In a hurry? If you quickly want to know my choice for the best in-ground basketball hoop, then I’d recommend the Goalrilla FT Series Basketball Hoop as the best one.
One of the best investments for basketball players like us is to have our own basketball hoop at home. When it comes to durability, stability, and performance, nothing beats a high quality in-ground basketball hoop that can give us several years of enjoyment. A solidly assembled in-ground basketball hoop would give us the inspiration and motivation to improve our hoop skills and take our game to the next level.
In this article, I’ll be reviewing the following in-ground basketball hoops:
- Goalrilla FT Series Basketball Hoop
- Spalding U-Turn In-Ground Basketball Hoop
- Spalding Pro Glide Lite 44″ In-Ground Basketball Hoop
- Silverback 60″ In-Ground Basketball Hoop
- Lifetime 71281 In Ground Power Lift Basketball System
- Dominator Outdoor In-Ground Basketball Hoop
- Goalsetter MVP 72″ Acrylic In-Ground Basketball Hoop
Things To Consider When Buying An In-Ground Basketball Hoop
How To Assemble An In-Ground Basketball Hoop
Assembling and installing the in-ground basketball hoop is not an easy task. Let us discuss the steps in detail.
- Concrete Footing: Before you can assemble the in-ground basketball hoop, a concrete footing is required to support it. This is the most difficult part in the entire process so make sure you have the right equipment and help available. This process will depend heavily on your ground conditions. You will have to dig a hole that is big enough to fit and support the pole and its base. Get some high-strength concrete mix to ensure the stability of the base. Allow the concrete enough time to harden before mounting the hoop and pole.
- Install the Hoop: Go ahead and unbox all the materials that came with the hoop in the box. There are several pieces to assemble with multiple big sized nuts and bolts. It is best to get a cordless drill to help you speed up this process. Read the installation guide for more details on the specific model that you have purchased.
- Set Up the Post: Start with having the lift mechanism and the lower support arms attached together by mounting the latter to the former. Mount the angled support arms by using padded sawhorses for stability. You can then mount the stabilizer on top of the post by following the video above.
- Assemble the Backboard: The backboard weighs too much for one person to carry so get as much help as you can. I would recommend that you recruit five people to help assemble and lift the backboard. You would need a couple of people to lift the backboard and several hands to help mount and fit it to the lower support arms. Next up will be to attach the upper support arms along with the cross-brace. Lastly, bolt up the backboard and get the hoop net attached.
Local Regulations And Restrictions
The worst thing that could happen to hoops players like us is to have our meticulously installed in-ground basketball hoop dismantled and removed because of a violation of local regulation. Make sure you check your locality or municipality rules before buying and installing the hoop. The first step is to check with your HOA (homeowners association) and make sure that you get their permit to install the hoop on your desired location.
As the installation process requires drilling, you will have to make sure that you don’t affect the structural integrity of the ground and the adjacent fixtures. Check and validate if there are any underground restrictions. Utility lines are fixed underground and you will have to first check the location of the lines before you start to drill away.
Measure the backboard and intended height of the hoop against the area you plan to install the hoop on. Inspect any hazardous structures around as basketball involves running, jumping, and pushing is inevitable. Safety should be your utmost consideration at this stage as it will have long term implications. Finding the right spot to install the in-ground basketball hoop may be a challenge but this decision is crucial because of the hard work and investment that you will pour in once the installation work has started.
It is not all expense when it comes to buying an in-ground basketball hoop. In a Berkshire Hathaway article, it is believed that a driveway basketball hoop can increase the perceived value of your home if you plan to sell it in the future.
Stability And Support
The pole and base hold the entire system together so I have reviewed the different packages and have come up with a list of the best in ground basketball hoops with solid support systems. Stabilizers are important in order for the ring to snap back to its original position after an impact. Hoops with stabilizers are paramount and this is one of the factors that I have meticulously scrutinized for in this review. Adjustable hoop height is also an important consideration especially if you have young kids who will outgrow a fixed height hoop. Value for money in-ground basketball hoop should have a long term investment return and this includes height adjustability.
