Shed Type and Roof Size
This playhouse caught our eye instantly, and its attractive mini-chalet looks mean that it will not only be a popular play area for your children or grandchildren it can also become a much loved and talked about feature for your garden. The first thing that caught our eye was the canopy area that can be used to create a natural verandah on the lawn or patio. This is a perfect space for children to play or relax in the fresh air, but also in the shade when the sun is overhead. In effect it creates two play areas for the price of one, as the inside can easily hold a good selection of games and toys.
We have reviewed larger single level playhouses, but we still feel that this will be more than accommodating enough for two children, and maybe even a friend as well. The overall width is 1.59m and the overall depth is 1.55m, creating an almost square base area, although these dimensions do included the front canopy formed by an extension of the felt covered apex roof. The pitch of the roof ensures that rain is swiftly carried away rather than being allowed to sit on the surface, and it gives a ridge height of 1.53m and an eaves height of 1.10m.
Cladding, Frame and Floor
The children using the playhouse may not be concerned about the make up of the cladding and its thickness, but we certainly are as it’s this that gives the building its durability and its strength in windy conditions. That’s why we were pleased to see that 12mm thick tongue and groove cladding was used on the walls. This isn’t the cheapest option, but it is tough and very good at keeping precipitation out and the contents dry.
The floor is made of a more cost effective material, namely OSB, and is a little thinner at 9mm. We often review playhouses that have thicker flooring than this, but we still feel this should be adequate for everyday purposes. What we did like about the floor was its integrated pressure treated floor joists. This means that both the joists and the floor itself are protected from the threat posed by ground moisture.
Treatment Requirements and Warranty
The timber has been given an initial dip treatment of preservative, which gives it a basic level of protection. This means that the customer themselves will be expected to apply wood preserver themselves on a regular basis, at least once a year. We would have preferred to see a longer lasting pressure treatment applied, but we appreciate that this would have been unusual on a playhouse in this price range. We were, however, pleased with the inclusion of a10 year anti-rot warranty. This gives added peace of mind and added value, even though it is dependent upon the treatment schedule being complied with.
Doors and Windows
We really liked the use of a stable style split door on this building, as we can imagine children using it for a game of hide and seek or to act out their imaginary games of being cowboys and girls, or in a castle. The door is also wider than many that we see, opening to a width of 0.57m.
On either side of the door is a large window positioned just under the eaves. Children will like their criss-cross pattern, and we liked the tough and shatter resistant glazing that’s inside of them. Your children will not only be able to see out, you’ll be able to see in so that you can supervise them at all times.
Safety and Security
The use of safe styrene glazing is an important safety feature, and it’s obvious that Play-plus have taken safety very seriously when creating this building. That’s why it complies with British and European safety standards, which is always a welcome sight. The stable style doors don’t come with a lock included, but this takes away the worry of children accidentally or deliberately locking themselves inside.
Customisation Options and Extras
Whilst there are no optional extras available to purchase directly with this playhouse, we can imagine many parents adding a bolt or padlock if they plan on keeping valuable toys inside for any length of time.
Even though the floor and the roof could both have been a little thicker, we still found high quality components throughout.
Longevity of Materials 8.5/10
A longer lasting preservative treatment could have enhanced durability, but we were still glad to see the manufacturer’s confidence in providing a 10 year warranty.
The verandah area offers a little more play space in addition to the mid sized interior.
Ease of Installation 8.5/10
The canopy and its supports mean that this can take a little longer to assemble than some playhouses, but with a friend’s help it can still be completed in around four hours.
For a well built and good looking playhouse with a long warranty period as well, we feel that this represents good value for money.
Final Thoughts: When you install a playhouse you’ll want to know that your children or grandchildren are going to enjoy it, and that it will last a long time, and we feel that this example meets both of those criteria. It’s good looks will be enhanced by a painted finish, and this will also give added protection against the sun. Yes, the wood will need to be treated annually but the relatively compact size means that this shouldn’t be too time consuming a task. We particularly liked the canopy which provides useful shade on a sunny day, as well as an extra area to play.
Prices around: £249.99
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