Lifetime 90020 In-Ground Basketball System Review

Last Updated on September 21, 2023 by

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Have you just started playing basketball? Therefore, as a beginner, at first, you need to start learning the basics of basketball. Then why not do it with a budget-friendly lifetime 90020 height adjustable in-ground hoop? Or are you looking for a worthwhile basketball goal to keep your kids busy in the afternoon?

Whether it is for some shooting practice or recreational fun, that does not matter. This is one of the cheapest in-ground hoops going around the world right now.

It comes with a 48” shatterproof fusion backboard with a Makralon playing surface. The shatterproof backboard with a polyethylene frame makes it quite durable. Yes, it shakes a bit when you try to play hard shots. But the amount of movement will be rather insignificant.

Compared to those cheaper flimsy basketball hoops, this one offers more reliability. And the overhang of 22 inches ensures you’ve enough room for under the hoop play. Plus, there will be very little chance of crashing into the goal post and getting injured.

You can easily rearrange the hoop between 7.5 to 10 feet thanks to action grip height adjustment. Powder-coated steel material also offers longevity.
Thus, it makes the hoop all-weather resistant and durable with fade-resistant graphics. Your basketball court will be converted into an NBA arena.

This basketball hoop offers proper value. Considering the low price, customers seem to be impressed with the quality it offers. However, materials used in the backboard might be slightly thin.

Nevertheless, this will work great for kids. At the same time, it is quite sturdy for adults to play.

All the parts basically come in undamaged condition, so no problems there. For protection, the slam-it rim comes with double compression springs, including a pole pad. All the parts are well backed up by a 5-year limited manufacturer warranty for the peace of your mind.

Lifetime 90020 Adjustable In Ground Basketball System
Product Specifications:
  • Backboard dimensions: 48" x 30" x 2"
  • Rim Diameter: 18"
  • Height adjustment: 7.5' to 10'
  • Pole Diameter: 3.5 inch round
  • Hoop weight: 75.6 pounds
  • Net: Nylon
  • Frame Material: Alloy Steel
  • 48” shatterproof fusion backboard with a Makralon playing surface
  • Slam it pro rim with steel braces and double compression springs
  • Fade resistant graphics offer a durable pro-glass look
  • Height can be adjusted from 7.5’ to 10’ in 6” increments with action grip adjustment
  • 3.5” diameter round, powder coated steel system
  • 22” offset from playing surface to the pole
  • 5 year limited manufacturer warranty

Let’s dig deeper into this in-ground basketball system and explore its various features, pros, and cons.

Shatterproof Fusion Backboard

The 48” shatterproof fusion backboard comes with a makralon playing surface. Yes, no doubt it comes at an affordable price. But the quality of the backboard material is the main reason behind the cheap price of the lifetime 90020. It is not as responsive as some of the high-end hoops.

Rather, the backboard does have a bit of a “thud” noise and shake when you attempt a hard long-range shot. But the truth is that any adjustable height backboard with this kind of setup and extension arms shall do the same.

This is by no means a bad quality hoop. But here, you won’t get the same feel of playing on an indoor professional basketball hoop that you would probably get in your local gym.

Kids or starters in this game won’t really understand the difference that much. However, this is where it works great and can be an ideal choice for beginners to get things started in basketball.

Quality Slam it rim

Dreamt of slamming hard on the rim just like the pros do? This 18” lifetime slam pro rim is quite stable and comes with a 5/8 inch ring of the solid steel ring. Plus, there are ½ inch steel braces & double compression rings included.

Now, you can follow the footsteps of your basketball hero without worrying too much about the backboard because this is not going to bend or shatter easily.

And the simple height adjustment mechanism makes it even easier for younger players to lower the hoop and dunk like Michael Jordan.

But one more thing, it will be better if there is no regular hanging on the rim or dunking by an adult.

Easy Adjustment With One Hand

The basketball hoop height adjuster is simple to use. You can adjust the hoop from 7.5’ to 10’ in 6” increments. And this action grip adjustment mechanism offers easy adjustment with only one hand. In addition, the handle provides a nice grip for making adjustments.

