Children playing happily on the Shooting Star wooden playset

The Savvy Parent’s Playset Buying Guide

With fewer options for play beyond your backyard these days, kids need a fun place right at home that’s just for them. A backyard playset will allow your kids or grandkids to expend their energy, have fun, and develop important physical and social skills while they’re at it. Our Backyard Escapes playset buying guide is here to make purchasing that high-quality swing set structure easy.

Read on to discover the most significant things you should consider when shopping for a new backyard playset, and discover why Backyard Escapes should be your first—and only—stop when buying a swing set structure!

What are the Most Important Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Playset?

Three of the biggest points you should think about when purchasing a backyard playset have to do with how your kids will use and experience this play equipment. Whether you plan on buying a relatively simple swing set, or you’re investing in a top-of-the-line play structure with every possible option included—from monkey bars to multiple slides and a playhouse—you need to think about safety, build quality, and the age groups who will play on it.

Safety

With all types of swing sets, playsets, and other outdoor play equipment for kids, safety should always be your number one concern.

Choosing playsets made from only the best materials—like the premium vinyl and #1-grade Wolmanized wood offerings we sell here at Backyard Escapes—will ensure a play environment that presents a minimum amount of safety hazards. And, you can choose to have our delivery and assembly professionals install your backyard playset with proper anchoring techniques, only the safest hardware options, and secure placement considerations.

If you’re comfortable with the DIY installation of your kids’ new play equipment, that’s perfectly fine, too. Just be sure you’re thinking about all the possible safety concerns that come with installing a playset in your backyard by reviewing the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s free handbook about backyard playset safety.

Durability

As mentioned, we offer both wooden and vinyl playsets here at Backyard Escapes. Both material options are incredibly durable and built to last by Amish craftsmen who take great pride in their work. While you can find lower-priced options in toy stores or the big-box home improvement retailers, those types of swing sets are not nearly as sturdy.

Unfortunately, because those “other” swing set options are made with cheap materials and hardware, they are often much less safe, as well. Think splinters from low quality wood, pinched fingers from bad S-hooks, bolts, and fasteners, or worse injuries that require a trip to urgent care. If you played on a toy store swing set as a child in your backyard, you probably know what we’re talking about! Your kids deserve better.

Additionally, our highest quality swing set structures will require less playset maintenance over time from you, the parent, or grandparent—because you also deserve better!

So, how do you choose between a vinyl playset and our premium wooden playset options? Much of the choice today comes down to aesthetics and what you prefer to see in your backyard. However, there are some unique advantages and product factors to consider for each type.

Wooden Playsets

  • Price points for wooden playsets often start lower than for vinyl options.
  • Wooden playsets tend to be heavier than vinyl playsets, which can present setup challenges if you’re planning to install the playset yourself.
  • Because they are more substantial, wooden playsets may be more appropriate for larger numbers of children or older, bigger kids.

Vinyl Playsets

  • Vinyl playsets are incredibly low maintenance and never need to be sanded or painted.
  • Available in a wide variety of colors, vinyl types of swing sets appeal to many homeowners because they can be made to blend in or stand out in the landscape, as preferred.
  • Depending on the features included, vinyl playsets may be a bit easier for owners to install themselves.

Age-Appropriateness

When you’re purchasing playsets for kids, you likely want to ensure that they will get years of use out of the equipment. However, if your children are very young now, you don’t want to buy a playset that they won’t be able to enjoy until they’re larger.

Luckily, when you purchase your playset from Backyard Escapes, we can help you customize with a wide range of features that can grow with your child. And, weight limits are never an issue with our durable wood and vinyl playsets either. Even many adults can swing or climb on our equipment with their kids without having to worry about damaging the playset.

Additional Points to Consider

Beyond safety, durability, and age-appropriateness, investing in a playset comes with a few additional “practical” things that parents and grandparents need to think about.

Available Space in Your Backyard

According to playground safety experts, your playset needs to have at least a three-foot—and ideally a six-foot—buffer zone around swings. Does your backyard have enough space for such a safe placement? If not, you may want to consider features other than swings.

You will also want to consider placement ahead of time relative to visibility from your home, mowing around the playset, and its proximity to large trees. Overhanging limbs can pose safety hazards for swinging and sliding, not to mention that they may fall and damage your playset in high winds/storms. And many parents appreciate being able to see the playset from inside the house to make sure everyone using it stays safe at all times.

Your Budget

While you’re probably already quite conscious of how much you’re willing to spend on a backyard playset, know that purchasing from a reputable playset dealer like Backyard Unlimited has advantages here.

You can often get more for your money than buying a swing set from a traditional retailer since we offer many purchasing options to fit nearly any family’s budget. Our rent-to-own and financing options are here to help you buy the playsets—and other backyard structures—you’ve always dreamed of!

Ready to Shop Backyard Playsets and Swing Sets? See Backyard Escapes First!

When you’re ready to turn your backyard into a playground for your kids or grandkids, it’s time to shop with us at Backyard Escapes. Check out our backyard playset selection right here on our website, or visit our outdoor showcase just off Ocean Highway in Pocomoke City, MD!

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