What child doesn't love splashing in water and having some messy fun? A kids' water table provides a vessel for water play, which you can place outside to keep your home relatively dry. Not only are water tables fun for little ones to play with, they can help develop hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and cooperative play.
Factors to consider when picking out a water table for your little one include the height, capacity, age range, and theme. Our top kids' water table is made by Step2. We love the large two-tier design and huge amount of fun accessories included.
Considerations when choosing kids' water tables
Some kids' water tables have a particular theme. For instance, they might look like a pirate ship or have an underwater theme with fish and coral. Of course, this doesn't make a difference to how the table functions, but one particular theme might appeal to your child more than others.
Find out the size of any kids' water tables you're considering to be sure they're suitable for the needs of your children. You should look at the height of the table, its length and width, and the capacity of the pool. The height is important because it needs to be at the correct level for your child to comfortably use — if it's too tall or too short, it won't be easy to play with. The length and width give you an idea of how much space a water table takes up and how many children fit around it. You might also want to check the capacity to gauge the overall size.
The majority of kids' water tables are aimed at younger children, around 18 months to three or four years. However, you can find some taller and more complex water tables for older children. Check the minimum recommended age for any water tables you're considering, as some have parts that are unsuitable for toddlers.
Some water tables have a separate section designed to hold sand. A table that holds both sand and water is like a mini beach and is great for building sandcastles, but it can create more mess.
Water tables usually include a range of water toys and accessories, such as water wheels, cups for scooping and pouring water, and squirt toys. These bring an extra dimension of fun to a water table.
Kids' water table prices
The majority of water tables cost somewhere between $30 and $150. Kids' water tables of around $30 to $50 are basic and quite compact in size with few accessories. Between $50 and $80, you can find larger and more complex water tables, but the largest models with the greatest number of accessories cost between $100 and $150.
Q. Are kids' water tables suitable for indoor use?
A. Kids are likely to do lots of splashing when playing with their water table, so they're best used outdoors. However, you could use them indoors on a tile or linoleum floor, or put a large waterproof sheet underneath. If you choose to set a kids' water table up indoors, you need to carefully move it outside to empty it.
Q. How do you empty a kids' water table?
A. Some kids' water tables have a drain at the bottom, which lets the water pour out on its own when you remove the plug. If your chosen water table doesn't have a drain, simply tip the water out to empty it.
Kids' water tables we recommend
Best of the best: Step2 Spill & Splash Seaway Water Table
Our take: With two separate pools, this is a great table for multiple kids to play at. One pool is higher than the other, letting you create a waterfall between them.
What we like: Includes plenty of toys and accessories to play with. Perfect height for toddlers. Optional umbrella to provide shade in the summer.
What we dislike: Assembly could be easier.
Best bang for the buck: Little Tikes Spiralin' Seas Waterpark Play Table
Our take: An affordable water table with a fun spiral center that lets kids drop balls into the water below.
What we like: We love the range of built-in accessories, including water wheel and ferris wheel. Includes five round balls that squirt water. Compact design.
What we dislike: Not as sturdy as we'd like.
Choice 3: Little Tikes Anchors Away Pirate Ship
Our take: All little mateys love the fun pirate ship theme and large variety of accessories.
What we like: With its pump, water cannon, and range of spinning accessories, there's plenty to keep kids entertained for hours.
What we dislike: Some buyers had quality issues with the drain.
Lauren Corona is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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