Tools & Know-How/ Safety/ Outdoor Projects/ Lawn & Garden/ Outdoor Structures/ Playground/

How to Check a Child’s Playset for Safety Hazards

You know, outdoor swing sets like these are great places for your kids to enjoy some carefree play, but it doesn't mean that they are free of care. Let me give you some tips on how to keep them safe, starting with the play surface right down here. The whole idea is that this should be soft enough to cushion a fall. This mulch unfortunately has compacted a great deal. Right now, it wouldn't provide much protection. So either add more mulch or my preference is to replace it with pea gravel, which won't compact at all.

Next, take a wrench and check all the nuts and bolts on your outdoor play set, especially wooden structures tend to shrink and these do get loose over time. Check the wood for places that might have gotten dangerous since you put the play set up.
For example, look right here, this used to be a knot. It's popped out, leaving a very sharp point right here. So, take a file and blunt it. Also be on the lookout for splinters like this. Remove them, and sand the area smooth. Just kind of make a walk around the play set, feeling for anything that might be uncomfortable if your child should rub up against it and sand it smooth with sandpaper.

Finally, look for nails that may have popped up since the last time you checked the play set. Protruding nails like this could cause a really nasty cut or worse. Bend them over. So take a couple minutes to check over your child's swing set and make sure they get a safe place to play.

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