If you have kids, it’s a good idea to encourage outdoor play and we have the solution with the best wooden swing sets under $500.
There are a lot of different swing sets on the market today, but which are the best? We’ve reviewed the top-rated swing sets that are priced at $500 below.
When looking for the best wooden swing sets under $500, only buy from a reputable brand. Make sure that it has quality materials with the most durable wood type and has sturdy reinforcements.
Our top recommendations feature quality, durability, and safety as the top priorities because these are the most important factors that make them the best.
Our reviews of the best wooden swing sets under $500 narrowed the selection down to 2 different brands, models, and sizes to give you the options in one convenient place. This saves the time and effort it takes to browse through the hundreds that are out there.
We’ve weeded out the lower quality items to provide the full details with specifications, what makes each product top-rated, the outstanding features, the benefits, and the downsides for each to give you all the specs that you need to make an informed decision.
Table of Contents
Are Wooden Or Metal Swing Sets Better
The question that is most commonly asked is whether a wooden swing set or a metal one is better. Each type has its pros and cons, and while it is a matter of preference, there are some facts that you need to know about each to make up your own mind.
The greatest benefit of a metal swing set is that it is usually less expensive than its wooden counterpart. Metal is easier to maintain, and they require less work after the initial setup.
There are some stability issues that go along with metal swing sets. Most require extra steps to ensure that they don’t tip over and to stabilize them. They are also not as easy to customize as the wooden sets, and they are less durable than properly maintained wooden sets.
After discussing the pros and cons of metal swings, we turn to the wooden type.
How Long Do Wooden Swing Sets Last
Wood swing sets can last for 20 years or more under the right conditions. Although this type is usually more expensive and more time consuming to set up, it is an investment that can last for over two decades, or even up to 40 years in some cases.
This is a lot longer compared to the average of 15 years for the metal type.
The durability of a wooden swing set depends on the type of wood that it is made of, and how well it is protected from the elements. The most common wood types are cedar and redwood.
This is because they naturally resist insect infestation, disease, and rot. This is a natural protection for the wood to prevent deterioration that can happen in the outdoors.
Those made of pine, fir, or spruce are also used by some companies, but they are not as durable, and they require more extensive maintenance.
Pressure-treated and preserved wood also has a long lifespan, but there are drawbacks to this type of wood for kids’ swing sets. The treatment is made of chemicals to preserve the wood.
Children who come into contact when playing may become exposed to potentially harmful preservatives.
How Much Weight Can A Wooden Swing Set Hold
This is an important question to ask about any wooden swing set you’re considering. The weight limits vary from one swing set to another. The average range is between 100 to 200 pounds per swing.
The total weight capacity for the entire set ranges from 600 to 800 pounds, but this is determined by the type of wood that is used, the construction, and the way that reinforcements are designed.
It’s best to check with the manufacturer to determine how much weight each swing will hold individually. It’s best to go with swing sets that are rated to accommodate the maximum weight of the heaviest child or adult that will be using the set to be safe.
Wooden Swing Set Measurements
The measurements of a wooden swing set are important to make sure that it will fit into the area that you have designated and to ensure that it will be large enough for your family.
This is why it’s important to review the specifications including the dimensions of the swing set and each of its components before you make your final decision.
Most of the best wooden swing sets for under $500 have smaller measurements than the more complicated larger versions. At this price range you’re likely to find more simple configurations or basic sets when the quality of the wood is high.
Unless you find a great sale price, expect to find sets that have a couple of swings with limited additional accessories.
If you’re willing to forego some expensive features for a higher number of swings or play accessories, you can find a wooden swing set that has more to offer.
The higher the price, the larger the set is the rule of thumb in general, but there have been some manufacturers who use pressure-treated wood made with non-toxic chemicals.
You can also go with cheaper woods that may not last quite as long, but with a little extra care and maintenance, they can hold up for a few decades. It’s a type of trade-off in most cases.
Wooden Swing Set Maintenance
The amount and type of maintenance that your wooden swing set requires depend upon the type of wood that it’s made of. The wood types that require the least amount of maintenance are cedar and redwood.
These offer the best protection from pests and rot, but there are common maintenance tasks that every wooden swing set needs to stay looking like new
Inspect the swing set regularly. We recommend doing this once a month. Take a close look at the swing chains, any plastic parts, and the small hardware that holds everything in place. Make sure that everything is in perfect working order.
If you see any sharp edges, loose screws, or damage, it’s best to make the repairs immediately so the problems don’t get worse. Make sure all screws, nuts, and bolts are in place and tight.
