Kids love playing outdoors once the warmer weather hits. Or, us parents love to send our kids outdoors at the first signs of higher temperatures. Whichever is true in your home, more often than not, the kids will be playing on some kind of wooden playset. Is your backyard playset in good condition? Let’s find out.

Green spring flower

Wooden Playset Maintenance Tips

Winters are brutal. Even if there wasn’t a ton of snow, there are freezing temps and lots of wind, and moisture. All the elements tend to mess with the condition of wooden playsets. It’s important to give yours a once-over before unleashing the children on it.

Inspect, Inspect, Inspect

Don’t just walk around and do a spot-check. Really get in there, and make sure the hinges, screws, bolts and any chains aren’t rusting. If they are, handle it before it gets out of control. Once the rust is handled, be sure nothing is loose. Tighten loose screws and bolts. If there’s any kind of rope, or roof to a playhouse, or slide - make sure nothing is fraying, or cracking. Replace anything with any kind of wear and tear damage. Once the metals and plastics are under control, check the wood structure for splintering. No one of any age wants a splinter. Usually, splinter can be handled with a little sanding. All surfaces should feel smooth when you run your hands along them.

Clean, Clean, Clean

Now that the edges are smooth, and the entire structure is solid, it’s time to clean it. The easiest way to do this? Get a bucket of soapy water, a sponge, and put the kids to work cleaning! I mean, help them if you want to. Or just wait for them to finish, and then blast it with a hose to wash it down. If you have a power washer, and know how to handle the pressure strength, use it to get all the mildew and grime off your wooden swing set. However, if you’re not great at controlling the power washer’s pressure, stick to the soap and water method. A lot of damage is done to wooden structure when a power washer isn’t used properly. Chunks of wood flying off, and wood splintering. However you clean the wooden playset, make sure to let it dry for 24 to 48 hours before moving to the next step of the prepping process.

Apply Sealant

Some years you’ll have to re-stain the playset. It’s really up to you, and how beat up the outdoor set is. What has to be done more frequently is sealing it. Usually, a sealant needs to be applied once a year, sometimes it can go for two years. When you’re inspecting your playset, you’ll have to decide if it’s time for stain, and for sealant.


If you’re taking the swings off of the set after the summer season, and safely storing them from the elements - you’re probably good with your swings. Give them a once-over, just to make sure they’re in good shape and clean. If alls good, securely re-attach them to the swing set. Then let the kids play and swing for hours and hours. Or, if they are like mine, for all of about 20 minutes and then they’re complaining about mosquitoes and allergies.

Hopefully, you found this helpful! And, if you’re entertaining throughout the warmer months, make sure to review your homeowners insurance policy. You never know what can happen when people visit, and you want make sure you’re covered in case of any accidents that may happen on your property. Give us a call to review your homeowners policy, we’re happy to help!

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