Buying a swing set guarantees hours of entertainment for your family for years to come. Before you head to the store though, you’ll want to know where you’re going to put this mammoth piece of playground equipment. After all, you don’t want to have to move this baby once it’s been placed!
So where is the best place to put your swing set? Read on to learn all about it.
Putting Your Swing Set in Its Place
There are several factors that will help you determine the most suitable installation area for your swing set. These include:
Remember that your children will probably be spending an awful lot of time on their swings, so you want the playset to be in a convenient location for you and your family. If your kids are big enough to play without constant supervision, you may want the playset in a spot where you can keep an eye on them from the kitchen or living room window. Alternatively, if you need to be out there all the time, installing the wooden swing set in an area where you can sit under the shade will be a smart move. Other factors can include neighbors, distance from the house, and pre-existing structures or elements. Choose a location that works best for your family and situation.
Play sets should be installed far enough away from the house to ensure the safety of the children during play. On the other hand, you want to be able to clearly see the action from your home and have the playground equipment close enough to home so you can reach your children relatively quickly if the need arises suddenly.
Next you’ll want to survey the area for any obstructions. This means anything that can get in the way of your playground equipment, hamper the usage, or damage or deteriorate the playset in any way. Take into consideration fences, trees and shrubs, rock formations, and other naturally occurring conditions that may affect your playtime.
Experts recommend having at least 6 feet of clearance on all sides of the structure and all swing set accessories to ensure optimal safety at all times. This includes allowing height for climbing toys and standing on decks, distance for maneuvering down playground slides, and space to swing far out on kids’ swings. Behind and in front of swings there should be even more room (say 8-12 feet) to allow for people to pass by safely without coming in contact with the swing in motion.
Consider all angles. For example, if there is a tree near the potential installation spot, realize it’s not just a question of trimming tree branches occasionally to ensure they aren’t blocking the arc of the swings. Does this tree have needles that will constantly be littering the area around or on the play structure? Are there large roots that will grow beneath this playground set and destroy the foundation? Will this tree seep sticky sap all around your kids’ swing set? Really take a big picture look before settling on a location.
3. Flat vs. Sloped
If you are having a professional install your play structure (recommended), then this isn’t as essential a factor as the others, but it is still something worth mentioning. It is possible to install a backyard swing set on a hill, but even the professionals will tell you that the flatter the ground, the better the installation.
The more level the ground, the more level the structure. It’s that simple. Of course slopes can and should be leveled out accordingly to provide the safest and sturdiest foundation for your set.
4. Room to Grow
If your family is expanding or you’re hoping to get more than a year or two out of your playground equipment, then consider expansion when choosing a location. If you limit yourself to just the right measurements now, it means you will not have room to add on bigger or better swing set accessories as the kiddies grow. By allowing a little breathing room, you are leaving your options open for future development and more fun.
When planning ahead, be sure not to get a playset that's too large for your children – yes, you want them to enjoy the playset in the future, but you also want them to have fun and stay safe NOW. Get a set too big, and you end up with a hazardous situation.
Ready to pick a swing set? Check out these expert tips on choosing the perfect playset for you and your family: