Guide to Cleaning and Caring for Patio Furniture

Outdoor furniture of the highest caliber is made to withstand the elements for many years. That doesn’t mean, however, that some extra care won’t be able to help it last longer and maintain its beautiful appearance. The upkeep of these items needn’t be challenging, but it does call for a knowledge of how to clean and care for various sorts of materials and a dedication to carry it out regularly throughout the year. This article offers maintenance advice for patio furniture, however the best maintenance for your particular goods should always be found in the manufacturer’s handbook.

How to maintain patio furniture

Whatever you do, something will inevitably spill on your patio furniture. Perhaps guacamole is spilled over the cushions of your sectional deck sofa or a glass of wine is knocked over and lands on the dining table of your screened-in porch. These are just a few examples of how people may ruin your perfect outdoor environment. At some time, suntan lotion is going to get wiped onto sun loungers by the pool. Mother Nature also employs several strategies. If you don’t take precautions and clean your furniture frequently, it might get soiled and damaged by wind, rain, sun, trees, pests, birds, and many other things. But different care must be taken with woods, metals, and polymers.

Cleaning advice for wooden patio furniture

The majority of wooden garden tables and chairs are made of hardwoods, which may be cleaned and maintained similarly.

  • Using a soft nylon bristles brush, remove any minor debris.
  • Using a sponge or moist cloth, scrub the surface with lukewarm water and mild household soap.
  • Make use of a microfiber or lint-free cloth to absorb any extra water.
  • Allow the wood to naturally dry out.

You can get away with washing wooden patio furniture once or twice a year if you’re allowing the woodgrain patina (which normally fades to a lighter hue) develop. You’ll need to clean the wood more frequently, treat it with furniture oil, and perhaps apply a thin coat of sealer to keep the wood’s original brown color . The frequency depends on the weather where you live and whether the furniture is protected. Maintenance will need to be done more frequently in regions with drier temperatures or more sun exposure. Spills should be cleaned up very away to prevent any discoloration.

Hardwood lawn furniture with the FSC certification is environmentally friendly, long-lasting, and requires very little upkeep.

Teak

Teak furniture eventually gets a nice silvery gray patina that is just ornamental and not a sign of dryness or a structural flaw. There is relatively little care required because of the natural oils that help maintain this hardwood healthy and resilient in a range of situations. In fact, teak is so resistant to the elements that it doesn’t require winter storage or tarp protection.

Teak may be frequently oiled to maintain its original golden honey gloss. This is excellent if your furniture is indoors, but when it’s outside, oiled teak is more susceptible to mildew and may get uneven colour. Therefore, instead of oiling the teak, you could want to apply a protective sealer, or you might want to do both just to be safe.

  • Give fresh teak furniture a few weeks of outside time.
  • sanitize the wood
  • Put a little layer of sealant on.
  • Before applying a second layer, wait an hour.
  • Wait four to five more hours before using.

Removing the worn-out texture

After the initial cleanings, the pores of some woods may open up, giving the grain a rougher feel. To maintain its smooth surface, you might need to lightly sand it. Aim to inspect for loose joints every spring and tighten as necessary because wood will expand and compress with time.

Shorea

Shorea, also known as Meranti or Balau, is a thick tropical hardwood that resists decay and insects because to its high oil content. Similar to teak, after being exposed to the elements, shorea develops a lovely silvery gray tint. You just need to lightly clean your wood patio furniture once or twice a year if you’re alright with it.

You must oil the wood on a regular basis to maintain its warm reddish-brown color. Before using linseed, teak, or other types of oil or sealer on shorea, be sure to clean and dry it well. Test the oil on a little, inconspicuous spot first to be safe. Before deciding whether or not you like the color, rub it in with a little paintbrush or soft cloth and let the surface dry.

Treating wooden outdoor furniture for mildew and mold

Your deck chairs and tables may develop mold or mildew if you reside in a warm, humid region. Most hardwoods are not harmed by these fungus, but they may leave ugly stains and pose health concerns to people and animals. Despite the frequent recommendations for bleach-based cleaning solutions, some formulas have been shown to damage wood and create discolorations.

