Backyartisan Rating:

4.35 Stars

Backyard Discovery is in the business of backyard living. For over thirty years, they’ve built a massive reputation and distribution network with big names stores and distribution centers in North America. Their design and production team produce unique and durable products like playhouses, swingset, and outdoor living projects.

The Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Swing Set is an extravagant play station to engage children and enjoy. This elite set is one of Backyard Discovery’s larger installations. It teaches children important play and motor skills, and more importantly, it teaches them to enjoy the outdoors.

The Backyartisan's Verdict

Investing in a costly outdoor play station is an overwhelming task for many parents. This reliable Backyartisan resource delivers a trustworthy and informative review to make the process easier. The Backyartisan group has done the legwork for you and created an easy-to-understand rating system.

We take all aspects of reviewing and delivering a verdict seriously. Our system evaluates backyard play stations on a 5-star scale, and each star rating has a value associated with each segment. We break the scoring system into percentages and attribute them to the playset’s use, 25% share is the value of the purchase.

This star scale is how we rated the Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Swing Set.

Backyartisan Rating:

4.35 Stars

Shipping & Receiving

Now that you decided on the Woodridge Elite Swing Set, you need to consider shipping. Your average delivery guy will balk at leaving this massive package at your doorstep. Luckily, Backyard Discovery has taken care of every detail. To ship their product efficiently, they’ve amassed a distribution network that allows them to manage shipping larger deliveries for you.

We rated them with 5-stars because they deliver for free. Although many other companies struggle in the face of the recent economic turmoil, Backyard Discovery arranges and manages efficient deliveries. These are relatively small packages for freight companies and are very manageable.

Our Woodridge Elite verdict: Backyard Discovery scores an impressive 5-star rating for shipping and delivery. Backyard Discovery will deliver your playset purchase on schedule without hassles unless you live in remote or inaccessible areas.

Typically an order takes 3-4 days to process before it makes the 7-10 journey to your destination. Once the swing set ships, you can use the tracking number to monitor the transit.

Trucking Company Appointments

Trucking companies manage a logistic hub that doesn’t always coordinate within our schedule. Dealing with a less-than-user-accommodating trucking company is a hassle, but it’s the nature of these playset deliveries. Large purchases like the Woodridge Elite Wooden Swing Set require a truck outfitted with special lifting tailgates and pallet jacks to deliver.

As a rule of thumb, truck transit times allowance:

  • Westcoast 10 to 17 days
  • Midwest 7 to 10 days
  • Eastcoast 10 to 17 days

Use your tracking number to monitor the playset while in transit. While you wait, prepare for the arrival of your Backyard Discovery Woodridge playset. Coordinate a delivery time with your freight company or have someone meet the delivery at your destination.

If vehicles or other obstructions congest your driveway, move them out of the way before your scheduled delivery. Freight trucks need ample room to maneuver. A playset requires a specific delivery truck. The easier you make it for the freight truck, the sooner you’ll be able to start assembling.

Dealing with Pallets

Swingsets come in large bundles measuring over 7 ft long. Some freight companies repurpose the 8 ft (or two 48” x40” standard pallets) pallets. However, if they don’t remove them, many ingenious ways exist to repurpose these wood structures. Think of the kids' fun in building something like a climbing wall, tree fort, or an organic plant wall with empty pallets.

Unboxing and Taking Inventory

Snap a few pictures of the unpacking process to record information. These photos will be handy if your delivery looks like it’s been mishandled or damaged. Keep an eye out for the assembly manual, or click their manual here.

Your waybill or packing slip will have an essential list of components. Stay organized and check off the items as you unpack. Count important pieces of lumber and articles in the package and if you notice any discrepancies, contact Backyard Discovery about damaged or missing parts.

Box Weight and Dimensions

Your shipment of the Woodridge Elite Swing Set contains four boxes. An extra set of strong hands is a good idea to help you navigate the weight.

Box specs:

  • Box 1: 92 3/4" x 22 1/4" x 7 1/2" Weight: 152 lbs.
  • Box 2: 92 3/4" x 22 1/4" x 8 1/4" Weight: 178 lbs.
  • Box 3: 92 3/4" x 22 1/4" x 8 1/2" Weight: 172 lbs.
  • Box 4: 92 3/4" x 22 1/4" x 7 3/4" Weight: 178 lbs.
  • Wave Slide: 118" x 17" x 26" Weight: 35 lbs.

Use a forklift or dolly to manage the cumbersome weight. A safety net is another set of strong arms to move the heavy box to its final destination. Assemble on site.


It’s difficult to score five stars on any at-home installation. You're miles ahead if you plan and read the instruction manual before getting started. Backyard Discovery also assembles its packages to make them more accessible for its clients.

If you’re overwhelmed by tackling this project, check out our DIY installation tips. To make the assembly of the Woodridge Elite Swing Sets even more manageable, check out the Backyard Discovery Bilt App.

Our Woodridge Elite verdict: Backyard Discovery is generally a lighter lift on installation, but isn't as simple as some other brands.

