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Air hockey can be a great pastime at home, but not all homes have sufficient space for a big air hockey setup. Fortunately, there are portable and small-sized air hockey tables that you can buy. They are usually tabletop setups, so you can convert your dinner or study table into an instant arcade game.
Kids can enjoy hours of air hockey games and the smaller size tends to be easier for them to control as compared to full-sized ones. However, the air hockey table still needs to have safety features for children.
If you are short on time and can’t read the whole article, definitely take a look at the Lanos 40-Inch Electronic Air Hockey Game, our top pick for mini air hockey tables.
Lanos 40-Inch Tabletop Electronic Air Hockey Game
The Lanos 40-inch Electronic Air Hockey Game is my first choice, which measures 40 x 20 x 8 inches, making it easy to fit over most tables. It’s not too heavy (it’s only 15 pounds) and it comes with two yellow pucks and pushers that are easy to hold for most kids. As for the blower, it uses a 12V AC motor fan to avoid any dead air spots in the middle of the table.
Setup is a breeze with this mini table, since you only need to attach the goal scorers and the short rubber legs at the bottom. While the scoring system is a manual sliding type, the numbers are still easy to read and the slider is less likely to slip compared to abacus-type scorers.
Another plus that I like about this mini air hockey table is that the legs won’t scuff your table or flooring. All the corners of this table are also smooth and curved to prevent accidents with the kids. Since the height of the table (without the legs) is not too tall, it will less likely make it awkward for the kids to reach and play on the surface.
Things I Like About This Product: The sliding scorers tend to be more secure than abacus-type scorers seen in most air hockey tables.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying This Product: The goals could be designed better since there are no pre-drilled holes to keep them secure.
Best Choice Products 40-Inch Air Hockey Arcade Table
If you want something for your game room with a wood-like finish, the Best Choice Products 40-Inch Air Hockey Arcade Table may be the mini air hockey table for you. As compared to the miniature air hockey table mentioned above, this one has a thicker platform with an 8.5-inch height and a width of 20 inches.
Nonetheless, it weighs only sixteen pounds so it’s still not too heavy to lift and take to another room or to a friend’s house. If you ever lose or misplace the pucks and pushers, you can just grab a puck that has a 2.25-inch diameter or a striker that measures two inches.
Powered by a 100V fan motor for a smooth play, the set comes with two red pushers and pucks that are ready to be used. Just like the table mentioned above, this one also uses a sliding scorer although the design is a little simpler.
Although the design isn’t exactly wood (it’s medium-density fibreboard), it makes the table more lightweight than an average-sized one. Just make sure that kids keep drinks away from the table since the MDF is more prone to water stains compared to pure plastic material.
Things I Like About This Product: The manual scorer doesn’t easily budge while the MDF makes it lightweight, yet attractive for display (complementing most home décor).
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying This Product: There could be slight chipping in some spots but you can easily repaint it when possible.
FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game
For those who want a small air hockey table that doesn’t have bottom legs (especially for tabletop use), you will like the FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game. What I like about this small air hockey setup is that the two pucks and pushers both glow in the dark – perfect for kids when they play at night during sleepovers or while camping outdoors.
As with the previous pick I mentioned above, the sides are also made with a wood-like to finish to easily complement most home furniture. The very small dimensions of 21 1/4 x 12 x 3 1/2 inches with a weight of only 5 pounds makes it ideal for younger kids – ideal for a practice table for them.
Similar to my picks above, the scoring system is also sliding but I like that the numbers are just slightly printed better so kids can easily read them. The surface is made of PVC material so that also lessens the weight of the mini air hockey table despite the bulky, thick look.
Things I Like About This Product: It has a glow-in-the-dark set of pucks and pushers – great for camping and nighttime play.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying This Product: It might be too small for the older kids as compared to larger-sized mini air hockey tables (which are usually 40 inches long) so there’s a bigger possibility of pucks flying out. Having no legs could also make it a little difficult to use on the floor.
ZENY 40-Inch Tabletop Air Hockey Table for Kids & Adults
Also sporting medium-density fibreboard sides with a wood finish and a PVC surface is the ZENY 40-Inch Tabletop Air Hockey Table for Kids, which comes with two red pucks and pushers. Unlike the yellow-colored ones, red is not only a standard color but it also makes it easy to see against the playing field. The width is at 19.9 inches, supported by a curved design on all sides to ensure safety during rough play.