You need to step up your game if your wooden furniture still exhibits mold or mildew after a standard cleaning. Use a sponge or soft-bristled brush to apply the resulting solution to the troubled region. Combine the components given below.

  • 1 cup of nitrate
  • White vinegar, half a cup
  • Baking soda, 1/4 cup
  • one gallon of hot to warm water

Sanding will be required to remove any mold that has permeated the wood and is still there. If so, sand the wood using fine-grained paper before refinishing or oiling it.

Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus is a hardwood that is less water-resistant than teak or shorea and has less oil content. Eucalyptus may therefore expand and contract in humid situations and in regions with large seasonal temperature variations, endangering the structural integrity of outdoor patio furniture or deck flooring.

It is advisable to oil and seal eucalyptus with a polyurethane-type varnish a few times a year to prevent cracking, which is the most frequent outcome. In addition to preserving the wood’s strength and guarding it against insects and decay, doing so will also give eucalyptus a rich color and shiny sheen. Before applying 2-3 layers of protective sealant, clean and dry the furniture made of eucalyptus. Two hours should pass between applying each layer before adding the next.

After a rain, be sure to wipe up any standing water to reduce needless moisture contact. Try to keep eucalyptus tables and chairs out of direct sunlight if your patio or outdoor space allows. Over time, the wood fiber might degrade due to UV radiation, resulting in discoloration. When you aren’t using your furniture, you can extend its lifespan and keep it in peak condition by covering it with a vented protective vinyl cover.

Ipe

According to some sources, this South American hardwood is three times as durable as teak and has many of the same weathering characteristics. Ipe furniture will weather from its original dark brown hue to a pewter gray if kept outside. The structural strength of this durable wood will hold up over time despite the visual color loss. Light cleaning will usually be sufficient. However, you may clean ipe with a bit more force than other hardwoods should tree sap or mildew accumulate on the surface. To remove or minimize challenging stains, use a firm brush, light soap, and water. With a hose, rinse off any leftover residue, then allow to air dry.

Oil ipe three to four times a year to maintain its naturally dark color. However, you should let your furniture weather for 30 to 60 days before to the initial oiling. This facilitates the oil’s penetration of the hard wood. Before applying the oil, it might be essential to lightly sand the surface to get rid of any small spots. On ipe sunroom furniture, varnish or wood sealants shouldn’t be used since the filmy covering will immediately flake and peel after application.

If the wood has a few tiny surface cracks or checks, don’t be concerned. As a result of continual exposure to the weather and varying temperatures, this is to be expected.

Oak

Compared to other hardwoods used for outdoor furniture, white oak has a low oil content yet being sturdy, waterproof, and rot-resistant. To maintain its original light or stained color, it must be oiled every year and sealed with external urethane sealer or spar varnish. Restoring the oil content also aids in reducing weather checking, which can happen when the wood is left outside for a long time. White oak will eventually become dark brown or even black if it is not sealed. However, it would be a good idea to wait a season or two before applying one to new furniture. You may also paint white in place of a clear coat that lets the wood’s natural grain come through.

General cleaning instructions for metal patio furniture frames

Metal patio furniture looks fantastic when it’s brand-new, but if it’s ignored and allowed to rust or stain, it can turn into a source of humiliation. Although most frames may be easily cleaned in a same way, every metal has unique properties that require careful handling.

  • Take out any upholstered cushions and accent pillows.
  • Use a garden hose to lightly spray the metal outdoor furniture frames to remove the bulk of the dirt and debris.
  • Utilize a delicate cloth dipped in soapy water to clean the metallic surfaces.
  • Wipe again with clean water after rinsing the towel.
  • Dry using a low-abrasion or microfiber cloth.
  • Pay close attention to any joints and the underbelly. Avoid using any cleaners that include acids, solvents, alcohol, or other abrasives that might damage the surface.

General cleaning instructions for aluminum patio furniture

Although sturdy, metal outdoor chairs and tables need to be powder-coated or otherwise maintained to prevent corrosion from building up (especially along the coasts).

