Find the Best Backyard Swing and Playset Companies
Compare Reviews for Top Backyard Swing and Playset Companies
|Backyard Discovery||Read 24 Reviews|
Backyard Discovery has been manufacturing wooden playsets for over 30 years and is part of the largest swingset company in the United States. It is headquartered in Pittsburg, Kansas and distributes its products worldwide.
|Eastern Jungle Gym||Read 12 Reviews|
Eastern Jungle Gym got its start in 1992 and is located in Carmel, New York. It designs, manufactures and distributes wooden swingsets across the globe. Today, their swingsets are sold in stores and on their e-commerce site.
|Adventure World Playsets||Read Author Review|
Adventure World Playsets is located in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and makes durable vinyl swing and playsets that can be customized into over 100 combinations. Its use of vinyl is said to provide a maintenance free product.
|Big Backyard||Read Author Review|
Big Backyard is a brand of playsets that is owned by Solowave Design. It designs and manufactures playsets and play structures for delivery around the world. Big Backyard has distribution facilities in New York and California.
|CedarWorks||Read Author Review|
CedarWorks is located in Rockport, Maine and designs and manufactures splinter-free outdoor swingsets, playhouses and backyard toys. They also produce indoor kits and indoor playsets and toys.
|Champ Craft Play Sets||Read Author Review|
Champ Craft Play Sets is located in Ohio and produces Amish-made wooden swing and playsets crafted out of resurfaced, pressure treated pine. Consumers can enjoy free shipping on all residential swing sets in the lower 48 states.
|Gorilla Playsets||Read Author Review|
Gorilla Playsets is located in Canton, Georgia and has been making ready-to-assemble playsets since 1992. It focuses on providing quality wood components, durable playset accessories and easy-to-understand instructions.
|Lifetime Playsets||Read Author Review|
Founded in 1986 and headquartered in Clearfield, Utah, Lifetime manufactures outdoor products from fabricated steel and blow-molded plastic. It acquired Dragonfly Innovation Corp. in 2010 to expand its product line.
|Rainbow Play Systems||Read Author Review|
Rainbow Play Systems, Inc. offers over 100 cedar models and over 150 wooden playset options and accessories to allow consumers to create a swing or playset that fits their family. It has over 200,000 locations worldwide.
|Swing-N-Slide||Read Author Review|
Swing-N-Slide was established in 1985 and is one of the leading consumer playground equipment companies in the United States. It manufactures do-it-yourself playsets and distributes them to playset retailers across the nation.
Backyard swing and playset features
How are most backyard swing and playsets designed?
Swing and playsets can be pre-built or custom built for your backyard or play area. Most companies offer many pre-built playset models to choose from based on three common design plans.
- Angled-base: Angled-base playsets are designed to be sturdy, height-adjustable and create the most deck space, both above and below a clubhouse. They are popular for their ample space beneath the clubhouse portion of the playset, which allows you to create more play space by hanging a tire swing or putting in a picnic table. You can also customize the sloped sides with rock walls, rope walls or ladders.
- Adjustable-base: Adjustable-base playsets are optimized for backyards that are uneven or sloped. Each base-post is adjustable to fit the terrain of your backyard so you don’t have to re-landscape your yard to make a flat, even surface.
- Multi-level: Multi-level playset designs combine different designs into one swing and playset. They have two or more features at different heights that are typically connected by features such as a slide, bridge or ladder. Multi-level designs give kids more space to customize and play.
What are backyard swing and playsets made of?
One of the most important things to consider before purchasing a swing or playset is the material it is made of. Most swing and playsets are constructed using vinyl, wood or metal. Green or yellow are commonly the primary paint colors for features because they stay cooler than other colors.
- Wood: The most common types of wood used for swing and playset construction is treated cedar or redwood, and occasionally pine. You will most likely see cedar playsets because it is naturally resistant to rot and insects.
- Vinyl: Vinyl swing and playsets require the least amount of ongoing maintenance, as well as great durability and longevity. Vinyl playset construction consists of placing treated wooden components into thick vinyl posts. Considered a premium material, vinyl is the most expensive material used in playset construction, which is reflected in the price.