Bearing a 12V fan motor and plastic legs that are designed to not cause markings on the floor. The slider on the scoring area is colored red to make it easier to identify it during matches (unlike black ones). The included legs measure around six to seven inches so they can be situated on the floor but you can also remove them for tabletop use.
Things I Like About This Product: The score numbers are easier to identify due to the large font while the slider is also colored differently (red) from the black platform to avoid confusion.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying This Product: The fan motor doesn’t have an on/off function although you can just plug and unplug it easily. Although the fan can be a bit noisy at times, it won’t affect the overall power of the blower motor during play.
Hathaway Rapid Fire 42-Inch Air Hockey Multi-Game Table
For kids who also like different games other than air hockey in the comfort of their home, the Hathaway Rapid Fire Air Hockey Multi-Game Table could be converted into a goal for life-size soccer and hockey. This 3-in-1 table only requires the use of the hook-and-loop system to convert it to different games.
But as for the air hockey game, this one has two pucks and pushers, and the scorers are in dial-form, which makes it uniquely designed from the rest. When you put it together, the whole table measures 42 x 20 x 28 inches while the playing surface is at 41.3 x 19.4 inches with a 5/8-inch thickness.
What I like in this table is that its L-shaped legs have cross-support bracing for added stability, while the leg levelers allow it to be playable on any surface. Its blower is a 110V UL-approved motor, while some of the other electronic functions only require two-AAA batteries to run.
For the other games, it comes with a reversible goal for soccer and hockey, as well as a 4-inch rubber soccer-style ball, two hockey sticks, and two hockey balls. The net is also made with rip-resistant nylon for extra resilience.
Things I Like About This Product: It can be converted into hockey and soccer aside from air hockey, making it a space-saving multi-game table.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Buying This Product: The assembly can be a bit tricky since it is a multi-game setup.
The Methodology: What I Considered When Picking the Mini Air Hockey Tables Featured Above
To choose a good mini air hockey table, I kept in mind the following pointers in making my decision (and you should too!):
The typical size of a mini air hockey table is about 40 inches – usually half the size of a standard seven foot air hockey table for adults or arcade use. The width and height can differ between manufacturers and models but in most cases, tables that have a shorter height are best for tabletop use while those with taller heights might work well on the floor.
Before buying, consider the space around your room to see if the mini air hockey setup can fit just fine. Also, bigger sizes might appeal more to older kids since a smaller surface could result in more pucks flying out due to their stronger force.
Pucks and Pushers
The typical size of a puck is about 2.25 inches while most pushers are about two inches in diameter. The popular color for them is red, to make it easy to see against a white background of the playing surface. They should be easy to lift and move, especially if kids will be using the mini air hockey table.
Some pucks and pushers also have a unique design, such as with the FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game, in which they glow in the dark and can be easily seen even during night camping or sleepovers. They can add a fun factor for your kids when they learn to play air hockey at home.
Kids are most likely the ones to be playing with these mini air hockey tables, so all the corners of the table should be smooth. Having sharp edges could cause potential injuries (let’s hope not) and other mishaps.
Purchasing a table with a safe design means you can rest assured that your little ones can enjoy playing mini air hockey on their table without harm. Not to mention, aside from safety, curved air hockey edges help in its visual design that can complement most modern or minimalist homes.
The typical scoring system of a mini air hockey table is manual as opposed to electronic scoring that is commonly seen in bigger full-sized tables found in arcades. The usual way of scoring in such tables is by using a slider, in which the player slides to the number of their current score.
Others, such as the Hathaway Rapid Fire Air Hockey Multi-Game Table, have a dial-style scorer, which can be okay at first but can still be prone to accidental nudging. I think that for scoring the best method is to use a slider system. Compared to abacus-style ones that other air hockey tables have, sliders can be fixed and are less likely to move if bumped during games.
When putting together a mini air hockey table, it’s usually simpler than with a regular-sized one. For instance, you only need to attach the legs and plug in the motor for the blower fan and it’s ready to go! In some cases, you may also need to attach the scorer but that depends on the manufacturer’s construction and design.
However, the assembly could also depend on where you intend to place the air hockey table. For example, if you intend to use it for a tabletop setup, you probably don’t need the legs unless the height of the main table is too short for your table or flat surface. On the other hand, for setting it up on the floor, putting on the legs is mostly crucial to elevate the height.
The legs of the mini air hockey table are usually either medium-density fibreboard (MDF) or plastic material to keep them lightweight. These small tables need to be as portable as possible but the leg construction should be wide enough so that it keeps the whole game area stable.