It takes no strength at all to rearrange the hoop. Super nice if you’ve small children or older children who use different heights. Kids can always move it up or down as they won’t really face any trouble with it.

And the buyers love the fact that this is adjustable, so the height can be raised as kids get older.

Pole Design Suits the Beginners Best

This shatterproof basketball hoop comes with a slim 3.5-inch diameter steel pole. This is not the thickest of the pole.

Therefore, it won’t be ideal for handling aggressive play and dunking by serious competitive players. Attempting a successful bank shot can become really tricky if the hoop starts to shake.

With all being said, this will fit beginners and kids most compared to the professional-level players. We don’t recommend playing in windy conditions as well.

For younger children, it is quite stable. Furthermore, it can absorb the shock provided by the shots from beginners.

Simple Assembly

Fearing about the fact that you may need to hire professionals to install the hoop? Then what if ease of installation is one of the best attributes of this adjustable outdoor basketball hoop. Nice and simple instructions are easy to read. They’ve given a complete description of each step.

Besides, the lightweight equipment won’t really test your physical ability. You can lift it quite easily and screw in the parts in the right places all by yourself. Big relief for sure?

Rust Resistant

The Powder-coated steel pole provides the best support to combat rust and corrosion. All-weather nylon net further assures you to play the hoop in every season of the year. Therefore, no need to worry about getting it rusted.

Manufacturer Warranty

Given that it comes at a fairly low price, the five-year limited manufacturer warranty seems like a bonus. Of course, now playing the game would be more fun.

Proper value for your bucks

Lifetime 90020 in-ground basketball goal won’t cost you a great deal of money, which is probably why it is hugely popular among customers.

Polycarbonate backboard and thin pole structure might just annoy you a bit, but except for these two things, it is still a great playing hoop for beginners or children. Think about shatter fusion backboard, fade-resistant graphics, sturdy rim, and all-weather nylon net.

Aren’t these factors quite enough to declare it as a wonderful hoop? Next, add one hand action grip adjustment and pad protection on the pole. Now happy?

Good Sides

  • Standard 48” polycarbonate backboard is suitable for dunking by the kids
  • Height adjustability paves the way for everyone to play the game
  • Pole pad and 22” offset reduce chances of accidental injuries when someone runs into the post
  • Powder coated steel pole is highly resistant against rust and corrosion
  • Instruction and assembly both are quite simple
  • Less expensive, yet it’s a quality build and good looking hoop


  • We don’t recommend dunking activities or hanging on the rim by adults.


Q. Does a warranty come with this product?

Ans: Yes, it does. This adjustable basketball hoop in ground comes with a 5-year limited warranty. The warranty covers manufacturing type defects of the products. It makes sure you can play with this hoop for quite a long time.

Q. Can I use this hoop system for pool?

Ans: No, Lifetime products manufacturers haven’t quite designed this system for pool use. However, they do have systems specifically for pools, and you may like this one from Lifetime Lifetime 90742 pool side height adjustable hoop. But It's wise to go through this article, where you will find quality pool basketball hoops

Q. How much cement should I plan on using?

Ans: It certainly depends on the size of hole that you would dig. Approximately, three 60 pound bags shall do the job for you.

Q. What size hole needs to be dug in the ground?

Ans: You shall need to dig a hole that is 21” deep and 18” in diameter. The edge of the hole should be flush with the edges of the playing surface.

Lifetime 90020 vs 71281

Key comparison between Lifetime 71281 and Lifetime 90020 is in the size of the backboard. Lifetime 71281 has a 52 inch backboard whereas 90020 model features a slightly smaller size backboard of 48 inches.

Final Verdict

If you talk about the overall strength of the hoop and robustness of the backboard, you may find it pretty average. But you know what, as one of the most affordable basketball systems, it literally has covered every base.

The backboard is super sleek and fairly sturdy for recreational play. The height adjustability works exactly as it should. It is pretty easy to put together. Buyers seem to be very happy with their purchases. It offers great value.

Kids who would love to shoot a few shots in the basket will be the happiest of all. So if you want to surprise your kid in his birthday with his first ever basketball hoop, this lifetime 90020 will be a smart pick.

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