Posted on

Buying a Playset for your Backyard? What to Consider

Gorilla Playset

Are you a parent looking for something to keep the kids busy while everyone is at home avoiding groups and gatherings? It is unprecedented times as the country addressees the coronavirus pandemic. Restaurants, bars, business, schools, daycare, malls, theaters, and even public parks and playgrounds are closed until further notice to minimize the potential to spread the illness. The upcoming days, weeks and months of families being asked to shelter-in-place means parents need ways to keep children entertained and active. For years, backyard wooden playsets and structures have been a great option! Buying the right playset for your family is important.

But which one? What do you need to know before installing a playset yourself or hiring a professional?

For over 20 years, my husband and I have been installing residential and commercial playsets in the Midwest and Arizona. During this time, I have learned a lot about playset quality, price points, and structural durability.

There are many but a few of the most common wooden residential playset brands are Gorilla (our preferred brand), Cedar Summit by KidKraft, and Backyard Discovery. Lifetime has some great playsets as well but are typically constructed of metal and plastic materials. All of the brands offer sets along the spectrum of price and quality but there are a few items to consider before buying a playset for your backyard.

Here are a few things you need to think about before buying the playset:

CONSTRUCTION

More modestly priced playsets use slightly smaller sized corner posts and swing beams. The pieces that make up the sides, tower, and the rest of the playset comes in many smaller, need to assemble peaces. The manufacturer is passing the value savings of the playset down to the assembly through greater deconstruction for shipping.  We noticed the wood has a greater likelihood of splitting during assembly. Investing in a quality playset will ensure you get your money’s worth! The swing beam is always the biggest give-a-way on quality and durability. It is a great day when the box is open and 4×6 swing beam is there! It also means sturdy 4×4 corner posts. Almost all Gorilla playsets use these sizes as standard. The retail price is slightly higher but it is worth every single penny. Many more affordable options use a 2×6 for the swing bean, 2×4 corner posts and twice as many pieces to put together. Some actually have you install a board to make it look like a 4×4! Typically, cheaper playsets cost more to install as it takes twice the work. If you have a few older children or want to swing with your kids….you cannot with a 2×6 swing beam. It just isn’t strong enough. Invest in a good product and check the construction!

ROOF STYLE

Playsets typically have two primary roof styles: vinyl or wood.  For the most part the roof style is preferential based on look and price point. Vinyl roofs may be more likely to be lost in a strong wind or heavy rain storm but are also easily replaceable. If you do loose one often the local hardware store will have  a generic replacement vinyl roof. Wood roofs offer great coverage and will help to protect the deck even longer against sun and weather damage but will require more stain during maintenance. Many modes have add-on features such as a play chimney, working shutters, and window cutouts! 

SPACE

I cannot tell you how many jobs we have had to tell parents we could not do until the yard was better prepared. If the playset’s physical footprint is 16′ by 20′ you actually need 22′ by 26′ of space to meet the recommended 6′ play safety zone standard. We will not install your playset if there happens to be a large rock under the swings or put the playset 2 feet away from a the cinder-block wall. Decorative trim pavers are also often an issue for safety and need to be removed or replaced with rubber ones. We understand not every yard will have exactly 6′ on all sides but we can help you find the safest place with a reasonable amount of safety zone. If you have a small space there are still many options for you to pick from. Consider the Five Star II Space Saver or possibly a tower playset without swing beam.

LEVEL YARD

A level play area is important for building your playset. A difference of even an inch is significant and can delay the installation of your playset. For most playsets, the current method of manufacturing assumes installation on a level ground. The playsets cannot be adjusted or modified from the manufacturer’s guidelines nor would you want to make modifications. However, in many cases, the playset can be trenched in the ground but that increases the likelihood of wood rot and will need greater care and attention. Most often we ask you to work with your landscaper to prepare the area to avoid damage to sprinkler lines. Every part of the country has different issues to consider. Spend time preparing the area properly for the safest play zone for your kids!

