What Types of Swing Sets are there?

When deciding to buy a Swing Set for your child, it can be difficult to make a decision. What is the safest? Where do I buy it? Where do I start? There is not a lot of market education on Swing Sets and that can leave the Buyer vulnerable to making an uninformed decision based off which ever company spent the most advertising dollars.

There are Two Types of Swing Sets, "Boxed" Swing Sets and "Custom" Swing Sets.

"Custom" Swing Set "Boxed" Swing Set

Below I am going to cover the basic differences between "Boxed" Swing Sets and "Custom" Swing Sets.


The "Boxed" Sets cost $500 - $1,750. Installation costs $500 - $1000. The standard "Custom" Sets cost $999 - $9,999. Installation costs $250 - $1500.

The "Boxed" Swing Sets cannot be changed or customized, the "Custom" Swing Set can be Engineered to any Shape, Design, Size, Accessories or Colors you like. Installation is so expensive for the "Boxed" Swing Set because the Set is not "Pre-Assembled". The Wood has no holes, or inaccurate holes for drilling and nothing comes put together. The Custom Swing sets come "Pre-Assembled" with holes for drilling and pieces put together.

"Boxed" Swing Set Installation "Custom" Swing Set Installation

Installation & Safety

The other difference between "Boxed" Sets Installation and "Custom" Sets Installation is Safety. When a "Custom" Set is Pre-Assembled, you know the infrastructure of your Swing Set is made and Assembled by the same Company who builds the unit with the responsibility

& liability of your kids safety in mind. The "Boxed" Swing Set will refuse to offer Installation because it increases their liability. If you are lucky enough where they do offer installation through a third party contractor, you are taking the liability of your child's safety and the company will claim any defect was due to incorrect assembly.

Quality & Safety

The quality of "Boxed" Sets vs "Custom" Sets is in Wood Quality & Thickness, and Hardware Quality. The Biggest difference is that "Custom" Sets typically use Lumber manufactured in America, "Boxed" Sets are always made of Cedar or Poor Quality Lumber made in China.

"Custom" Sets use two types of Lumber. #1 Grade Pine Lumber and #2 Grade Pine Lumber. Both of these are superior to anything made in China or any material "Boxed" Sets use. #1 Grade Lumber is Commercial Grade Wood that is special ordered and can withstand Water, Pressure and Wear and Tear for 10-20 Years without losing Quality. #2 Grade Pine Lumber will last you at least 5 Years but will start to degrade at a quicker rate and cannot handle the same environment as #1 Grade Lumber. You can pick up #2 Grade Lumber at any Home Dept. Store and is a common Residential Grade Wood.

"Boxed" Sets use two types of wood. Higher Quality boxed Sets use "Lumber" from China. Cheap "Boxed" Sets (90% of market) use Cedar made in China. The Lumber made from China will last you a couple years of residential use if the structural beams are 4" thick and under normal conditions. The Cedar from China is dangerous, depending on the rain and how many kids use this set it could break down in less than a year and as quick as 6 months.

Wood Thickness is very important. The Thickness of your Swing Set can determine whether your Swing Set shakes or how durable it is. "Boxed" Swing Sets that use 1 inch thick wood should be illegal. This is putting your kid at severe risk of harm. 2 Inch thick wood is the minimum acceptable thickness to support a swing set. With 2 inch thick wood the Swing Set will shake when pushed and last a decent time if the wood is quality but if the wood is made in China you are still risking safety for cost. Any thing using 4 Inch Structural Beams is putting your Child's safety as the number 1 priority. Depending on the Quality of Wood, you will get a minimum of 5 years of Safe, Sturdy Play with 4 inch Thick Structural Beams and with Quality Wood you can get up to 20 Years or more!

Call us at Playkids today to learn about our Quality of Swing Sets and why we offer a 10 Year Warranty on our entire Swing Set! Your Childs Safety is our #1 Priority!

Happy Holidays!

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