Before You Buy A Cheap Basketball Hoop
Not all hoops are created equal
Some hoops hang around for a year or two, some hoops don’t even last that long. Here’s the lowdown on what to consider before you buy a cheap basketball hoop.
A critical consideration for anyone installing a hoop. Is it as safe as possible?
Rain equals rust and rust equals rubbish. Is your hoop protected?
There’s nothing like a tempered glass backboard for bank shots.
Dunk-proof hoops offer a whole new level of basketball
You can’t dunk, but can you funk on a cheap hoop?
Basketball Hoop Safety
Each time a portable hoop system is used, it’s critical to check the base is fully weighted in accordance with your manufacturer’s guidelines. In most cases, portable basketball hoops require the base to be filled with sand, water, or a combination of both. Over time, the water can be prone to evaporating. The front-loading weight of the backboard can easily topple a portable system with no base weight.
Moving any hoop presents a risk
Do the benefits of being able to move your hoop, outweigh the risk of it falling whilst being moved? A heavier base will provide more stability, whilst also making it more challenging to move. Full-size portable hoops can often require around 50 gallons of water to stabilise the system, making the term ‘portable’ a little irrelevant. We think it’s well worth considering the alternative benefits of a system anchored to the ground with consistent stability.
All weather hoops
The plastic components of most cheap hoops will swell in the sun, shrink and crack in the ice and the cheaper metals will rust from the rain. So the only solution is to port your hoop indoors, next to the telly, to keep it in good nick for Summer. Alternatively, 4-season hoops like the Mega Slam systems, are built for British weather!
Portable hoop tip:
Add Base Gel to the water in your basketball hoop base to create a firm and weather-stable gel that prevents your base from cracking in the winter. The base gel also reduces water-loss from evaporation while adding a little extra stability to the base.
Backboard ball response
A rattling backboard can produce an awful noise with every strike. Flimsy and weak, plastic boards provide little feedback to the shooter and terrible consistency. Developing shooting skills on a rickety old board is commendable, but far from ideal. With a regulation 1/2″ backboard, athletes receive great feedback on bank shots from the unique feel of strong tempered glass.
Can you dunk on cheap basketball hoops?
Cheap hoops are not built to withstand dunking or hanging on the rim. Dunking requires more stability, so more weight, meaning more expensive, heavier materials are used. So to dunk on any system, it’s not going to be cheap! For dunking in backyard basketball, unless you have space and resources for a giant portable tournament hoop, a heavy weight in-ground system is the way to go. Check out the installation guide for a Mega Slam Hoop to see what’s required to install a dunk-proof system.
Can you funk on cheap basketball hoops?
Perhaps not the most important consideration when choosing how much to spend on a basketball hoop, but beats are synonymous with basketball culture. You can of course affix any speakers to your hoop however you’d like, but we think we’ve nailed it with the Audio Bracket for Mega Slam Hoops.
Pricey but prudent
Reassuringly expensive premium basketball hardware