Slide Buying Guide

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Slide Buying Guide

Indoor and outdoor slides are great toys for children that can provide hours of entertainment. Slides come in different designs and can be made from a variety of materials.

It’s important to spend some time selecting a slide, as the size and height of the slide should be adequate and suitable for the age of the children using it.

eBay is a great place to search for slides, as the site offers a larger selection and better value for money then that found in most toy stores or on specialist sites.

The following guide will examine all the factors first time buyers should take into consideration before making a purchase, and how to use successfully navigate eBay to find an ideal slide.

Material Used In Slide Manufacturing 

Depending on the size of the slide and its intended age range, a slide can be made from either plastic or metal. All slides are comprised of a chute supported by strong legs and a ladder or steps that lead to the top of the slide.

Plastic

  • Plastic is more commonly used in the manufacturing of slides than metal. It is cheaper to use and a lot easier to mould.
  • The plastic used in slides is usually high density 100% polyethylene.
  • Plastic slides are tough, light and easy to clean.
  • Plastic slides are not susceptible to weather damage like other materials, e.g. rust found in metal or rot found in wood.
  • Plastic slides are available in a large variation of heights and weights. The smallest for sale are intended for indoor use by toddlers and very young children, while the biggest need to be kept outdoors and can be used by children and adults alike.
  • Slides made for use by young children are usually between two and three feet long.

Metal

  • Metal slides are usually more expensive to buy than plastic, and this is due to the costs of manufacturing.
  • Metal slides are very rarely made with indoor use in mind, and are much more suited to outdoor use.
  • Most metal slides are created using metal alloys to help protect them from rusting and other weather inflicted damage.
  • The recommended starting age for use with metal slides is four years.

Types of Slides

Children’s slides come in a variety of shapes and designs, and some can be connected to other outdoor play sets to create a more varied playing experience.

  • Straight slides come in both plastic and metal, and come in a number of lengths and heights. This is the most common type of slide available and prices are in accordance to the size. Straight slides are available for both indoor and outdoor use. Super straight slides are also available and are stand much taller than regular straight slides.
  • Wave slides are also very popular and the wavy chute provides plenty of fun. Wave slides come in a variety of lengths and heights and are available to buy for indoor and outdoor use. Super wave slides are also available.
  • U Turn slides turn around as they descend giving the impression of spinning to the user. These slides mainly come in plastic form, and are especially popular with younger children. U Turn slides come in various heights and sizes and are available for use outdoors.
  • Water slides are used with paddling pools and very popular with younger children. Water slides should only be used outside.
  • Tube slides are cylinder slides for use outdoors. These slides tend to be only available in large sizes and these are not suitable for very young children.
  • A radical ride slide is designed in separate sections and then constructed using a vacuum formed polyethylene.

Slide Safety

  • If the slide is being used by young children then make sure that they are being supervised by an adult.
  • Children should wear appropriate clothing. No loose clothes with buttons or zips as they could become caught and cause a snag.
  • Always make sure that the children descend the slide feet first and not head first.
  • If the slide is outdoors then make sure that it is never used in the rain or in frosty conditions.
  • Teach young children to check that slide is free from others before they descend.
  • Never let a child run up the slide as they may slip.
  • Only one child should use the slide at a time.
  • Metal slides can cause skin burns so adequate clothing should be worn. Also metal slides can become quite hot to touch in sunny weather.
  • Makes sure that the slide is completely smooth and that there are no cracks or splits in the chute.

Buying Slides On eBay

  • Head to eBay.co.uk to start a search. Once on the title page click on the All Categories tab found to the left of the search bar.
  • This will load up the Categories page. From here scroll down to the Toys heading and click More. Then click on the Outdoor Toys and Activities link to be brought to the relevant listings page.
  • Next click on the Slides filter found in the Categories table on the left hand side of the page.

If any difficulty is experienced in navigating the site then contact eBay’s Customer Support page.

Slide Listings Page

Buyers can browse through the various slides for sale on the listings page. All buyers should take their time when searching this page.

All slides on eBay are listed as one of three options. These are Bid Now, Buy It Now or Best Offer. Slides listed as Bid Now are on auction and the bid with the highest offer will win the auction when the auction’s time runs out. Slides listed as Buy It Now are for sale at a set price and will be sold on a first come first served basis. Slides listed as Best Offer will be sold to the buyer who offers the price the seller believes to be the most appropriate.

  • Buyers can change the listings to show either only slides on auction, or those being sold as Buy It Now. To change the listings to one of these options click on the relevant tab at the top of the page.
  • To change the amount of slides listed on the page scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the relevant box. Slides can be listed in groups of 25, 50, 100 and 200.  
  • The Categories table on the left of the page contains filters to help modify the search and make it more precise. Buyers can choose to list slides by the Condition, Price or Location of the item.
  • Use the Sort By drop down menu to list slides by Price, Time left in the auction, the Distance and the Condition.

Slide Items Page

The items page contains important information about the slide, its current condition, the price and the postage details.

  • All items on eBay should be accompanied by a photograph of the item in its current state. It is important to check that the slide being advertised is the one shown in the photograph. If there is no photo then request one using the Ask a Question feature found at the bottom of page below the Description box.
  • The information to the right of the photo contains details about the current bid on the item, the time left in the auction and location of the slide.
  • The Seller Information to the right of the bid details contains a brief summary of the seller’s history on eBay and how they’ve been rated by other buyers based on previous transactions.
  • The Description box will contain slide specifications such as height, material used in manufacturing and the recommended age ranges for the slide. Always check the Description box as additional messages from the seller will be kept here.
  • The Postage and Payment box contains details about the postage costs for the slide and estimated time of delivery for it.
  • If the seller is a business then their contact information and refund policies will be found at the bottom of the page.

About The Seller  

  • Never buy a slide without first reviewing the seller’s feedback. Look for buyer comments dealing with postage, item conditions and prices. If the seller has received a substantial amount of negative feedback then it is advised that the buyer search for another slide listing.
  • The eBay Resolution Centre page will help any buyers encountering difficulty in dealing with a seller. This is the first place to contact if any problems are experienced. The Resolution Centre page can be found by clicking the link found in the Customer Support drop down menu located at the top right hand side of the page.
  • All eBay users are protected under the Buyer Protection Programme, and PayPal handles all of eBay’s online transactions.

Conclusion

Slides can provide hours of entertainment for children of all ages, but some time should be spent researching into the various sizes and heights available to ensure that slide will be suitable for the children using it. Indoor slides are aimed more towards younger children and do not stand very high whereas outdoor slides can stand over six foot tall.

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