With people getting outside to try to safely enjoy the winter amid the COVID-19, backyard rinks have surged in popularity.
But how do you build a backyard rink?
Global Sports got together with an all-star group of technicians — including the guys from Dad’s Rink Kit — for some advice.
1) Scout out the surface
Look for a flat area, free of debris and a significant slope. A shaded or protected area prevents melting.
2) Clear the area
Shovel right down to the grass or dirt. It prevents cracks as the ice loses strength with snow or debris underneath.
3) Line your rink
This is like building a bathtub. Do what’s necessary to dam the water in. A plastic liner will keep the water in and level.
4) Build a base
Use cold water for the first flood. Start at the lowest spot. Stop when the water is level and allow a sufficient amount of time for the water to freeze.
5) A whole new level
The following floods should be with hot water. You will want to do thinner layers, once a day. This allows old and new ice to bond and strengthen. In about a week — or two to three inches of ice — the rink should be ready for some family fun!
6) Tender loving care
Regularly shovel, maintain and water the rink. It will extend the life of your rink and keep the surface smooth.