Stainless Steel

Outdoor tables and furniture with hairline brushed steel frames provide a modern, upmarket appearance. But even the smallest stain or discoloration can take away from the elegant appearance. Metal may become soiled and stained due to greasy hands and precipitation.

While furniture constructed of stainless steel of the 316 marine standard will not rust, furniture of the 304 and lower grades that have not been electrostatically polished are prone (particularly in locations with salt air). Fortunately, many of these problems have straightforward fixes to keep your stainless steel outdoor furniture in good condition.

Oily Fingerprints & Smudges – After the imperfections have disappeared, wipe the area with a moist, soft cloth and white vinegar.
Water Marks – Perform a basic cleaning, remove any extra water with a dry cloth, and allow the surface to air dry in the shade.
Rust and corrosion, often known as tea staining –  Use a soft-bristled brush to lightly scrub the surface (against the grain) with a mixture of baking powder and water, and then thoroughly rinse with fresh water.

Removing calcium or lime stains from steel caused by hard water

On metal, water with a lot of minerals can eventually create a white, chalky deposit. These unattractive stains require a little more effort to remove.

  • 25 percent vinegar for stainless steel and 50 percent vinegar for galvanized steel should be combined in a solution with water.
  • Use a spray bottle to apply the solution to the metal or a delicate cloth to gently massage it in.
  • Warm water should be used to rinse and wring out a cloth.
  • Utilize the moist towel to remove the vinegar solution.
  • Use a dry towel to clean the surface.

Zinc-Coated Steel

A zinc oxide coating keeps this matte gray metal from corroding, although it inevitably deteriorates. Regularly cleaning galvanized steel will help to slow down deterioration. Scrub the surface in tiny circular motions with a soft-bristled brush while using hot water and mild dish soap. Clean the surface with water, then use a microfiber towel to dry it.

Removing calcifications from galvanized steel

Alkaline build-up over time can cause galvanized steel to become dull and hazy. The zinc oxide layer that aids in shielding the metal from corrosion may also be damaged by this buildup. There is a simple DIY fix to preserve the protective layer and restore the original finish of galvanized steel.

  • Blend 33% baby powder and 67% milk to create a solution.
  • With the toothbrush, use tiny, circular motions to apply the solution to the metallic surface.
  • Wash off with fresh water.
  • Completely dry with a soft towel.

 Aluminum

Aluminum is simple to work with and is used to make a wide range of unique patio furniture. Despite being sturdy and light, it is more prone to denting than other metals. When relocating metal furniture for storage or cleaning, exercise caution. Dents reduce the protective integrity of any coating and weaken the metal’s structural integrity.

In heavy traffic outdoor settings, powder-coated aluminum patio furniture frequently becomes scratched. Before doing a basic cleaning, it is advisable to get rid of any marks left by shoes, tools, toys, and lawnmowers. Most of the time, non-abrasive liquid cleansers will work. Using a soft cloth and water, gently massage the cleaner onto any scratches. The majority of scuffs should be rather simple to remove, however it could take a few tries.

If the original powder coating has a gloss finish, using baby oil or vehicle wax will keep the sheen. You may repair scratches with touch-up kits, which are frequently sold by manufacturers, or you can spray a clear lacquer on the exposed metal to protect it.

 

Wrought iron

Wrought iron patio furniture items include rich patterns and numerous nooks and crevices. Compared to other metal patio chairs and tables, this makes them a little more challenging to keep clean. You should start cleaning them by first using a vacuum with a little brush attachment to get rid of as much of the loose debris as you can because they tend to accumulate a lot of dust. Use a small nylon scrub brush or toothbrush to clean tight curves and nooks while adhering to the fundamental metal cleaning procedures.

Taking care of wrought iron with patches of rust or peeling paint

You must remove any rust or damaged paint from your wrought iron patio furniture before cleaning.

