Are you looking for a sturdy and durable ping pong table for your family game room? Let us help you pick the best table for your family—check out our in-depth buying guide that highlights some of the most important things to consider before you buy.
Outdoor vs. Indoor tables
The first thing to consider while shopping for a ping pong table is whether you want to keep your table inside or out. There are some important differences in indoor and outdoor ping pong tables that affect both gameplay and durability.
Indoor table tennis tables: Indoor tables are designed to produce a consistent and optimal bounce compared to outdoor ping pong tables, which are made from weather-resistant materials that affect how well the ball bounces off of the surface. This means that indoor tables will give you the closest experience to regulation table tennis matches. If you decide to keep your table indoors, look for a foldable table with wheels for easy storage. Remember never to leave your indoor ping pong table out in the sun or rain.
Outdoor table tennis tables: Outdoor ping pong tables are built to endure the elements. The legs and frames of the table are made of rust-proof material and a weather-resistant net. The tabletop will be made of waterproof material to ensure the table doesn’t warp when it gets wet. If your outdoor space is not level, look for a model with adjustable legs.
Features to Consider
Once you decide on an indoor or outdoor ping pong table, consider these additional features when deciding which table to purchase.
Space: Before you choose your ping pong table, measure the room where you will play. Full-size tables measure about 9×5 feet. In order to move freely as you play, you would also need an additional 3-5 feet of space between the table and the wall(s) on either side of the table.
If a regulation-sized, indoor ping pong table will not fit in your space, there are several other options available. Consider getting an outdoor table, a smaller-sized table, or a folding table that you can put away when you aren’t using it. There are also high-quality tables that break down into two pieces that are ideal for families with less space.
Table Surface Thickness: The surface thickness of a ping pong table has the most significant impact on the quality of play. The thicker the table’s surface area, the more consistent the ball’s bounce will be. Avoid buying a table that has any less than .75 inch (19mm) thickness. The ideal thickness for a ping pong table is 1 inch (25 mm). If you plan on placing the table out on the patio or porch, you may also consider a table with a UV protective layer or an anti-glare coating.
Net: Pay close attention to the type of net included with your table. Standard nets are made from a durable material (look for weatherproof material if you are buying an outdoor table), are 6 inches (15.25cm) tall, and have a contrasting stripe along the top edge. Nets with adjustable tension and narrower posts help ensure that the net doesn’t interfere with gameplay. The last thing to consider is how the net attaches to the table. Fixed nets and clamps are ideal if your table won’t be stored often. Clips might be more convenient if you plan on storing your table frequently.
Frame and Chassis: Many lower-priced tables will advertise a high-quality table-top, but are able to lower the price tag by changing up the frame materials. But remember, a ping pong table is only as strong as its frame is. Ping pong tables need to be able to withstand weight placed on top of the table—often, players’ bodies will come in contact with the tabletop during gameplay. Younger children might also climb up on or lean across the table to reach balls and paddles during a game. All of these things can bend the chassis and make the surface uneven and unfit for play.
We recommend purchasing a table with a strong frame and chassis made of steel. Look for galvanized steel with an outdoor table to protect the frame from the elements.
A table with playback ability lets you fold up one side of the table half and use it as a backboard for your practice shots. It is a great feature to add versatility to your table and the ability to improve your skills.
There are several important safety features to consider when choosing a ping pong table, especially if you choose a model that folds or has wheels. Look for models with corner protectors to prevent both the table and players from bumps and scrapes. Also, ensure that your table has strong and durable locking systems on the wheels and folding mechanisms to prevent accidents when moving and storing your table.
Ease of Setup: Once you’ve chosen the type of table and features you want, consider the assembly needs. A table that needs assembly will require you to attach the tabletop to the frame via brackets and also attach the wheels, net, and any locking mechanisms. Because the table parts can be heavy and the locking mechanisms are vital for safety, look for a ping pong table that is shipped pre-assembled by the manufacturer. Some retailers also offer deals on professional assembly.
Aside from the features mentioned above, also be sure to check for spare part availability. Good quality tables are built to last, but you still want to be able to easily replace a loose net clamp or damaged net.
If you are in the market looking for a ping pong table, look no further than Greater Southern Home Recreation. We have quality ping pong tables and offer shipping and assembly. Call us today at (678) 240-0007.