Look for rough spots, cracks, and splintering. If there are any of these, sand them or repair the cracks immediately. If the set is still under warranty and you notice any dry rot, contact the manufacturer quickly to obtain a replacement board.
How Do You Protect A Wooden Swing Set
Wooden swing sets are subject to the deteriorating effects of the elements. These include harsh UV rays, wind, rain, hail, and snow. One of the most important things that you can do is to stain and seal the wood, regardless of the type that it is.
This helps to provide a waterproof coating that lessens the impacts of weather and it can lengthen the lifespan of the set
Staining and sealing should be done within 60 to 90 days after the construction of the swing set is complete. Some sets are pre-sealed, so this is a step that you won’t need to complete for a year or two.
On average wooden swing sets need to be resealed everyone to two years for maximum protection.
There are two types of products that work well for sealing wooden swing sets. These are oil-based or water based. While one isn’t necessarily better than the other, it’s advised to go with the product that guarantees the waterproofing of the surfaces.
The sealant is only for application to wood surfaces so avoid getting it on plastic, metal, or rubber components.
Top-Rated Wooden Swing Sets Under $500
Wooden Swing Sets are in investment that can last for decades. Your children will enjoy them and so will your grandkids in the years to come. We’ve highlighted the top wooden swing set under $500 for your consideration, along with our choice for runner-up for this distinction.
Ainsley Premium Play Set on Amazon is one of the top-rated best wooden swing sets because it is made by a reputable brand, featuring all cedar wood.
Cedar is one of the most durable types for decades of regular use, even when out in the elements. It’s rare to find such a deluxe playset with such high-quality materials for this low price.
This swing set is perfect for kids age 36 months through 10 years old. It has an upper deck dimension of 49 x 22 inches. The slide is 8 feet long with a super slippery design for sliding ease.
It also comes with a rock-climbing wall ladder, two belt swings, a swing trapeze bar, and a sandbox on the lower deck. It also comes with a colorful green canopy over the upper deck that leads to the slide.
The frame is angled for extra stability. The total assembled size is 10’3″L x 9’W x 7’11″H. It fits into most smaller backyards and it’s an exceptional value for the cost.
What I like:
- Can build a sandbox below upper deck
- Easily assembly
- Perfect for toddlers through elementary school-age kids
What I don’t like:
- Only larger screw holes are pre-drilled. You’ll need to drill additional holes during assembly.
This is easily one of the best values for a cedar wooden swing set under $500. It’s hard to find this quality for such a low price. It’s loaded with useful features so up to 5 kids can play at the same time.
Swing-N-Slide PB 8360 Ranger Wooden Swing Set with Swings on Amazon is one of the top-rated wooden swing sets because it is made by a reputable brand at a budget friendly price. It is made with cedar, which is one of the most durable types for decades of regular use.
This swing set is perfect for kids up through 10 years old. This set features two swing seats and a ring/trapeze combination swing that have pinch free coated chains. Each of the three swings support up to 115 pounds and the chains can be adjusted for variable height.
The frame is angled for extra stability. The total assembled size is 104” x 92” x 82”. It easily fits into most smaller backyards and it’s an exceptional value for the cost.
What I like:
- It’s easy to switch out the accessories such as swings for replacing with other compatible equipment
- This set goes up in just a few hours
- Perfect for toddlers through elementary school-age kids
What I don’t like:
- Will need 2 people to put together
Wooden Swing Set Options
This is a buyer’s guide that lets you know what to look for when buying a wooden swing set. We look at the best brands along with the best quality, affordability, and a selection of the different types of swings that we’ve included in our reviews.
This guide points out the most important things to look for while you’re browsing through the detailed descriptions and specifications and why it’s important.
While each choice is a top-rated wooden swing set, each has its benefits and drawbacks and it is important for you to know what makes it a good value, and if there are any known problems associated with the product.
What Should I Look For When Buying A Wooden Swing Set
Think about how many kids will be using the swing set and how many swings it will need to have to accommodate them all. If you have a family with two or three kids, it’s best to make sure that there is a swing or at least a piece of equipment for each of them.
Consider the configuration of the set. Wooden swing sets come with a lot of different equipment configurations. Some are strictly swings, others have rings, a slide, a teeter-totter, or merry-go-round accessory. Choose the one that has the most useful features that are within your budget.
Think about the total weight that the swing set will need to accommodate. You can do this by calculating the weight of each person that will be using it by the number of accessories that will be used at one time.