Tempered glass has the best resistance and professional feel for a backboard. This material is top-notch and I will consider this material when narrowing down the best options for you. The pole design will also affect your experience with the game so I will include only those with solid pole support with safety features in place. The foundational strength of the base depends on the material and design. I have reviewed and have included only the best combination of material and design in this review.
While most products provide warranty, some of the manufacturers go the extra mile and provide a limited lifetime warranty. This is certainly a plus as an in-ground basketball hoop is by no means a cheap purchase. Subject to proper assembly and normal use, the manufacturers may provide lifetime warranty on defects with certain limitations so always read the fine print before buying.
7 Best In-Ground Basketball Hoops
Now that I’ve explained the different factors to consider, let’s go and decide which in-ground basketball hoop to buy.
The Goalrilla in-ground basketball hoop has a high quality tempered glass backboard that measures 60 inches. This material exudes a professional aesthetics as well as enhances the overall basketball experience. The steel pole that supports that entire system is made of powder-coated anodized steel frame that is sturdy and durable. The black color is beautiful and is professionally finished to provide that basketball arena-like feel. The stability and structural design of the poles are top-notch. The design is quite innovative with a single pole style. It has dual extension board arms that ensure stability during impact. The triple-joint connection system creates a full surface area contact.
The height of the rim is adjustable from a low of seven and a half feet to a high of ten feet. The official NBA hoop height is exactly ten feet off the ground.
One of the advantages of this hoop is the strength of the concrete anchor while at the same time providing flexibility to unbolt and move the goal in the event that you move house or extend your driveway.
In terms of warranty, the Goalrilla FT series basketball hoops have an industry-leading limited lifetime warranty which is a big plus. Overall, this is a real winner and is worth your money.
- Easy adjustability from 7.5′ to 10′
- Innovative pole design with solid support and stability
- One-piece main pole design that is structural sound and strong
- Professional basketball arena aesthetics
- Priced on the higher end
The Spalding U-Turn In-Ground Basketball Hoop system comes in 54″ and 60″ models. The backboard is made of tempered glass with a 2 feet offset. This gives you lots of room underneath the basket. It is made of top quality materials which exude that fun and professional feel. The steel pole measures 4” and is very sturdy.
The height of the backboard and rim is adjustable from 7.5 to 10 feet. The adjustment is done by turning a handle (U-turn) to activate the lift system. The U-turn handle has a nice design and is detachable. The breakaway rim is strong and snaps back to its original position after a slam dunk. The steel board frame comes with aluminum trim and provides solid base support.
The combination of the aluminum steel, tempered glass, and adjustable lift system make this professional level standard basketball hoop suitable for outdoor play.
- Aluminum trim steel board frame
- Springy breakaway rim
- 2 feet offset underneath the basket
- Value for money
- Height adjustment can be a challenge to turn for kids
The Spalding Pro Glide Lite In-Ground Basketball Hoop is one of the cheapest that you can find on the market but it does not compromise on quality, stability, and performance. The size of the backboard is 44 inches by 30 inches. The backboard material is made of quality polycarbonate which is a thick slab of clear plastic. It is durable and can withstand inclement weather. The breakaway rim is snappy and can withstand slam dunks. The round steel pole is 3.5 inches thick.
It comes with a ground sleeve for ease of installing and dismantling. The powder coated matte black finish is pretty nice and will look good on your driveway. The rim can be adjusted from 8 feet to 10 feet and has 16 inches offset. This gives you enough room underneath the basket when you land after a slam dunk. The 8-year limited warranty gives us peace of mind from any factory defects.
- Adjustable rim height from 8 to 10 feet
- 16 inches offset for under the basket action
- Great value for money
- Polycarbonate backboard may not be the most durable
The Silverback in-ground basketball hoop’s backboard is made of durable tempered glass. The flexible breakaway rim does not bulk under extreme pressure and quickly snaps back to its position after a dunk. The quality is very close to a pro-style basketball rim. The anchor mounting is solid and at the same time provides the ease of unbolting should you decide to move the hoop to another location. Strength and performance should not be a problem.
