Backyard swing sets are a popular way to keep kids amused as well as a great way to get them outside a little more often and lure them out of that video game stupor. And while there are a great many choices available when it comes to backyard swing sets the way you locate and install them is every bit as important, if not more so, than the actual model of backyard swing set you choose.
Locating Backyard Swing Sets – Whether you choose a wooden backyard swing set or a wooden one, a basic model or a more complex one, locating it correctly in you backyard is crucial to the safety of any child who uses it. The ideal location for backyard swing sets is well away from both roads and driveways but still clearly visible from some point inside the house, especially if younger kids will be the primary users. In addition ideally backyard swing sets should be located and installed at least six feet away from the house. This area also needs to be completely clear of “obstacles” or trip hazards, such as tree branches, tree stumps, large rocks or other natural barriers.
In order to be as safe as possible some kind of protective surface should be installed underneath backyard swing sets once they are in place and fully assembled. Good choices for such protective surfacing include wood mulch or chips, engineered wood fiber, shredded rubber mulch, sand, and pea gravel. Another great choice is manufactured rubber tiles, although should you choose the latter option anchoring them in place is essential to avoid slip and fall accidents during playtime.
Backyard Swing Sets – Choosing the Right One – In order to make sure that they are safe any backyard swing sets you consider should be marked as meeting standards set by ASTM-F1148 and detailed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. The vast majority of the backyard swing sets sold by major retailers do meet these rigid standards but if you are buying a used swing set, or one at what seems to be a greatly discounted price you do need to be vigilant in this respect.
Another consideration is that however old the children are that are going to be the primary users of any backyard swing set there should never be too far to fall. Even backyard swing sets designed for the older 6-12 age range should have no drop higher than five to six feet. And for toddlers there should be as little drop as possible.
Backyard Swing Sets – Metal or Wood – These days whether you opt for a wood backyard swing set or a metal one is really a matter of personal preference and budget. Most good quality metal swing sets sold these days are treated to be rust resistant so for the most part that disadvantage is gone. A wood backyard swing set is usually the more expensive option but from a aesthetic standpoint do tend to blend with landscape a little better.