MAINTENANCE

If you buy a quality set, you can double if not triple the life of the playset with regular maintenance and stain. Hot summers, storms and heavy winds are rough for wooden playsets. Weather sealant every two years will do wonders to protect the life and longevity and look of a playset. If you miss a few years, a solid stain such as Behr’s DeckOver fills in cracks and reduces splinters. Before and After Pressure Wash and Playset StainIt is also important to regularly check the bolts and hardware for the swings and other activities. These can loosen over time with normal wear and tear. We are also noticing significant damage to the base of many playsets due to lawnmowers and weed eaters. These will wear down the structural frame of your playset and cause it to need major repairs or just tossed in the trash.

PLAY SURFACE

It is always recommended to add a protective layer or surface for your playset. Rubber playground (6″ depth) mulch is a great option and highly recommended. Pine playground mulch (9″ depth) is also another great surface option for the play area. This helps protect children in case of a fall and minimize the risk of injury. There are a number of options available from a mulch like product to a cushioned play pad. A concrete pad or landscape gravel are never a suitable option as a play surface. Minimizing the risk of head injury is so important and your play surface is a big part of creating a safe place for kids to play. 

SHADE

The wood typically does not get hot to the touch but the hardware, plastic slides, swings and monkey bars can in direct sunlight. Look for areas of shade if possible. If needed, a solar shade is a nice addition to increase the hours of play. If you plan to install the playset on artificial grass with hours of direct sunlight…it gets HOT to the touch! Installing playsets on artificial grass means I will spend the day burning myself every time I have to build something on the ground. We bring shade tent just to keep the temperature of the hardware and materials down so we can hold them to install.

Conclusion

Leisure Installation Service is a residential playset, basketball goal, trampoline and structure installer serving the the Phoenix metropolitan area since 2014. Providing installation services for most models of Do-It-Yourself playsets and other outdoor residential recreation equipment. Please visit our online shop to explore the models of Gorilla Playsets we offer. We thank you for your business and support. We look forward to building you a playset for hours of fun!

James and Sasha Lewis are a husband and wife team living in the Valley. Sasha is an Arizona native and James grew up on a farm in Missouri. The tire swing in our logo represents the hours of fun we spent with our children when they were little in our Midwest backyard. Our children are now grown but we have many great memories of our backyard playset, jumping on the trampoline and shooting hoops. Thank you for allowing us to help your family create lasting memories too.

Written by Sasha Lewis, Owner, Leisure Installation Services.Owners, Sasha & James Lewis

Posted on

8 Reasons Why Valley Parents Are Using Professional Swing Set Installers

From Arizona Foothills Magazine. Click for the original posting.

AMANDA RUMORE

The modest metal swing sets of the past have been replaced by play structures made of lumber with intricate accessories like rock-climbing walls, spiral slides, bridges and skybox play decks. Modern play structures, like  Gorilla play sets, start at $1,000 for a very basic model and can reach $10,000, depending on brand and add-ons.  Needless to say, a swing set is a significant investment for your home and your children’s development.

Swing set installed by Leisure Installation

This spring season, when my husband and I were ready to purchase a swing set for our daughter, we turned to our friends at Leisure Installations – Outdoor Recreational Equipment Installations.  They were able to provide us with inside knowledge on play set brands and equipment, and we’re also the ones we trusted to install our new playground equipment.  In fact, many Phoenix families are turning to professional swing set installers for their tiny tots beloved sets.

If you’re considering making this summer extra special by purchasing a swing set, here are reasons other parents are turning to the pros:

