Swing sets are increasingly popular because of the many benefits homeowners can get from that.
Not only are these nice pieces that add aesthetic appeal to the outside of your home, but they can also serve as ways for you to enjoy the outdoors without exerting too much effort.
Simply step out of your door, sit on your swing set, and swing your way whichever way you like.
However, there are already a lot of options for swing set out there now. And many people are having a hard time choosing the right swing set for kids. Hence, the debate between wood vs vinyl swing sets has been raging on for some time.
In this article, we will help you choose which of the two types of swing sets is the ideal choice for you. We are going to weigh out their pros and cons
Choosing Between Wood vs Vinyl Swing Sets
You might have already become parents now, and when you look back to your younger days, you will surely remember those days when you had aluminum swing sets.
Well, those days have long past, and now, aluminum swings aren’t anymore that popular due to many reasons such as its safety, durability, and reliability, especially when placed under varying weather conditions.
Now, a new set of materials have replaced its place. Specifically speaking, there are now the so-called vinyl swing sets and the wooden swing sets. These are also the most popular type of construction material for the swing sets we have today.
Both are ensured to be of utmost quality, and are assured to last for many years. So, which between the two should you choose when you are planning to buy a swing set?
Vinyl Swing Sets
Vinyl swing sets are very popular today. These are made from wood components that have undergone strong pressure treatment which are then inserted directly on the thick posts of PVC vinyl materials.
What is nice about this is that it doesn’t need too much maintenance, instead of course from the fact that you need to clean it annually.
Furthermore, vinyl also means that you can avoid the painting, sealing, and even staining annually of your swing sets because these aren’t anymore needed knowing their composition and material are already tolerant of the varying weather conditions.
You can even choose different color combinations when you are buying a vinyl swing set.
But the catch is that there is very little room for customization of the colors. Note, though, that vinyl is considered as a very premium kind of material, so don’t be surprised by its price.
Wood Swing Sets
Then there are the wooden swing sets which are usually crafted and made from a tree wood called yellow pine. These are very popular especially in outdoor structures in parks and various other amusement constructions.
What’s nice about wood is that it provides the natural vibe and appeal of the much-needed aesthetic features many people want today.
It can also easily blend with your backyard because its wooden texture camouflages with the natural surroundings.
What’s more is that you can stain or paint it once you have already bought it. You can also choose the color of your choice and customize it later on by applying varnish or an additional color coating.
But the catch is that wooden swing sets need more maintenance compared to their vinyl counterparts because they can easily look dull or beaten down.
You need to clean them regularly, make sure that there are no dirt or debris sticking, and make sure that they are dry most of the time so that they won’t rot. You might also need to re-stain or even repaint it later or from time to time.
Speaking of safety, you also need to regularly check the security and solidness of your swing set because they can easily crack or even splinter if left without any maintenance.
You also need to regularly tighten the bolts because they can easily loosen because wood tends to shrink through time. It can also swell because of humidity.
Top Things to Consider When Buying a Swing Set
There are many things you need to consider when buying a swing set, aside from the usual debacle between wood vs vinyl swing sets. The first important consideration you need to make is the location.
Specifically speaking, you need to consider the safety zone. What this means is that you should give children a lot of space to zoom down the swing set, as well as climb the stairway, or swing through the swings.
In simpler words, you need to make sure that there is enough tumble room. This is because if ever they lose their balance or accidentally trip, they don’t have to suffer any major injury or get wounds.
A rule of thumb for this is that there should be at least a six-inch safety zone surrounding the area where the swing set is located. This is enough to make sure that they won’t hit something. If you have more space, then that would be better.
There is also this thing called leveling where you set up the swing set in a level area inside your yard. This is to make sure that the swing set is stable.
If the area is not level or if there is a slight incline, there is a possibility that the swing set, whether it be wood vs vinyl swing sets, would slant and move suddenly. This can then cause further trouble and give safety issues on the users of the swing set.
You also need to consider the features that will be present on the swing set. This is a crucial factor to consider when you are choosing between wood vs vinyl swing sets because it is the one that dictates the value.
Note that each swing set has their own set of features, with most of it being designed to have climbing features like Congo Safari Swing Set.
There are also some that are geared more towards becoming more of like a playhouse or a fort. Choose the reason why you are getting one so you can get the kind of swing set that will suit your needs.
Ask your children what they like so that they can make the most out of it. If they want to climb, then choose one that has a rock climbing feature.
But if they want something where they can play hide and seek or use as a base just like a castle, then choose a swing set that has a fort and playhouse feature.
You can also just take them out and see what they really like so you can make sure that the swing set you are getting has the features they would want to have.
You also need to consider the height when choosing between wood vs vinyl swing sets. This is very important because this is where the safety of your child will depend on.
Always take note that a swing set should not be higher than eight feet from the surface no matter if you have already a big child. Make sure that the swing set has handrails.
These can also come as ladders, hand bars, or ramps. These make the swing set accessible to children of varying ages.
There should also be guard rails if ever you have an elevated space, such as having 30 inches off the ground. Furthermore, there should be a protective barrier on the elevated surfaces if it has a height of more than four feet.
Then there is the element of space. You should make sure that there is a six feet clearance surrounding your swing set.
This is a very important consideration to make if you are choosing between wood vs vinyl swing sets.
What’s nice about this is that it gives kids a lot of space to move around the area without inflicting safety hazards to other children who are also playing around.
Make sure that the size of its openings around the railing slats and ladder rungs are enough to not pose any security risks.
It’s a way to make sure that children won’t get stuck around these openings. Make sure that the openings are either at least three feet or more than nine feet in diameter.
How much is a swing set?
Swing sets vary in price, but this depends on the size, materials used, as well as features and chosen add-ons.
The price of vinyl swings ranges from $2,000 to a massive $25,000 or even sometimes more. Meanwhile, wooden swing sets range from around $1,000 to at most $6,000 or even $10,000.
Concluding all of this, you can see that wood vs vinyl swing sets are increasingly popular these days, and you just have to choose which between the two is your better preference.
Weigh out their pros and cons, features, safety, and respective prices so you can choose the best swing set for your child.