5 Key Components Of A Safe Playset

5 Key Components Of A Safe Playset

Dec 6th 2022

Your children's safety is your number one priority - it's the same for every parent. Everyone wants their kids to have the safest food, study at the safest schools, and play in the safest way possible. So how do you do it? What’s the best ways to ensure your kids have the safest, most engaging playset out there? If you are looking to install a playset in your home here are the 5 key questions you need to ask if you want the safest playset possible.

What's the playset made of? 

When thinking about outdoor playsets you’ll find manufacturers who use either metal or wood as the primary material. Each has their own benefits and it’s an important consideration when deciding which set will fit your family. So, should you choose a metal or wooden playset? Wood is usually the go-to option for parents buying a playset for the first time. Wooden playsets have a timeless look and little to no downsides. They last longer than metallic playsets, stay cool during high temperatures (which means kids will be more comfortable playing outside during the summer), and never rust. The best part of choosing wooden playsets is just how long they last. With the proper care and upkeep, you can expect them to last for years all while keeping their original classic look. That’s why we offer a 10-year limited warranty on all wood components so you can feel confident that your set will last from childhood and beyond. At Gorilla Playsets, we pick and choose the finest lumber available. We look for certified forests that are harvested and replanted in a responsible manner to source our material. That way, we provide sustainable playsets that are not only engaging, but also eco-friendly.

How do you install a playset?

When it comes to playgrounds, safety comes first! To follow that rule, you must know how to install a playset properly. A poorly installed playset can cause several issues and safety hazards. All of our playsets come with detailed instructions on assembling and installing everything you'll find inside the box. All lumber is pre-drilled and pre-cut so all you’ll need are basic household tools to make your kid’s playset dream come alive. If you're not sure you can install your playset the right way, you can hire a professional to do it for you. That way, you ensure a picture-perfect playground that's safe and sound for your kids to have fun at home. Plus, it will save plenty of time and effort so you can go from box to built without breaking a sweat! Check our professional installation process to see how we can help.

What surface should a playset be placed on? 

The surface you choose to install your playground on is the foundation of the countless hours of fun your kids will have. That’s why it’s important to look for an appropriate surface to ensure there are no issues down the line. Certain surfaces are not suited for a playground. Examples of improper surfaces for your playset include asphalt and concrete. When a child falls onto either, there's a big chance of an injury. A mid-tier option is grass. It's not the ideal, but way better than the two options already mentioned. What's the problem with grass? It tends to wear and harden as kids play, run, and jump. Because of that, grass starts soft but becomes a hard surface over time. Do you want to know the best surfaces to install a playset on? We recommend wood mulch, rubber mulch, sand, pea gravel, rubber mats, and poured-in-place surfaces. 

Wood Mulch: The second-best option here, wood mulch looks natural and is almost as absorbent as rubber mulch. At the same time, it's more affordable than rubber mulch and is easier to find. Unfortunately, wood mulch tends to spread out over your backyard, so you may have to take care of cleaning up. 

Rubber Mulch: This material is ideal for taller swings. It's the go-to option for shock absorption because it reduces the chance of injury during play. Some will find this material more expensive than other alternatives - but think long-term: rubber mulch requires little to no maintenance and lasts longer than any other option. 

Rubber Mats: This material provides enough shock absorption and traction to reduce risks and injuries during playtime. Unlike poured-in-place surfaces, you can install rubber tiles yourself. At the same time, you can hire someone to do it too. 

Pea Gravel: This material is perfect for gardens, parks, and the like. You probably stepped on it when you were a kid and took a trip to the local swing set in the public park. Pea gravel is soft and offers a nice cushion for kids. Nevertheless, pea gravel is loose-fill material, which can become a potential choking hazard for toddlers. Because of that, it's not an option for parents with very young kids. However, for older kids it’s a great choice! 

Poured-In-Place Surfaces: The name gives it all away. This material is poured into place; after a while, it sets. Because of that, you can have a surface that's customizable, protective, and visually appealing. Then again, you can't roll up your sleeves and fill a hole in your backyard - you have to hire a professional to do the job. That makes it more costly than other options but perfect for those who can afford it. 

Sand: This option is the classic playground surface material. It's affordable like wood mulch is and available everywhere. At the same time, it can spread all over the place as wood mulch does. On the plus side, sand turns everything into a giant sandbox where kids love to play! 

The decision to use a safe material under your swing set is a great one, as it significantly increases the safety level of your kid's play area.

Is my playset age-appropriate for my children? 

Creating an age-appropriate playground is something to have in mind when you're a parent. Most of the time you'll know how to easily accommodate your children: smaller slides or a bucket swing is better than a bench for toddlers. What if you have kids of different ages? As we explain in our FAQ section, you must figure out how to make a safe and appropriate playset for everyone! Installing barriers or gates is a good idea. You can also choose a two-level design, where the lower level is for younger children and the gated upper level is for older kids.

What do you need to be aware of when owning a playset? 

When it comes to playsets it’s usually the smaller details that make all the difference. For example, we've explained the importance of surface materials and playset construction, which is something most parents don't pay attention to. Doing regular maintenance is crucial to having a safe playset for your children. Making sure everything stays in place is the key here. It’s always a good idea check for wear and tear, tighten the loose bolts, repair or remove chipped boards and more. Also, you’ll want to apply a playset sealant after the first ninety days and then again every other year to ensure your set stays at its best. We provide a free playset maintenance list for parents everywhere to make the most out of their playset. Check it out to see if it's time to roll up your sleeves!

Get a safe playset for your children!

As a parent, you might feel like you're never doing enough to provide a safe environment for your children. In this article, we provided a basic list that covers common concerns and pressing issues for playsets. Knowing how to answer these five questions is enough to understand how playsets work and where the sticking points are when installing one. It may seem hard at first, but once you understand the basics creating a super safe, super fun play environment for your kids will be easy! Not only that, but since every set we offer is built with safety in mind you can be sure that when you buy from us, you’re getting nothing but the best. So, search our catalogue of playsets today and discover the outdoor adventure that’s right for your family!