  • To remove the larger fragments, use a paint scraper to go over the surface.
  • To get rid of rust stains and tiny paint flakes, scrub it with a wire brush.
  • Sand any remaining rust with sandpaper and even out any blemishes on the painted surface.
  • Do a complete cleaning
  • Repaint or seal the metal once again.

After removing loose paint and rust, it’s crucial to repaint or reseal wrought iron as soon as possible. The iron will soon corrode and deteriorate if kept in the open. Before applying a few thin layers of long-lasting enamel paint, use a rust-proof primer. It could be simpler to use spray paint than a brush if the parts are intricate. Polish the iron surfaces with automotive wax and buff with a soft cloth once it has dried to help keep the paint’s gloss.

Caring for plastic outdoor furniture

Plastic can take on a wide variety of forms, textures, and designs and is lightweight and fade-resistant.  Synthetic wood, HDPE, resin and molded plastics are common types.  Additionally, it doesn’t call for the paint or sealants that other materials do. This makes these synthetic polymers  wonderful low-cost alternative for outdoor furniture and easy to maintain. The best way to clean and maintain plastic furniture actually depends on the type of grime that it has.

Rubbing alcohol will usually work just fine, but commercial chemicals ( Goo Gone) may be necessary to remove really sticky spills and drips like tree sap. Once you’ve cleansed the trouble spots, it’s crucial that you promptly rinse these chemicals away, regardless of the solution you use. Your patio furniture’s aesthetic lifespan may be reduced by prolonged contact to the chemicals in some items that fade plastic.

Caring for plastic outdoor furniture

Outdoor furniture made with synthetic all-weather wicker will endure a lot longer than traditional plant-based weaves since it is colorfast and water-resistant.
Cleaning furniture made of braided resin with all-weather wicker
Traditionally, white wicker furniture that was either natural or painted was used for indoor or porch sitting that offered at least some degree of protection from the weather. That was essential since the weave was made from organic materials. But modern synthetic wicker offers all the visual benefits of a natural weave without the susceptibility to precipitation like rain, sleet, and snow. However, complex resin wicker patio furniture may require some more work to clean the nooks and crevices.

  • Remove all cushions and pillows.
  • To remove surface particles, use a soft-bristled brush.
  • The majority of the time, a vacuum with a little brush attachment may be used to remove any extra leaves, twigs, soil, or other debris that may have been entangled in the weave.
  • You may use a high-pressure washer set to a low or moderate setting to remove any remaining small debris that is tangled up in tight or complicated weaving.
  • Once the wicker is clear of surface filth, gently scrub the surface with a hand brush, mild household soap, and warm water to remove any stains or coatings left behind by pollen, berries, bird droppings, and general grime.
  • To guarantee that there is no soapy residue left, thoroughly rinse the woven material.
  • If possible, let the furniture air dry in the shade.

Mold and mildew spots on resin patio furniture removal

Due to their low cost, plastic outdoor chairs and tables are frequently disregarded when it starts to rain or the weather changes. On furniture, however, allowing standing water to build up and persist can result in the growth of mold and mildew. Fortunately, eliminating these fungi growths is not too difficult.

  • Fill a plastic spray bottle with a quart of water and 1/4 cup of white vinegar.
  • Spray the stained area liberally.
  • Give the solution 20 to 30 minutes to set.
  • Clean up the furnishings by rinsing it with water.
  • Air dry or use a towel to dry.

Simple cleaning procedures for plastics

Plastic or resin-molded patio furniture is lightweight and requires little upkeep, but it becomes dirty easily. Plastic tables and chairs deteriorate in direct sunlight and frequently take on a powdery look, in addition to the usual filth and grime from ordinary outdoor use. As a result, there are a few more procedures necessary to clean and restore the new-looking plastic.

  • Clear the area with a brush of any debris.
  • Make a basic solution of water and mild dish soap.
  • Clean the furniture by dipping a sponge, soft-bristled brush, or cloth into the soapy water.
  • To remove the plastic’s gritty surface, using baking soda on a moist sponge and rubbing it in will help.
  • Repeat the process, rinsing the sponge after each application, until the entire piece is coated.
  • Clean up the furnishings by rinsing it with water.
  • Dry it in the sun or with a towel.
  • Apply auto paste wax with a rag to bring back the plastic’s luster.
  • Allow it to dry for about five minutes.
  • Use a gentle towel to buff it
  • Avoid the urge to use scouring powder or steel wool to clean up spills or stains since these abrasives will harm the plastic’s surface.