  • Professional is better.  There’s a reason why I prefer having my makeup done by a professional and my house cleaned by a pro. When working with a true expert, you ensure perfect results and you eliminate the stress and hassle of doing it yourself. By partnering with Leisure Installations, the professional swing set installers in Phoenix, you will have peace of mind that your children’s new playground is properly and safely installed and meets all codes.
  • Saves time. Who has time to put together a swing set? Not me, not my husband nor does anybody else I know.  With family life, home life and work life, installing a swing set hardly fits into our schedule. A new swing set should inspire fun, excitement and quality time together for your family, not create new stresses and challenges over a tedious installation. The pro installers at Leisure Installation Phoenix have the necessary time to install your play set because it’s their job.  In fact, it’s one of the things they do best!
  • Sick of the clutter.  Boxes filled with play set parts take up a lot of room! If your honey has been consistently skipping this big task on his honey-do list, it is time to take matters into your own hands. Call the experienced installers today at 480-980-6929. Or, you can get a free quote via the web. They can get your play set up so it can be put to good use!
  • Professional planning. A professional who installs swing sets has the equipment, know-how and training to provide optimal results. A professional will analyze your Arizona backyard terrain and landscape, taking into account any special accommodations needed. A professional installer can ensure that the installation is done correctly and with minimum disruption to your yard. They can also help with the additions of mulch, sand or whatever substance you’ll be using under and around the set.
  • Service and support. Once your swing set is installed, it’s wise to have it properly maintained. James Lewis at Leisure Installations can help you maximize the lifespan of your swing set. Staining and maintenance are key in the longevity of your playground set!
  • Added value to your home. Everyone knows that once you install an awesome play set, you’ll have a home that everyone wants to come too – children and parents alike.  And, if you’re eventually looking to rent or sell your home, a professionally installed play set can be an attractive element to families in Phoenix looking to rent and / or buy.
  • Relocating. Speaking of buying a home, if you’re moving and your children are attached to your play set, you can take it with to the next house.  Leisure Installation Services will disassemble your playground, load it on a trailer, deliver and re-install it at the next location. The playground set will be checked for wear and any problems will be brought to your attention, immediately.
  • Saves money.  Can you imagine how much it would cost to tear down a swing set that was installed haphazardly? Worst yet, if the neighbor’s kid hurt themselves because you had faulty equipment? In this case, I think we all agree to go pro.

Leisure Installation Services is a family owned company dedicated to bringing quality and integrity back into this world. Owner, James R. Lewis has more than a decade of experience installing residential and commercial playgrounds specializing in Gorilla play sets. As a parent, James insists that safety and security are paramount and every set installed must be “good enough for our own children.” Leisure Installations expertly installs play sets, basketball goals, trampolines and gazebos and sheds.  For more information, visit leisureinstalls.com.

Amanda Rumore is a writer, mom blogger and lifestyle expert. Scottsdale-based, by way of Chicago and Los Angeles, she lives with her husband, Anthony, daughter, Mia Valentina, and Boston Terriers, Gigi and Harley. Amanda is the founder of ValleyGalInc.com, writes for various magazines and appears on local television stations featuring family-focused stories. She was also voted “Favorite Valley Mom 2016″ in the Best of the Valley!

Posted on

Phoenix Playset Stain and Repair Special

Before and After Pressure Wash and Playset Stain

Get your playset ready for the season!

It is time to get your playset ready for the season and for your kids to be outside! The Phoenix summer heat is hard on outdoor playsets. Reduce the risk of splinters, minimize the wear from sprinklers and harsh monsoon winds. Make your playset look like new again! Staining your playset with a weather-resistant paint after a pressure wash will extend the life of your set and will help to keep your backyard looking beautiful! Call now Leisure Installation Services to get a QUOTE and scheduled your playset stain and repair today in Phoenix!

Call NOW
(480) 980-6929
to schedule!

Click here from your mobile device to send us a message or click the button to the right to send us an email.

Our Phoenix playset stain and repair services include:

  • Pressure wash to remove dirt
  • Solid stain with weather protectant applied on interior and exterior of set. We use Behr and Gorilla stains.
  • Hardware tighten and basic repairs (Broken beams/boards may require a return trip and additional costs. Please check your warranty for replacement parts.)
  • Repair recommendations (May incur additional fees; upon agreement.)

Make your playset like new again and protect against the weather. Above all, enjoy your leisure time and let us do the rest!

Service is available in the metropolitan Phoenix area. The playset stain and repair will be scheduled over 2-3 days. Sprinkler systems will need to be turned off during scheduled dates to ensure proper application.

