Owning a house with a small yard doesn’t mean your children have to go to their friends’ homes and play on their swing sets. Your small yard can still be the perfect place for your children to play on their very own swing set.
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All it takes is a little research to find those swing set models that will fit the dimensions of your back yard. This article will help cut your research time down and give you the important facts about finding the right swing set for your little yard.
Plus, it will review what we think are the top 9 smaller swing sets that should be perfect candidates for your and your family. Right now, the only thing you have to do is keep reading.
#1. Evaluating your yard
Before you rush out and buy a swing set, you need to do a little pre-purchase work. You need to measure your yard’s dimensions and look for overhang obstacles that may impact your buying decision.
This information will also help you in placing the swing set in the right location. Keep in mind you will need a safety play zone surrounding the swing set before you can put it in the perfect spot.
#2. What features will you include
This is important information that also has to be decided before you purchase. The more features you add, the larger the swing set or play set will be. The type of questions you should ask are:
Once you decide on the number of features, you need to look at the dimensions of the swing set and compare that with the dimensions of your yard. If you can’t get that safety zone in, then the swing set is too large.
#3. What materials do you want used
There are 3 main materials used to build swing sets.
Plastic- is usually reserved for tots and toddlers. These swing sets are small, easy to maintain and very easy to move. They have a low weight capacity and few designs to choose from
Metal- the traditional construction material that is strong, can have a high weight capacity and can handle more than two children with ease. They also have a very long lifespan.
Wood- there are three different types of wood that can be used for swing sets- pine, cedar and redwood. They each have different capabilities, different ways to preserve them, but they can be customized to fit small yards.
Swing sets are not a set them up and forget them type of toy. Most of them do need regular maintenance to make sure they stay in top shape and extend their lives. Before buying, you have to be decide if you are prepared to do the maintenance required to keep these swing sets in top shape.
One thing about plastic swing sets is that the maintenance on them is almost nil. A light cleaning every so often should do the trick. Metal and wood swing sets need regular maintenance to stop rust, corrosion, rot and other issues that arise over time.
#5. Assembly and the time it takes
The good news is that many swing set manufacturers off to assemble the swing set for you. This option saves you a lot of time and frustration. The bad news is that you may not want to pay the fees that come with assembly your new swing set.
If you are going to assemble the swing set yourself. You will need to factor in your construction abilities, if you need extra hands to help you and the time needed to assemble the swing set.
The smaller the swing set the less time and frustration it will take. You may be good at it all but keep in mind that professional installers have a lot of experience working in small yards and can make sure you get the perfect fit.
This decision will be influenced by your assembly abilities and your budget.
#6. Laying down the right base
This is as important as having the right construction materials for your swing set. The base will protect your children from serious injury and give them a softer place to land. Also, they will help make the swing set area look great.
Two materials you should stay away from are concrete and asphalt. These materials are not conducive to safe swing set play. Accidents can happen quickly so you want to be prepared with the right base material.
Ask your local professionals which kind of base materials are available and which is the best to use. Remember this is an extra cost and the material you use should fit your budget
#7. The moving factor
Many parents are not thinking about this factor at all. They are more focused on making sure their children have fun, get plenty of exercise and do not miss out on childhood activities & memories.
In most cases you are investing a lot of money in your new swing set. The question to ask yourselves is ‘do you want to leave it behind if you have or want to move to a new home?’ The next question will be ‘how much will it cost to move it?’
A move may not be on your mind right now but things have a way of changing and you may need to consider this before you purchase. Or you can put it off til the time comes.
#8. Your budget has a say
This is an important factor as you really shouldn’t overspend to get that swing set. There are a lot of expensive swing sets on the market but that does not mean you need to buy one. Buying what you can afford is the smart way to shop, even with swing sets.
The good aspect is that smaller swing sets for smaller yards do not cost as much as more elaborate swing sets designed for very large yards it shouldn’t take much research to find one that fits both your yard and your budget
Now that you have a good idea on how to choose a good swing set for your small yard. Let’s take a look at the 9 best swing sets on the market today.