First and foremost, you'll need to organize the lumber, hardware, accessories, and miscellaneous components. It's a good idea to familiarize yourself with these items. You’ll also need a set of tools.

Tools Required

Since you didn’t opt for the assemble option, you’ll need to break out some tools. The Woodridge Elite Swing Set is a complex and durable unit. Therefore, assembling requires more than an Allen (hex) key.

  • Electric or Cordless Drill
  • Phillips Attachment
  • Open End Wrenches 1/2” & 9/16”
  • Drill Bits 1/8”, 3/16”/ 1/16”
  • 3/8” Drive Ratchet
  • 1/2” & 9/16” STD Sockets
  • 1/2” & 9/16” Deep Sockets
  • Claw Hammer
  • Rubber Mallet (optional)
  • Tape Measure
  • Square
  • 24” Level

See page 16 of the manual.

Ease and Timeframe of Installation

We have a wealth of experience in play and swing set assembly. We understand that nothing is as easy as it should be. Backyard Discovery doesn’t include a timescale in its instructions, but you should allow yourself three days to complete the project.

Seasoned DIYers with a lot of knowledge and an extra set of hands can push that timeline. The only way to speed up the process is to be well organized, have the area cleared, and rely on a team of helpers.

The Woodridge Elite Swing Set is an investment in time and money. Skipping a step will jeopardize the safety and longevity of the Woodridge backyard adventure castle. It’s also a great idea to spend time with your children by involving them in the setup process, keeping safety in mind at all times.

Quality of Directions

Backyard Discovery provides an excellent and comprehensive manual in several languages. The manual has easy-to-follow segments.

Each manual has a detailed list of components to match against your delivery. Each part has a visual so you can find each piece at a glance. As we said, getting organized and familiarizing yourself with the features and instructions is half the battle.

Overall, the Backyard Discovery manual is well-written, with dense and thorough instructions that didn’t get lost in translation.

Space Needed

The Woodridge Elite Swing Set is a gorgeous but sizeable outdoor play equipment. The completed unit measures 19’3” W X 15’8” D X 11’9” H.

To assemble the unit, make sure you have lots of maneuvering space. We recommend a 28’X32’ usage area with a 12’ rounded clearance. A fully assembled swing set weighs 716lbs.

Another space consideration involves running room for your active children. Trim any low-hanging branches and stay clear from the power lines. Make sure the lawn area is free of rocks and flat. Adding sand or mulch beneath the swing set will save many scraped knees and bruised elbows.

Stability & Durability

Backyard Discovery is in the business of manufacturing stable and durable yard products. Our testing continually ranks their products as average, but the Woodridge Elite surpasses their other models. This quality qualifies them as a 4-star swing set.

The Woodridge Elite is also one of the largest models, and they included significantly more stability and durability in the design.

Our Woodridge Elite verdict: Quality, design, stability, and durability set this swing set apart from similar models on the market. The Woodridge Elite provides hours of entertainment to children, and parents get peace of mind knowing the unit is safe and stable.

Joints & Hardware

You get excited about quality joints and hardware when building and testing products. As far as we’re concerned, these invisible components are vital to building something durable.

Backyard Discovery provides an average-quality assortment of nuts & bolts. They’re generous with the number of screws included in the package. If you lose some in the installation process, your local store can provide replacements.

The swing beam plate is adequate but doesn’t have the heavy-duty appearance you’d expect. It’s an area Backyard Discovery could improve on with higher quality components.

Wood Thickness

Everyone is rolling their eyes at the price of wood these days. But scrimping on wood isn’t a great idea when building children’s play equipment.

Backyard Discovery wood material package is adequate. The swing beam measure 3 X 3, which makes us a bit hesitant. We’d like to see solid wood. This isn’t the place to save a few bucks when you’re already investing a substantial chunk of money.

Plastic Thickness

With all the recycled plastic materials available, this should be a no-brainer. Plastic has the power to last for 500 years, and this thermoformed one-piece wave slide should outlive your children and grandchildren.

In general, one-piece molded plastic is much better for longevity than when it's manufactured in multiple pieces.

Wood Stain & Finish

All pieces of outdoor equipment need periodic maintenance. The Backyard Discovery wood finish and stain job are well done. There are no runs or bubbles in the stain’s finish, and it meets a professional standard.

Over time, you’ll need to restore your playset to make it last.

Weight Limits

Parameters for safety are contingent on following the maximum weight restriction on any equipment. The Woodridge Elite is safe if the maximum of 150lbs per child per activity isn’t stressed.

To keep it safe, restrict activity to under nine children in total. Monitor children on joint support activities, 120lbs per child. It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on small children, regardless.

Ongoing Maintenance

Maintenance is a necessary evil to prolong your investment. Check out our tips on how to preserve the integrity of your structure. This swing set isn’t exactly cheap, and you’ve already invested a nice sum on the front end; maintaining the swing set with a coat of stain is essential. It also helps prevent unnecessary splinters and material corrosion. For this Backyard Discovery model, you'll just need to give it some regular love and a new stain every few years. Nothing special.

