Winterizing Your Swing Set
It’s been a summer full of fun, laughter, and memories made on the backyard swing set. Your kids have enjoyed it, and you’ve cherished those memories.
But as the season begins to change and cooler weather starts sweeping in, it’s time to start thinking about prepping your Backyard Discovery swing set for winter. After all, you want many summers of memories for you and the kids, which means having a swing set that will withstand the elements and last for years.
Following these four steps will help ensure your swing set is ready for the cold season and will be in prime playing condition again come spring:
1. Remove Plastic Components
Before the first freeze of the season, remove plastic swing seats and other items as indicated by the manufacturer. This includes gliders, trapeze bars, telescopes, and any other plastic accessories.
Plastic exposed to below-freezing temperatures or snow is at risk of cracking or warping. Make sure you store these accessories in an area where they’ll be safe from winter conditions.
2. Do a Thorough Inspection
Check your swing set for any loose hardware, damage, or other problems. With all the wear and tear that comes with a summer full of kids playing, there’s a chance something may need your attention. Make sure all hardware is tightened and anchors are still in place. It’s also a good idea to check all movable parts for wear, rust, or deterioration.
Doing this inspection before it gets cold or starts snowing is critical, as winter elements may turn a minor issue into a major one later.
3. Clean the Area Around and Underneath
With the changing of the season comes a lot of debris: leaves, sticks, pinecones, and more. Make sure you’re keeping this debris out of the play area by raking consistently. Leaving it adds unwanted moisture and could also create mildew.
In addition to keeping debris out, raking the loose-fill material under the set is also necessary. Cold temperatures cause this material to compact, which could lead to it hardening and becoming unsafe next season. Raking this material helps loosen it and lets you know if it has maintained its appropriate depth. If you have a material that is decomposable, such as mulch or chips, you may have to replace it.
4. Seal the Wood
During dry seasons, wood may become splintered. You’ll want to inspect the wood carefully and sand any parts that have splintered or become rough. Once you’ve done that, make sure you apply a protective sealant to the wood.
Failing to seal your wood before winter could result in the wood splitting or cracking when temperatures drop or snow builds up. Improper maintenance, including not sealing the wood, could also result in your warranty being voided, depending on the manufacturer.
Prep Your Set for Winter So the Kids Can Enjoy It In the Spring
Winterizing your swing set certainly isn’t the fun part, but proper preparation and maintenance before the cold months are essential to extending the life of the set and its accessories.
Removing and storing plastic parts, inspecting the set for hardware issues, maintaining the area underneath, and sealing the wood are all necessary steps to making sure your Backyard Discovery swing set survives the winter. If you take those simple actions, you can ensure your kids enjoy it for many years to come without the need for constant repairs and replacements.