The steel pole is powder coated for protection. Rim height is adjustable from a low of 7.5 feet to a maximum height of 10 feet using a crank actuator. The pole and backboard are covered by safety pads which is a plus because you would never know when the next rough play will happen. It has a two and a half feet overhand and offset to allow enough room under the basket. In terms of warranty coverage, Silverback provides a limited five year warranty.
- Crank actuator for height adjustment from 7.5 to 10 feet
- Durable tempered glass
- Snappy breakaway rim
- Padded pole and backboard for safety
- Stability of the pole is not the most sturdy
The Lifetime in ground basketball hoop system has a polycarbonate backboard that is shatterproof. It is sturdy and durable and can withstand strong impact. The rim height is adjustable using a power lift mechanism which is quite responsive. Height can be adjusted from 7.5 to 10 feet high by squeezing the handle. This can easily be adjusted even by young adults without any extra equipment. It features three pieces of 3.5 inches round pole with friction-weld joints for safeguarding against unwanted movements.
The hoop is all-weather resistant and can certainly withstand inclement weather. The graphics in the hoop are also weather and fade resistant. The steel poles and backboard are powder-coated for UV protection and weather-resistance to rusting and unwanted discoloration. With a five year limited warranty, this in-ground basketball hoop is certainly one of the better value hoops that you can find online.
- Power lift mechanism to adjust rim height
- Powder coated steel for UV protection and weather resistance
- Good value for money
- Polycarbonate backboard may not give you the arena-feel
What I love most about the Dominator Outdoor In-Ground Basketball Hoop is that it is fully rust-proof. This is probably the only basketball hoop I have seen in the market that is completely protected from rust. The aluminum used is of the 6061 T6 kind which is the same material used for automotive vehicles and aircraft.
The look of the background is another aspect of this basketball hoop that I like. It is definitely a cool feature for a residential basketball hoop. The 72″ background is of the standard regulation size. It exudes that professional feel and sturdiness that you see in NBA and NCAA backboards.
Installation of this Dominator in-ground basketball hoop is quite easy. The package comes in four pieces: the backboard, a rim, a 4 feet overhang arm, and the main pole. When installing, I noticed that the bottom part of the main pole pivots which makes it extremely easy for me to finish the installation process.
- Completely rust-free
- Top quality material
- Aluminum used is similar to those found in automobiles and aircrafts
- Professional look and feel
- Easy Installation with pivoting main pole
- Quite expensive
- Backboard look may not be for everyone
The Goalsetter MVP In-Ground basketball hoop is made of an acrylic enamel material with corrosion-resistant painted pole. The protective paint makes it one of the more durable basketball hoops available today. I noticed that the six-inch offset coupled with the seven-gauge wall thickness reduces the shakiness of the rim and backboard. This will also provide longevity from wear and tear because the joints are quite immovable.
The height adjustability of Goalsetter MVP is great. The internal compression mechanism allows me to adjust the height from six to ten feet with no grab or pinch points. The backboard measures 42 x 72 inches and is made of full tempered glass. The glass backboard is mounted with an H-frame designed structural tubing. I can really feel some good and consistent ball response from the rim, backboard, and pole.
- Corrosion-resistant paint
- Easy height adjustment
- Solid and sturdy build
- Professional-grade backboard
- Installation may not be the easiest
The Awesome Choice
An in-ground basketball hoop is not a cheap investment in terms of money and installation effort so you have to think very carefully before making the purchase. While you will not regret buying any of the five that I have reviewed in this article, the one that really stood out for me is the Goalrilla FT Series Basketball Hoop.
With the high quality tempered glass and top-notch breakaway rim, the performance of the Goalrilla gives you that professional basketball arena-like feel. The easy adjustment of the rim height makes it a worthwhile investment especially if you have growing kids. The pole design is rather innovative in that a single pole can solidly provide stability to the heavy backboard. Overall, Goalrilla is my top choice for the best in-ground basketball hoop.