- Metal: Although they are the least expensive, metal swing and playsets take the most installation work, from digging holes for the base-posts to pouring concrete to anchor the structure. Metal playsets are also at high risk for rust and corrosion from the elements, even though some may be treated to help slow the corrosion process.
What additional features can come with backyard swing and playsets?
Each swing and playset is designed with one or multiple features to enhance kids’ experience while playing. Many companies offer large selections of pre-built designs that include multiple features made for that specific design. You can also find companies that have highly customizable designs, allowing you to change features as kids grow.
- Slides: Slides can either be open or closed and are built-in multiple styles that give kids different paths out of the playset. Be mindful of the material of the slide and try to avoid fiberglass, which can wear over time, loosening the fibers.
- Swings: Different playset designs can accommodate a different number of swings, but most can be outfitted with traditional, individual swings, tire swings or bench swings.
- Clubhouses: Clubhouses can stand alone as their own playset or be attached to a swing or playset on various levels above the ground. They can be outfitted with things like locking doors and doorbells, flower boxes, tables and canopies.
- Walls: Popular alternatives to ladders are various types of walls that lead up to the playset’s clubhouse. Rock walls, rope-ladder walls and solid walls with a single rope hanging down for climbing are common wall styles.
- Bridges: Bridges are often used to connect multi-level playsets and can come as a solid floor, rope or clatter bridge design, which is made up of plastic moving pieces to form the bridge floor.
How can backyard swing and playsets be customized?
Swing and playset accessories are designed to enhance your child’s imagination by creating a theme for them to imagine playing in a different setting. Hardware accessories can help attach additional swings or features to your playset, making them safer and longer lasting.
- Miscellaneous accessories: Accessories help children use their imagination to transform their playset into different objects. By adding things like a ship's wheel, telescope and a pirate flag, a child can pretend to be on a pirate ship. Additionally, children can add things like plastic or wooden telephones, flowers and shutters to their playsets.
- Parts and hardware: Parts and hardware can be added or replaced to maintain your playset and keep it safe. Things like adding additional handrails, replacing ropes and handles and replacing brackets can all help keep your playset in safe, working order.
- Swing accessories: Swing accessories help keep your swingset relevant as your child grows. From full-buckets swings for infants to regular sling swings for children and everything in between, swings can be customized and interchanged fairly easily.
Do backyard swing and playsets come with warranties and safety features?
As is the case with most expensive purchases, warranties are important to consider when looking at swing and playsets. While the length of warranties can vary depending on the company, you should make sure the type covers the components, parts and equipment.
- Components: Make sure the components of your playset come with a warranty that includes the material of the components. A wooden playset, for example, should have a warranty protecting all wooden components from rot, decay, insect infestation and structural failure.
- Parts: Most companies offer an additional warranty that covers defective parts and poor workmanship. These typically come with a shorter time frame than the company’s components warranty.
- Safety: Almost all swing and playset companies use multiple safety testing standards and are approved by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Ask about the company’s testing process and the safety features used to meet playground safety standards.
How are backyard swing and playsets priced?
The total price of a swing or playset is determined by multiple factors, including materials, features, size and the number of accessories. Additionally, companies can tack on delivery and installation fees if you do not want to assemble the playset yourself.
- Size/series: Companies typically design multiple models of swing and playsets that vary in size and are grouped into series. Each model in a series shares a similar style and price because they are relatively the same size. It is a good idea to check out all series when comparing prices so you can see what you get for each one.
- Material: The material used in the components of a playset carries is a major factor in the final price. The most expensive material is vinyl due to its low maintenance and durability, followed by rot-resistant wooden and metal playsets.
- Delivery/install fees: It is important to look for additional fees like delivery and installation charges. Many swing and playsets come with instructions and can be assembled yourself. However, some companies offer to install them for you for an additional fee.
What are the different types of backyard swing and playsets?
Classic A-frame swingsets
Classic A-frame swing and playsets typically use a cross beam called a swing beam where the swinging accessory is hung. The swing beam is held up by two A-frame posts on either side, about 8-12 feet wide. Classic A-frame sets can hold bench swings, tire swings and traditional, individual swings.
