Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Playset and Swing Set Assembly:

What Playsets do you recommend?

I’m often amazed that I don’t get asked this question much more often. I have assembled every brand and model out there and there are hundreds. No one knows better which are the best than the person that puts them together.

Have said that you should know that most playsets sold online as well as all †he big box s†ores are made in China.  Surprised? One of China’s major exports is a fast growing wood often referred to a Chinese Fir or China Fir (Cunninghamia Lanceolata).

It is a great export not only because it is fast growing but is also lightweight. Unfortunately, it is also flimsy, brittle, and splits easily.

We highly recommend Creative Playthings Playsets.  They are made in the USA and right here in New England as well.  Here’s my inside connection. Peter Kakridas @ (508) 656-1534 or email him @ pkakridas@creativeplaythings.com.  He’s the boss!  Be sure to tell him that Stan sent you.

Why does my inexpensive set cost more to assemble than the more expensive Gorilla or PlayNation Playset?

Many less expensive sets like Swing-N-Slide, Backyard Discovery, Cedar Summit, and Big Backyard are much more difficult to assemble, and time-consuming than the Gorilla Playsets, which is the main brand that we recommend. The price that you pay for a playset or swing set has little to do with how much it is going to cost to assemble it.

Do you service my area?

We serve most of the New England states which include all of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.

What does it cost to assemble a playset?

This depends on the brand and model. Simply fill out our Assembly Quote Form and you’ll get a fast response.

How and when are you paid?

If you are paying us directly for the assembly, then we would invoice you via PayPal for a non-refundable deposit of $100.00. You do not need a PayPal account, just use any credit or debit card.

You would then pay the balance in cash, on-site upon completion of the assembly and installation. Sorry, we cannot accept personal checks or credit cards for the balance due.

Is the deposit applied to the balance and is it refundable?

The deposit is applied to the payment for the assembly and installation services. Our PayPal invoice will state the cash balance that is due upon completion, which is less the deposit amount.

The deposit works for both of us.  In your case, it reserves a particular open date for you so that you can count on your playset being assembled on that date.

It also protects us.  We have had the experience of scheduling folks for a particular date only to have them cancel with very short notice. This can cause us to lose work and revenue for the day that they were scheduled.  We have also experienced driving a long distance to do an assembly only to find out that they were sorry, but “Uncle John” already assembled the playset. In this case, the deposit is applied to our travel costs.

Typically deposits guarantee that the customer is going to follow through on the date we have reserved for them and they are not refundable.

Additionally, if we arrive and for some reason beyond our control we are not able to install your playset, your deposit cannot be refunded and will go to the installer to cover travel expenses who has also typically lost a day’s work as well.

Do we need to be present the entire time during the assembly?

We prefer that an adult be present while your playset is being assembled. If an adult cannot be present, please leave the cash balance with someone at home, or go ahead and pay the installer. Please don’t make the crew wait for you to return. At a minimum we need access and to be shown exactly where the playset is going and how you want it positioned.  We cannot be held responsible for issues that may arise during assembly with no one present. We will do our best to make the best decision possible in your absence.

What do you need us to do to in preparation for your arrival?

All that we need is a flat, level, clear space on solid ground in which to place the playset, and an adjacent yard area in which to work, layout components, etc. We do not advise and prefer that you not add any fill materials such as mulch or wood chips until we complete the assembly.  The playset must sit and be anchored to the solid ground.

Can I use sand or mulch for the base of the playset?

Sand, mulch, and other soft materials are great for the ground under the playset area. However, the playset should NOT rest on these materials. You MUST make sure the ground is level and firm. You must also secure the set with stakes provided. Once the playset is securely resting on these solid footings, then you can surround it with your favorite soft material.

Do you do any groundwork or landscaping?

No, if landscaping is needed and you cannot do it then you would need a local landscaper, gardener, or laborer to do what is needed. We often travel a great distance to come to you, so it is not feasible or cost-effective for you to hire us to do any landscaping.

Can you level the playset?

