Assess the general state of the swing set. Are some parts rusted out? How many need to be replaced? Does it simple need a good polish? These are the questions to ask yourself during the initial stages. Make a list of all the parts that need help, need replacing, or need polishing. Reference this list as you move through the cleaning stages. You will also use this list to create a budget for this project.
Using the list you made, turn it into a budget. Find the parts you need either online or at toy stores, home and garden stores, etc. Write down their prices and shop around until you find the cheapest options. Add them up to come up with a total amount of expenses. Can you do this right now? Should you wait until later? This budget will tell you.
As an alternative, if the total expense amount is high, consider simply buying a new swing set. Repairing a metal swing set can be costly, while buying another swing set made of plastic or wood helps save money. Look around for the best model at the best price before making a decision.
If you decide to repair it, start by spraying down the swing set if it is dusty or dirty. Next, remove all the swings so that the metal frame remains. If you cannot remove larger parts, like seats, rods, etc., just cover them with tarp or sheets. Sand all the areas that are rusty, and then carefully spray them with spray paint in order to improve appearances. Finally, reinstall all working parts.
Repairing a swing set is often a simple matter like spray-painting any rusted parts and replacing parts that are worn out. What if an important piece like a hinge is rusted? That is when you need to consider replacing the entire swing set in order to cut down on expenses. It is not worth repairing a set if you can replace it for much less money. To do otherwise would not make much sense, economically or practically. Repairing a swing set does not have to be expensive if you shop around for the best parts beforehand.