Main features: With this swing set from Swing N Slide, you get some great features. First, you get 2 swing seats that will hold up to roughly 115 pounds each. Second, you have a ring and trapeze bar that will add to your children’s excitement as they can do tricks and other stunts. These also hold up to 115 pounds of weight. Third, the swing set meets or exceeds ASTM regulations.
Three kids can play on this swing set at the same time. That means that it has a great weight capacity and should not break while your children are playing on it. Also, the trapeze bar and swings are interchangeable and you can replace the bar with another swing if you want. Click here for latest prices on Amazon >>
Dimensions: when fully assembled the swing set measures 113 L by 96 W by 82 H. When factoring in the mandatory safety zone, you should have enough room for this swing set in your back yard.
Assembly: with pre-drilled holes the assembly time should not take very long. Assembly time will also depend on your mechanical and construction skills. This swing set is designed to prevent splinters, require little maintenance. Ground anchors are included with your purchase and help secure the swing set.
Warranty: a 5 year warranty comes with this swing set.
What we liked:
Main features: This swing set is designed to give your children a lot of fun. Not only do you get 3 swing seats, you get a trapeze bar combined with rings for extra fun. On top of that, you also have a set of monkey bars and a slide. The variety of features on this swing set makes it larger than its actual size.
The slide measures in at 9 feet giving your children lots of sliding fun. Your child can have up to 5 friends playing with them on this swing set. The overall weight capacity is 640 pounds. Your children’s friends can be large or small as long as they stay under the weight limit. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: the size comes in at 216 inches L and 167 inches W. This compact size should leave you enough room left over to add in the safety zone.
Assembly: All the boxes are labeled very clearly and the included instructions should not confuse you. Just follow the instructions step by step and the swing set should be erected in no time. It is best that you do not do it alone and enlist the help of one other person. The two of you should assemble this swing set in about 3-6 hours.
Warranty: a 5 year limited warranty is a part of the package
What we liked:
Main features: This all wood swing set comes with a rock climbing ladder and a regular ladder. This A frame set up provides excellent support and stability to the swing set. Plus, you get 2 swing seats and a trapeze bar/ring combo to add to your children’s fun
Plus, there is a sun cover over the top platform where the 8 foot slide hooks to. There are no weight limit numbers listed for this swing set but it is safe to conclude that more than 3 children can play on it at the same time. If you want to add sand to the sandbox area, you would need about 5 cubic feet. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: over all dimensions for this swing set are 196 inches L by 87 inches W and 94 inches H. The slide platform measures 55 by 20 inches in size.
Assembly: this will depend on your age as two young lads can handle the assembly in about 3 hours. The materials should arrive in one small box so be careful when removing the parts. On their website, you can download assembly PDF style instructions or watch their handy video on maintenance and repair.
Warranty: a 5 year warranty covers the wood materials and 1 year on other parts
What we liked:
Main features: This is a swing set for those people who like simple things. There are no bells and whistles on this swing set. Just good old fashioned swings. Two swing seats allow for individual play and one dual swing seat so that two children can have a lot of fun together.
The swing seat can each hold children weighing up to 100 pounds. The good news is that the swing set can handle 4 children at one time. Then the metal A frame is powdered coated to protect the metal parts against rust and corrosion. On top of that the polyethylene plastic seats are coated with UV protection. Ropes not chains hold the swing seats. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: this is a very simply designed swing set. Its overall dimensions measure 126 inches L by 59 inches W and 72 inches H. A very good size for those yards that are not as large as others.
Assembly: Since it is a very simply designed swing set, assembly should not take that long. If you follow all the instructions carefully and all the parts are in the box, plan on a couple of hours only. Three at the most. Ground pegs are included with the swing set.
Warranty: there was no warranty information available. You will have to talk with the seller or the manufacturer to get the warranty details.