Make sure that if you have heavy kids, you have a set that is rated for the total weight and then some. For example, swings on average can accommodate as little as 100 pounds or as much as 200 pounds. It’s also a good idea to make sure that the set is age appropriate.
Best Brand Of Wooden Swing Sets
Wooden swing sets are made by a lot of different brands, but not all of them have a solid reputation for quality and safety. It’s recommended that you do a little research on a brand that you’re not familiar with.
Ainsley is the brand that offers the best wooden swing sets under $500. Few brands can match the price while maintaining this level of quality.
The company uses cedar type wood which is one of the best choices for strength, durability, and resistance to common pests such as termites.
Best Quality Wooden Swing Sets
When looking for the best quality, there are a few things to keep in mind. The type of wood that is used is one of the best indicators of the quality of the swing set. Choose a set that is made of cedar or redwood for the longest life.
If you go with a wooden swing set that is made of fir, pine, or wood that is not either cedar or redwood, it’s important that the wood is pre-treated and sealed. This protects it from deterioration from the elements.
Other materials should also be considered. If there are plastic components, it’s important that they are made of strong and durable plastics that will hold up over time. If there is metal for the chains it should also be weather-resistant, and at a minimum, rust-resistant.
Finally, take a long look at the design. Is this a swing set that is sturdy with reinforcements? Will it hold up under intense play? These are important questions to ask and get the answers before you make your final decision.
Best Affordable Wooden Swing Set
The best affordable wooden swing set is the one that most closely meets your needs. While the price is a consideration, the quality must also be present to make the item worth purchasing. It should be made of sturdy materials that will hold up for more than a few years.
The best affordable swing will have the features that will make it the most enjoyable to use. It should come with enough swings for the number of kids who will be using it, or at least, offer other accessories so everyone gets to play at the same time.
Best Cedar Wood Swing Set
Cedar is one of the most preferred materials for a wood swing set because of its natural resistance to deterioration and damage from pests and disease. It’s also one of the most expensive. You should be prepared to pay more for cedar than most other types.
The best cedar wood swing sets are those that are pre-treated with a sealant to further protect the wood from UV, wind, or rain damage. Each piece of wood in the set is stained and coated with a weatherproof treatment.
You can purchase a cedar wood swing set that isn’t treated, but you must be willing to treat it within 90 days of its set up to keep it protected from damage.
This might mean a little more work, but sometimes, untreated wood swing sets are cheaper than those that have been pre-treated and it could save you some money in the long run.
Best Backyard Wood Swing Sets
The Best backyard wood swing sets are those that meet your requirements for safety and quality. There are a few more considerations to make when you’re deciding which set to choose.
It should be made of quality materials and when set up, the swing set should be stable, so it won’t tip over easily.
Aside from quality and safety features, the set needs to be the right size and configurations to fit in your backyard.
This is why it’s important to check the specifications for the measurements. You will want to plan on at least 6 feet on all sides of the set, so kids are safe from injury if they fall out. You don’t want them to slam into a wall or other object.
A wooden swing set that is going to sit in your back yard should be treated with a coating of weather-resistant protection. Since it’s going to be exposed to the elements, this will help protect it from damage.
Wooden Swing Set With Slide
If you choose to go with a wooden swing set that comes with a slide there are a few things that you need to consider when making your choice. Safety is the biggest concern. In order for a slide to be safe it needs to meet certain standards.
The slide should be made from strong and durable materials. Metal slides should be made of materials that are resistant to rust and corrosion and there should be no sharp edges on the slide.
Another consideration to make is to make sure that the slide is heavy-duty enough to accommodate the maximum weight of the people who will use it. Avoid sets with flimsy materials and poor construction designs.
Pay attention to the design and make sure that it has reinforcements in the right places, so the slide doesn’t buckle or come undone from the rest of the set.
Helpful Tips To Find The Best Wooden Swing Sets Under $500
- Watch for quality in material and go with the most durable wood type
- Inspect the construction for stability and sturdy reinforcements
- Only buy from a reputable brand
When you’re looking for the best wooden swing sets under $500, you have your work cut out for you. This is why we’ve done the research to find the top-rated models and provide our reviews.
Most wooden swing sets are priced well over $1,000 and some even go into the several thousand with less impressive materials than the Ainsley set.
We chose the Ainsley Premium Set because of its size and awesome features as our top recommendation, but the Swing N Slide is just as impressive with a slightly smaller footprint, but all the features to keep kids busy for hours of fun and enjoyment.
When you can find a quality wooden swing set made of cedar for under $500, you’ve found a real deal, and this is why we’re happy to let you know about these treasures we’ve mined.