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Nothing screams SUMMER quite like a slick plastic water slide in the backyard on a hot and steamy day. And while the store-bought Slip ‘n Slides are great fun, this year my boys and I decided to take just a little extra time, hit the hardware store for some simple supplies, and create a much more epic slippery slope.

I’ve always heard that making your own plastic water slide is way better and really not that hard. And I can now attest that anyone who ever told me that was spot on. For under $30, my boys and I created a much faster, much longer, and much more fun version of the Slip ’n Slide. So naturally, I think you should give it a go as well!

Here are my quick tips for making your own:

Slip 'n Slide

1. Hit the local hardware store for the two major components: A long roll of sturdy plastic sheeting. We chose the thickest weight they had (6MIL) and went with 25 ft long. This is WAY better than blue tarps. Ours was 10 feet wide, but we folded it over to make more of a thinner slide and to make it even sturdier on the bottom.

Slip 'n Slide

2. Get yourself some garden staples. These are the best option for making sure the plastic doesn’t move. We only attached them at the top of the slide, where we knew no one would hit them on the way down. They lay flush to the ground and keep the slide perfectly in place.

Slip 'n Slide

3. Before you unroll your plastic sheeting and staple it down, it is VITAL that you completely rake the ground below. Rocks, sticks, and other debris are bad news underneath a Slip ’n Slide. Taking the time to clear out any harmful stuff will ensure you won’t be ending the day at the ER for rock-induced stitches.

Slip 'n Slide

4. Add bubbles! After the slide is wet and the kids have had a couple of rides, add some slippery soap bubbles. We used cheap dish detergent, but I’ve also been told that baby shampoo is great! Plus the kids will smell good when they’re all done.

I advise getting the kids involved with the construction of the slide as well, from raking the ground all the way to the first slide down. Having them help create the fun makes it even more special.