Some swing and playsets are made with adjustable bases that can be moved up and down to fit uneven terrain. This is a popular feature because it saves homeowners from having to re-landscape their yard. Adjustable-base playsets can accommodate things like sandboxes and picnic tables underneath the clubhouse portion of the playset.
Angle-based swing and playsets provide a sturdy base using a wide-stance design. Angled-base playsets are popular with people wanting a tire swing because they can be installed underneath, leaving plenty of room to swing without taking up and more property. The angled walls are great for climbing and rope-ladder walls.
Multi-deck swing and playsets combine multiple playset designs into one model. They typically have multiple clubhouses or enclosed rooms connected by stairs, slides or walkways.
Who uses backyard swing and playsets?
Homeowners with children
Backyard swing and playsets are a popular way for homeowners to get children away from mobile devices and get outside to play. With so many features and accessories available, playsets help children use their imagination and creativity while exercising and increasing their independence and self-confidence.
Daycare centers can use swing and playsets with their kids during recreational times of the day. Playsets are a great way to stimulate the creative part of the brain through exercise and imagination.
Churches often run daycare centers or mother's-day-out programs for part of the day during the workweek. Swing and playsets give adults the opportunity to break up the day and let the kids play outside.
wing and playsets are a popular feature for apartment complexes that are trying to create a sense of community among its residents.
New housing developments often put swing and playsets in central locations throughout the community for residents to enjoy.
Backyard swings and playsets FAQ
- Is a wood or metal swingset better?
- There are pros and cons to each material:
- Wooden swingsets are generally more attractive and durable, but they require upkeep and sometimes attract wasps and other insects.
- Metal swingsets are more affordable, but they are also far less customizable than wooden swingsets. Rust can occur if you don’t perform proper maintenance.
- How long do wooden swingsets last?
- With proper care and maintenance, your wooden swingset should last 15 to 20 years, depending on the type of wood and wood treatment you choose.
- Are backyard playsets worth it?
- Whether or not a playset is worth the cost depends on how much you expect your family to enjoy it. Ask yourself:
- How frequently do you think your family may use it?
- Do your children play outside often?
- Do you have regular family or neighborhood gatherings in your yard?
- Are your children young enough to get years of use out of it?
- Do you plan on having more children?
- What do you put under a backyard playset?
- Some of the most common materials include:
- Wood chips
- Rubber mulch
- Rubber mats
- Poured rubber
- Pea gravel
Putting the right material beneath your backyard playset helps prevent injuries and maintain the attractive appearance of your yard.
- Are metal swingsets safe?
- Yes, but check your metal swingset periodically. Metal swingsets can become hot in direct sunlight, and they can form jagged edges or rust without proper maintenance.
To keep your metal swingset safe:
- Check its stability regularly.
- Eliminate any rust or sharp edges.
- Keep water off unfinished metal surfaces.
- Touch the playset before use to make sure it’s not too hot.
- Pad any corners or hard angles.
- Can you put a playset on grass?
- Yes, you can put a playset directly on the grass, but this may result in wear and tear on your lawn. Consider alternative ground coverings as a way to keep your children safe and maintain your yard’s appearance.
- Where should I put my swingset in my yard?
- Place your swingset on a spot in your yard with level ground and no nearby safety concerns, like trees, wires or rocks.
If you have a metal or plastic swingset, be aware of direct sunlight, which may make the swingset too hot to use. Avoid areas with poor drainage, as soft, muddy soil may cause your playset to lean or sag.
- How do you anchor a swingset?
- Most installers use cement or ground anchors to keep swingsets from falling over. Anchoring a swingset is important to keep your children safe and your swingset sturdy.
If you’re not confident handling this project yourself, hire a professional installer or handyman to make sure the job is done correctly.
- How much does it cost to assemble a playset?
- The average cost to install a backyard playset is around $450, not including the cost of the playset itself.
- Is pressure-treated wood safe for a playset?
- New pressure-treated wood is safe for playsets, thanks to a shift to safer chemical preservatives in the lumber industry. These chemicals help protect wood from the elements, making it a popular choice for outdoor playsets.
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Information in this guide is general in nature and is intended for informational purposes only; it is not legal, health, investment or tax advice. ConsumerAffairs.com makes no representation as to the accuracy of the information provided and assumes no liability for any damages or loss arising from its use.