Tips for Wooden Playground Equipment Maintenance.
Outdoor swing sets and any other type of playground need regular maintenance. Doing regular inspections is a good idea if we are trying to ensure the safest play environment for our children.
Now, depending on the material, the maintenance will be different. Wooden swing sets and other types of play equipment like a wooden playset will require special care and regular maintenance to preserve the integrity of the play equipment and also its aesthetics.
Since Spimbey is already at your home, let us keep it that way by being diligent with the maintenance of the playset.
Follow these tips for wooden playground equipment maintenance and keep the fun rolling.
Be mindful of weight recommendations.
One of the easiest ways to ensure a long lifespan for your outdoor playset is to make sure you are following the weight recommendations.
As our kids grow older, they tend to weigh more. After a certain point, using the playground will no longer be safe and can actually cause structural damage.
This also includes the number of children that can use the play equipment at the same time.
What about weathering? Does it affect my playground?
One of the main reasons for weathering is the effects of water (moisture); the moisture content of the wood at the surface is different from the interior of the wood.
As the climate changes, moisture moves in or out of the wood, causing tension which can result in checking and or warping. You can expect the following due to weathering. These changes will not affect the strength of the product:
- Checking is surface cracks in the wood along the grain. The surface and the interior moisture content will vary more widely than in thinner wood.
- Warping results from any distortion (twisting, cupping) from the original plane of the board and often happens from rapid wetting and drying of the wood.
- Fading happens as a natural change in the wood color as it is exposed to sunlight and will turn grey over time.
Staining the wood with a water repellent is the way to go to slow the aging of the wood and prevent moisture. We recommend doing this at least on a yearly basis since sunlight will break down the coating, but depending on the weather conditions of your country or region, you might need to stain and seal the wood on more than one occasion during the year.
This coating decreases the amount of water absorption during rain or snow thus decreasing the tension in the wood.
Most weathering is just the normal result of nature and will not affect safe play and enjoyment for your child. However, keeping the wood stain and seal is the way to go to ensure a long lifespan for your playset.
Other tips to keep the wood looking sharp and the play area safe.
- During the winter months, we recommend removing any detachable parts of the playground. This includes ropes, the chains of the swing set, and other accessories the playset may have.
- To protect the wood from UV rays, you can apply a water-based repellent. This will slow down the aging of the wood and help it keep that natural brownish color.
- Check all protective coverings on bolts, pipes, edges, and corners. Replace if they are loose, cracked, or missing.
- Check for sharp edges or protruding screw threads. Add washers if required.
- Check all wood parts for deterioration, structural damage, and splintering. Sand down splinters and replace deteriorated wood members.
- Rake and check the depth of loose fill protective surfacing materials to prevent compaction and maintain appropriate depth. Replace as necessary.
If you are looking to upgrade the playground experience, make sure to give it a look at our website and see the different looks Fun can have.