If your ground is flat and level where you have the put the playset, then your playset will be level. We cannot alter a playset to make it level, nor can we sink posts into the ground to level it. All wood placed below ground will rot over time regardless if it’s cedar, pressure treated, or another wood type.

How level does the playset area need to be?

I recommend that the ground where the playset is to be placed not slope anymore than 3 inches for every 10 feet of the playset. So if your playset is 15 feet deep by 20 feet wide, I recommend that the ground not slope anymore than 4½” front to back and 6″ left to right. This is my recommendation for your child’s safety and optimum for the enjoyment of their playset. Beyond that, it’s up to you to decide what is acceptable and safe.

What brands of playsets and swings do you assemble?

We assemble virtually all brands and models made, as well as virtually anything that comes in a box, i.e. toys, furniture, barbecues, etc.

How long does it take for you to assemble a playset?

It usually takes us one full day. We are very experienced and can do in one day what takes most do-it-yourselfers many days to do. On occasion due to some very large sets or other complications, we need to return the second day. However, we usually come from a great distance, so we try really hard not to do this.

How quickly can you come?

We stay pretty busy usually from March into October. However, we can usually fit in your assembly within just a few days of delivery, and more often than not, within one or two.

Can you provide and put down mulch or pea gravel?

If you would like a wood or rubber mulch, or pea gravel, you need to contact your local supplier or landscaper.

We recommend that you have this placed after the playset is installed so that we can set and anchor the playset to solid ground. However, you may wish to remove any existing lawn area and put down landscaping fabric or weed block polypropylene beforehand. Most playsets and swings are installed on the lawn or ground and left natural.

Do you need anything from us while you are here?

Restroom access is always very handy, but not absolutely necessary. We do need access to a power source to recharge our batteries for cordless drills and cordless impact drivers. An outlet is usually available outside on house in most cases. Also, we ask that you keep children and pets out of the area, as well as adults from interrupting the crew. The playset is often not safe, nor is the area that we are working in.

In addition, adults engaging us in conversation, overseeing, helping, etc. only tends to slow down the assembly. Often sets take a full day, and it is difficult sometimes to get everything done in one day. After traveling a great distance to come to you, the last thing we want is to have to travel that distance for the second day.

Please make sure that the playset area is unobstructed, and any animal feces are cleaned up prior to our arrival.

Can we make changes in the layout of the set?

We must assemble the playset to the manufacturer’s specifications on the assembly instructions to avoid liability for improper assembly or damaged playsets.

Can we assemble the playset ourselves?

The short answer is; Yes you can. If you, or a family member, or friend is good with tools, you have someone that is good with reading and understanding directions, are the handy type, have good organizational skills, and are in good health for the physical challenge of climbing all over a playset for long hours, then yes, of course you can.

Just a warning before you start. It has been our experience that the majority of people that did it for themselves regretted it, and ended up wishing that they had hired a professional. The amount of parts alone that come in those big boxes is overwhelming to most people. Some have a difficult time understanding the directions.

Please note that even though the assembly manual says that it should be able to be assembled by two adults is 10-14 hours, etc., that is rarely the case for most people. Many stated that it ended up taking them several weekends. Many give up in futility only to call us anyway. They often ended up paying just as much, if not more for the assembly because of the errors that needed to be undone, and the disorganized clutter of parts laying all over the place. Playsets are a big project!

However, I have also seen couples do very well and get a set together just fine in a weekend. You have to decide what your capabilities are, and if you want to spend the many hours it is going to take to do it.

My general recommendation is that unless you are absolutely sure, don’t do it. We have a long list of customers that began to assemble a playset and became overwhelmed with the mountain of parts and the size and difficulty of the project. They often ended up paying just as much, and sometimes more because of the sections that needed to be redone, or the parts that were damaged or missing.

Here is a video on YouTube (Sky Fort Assembly) where it took four adults 4 days to assemble. This is documented in the video as well as the comments of others below the video. At least one other person stated that it took them 4 days as well. This is very common.

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