If you recently bought a swing set for your backyard you may be wondering what you should put down under the set to help ensure your child’s safety while playing.
If you have ever gone to different parks around your city you probably have noticed that each one may use slightly different material under the playgrounds.
Some will have a simply mulch or wood chips while others may have more of an expensive flooring like rubber mulch or even rubber flooring.
What Is The Best Material To Put Under a Swing Set?
When it comes to the best material to put under your swing set there are a few things to consider, but keep in mind cement or asphalt should never be used as a landing surface under a playset.
Although swing sets can be super safe, you do have to remember that there still may be falls or accidents while playing which means you want a soft surface that reduces the risk of injury.
Some people simply just have grass under their swing set but there are definitely safer options available than just keeping grass under the set.
Here are a few materials that are recommended for under play sets and swingsets.
- Wood chips
- Bark Mulch
- Rubber mats
- Pea gravel
- Rubber mulch
There are both advantages and disadvantages to each of the materials above.
Pros and Cons of Swing Set Flooring Materials
For example, if you are looking to save some money or you are on a tight budget you may not be able to afford all the rubber mats or rolls you would need to cover the entire fall zone of your swing set.
The same would go for the rubber mulch as both of these can run quite expensive, especially if you have a larger playset.
If you are looking to save some money but you still want a nice safe material for under the swing set you could go with the bark mulch or the wood chips as sometimes you can find local companies that give discounts for buying them in bulk.
If you do plan on using mulch or wood chips, keep in mind that every so often you will have to add more mulch to the playground area. With the rubber mats, they will last longer before you need to replace any of them so once you buy them the continuing cost is not that much.
Any material that you choose will run you at least a few hundred dollars even if you are just doing regular bark mulch. If you choose the rubber mulch it could cost you anywhere from $700 – $1000 depending on how large the set is.
Some people prefer the rubber mats because it can look nicer around the swing set while other people like the natural look of the wood chips or mulch. Also, with mulch you will have to worry about insects as well as weeds that will pop up as well.
Although sand can be a good low cost option as well, it can get rather messy and it will also attract little critters into your yard as well.
Pea gravel look like tiny little stones and although they are softer than soil and cement it does tend to make a harder surface than the rubber or mulch.
Some people prefer the gravel though because it is low maintenance and durable while others don’t like how it gets stuck in your shoes and gets tracked into the house.
As you can see there really is no “best” material to put under your swing set as it all depends on your preference as well as how much money you want to spend.
When determining what you will put under your swingset, you need to realize that with things like mulch and pea gravel you are going to need a thicker layer than with something like the rubber mulch or mats.
Be sure to check out the recommended thickness for each material especially no matter if you have a swing set for older kids or toddlers as the thickness will depend on the material as well as the height of your structure.
Remember that no matter what type of surface you use for under your backyard swing set, not all injuries can be prevented, but you can do your job to greatly lessen the risk that your child will get hurt while playing on the swing set.