Buying a swing set is a big investment for anyone, so it is pretty normal to thoroughly research the market before making a purchase.
In any industry, there are particular brands that have become a byword for quality, so how about in the world of swings sets?
Today we are turning our focus to KidKraft and looking at the quality of its products.
So are KidKraft swing sets any good?
Let’s find out…
Are KidKraft Swing Sets Good?
In terms of the swing set market, KidKraft swing sets are definitely at the lower end of the price range. As such, they can tend to feel more cheaply made and there have been a few concessions made in terms of cutting costs, but they are good swing sets that offer fantastic value for money.
So before we answer the title question it is important to know a bit about the history of KidKraft.
KidKraft was founded back in 1968 and began by making wooden toys and furniture for children, operating out of a base in Dallas, Texas.
For its first couple of decades, the company sold its products through catalogs and in independent toy stores.
However throughout the 1980s its presence expanded and by the end of the decade its increasingly popular kids’ toys could be found in department stores all over the United States.
In 2000 the company underwent a reorganization, and the following year production was moved to Asia.
Around this time it moved beyond its initial roots of making children’s furniture, and for the first time began producing, amongst other things, swing sets.
In 2015 KidKraft was purchased by the New York-based asset management firm MidOcean.
Today KidKraft serves over 2,800 retailers and its products can be found in more than 90 countries across the world.
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KidKraft Swing Sets: An In-Depth Analysis
Now we know a little bit about KidKraft’s backstory, let’s take a closer look at its products and see how they stack up in a number of areas.
A quick visit to the KidKraft website and you can see its swings sets range from $649.99 for its Newport Swing Set up to $3,499.99 for its Bear Cave Lodge Swing Set. The average price mark is somewhere around the $1,000 level.
Or if you visit KidKraft’s Amazon store, then you are looking at anything between $467.52 for its Appleton Wooden Swing Set/Playset to $1,499.99 for its Titan Cliffs Swing Set.
The table below summarises how KidKraft compares to selected other swing set manufacturers:
In terms of price, you can see that KidKraft swing sets are at the lower end of the scale.
So how does this translate into possibly the most important aspect of a swing set?
*Prices correct at the time of writing.
The old adage of you get what you pay for is definitely true to an extent with KidKraft swing sets.
That isn’t to say they are poorly made, just that it is evident that the price point is somewhat lower than its competitors.
The cedar wood used in its playsets does feel cheaper and possibly won’t stand up to the elements as well as more expensive play sets.
Customers have reported warping and cracked lines. Also some parts don’t have holes pre-drilled and you are expected to drill them yourself.
Of course, you can reseal the wood to provide more protection.
Aside from this parts such as the swings and slides are sturdy enough as long as weight limits are adhered to.
It is a well-known fact that even the swing sets with the most comprehensive installation instructions can be a threat to the most solid marriage should you attempt to put them up with your spouse!
And KidKraft is definitely no different in that respect.
In fact, they are probably even more of a challenge than their competitors, and again this is a result of their price point being lower.
As mentioned previously not all parts come with holes drilled and there has been some compromise on assembly design in parts.
Instructions are no more than adequate, but when you have parts without pre-drilled holes it does make the whole construction process more confusing and time-consuming.
KidKraft’s warranty guarantees the lumber for five years against structural failure due to rot and insect damage.
All other parts, such as the swings, slides, any other hardware, etc, have a one-year warranty.
It isn’t a particularly comprehensive warranty in comparison to other swing set manufacturers.
Full details can be found on the KidKraft warranty page.
You can return items purchased through the KidKraft website for a period of up to 30 days, provided you act in accordance with its returns policy.
Note that any shipping costs incurred by KidKraft upon the initial purchase are deducted from the returns reimbursement.
Also note this only applies if you purchase the swing set directly from KidKraft, should you purchase the swing set from another retailer then you will need to check its return conditions.
Value For Money
One area where KidKraft swing sets excel is definitely in value for money.
Yes, they might seem a little cheaply built, yes the wood might be a bit thin and no the quality might not be top of the line, but neither is the price.
Overall, KidKraft swing sets are great value for money.
Its swing sets are generally much cheaper than its competitors, but they are worth the money.
Especially if you are on the fence about buying one, or worried about your son/daughter not using it or growing out of it.
For a reasonable outlay, you get a good swing set, that your children will enjoy.
Sometimes it can be difficult to get out of judging everything on the same level.
When considering whether to buy a KidKraft swing set or not, remember that its prices are considerably lower than most, and as such there are a few concessions made in terms of build quality.
You cannot expect a top-of-the-range swing set at a bottom of the range price. But you definitely get more than you should for your money.
If you want something that will last a lifetime, then maybe consider a Rainbow swing set, but just remember it will be infinitely more expensive. Alternatively you can also view our post outlining the best swing sets for older kids.
Otherwise, a KidKraft swing set will definitely keep your kids happy!