Play Elements

Your children deserve a quality playset that helps build their character, love for being outdoors, and strength and mobility. The Woodridge Elite Swing Set delivers and gets the coveted Backyartisan 5-star ranking. With all the play options, it’s hard not to put yourself into your kid’s shoes and enjoy.

It’s hard to pick a favorite from among the top-level clubhouse with crow’s nest, the balcony, the rock wall ladder, the two belt swings, and the trapeze. Your children’s imagination will flourish in the super cool tunnel and the never-ending fun slide. (And that’s not even the kids take on things.)

Our Woodridge Elite verdict: Play ability is the best feature of the whole set, and it can entertain several children. The tunnel opens up your child’s endless imagination and is such a creative touch and our favorite part. The design of the Elite Swing is fabulous. The rock wall ladder, the trapeze bar, and the slide will turn your gadget-loving kid into a healthy, thriving ninja.

Ups, Downs & Acrosses

Build it, and children will find enjoyment. The rock wall ladder will help your children burn energy and teach them skills. The tunnel will allow them to explore their imagination and overcome their inhibitions.

Although the slide is a bit basic, children and toddlers will enjoy the thrill of sliding (over & over again).

What’s great about this Elite Swing Set is that there are activities suitable for several age groups, so no one is left out.


Swings have entertained us for over 3000 years which tells us it’s a fun activity that children of all ages enjoy.

The swing bar has three positions and an acrobat bar for those athletic kids that enjoy seeing the world upside down. While the swings probably aren’t the star of the Elite Swing Set, they are an essential structural element. We bet the word ‘higher’ will echo through the backyard.

Social Play Accessories

Your children’s imagination can run wild in this creative structure with a decent clubhouse. What’s appealing to children is that the swing set can act as an activity center, a pirate ship, a princess castle, or a home away from home.

Since the set can accommodate several children, it teaches them invaluable social skills. Children can also learn a bit of responsibility by taking care of younger playmates and engaging their imagination.

Solo Play Accessories

Although the set is extensive and intended for groups of children, it’s also okay for single children to enjoy outdoor activities. There are no solo play features, per se, and children thrive with playmates. However, it doesn’t mean they can’t find a way to enjoy the activities if they’re encouraged to explore.

Roof & Kit Options

The Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Swing Set has a durable, standard wood roof that protects your kids from the elements. In mild weather, children can still enjoy playing under the roof that will keep them dry. The roof will provide shade on hot sunny days to protect them from sun exposure. Because it has two levels, this swing set provides extra protected play space.

Doing some regular maintenance will preserve the wood.

Price & Value

You’ve been shopping the playset market and have narrowed it to a few choices. Are you debating the $2400 MSR price tag? Though you may find it cheaper elsewhere if you follow our shopping links.

Let’s summarize the highlights.

Our Woodridge Elite verdict: With our time-tested ranking formula, this Backyard Discovery swing set rates pretty high. There’s no shame in a 4.35 rating, and Backyard Discovery is a reputable manufacturer of outdoor play equipment. Their playsets stand the test of time and surpass other brands.

Overall Value

Backyard Discovery doesn’t offer the best product warranty, and each product in its lineup has a unique set of warranty parameters found in the manual.

If you plan on taking advantage of the assembly feature, tack on another 25-40% of the retail value. You can check out their assembly service for a quote. The good news is that the Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Wooden Swing Set price tag includes free shipping.

Shipping Costs

We all know that shipping costs have become atrocious. The caveat here is to read the small print. Many retailers include free shopping in the price; the catch is in the return cost.

So before committing, make sure you understand that the average return shipping fee is between $250 and $ 350. That cost is your responsibility and fluctuates with rising gas prices.

Installation Costs

Regardless of where you live, having the swing set assembled isn’t going to be cheap. Expect to pay between $800-900 and probably more. You might want to compare a local handyman’s quote against the assembly fee from the Backyard Discovery team.

Remember, it took about three days of labor for us to build our set. If cost is a consideration, you can tackle the job with all the helpful tips we’ve outlined here.


Backyard Discovery has worked toward improving its warranty. You should note that each Backyard Discovery project you purchase has individualized warranties as per the manual. To check on all the warranty issues regarding the Woodridge Elite Swing Set, go to page 96 of their manual.

They offer a 1-year warranty on defects and a 5-year warranty on wood rot. Remember to register your purchase. The warranty doesn’t cover labor costs, regardless of the source. If bad weather damages your swing set, your insurance carrier might cover the cost, not your warranty.

To maximize your Backyard Discovery warranty, check out their maintenance guide.

If you have concerns about warranty particulars, it’s always wise to consult the source.

Backyartisan Rating:

4.35 Stars

Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Wooden Swing Set gets an excellent rating of 4.35 stars. That’s an achievement and speaks to the quality of design and execution. We deducted a handful of points to leave room for improvements—better installment ease, stability and durability, and value for the price are the three main segments.

We think this is a great set, with well-rounded features and excellent scores for overall performance. Your children will enjoy playing and exploring for years, and why we ranked with five stars for playability. It even earned a spot on our list of the best playsets for older kids.

We appreciate your visit to our Backyard Discovery Woodridge Elite Swing Set Review and hope you found the information helpful.

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