Overview
1st Day – Pressure wash (and drying time)
2nd Day – Stain & Repairs
3rd Day – Repair (if needed)

Check out some of our other services:

Posted on

Costco Playset Twin Mountain Lodge 2 Slide Cedar Playset

Getting Costco‘s Twin Mountain Lodge playset with both the tube and wave slide? Call Leisure Installation Services for your professional installation in the Phoenix area. Most installations can be scheduled and completed within 48-72 hours. Average installation takes 6-8 hours and is completed in the same day.

We look forward to working with you!

2014 Cedar Summit with Tube Slide
2014 Cedar Summit with Tube Slide

Call (480) 980-6929 NOW to schedule!

Costco’s Twin Mountain Lodge playset comes with:

  • FSC Certified Cedar
  • Tube and Wave Slides
  • 3 Position Swing Beam
  • 2 Story Clubhouse
  • Freestanding Bench
  • Panelized Wall Construction

www.leisureinstalls.com

Serving Phoenix, North Phoenix, Scottsdale, Glendale, Mesa, Gilbert, Chandler.

Posted on

Check out a blog in Arizona Foothills Magazine about us!

Trending: Professional Holiday Lighting in Phoenix

Trending: Professional Holiday Lighting in Phoenix
Amanda Rumore

Tis the season for holiday décor. Phoenix residents are especially holly and jolly during the holiday season, as we do boast sunny 70-degree days throughout much of the wintertime. Our warm weather doesn’t stop us from adding holiday cheer to our homes. Decking the halls, adding faux snowmen and hanging glistening lights is a favorite amongst many Phoenician families.

This year, a growing trend in holiday décor is becoming even more popular. Did you know that many of your neighbors actually skip the hassle and frustration of hanging outdoor Christmas lights and hire a professional? Yes, there are professional Phoenix holiday light installers that have perfected their craft so Valley homes can shine ever so bright.

Classy_Lights

Leisure Installation Services

Homes throughout Phoenix are being lit by the professionals at Leisure Installation Services. Formed by husband and wife team, James and Sasha Lewis, they created a family owned company dedicated to bringing quality and integrity back into this world. As parents, they insist that safety and security are paramount.

During the holiday season, they specialize in Phoenix custom holiday lighting services. They install commercial grade c7 lights cut to a home’s specific needs. After the season, they come back to remove the lights, which you get to keep. They will also hang your pre-owned lights.

Their company also provides residential installation of entertainment and premanufactured products such as wooden playsets, trampolines, basketball goals, sheds, and gazebos.

holiday_lights

More About James and Sasha

Fa la la la, hanging holiday lights might be one of the most festive jobs of the season, except for the big guy in red, of course. We asked James what his favorite part of the job was. “The best part of hanging Christmas lights is when they turn on and the house lights up,” explains James. “It’s always great to get photos from customers the first time the lights can be seen at night. Everyone remembers driving through neighborhoods as children looking at the lights and it is always great when we can be part of that.”

The least favorite part of hanging phoenix holiday lights? “The ladder work!” says James. “That’s also why I am in business! Each installation requires a unique approach because of the home design and landscape. Being able to maintain safety at all times is my primary concern and Phoenix topography adds an interesting challenge at times.”

As you would expect, James and Sasha’s home is lit up for Christmas. They are a bit traditional in the timing, so they put up their Christmas tree on Thanksgiving and everything begins to come down within a week after New Year’s. Their two story home is complete with the white c7 lights and the front tree wrapped in white mini lights. A Christmas wreath hangs from the front door welcoming family and guests. For fun inside the house, they wrap the banister with multicolored LED lights.

DIY Tips for Phoenix Residents

  • Be careful to not overload your circuits by plugging too many lines together. Pay close attention to the limit recommendations to avoid fire hazards.
  • If you are using hot glue on the stucco and do not want to ruin it when taking the lights down, use heat to quickly soften the glue so it releases the string instead of popping it off the wall.
  • On a tight budget? Place a wreath on the front door and one eye catching decoration inside other than the tree. One or two things can add to the holiday spirit.

If you’re looking for Phoenix Christmas lighting done by professionals at your home, be sure to contact Leisure Installation Services at leisureinstalls.com. They also offer Christmas lighting specials all through the season..