Frequently Asked Questions
Serendipity Series

What type of wood is used in Serendipity swing sets?

Serendipity swing sets, like all CedarWorks outdoor swing sets, are made exclusively from Northern White Cedar. This is the only wood species that meets our discriminating requirements for strength, long life, and no splinters without added chemicals.

How long does Northern White Cedar last?

According to the National Forest Service, Northern White Cedar is classified as "highly decay resistant" and will last up to 20 years untreated. This is longer than any other natural wood species used in swing sets.

Does Northern White Cedar need to be stained?

No. Northern White Cedar will remain long lasting and splinter free without any maintenance required. Over time, the wood will naturally weather to a classic silver-gray. You can leave it be, or sustain its brightness with occasional power washings. It's also possible to apply a stain to achieve a golden color. However, other than color preference, there is absolutely no need to stain or otherwise seal a CedarWorks swing set.

Will Northern White Cedar splinter?

No. Northern White Cedar is the only wood used in swing sets that is naturally splinter free. Even when wood fibers happen to lift up above the smooth sanded surface of our swing set parts, they will bend harmlessly out of the way instead of becoming a painful splinter.

How does Northern White Cedar compare to other wood species used in swing sets?

Northern White Cedar is the only wood used in swing sets that is long lasting and splinter-free without chemical treatments, paints or stains. All other wood species used in swing sets (including redwood, cypress, other species of cedar, and inexpensive pseudo-cedars imported from China) require some form of chemical treatment to increase longevity, prevent splinters, and/or color match various species used in the same swing set. Northern White Cedar on the other hand not only protects your children from unnecessary chemical exposure, it also saves you time and money in the long term. Because we don't have to stain our swing sets to prevent splinters or to make different wood species look the same, you don't have to either.

What is checking?

Every cedar post and beam has the heartwood at its center, and that's the source of its remarkable strength. The sapwood around the heartwood dries more quickly than the heartwood and sometimes undergoes a process called "checking". This natural phenomenon, which produces separations on the surface of the wood, is common to all wood species. Checking does not pass through the heartwood itself or compromise the structural integrity. We want to point this out so that if you see checking in your beams, you'll understand that your playset is still just as strong and safe as ever.

How long will it take to install a Serendipity swing set?

The average Serendipity swing set should take approximately one full day to assemble with two adults using common household tools. Major components such as fences, platforms, roof panels, ramps, climbing walls and the like arrive pre-assembled to expedite assembly. In addition, CedarWorks provides detailed installation instructions which, if reviewed in advance, can significantly reduce assembly time.

Can I hire someone to install my Serendipity swing set?

Yes. CedarWorks can provide the name of an experienced swing set installer in most areas of the United States.

Can I customize a Serendipity swing set?

Yes. In fact, every Serendipity swing set we sell is custom configured. While many swing sets are similar to the examples on our website, others are completely unique configurations designed to fit the exact needs and wishes of a specific family.

What are the weight limits for a Serendipity swing set?

Serendipity swing sets are designed for the whole family. That means parents, too. So, we have designed all of our Serendipity products to support adult weights.

How do Serendipity swing sets compare to competing premium swing sets from other companies?

  • Better looking: Yes, this is a matter of taste, but as one observer noted, a Serendipity swing set is "so beautiful that you want to put it in the front yard."
  • Better wood: Serendipity swing sets, like all CedarWorks swing sets, are exclusively made from Northern White Cedar. The ideal choice for outdoor swing sets, Northern White Cedar is splinter free and rot resistant without chemical treatments and requires no maintenance. All other wood species used in swing sets (including redwood, cypress, other species of cedar, and inexpensive pseudo-cedars imported from China) require some form of chemical treatment to increase longevity, prevent splinters, and/or color match various species used in the same swing set.
  • Custom configured: Every Serendipity swing set we sell is custom configured to meet the precise needs of each family. In fact, our entire company from product design through manufacturing, sales, and shipping is organized around the concept of custom swing sets. Our online design tools and industry exclusive Design Experts help make the process fun and easy.
  • Exclusively safe: It starts with our splinter free, chemical free Northern White Cedar. Add to that our patented SureStep System, the only safe way for kids (as young as 18 months!) to climb; our patented Kid Swing and Sling Swing which provide the perfect transition to big kid swings; and our custom configured swing sets which let you create a design that is safe for your unique family, and you get the safest swing sets available anywhere.
  • Made here: All Serendipity swing set parts are manufactured right here at our plant in Maine and at a select group of small family-owned cedar mills in Maine and Canada. CedarWorks employees then inspect and custom pack every swing set part and ship them direct from our facility to families like yours around the world.

What type of ground surface should I use?

The Consumer Product Safety Commission ( recommends that all swing sets be placed on loose-fill materials such as wood chips or pea stone. Not only does this improve safety, but you won't have to deal with mud puddles under the swings and mowing around and under the swing set.

How much space do I need for a Serendipity swing set?

According to the ASTM standards for residential play equipment, you should allow 6 feet of space around all sides of the set you choose for maximum safety. In addition, the standard recommends that you have a total of 30 feet front-to-back for the swing area. Of course, some judgment should be applied since having a brick wall within the safety zone is different than having a grass lawn the same distance away.

How long will it take to receive my Serendipity swingset?

It depends on the time of year and where you live. Normally it will be 1-2 weeks from the order date until the shipment date though during our busiest times it may be up to 3 weeks. It will then take an additional 3 days travel time in the Northeast and up to 10 days to travel out West.

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Our Design Experts have years of experience and can answer any question you have. Give us a call today.

(800) 462-3327