What we liked:
Main features: There are numerous features that come with this swing set that will have your children and their friends playing for hours. Up to 10 children at one time can play on the different features.
Dual swings, 2 swing seats rings, slide and a see saw all combine together to create great childhood memories. Plus a teeter totter is attached to the one side to complete the playground package in your back yard. All of the features are attached to a basic powdered coated frame that should last you a long time.
The weight capacity is limited to 105 pounds per seat and the swing set will handle up to 1050 pounds of weight. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: this swing set is a lot longer than most coming in at 216” long and 102” wide. The height of the swing set measures 72”.
Assembly: it is labeled as a quick assembly swing set. By that it means that you should not have a lot of trouble putting it together. Every feature goes in a line so there should be no weird angles to match up and secure.
Warranty: the warranty period is not that long. Even though the powder coated metal frame is durable and strong, you only get about 6months of coverage in total.
What we liked:
Main features: Little kids do not want to be left out of the swing set fun picture. That is why this little swing set is so important. It is made more for little children than bigger ones. Each feature can hold up to 81 pounds, with a maximum of 4 children on it at the same time.
It comes with a tree house lookout spot, 2 swing seats, a rock climbing ladder and a small slide. It is all put together in a compact size to maximize your yard space. A steering wheel accessory is included in the lookout room to add to your child’s fun. It is made for children between the ages of 18 months and 5 years. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: It is a small swing set. Overall it measures 139 inches L by 93 inches W and 81 inches high. These measurements do not include the safe zone that should be around the swing set at all times.
Assembly: It is very lightweight and is easy to assemble. That means that if you have to move, it is easy to take apart and pack with your other household items. Give yourself about 2 to 2 1/2 hours to assemble this swing set properly.
Warranty: The warranty period only lasts for 1 year with this swing set. Just make sure to follow their instructions to keep the warranty valid.
What we liked:
Main features: The first swing set a child owns is probably going to be the one they remember the rest of their lives. This first swing set comes with a metal frame and has several good features to it. First, the high trapeze bar allows your children the freedom he or she needs to make great moves.
Second, the two swing seats are made of light plastic but they can hold 100pounds each. Finally, the slide, gives them something to do when they are bored with the other features. Overall the set can hold up to 400 pounds, 100 pounds for each feature. Then the metal frame comes with foam padded leg bottoms for better safety. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: there should be no problem fitting this swing set in your back yard. It only measures 89 inches L by 89 inches W and 74 inches H. It does meet ASTM regulations which should put your mind at ease.
Assembly: It is a very straightforward swing set to put together. The maximum time you should set aside for assembly is 150 minutes or 2 1/2 hours. The metal parts are all made from weather resistant steel tubing and are powder coated for extra protection
Warranty: this may depend on who you buy this swing set from. Most warranties listed come in at 6 months or 1 year in length.
What we liked:
Main features: A lot of nice features come with this swing set. After you assemble it, you get 2 swing seats, a glider swing seat, an 8’ sldie and a sandbox. But that is not all of the features on this swing set.
In addition you get a built in snack bar with awning, a rock climb ladder, and a covered play fort with a blackboard, There is more than enough features to keep your kids and their friends active for hours.
All of this is placed on a solid 100% cedar frame. Once you set it up, you get a very natural look to your yard that complements your landscaping. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: With all those features you may thing this swing set will take up a lot of space. Its overall measurements are 155 inches L by 153 inches W and 108 inches H.
Assembly: what makes assembly go faster is if all the parts are very clearly marked. This swing set components are marked clearly. But with all the features that need to be attached, you better consider a 10 hour or more assembly time. Even with help, it is going to take a day or two before it is ready for your kids.
Warranty: the wood frame and other wood pa=arts come with a 5 year guarantee. This protects against rot and insect damage and it is a good idea to spray each part with sealant before assembly. A 1 year warranty covers materials and craftsmanship.
