Safe Sandbox for Your Children

How to Make a Safe Sandbox for Your Children

There are some factors to consider when making and locating your child’s sandbox. This article will reflect on safety, location and construction of your child’s sandbox.

First, decide where you want your sandbox located. Keep these factors in mind. You want to be able to see your child while they are playing in it. If it is too close to the house, you might not be able to see them playing in it. Keep it away from driveways, sidewalks, streets, wells, and gardens. Each of these areas can present their own problems. As for gardens, they attract insects.

You also don’t want the sandbox in direct sunlight. Sand can get very hot and cause burns. You want shade on the box but, you don’t want debris from trees falling into it either. So this sets up a good challenge for you. Once you find your location, you are ready to start.

I would caution on the use of truck or tractor tires. Insects like to fly or climb into the inside of a tire. They build nests inside. This could cause problems like bites and stings. If you decide to do this, always check it out before letting a child play in it. Snakes also like the coolness on the inside of a tire.

Construction: When you have picked out your area, stake it off and use a string to mark off the area where your sandbox will be located. Using a spade or sharp shovel, dig out the area. You don’t need to go very deep. However, you want a smooth surface with no grass, weeds, or vegetation growing inside this area. I would think three to four inches of sod removal is enough.

Now use some heavy duty plastic to line over where you dug out. You can usually find a roll at your local hardware store. You can also find them at Lowe’s or Home Depot. Simply lay it down in the area and cut it off at the ends. If you have to overlap, make sire you go at least 8 inches on the overlap. The plastic does several things. It keeps out weeds from growing. It provides a smooth flooring for your child’s feet and hands. To some degree it holds some moisture. However, once the sand is turned over, the moisture usually evaporates.

I recommend using 2 by 6’s or 2 by 8’s for the sides. 2 by 4’s are just too small. You want something strong and that is hard for the child to move. Now simply measure and box up the size that you want. Use long dry wall screws to secure it together. Three inches are great for this project. Once you have it boxed up, set it where you want it. It is okay to have some of the black plastic on the outside of the box frame.

You are ready for your sand. Some people like to use white sand. I caution against it ,because in direct sunlight, it will get hotter than regular sand. Regular sand will work just fine. Your pit should be filled only about two thirds the way up to the top of the sandpit.

Now take some left over sod and go around the outside of the sandbox and cover any plastic that is showing. This is very important to do, because the if you use black plastic, it will attract bugs. Just like a tractor tire, insects will be looking for a nesting place.

There you have it. Your child’s sandbox is ready to go.

Note: Double check to make sure that no screw points are splinters are exposed on the sandbox. You can add a board on the corners for seating if you desire. Just be sure they are safe.