Another important factor about table legs is that they shouldn’t cause markings on the floor (or tables) when you set them up, which can be annoying to fix for most people. Some cheaper air hockey tables have poorly painted table legs that are likely to stain and ruin your flooring. Fortunately, all of my picks above avoid these – the legs were manufactured neatly.
Some mini air hockey tables such as the Hathaway Rapid Fire Air Hockey Multi-Game Table also have individual leg levelers (but not all mini air hockey tables do). Leg levelers can be useful when you have uneven flooring indoors (or even outdoors).
Surface Material and Construction
The usual surface material of a mini air hockey table is PVC. After all, PVC is lightweight and low-cost, so it also helps the mini air hockey become more portable than its regular-sized counterparts. As long as it is kept smooth with constant cleaning and the motor for the fan works evenly, the surface can work efficiently.
The problem with cheaper air hockey tables is that some of them don’t have a well-calibrated surface, making it uneven and prone to dead air spots. Even with leg levelers at the bottom, having a straight and smooth surface makes every game a fair play.
MDF is a common material on the side of mini air hockey tables because it makes the whole table lightweight and portable. The design also mimics full-sized air hockey tables that are made of wood, so you can get a small table that still looks stylish and elegant in your home.
However, keep in mind that MDF and water don’t mix– remind your kids to keep their drinks away from the table since it can damage the MDF and ruin the finish altogether. Regardless, MDF is fairly decent in terms of durability as a material for air hockey tables.
Even mini air hockey tables need a good blower motor so that the puck glides smoothly. It should blow the air from all sides and evenly and a UL-rated motor is a plus for safety.
When someone scores a goal, it goes into the puck return. However, not all puck returns are designed the same – some are a bit difficult to reach while others can have attachment issues. There can also be problems with some air hockey tables not returning the pucks properly or jamming, but it won’t likely happen if you choose the right sized puck for it.
Portability and Weight
Compared to a regular table, mini air hockey setups can weigh as little as five pounds while most weigh around fifteen pounds, especially those that measure 40 inches in length. The reason why they need to be lighter is that they are mostly meant for tabletop setups (without legs).
If you intend to have a mini air hockey table for travel or camping use, you should pick one that has a lighter weight (but not to the point where it feels flimsy and unstable). Most of the tables I chose above come with detachable legs so you can pack them up easily when going out.
Some parents want to make the most out of every inch of their indoor space and air hockey tables such as the Hathaway Rapid Fire Air Hockey Multi-Game Table might work if you want a 3-in-1 setup of air hockey and other games due to its convertible mini-goal system (and free playing equipment for kids).
Aside from detachable legs, mini air hockey tables on the market may also have some extra features that will get kids interested in playing it. For instance, the FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game, which also has a set of glow-in-the-dark pucks and pushers, may appeal to children who want to play at night or want a unique air hockey set in their house (or outdoor camp).
Alternatively, there’s also the Hathaway Multi-Game Table if you want to have different other games in just one table setup. Your kids can enjoy soccer and hockey as well other than the air hockey table on the top.
If you intend to use the mini air hockey indoors, it can either have legs or not depending on where you want to place it (as I mentioned above). Table legs are more suitable for game placement on the floor. Of course, you can still leave the legs on when placing it on a table if you want more height.
For camping, removable legs are also a great plus point, as well as leg levelers to keep the game fair on uneven terrain. As I mentioned above, the glow-in-the-dark pucks and pushers of the FineLife Products Air Hockey Game are especially appealing to campers.
Younger children, around three to five years old, might not have a lot of power for pushing the puck yet, so even a 20-inch-long air hockey table such as the FineLife Air Hockey Game can be just fine for them. After all, smaller tables like that may cause more pucks to fly if played by the older kids.
If you’re looking for a mini air hockey table with just the right height for most kids, I suggest the Lanos 40-Inch Electronic Air Hockey Game. For those who want multiple games in one setup, an air hockey table to try is the Hathaway Rapid Fire Air Hockey Multi-Game Table.
However, if you prefer a wood-like finish for the design, you might like the Best Choice Products 40-Inch Air Hockey Arcade Table, ZENY 40-in Tabletop Air Hockey Table for Kids, or the FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game, which also has a set of glow-in-the-dark pucks and pushers for night games.
Additionally, I’d also suggest the FineLife Products Tabletop Glow Air Hockey Game if you want a camping companion for your kids. This table setup is not only small and portable but can also be used even in the dark.