduct material and you know we look at a lot of other rubbers that is close to spec but if we can’t guarantee they didn’t have contamination and that they don’t have red list chemicals and they don’t have anything that a child is not safe to play on filate free sterile latex free you know all these things you have to take into consideration. And so it really limits the type of rubber supply of rubber that we could use. And you know if we were to go out and just buy this rubber and do it I think we would be almost ten times the cost.

Nic: [00:15:11] And so it is just very difficult to find suitable rubber so I think that you know we kind of have a hard time you know in the marketplace finding more and so it is a limited supply issue and therefore you know that’s the reason why there’s not more people doing it and that’s why you know we have a hard time keeping up with orders at times.

Clark: [00:15:35] That’s fantastic. It’s a good problem to have if you are a business.

Nic: [00:15:39] Yes it is.

Clark: [00:15:41] OK. And then last question for you that I just thought of what you’re talking about that does the warranty cover indoor installs if anyone were to install this inside?

Nic: [00:15:52] It certainly does.

Clark: [00:15:54] Ok Because people

Nic: [00:15:55] And that’s a good you know a good a good note. You know I mean we are to my knowledge the only loose-fill product that is certified in the state of California to go indoors due to the fact that you know we do have a rating on the product that shows that it meets the indoor air quality standards to not emit VOCs.

Nic: [00:16:15] And so you know there are products that are unitary that have that standard. But to my knowledge there are no loose-fill products besides ours that meets that standard.

Clark: [00:16:27] Right. Right. Well Nick this has been wonderful. I really appreciate your time to explain the warranty for Jelly Bean rubber mulch.

Nic: [00:16:35] Thanks Clark.

Clark: [00:16:36] Thank you.