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Monday, November 06, 2017

Review: Little Tikes Jump 'n Slide Bouncer

Someone last year gave us a Little Tikes Jump 'n Slide Bouncer. I'm not normally in the habit of reviewing kid's toys, but this one gave us a ton of use. With a long power cord, the blower for this bouncer still requires a power strip: the reason is because the wall wart is nasty and long, and wouldn't fit into any weather protected wall sockets, so you have to use a power strip for it. Fortunately, the power draw is relatively low (400W maximum). It comes with several stakes for holding down the bounce house on grass/lawn, but since we usually use it on a wooden deck or concrete we rarely use those.

In use, the bounce house mostly works great, but Bowen can reach the roof and pull it down. Similarly, Boen has discovered if he slides against the walls the roof will come down and he can grab it as well. For whatever reason the kids think this is great fun, but so far after a good 6 months of use the toy has still not fallen apart.

For Bowen's birthday party, we decided we'd rent a generator and run this jump house instead of renting a bigger jump house. But renting a generator cost $200, while a Tailgator from harbor freight cost only $109. I tried shopping from Amazon, but because of California's air quality regulations and because most generator companies can't be bothered to present their California certification to Amazon, you can't buy such low end devices from them. Along with the generator, you'll have to get 2 cycle engine oil and fuel stabilizer. Since the Tailgator was good for 700W it was perfectly matched with the bouncer. (Note: the generator has a 25 hour break-in period, during which you're not supposed to exceed 50% of the maximum wattage the generator's supposed to provide, so 400W is about right)

The generator requires more maintenance than you would expect: you're supposed to run it every 3 months for at least 15 minutes, but since one use of it has already paid for itself I'm not too concerned about the longevity.

Most kid's toys get played once or twice and then are left to languish. This one gets used over and over, so I recommend it if you have the room.

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