What we liked:
Main features: The long swing set adds in to features that attach to its outside frame. First the teeter totter goes on the left of the swing set and second the slide attaches to the right. Inside the metal A frame you will find 3 swing seats and a dual glider swing.
The swing set will hold up to 8 children at one time and each feature can hold 80 pounds except for the dual seats. They should hold 160 pounds. In addition to this, the metal legs are covered with foam padding. This ensures that your children’s play time is safe and well protected. The whole set meets ASTM requirements for safety, etc. Check latest price on Amazon >>
Dimensions: Even though it does not have a lot of features on it, they are spread out and take up a bit of space. The swing set measures 165 inches L by 106 inches W and 76 inches H. Keep in mind you need a 6’ safety zone surrounding the swing set.
Assembly: When you go to assemble this swing set, you will find that an anchor kit is not part of your purchase. You should pick one up on your own. This will extend your assembly time somewhat. A ballpark time frame may be about 3-6 hours before it is ready for your children
Warranty: This swing set doe snot come with a long warranty period. You are looking at only 180 days in total.
What we liked:
We have talked about this before and we need to do it again because safety is such an important issue when it comes to children. Sometimes children forget the lessons they are taught by their parents or those lessons are overshadowed by the fun and excitement they are having.
Here are some safety tips to apply when you get that swing set up in your small yard:
Set ground rules for your kids and their friends
Don’t allow your children to overload a play feature
Keep food and drinks away from the swing sets
Make sure to set up that 6 foot safety zone all around the swing set
Cut down overhanging branches
Don’t place the swing set close to eaves, buildings, sheds or other structures
Keep the swing set away from walls and fences
Lay down a good base so your children are protected when they fall
Do regular maintenance to keep the swing set safe
Make sure the swing set matches the age of your children
Your children may be young, full of energy and seem to be healthy. You may not think of the health benefits they get from playing on a swing set. They get then even when they are using a swing set in a small yard
Here are some of those benefits:
They get to move - swing sets provide hours of ample movement time. All movement is good for them
They develop motor skills - these motor skills will last them the rest of their lives and help them in many different situations
Your kids develop better balance - this is a good thing when they want to do other activities that require good balance
They get plenty of fresh air - this helps clear their minds, boosts their immune systems
Helps fight depression - the more active your children are the happy they will be. They will also have more energy
They sleep better - this is good for their overall health and their brains. They can study better if they sleep well
Parent’s health and well being is enhanced - a well exercised child is easier to put to bed, you can concentrate on other matters instead of trying to find something for your kids to do, and parents can use swings to ease stress
We are not going to tell you which swing set to buy. That would be too presumptuous of us. But we will make a few recommendations to help you in your search for the perfect swing set for your small yard
Talk with your children and see what features interest them. A child won’t play on a swing set that bores them
Look at the age of your children and see where the swing set will be in a few years. Will it be sitting there unused after a couple of years? Are the children too small or two big and so on
Don’t overspend and do not under spend. Being too extravagant or cheap sets bad examples
Don’t be too strict but don’t be too loose in maintaining rules and safety standards. Neither attitude help your children
Have fun with your children. Swing sets can be a great bonding time. Don’t waste it
Getting the right information can spare you a a lot of trouble and frustration. If you follow the wrong advice, you could end up wasting a lot of money. Which swing set works for your friend’s or relatives’ kids may not work for your kids and they may not fit your yard.
Do your own research, evaluate your own yard and make up your own mind. After all it is your money paying for the swing set and your kids playing on it. You want what is right for you and your situation.
The above buyer’s guide should put you on the right path to finding the right swing set that will entertain your children for many years. It is filled with the right information that helps you keep a safe playing area.
Then go through the different swing sets to see what kind of features you want to have, the dimensions that will fit your yard and the materials you want to use. It pays to be safe.
We hope you enjoy the swing set you end of buying and we hope it brings you many years of fun and great memories.