White Plastic Cleaning Method

All outdoor furniture becomes soiled, but white plastic patio chairs appear to make an additional effort. White resin furniture might still have a dingy appearance even after some hard work and thorough cleaning. You’ll need to put in a little additional effort if you want to truly restore the brightness to your white.

  • Clean the area as usual and dry the surface.
  • Put a pair of rubber gloves on.
  • To a gallon of water, add a few teaspoons of powdered oxygen bleach (one cup of bleach for tougher stains)
  • Scrub the surface with a clean brush or sponge dipped in the bleach mixture until the dirt is removed or stops fading.
  • Give everything a few minutes to settle.
  • Clean the plastic by rinsing it with water.
  • Use a towel to dry it.
  • Using a cloth, apply vehicle wax.
  • Allow it to air dry for about five minutes.
  • To restore the shine, buff the surface using a microfiber cloth using tiny circular strokes.

Tabletop Materials – Maintenance advice for patio tables

As temps increase, more family and friends will gather outside to eat and drink. No matter how careful you are, accidents will inevitably occur, necessitating frequent cleaning of your tables. To fit your décor style, tabletops may now be constructed from a range of materials.

High-tech designs and elegant scratch-resistant materials, such HPL High-Pressure Laminate, are used in contemporary outdoor dining sets (HPL). This modern material is robust, bacterial-resistant, and difficult to nick. It is a fantastic option for upmarket outdoor settings because of its sophisticated appearance and ability to withstand all types of weather. It often requires little upkeep as well.

  • Use a soft cloth or moist microfiber to clean the surface.
  • Most stains may be removed with water and regular dish soap.
  • Repeat the cleaning using a cloth and just fresh water.
  • Remove all liquid by wiping and allow to air dry in a shady area.

Avoid using scouring pads or abrasive powders because they can dull or scrape high-pressure laminates, which makes the tabletop more prone to stains in the future. A small amount of concentrated detergent and a soft-bristled brush can be used to remove tough stains. Greasy marks can be removed with glass cleaners that contain vinegar or ammonia. Although spills and stains should be dealt with right away, HPL tabletops should be cleaned two to three times each year.

Tempered Glass Glass tabletops are comparatively simple to maintain and clean. It may take a bit more work to remove insect and bird droppings, but avoid using steel wool or any other abrasive pad.

  • Use a microfiber cloth and light soap or detergent to clean the surface.
  • Using a wet towel or rinsing with water
  • Air-dry the table.

Every two weeks, wash the top of the table, and once a month, wash the bottom. Be careful while placing or moving anything on the glass since they might create permanent scratches. Lime deposits may occur if certain things are left in one location for a long period of time. To get rid of these deposits, clean the area with a soft cloth or paper towel after wiping with a mild vinegar solution or glass cleaner.

Modern ceramic tabletops are made from incredibly thin sheets that are scratch- and weather-resistant yet still strong. As a result, they require just 1-2 cleanings each year and are generally easy to maintain (excluding spills).

  • Using a soft cloth or sponge, clean the surface with water and mild dish soap.
  • It is possible to remove stubborn stains with a small amount of household detergent.
  • After that, wipe the table with a dry, clean cloth.

Removable Table Tops

Some outdoor tables have tops that can be taken off, making it simpler to move or clean the table from both sides. Although these substantial flat pieces are sturdy, if held horizontally at the ends, they might fracture in the center. If you must move a tabletop (particularly one that is thin or made of porcelain), hold it upright and support the bottom edge. The materials should be handled by at least two individuals because some of them might be fairly heavy.

Slate Tabletops

Slate tabletops are beautiful and durable with appropriate care. Slate that hasn’t been sealed at least twice a year will discolor since it’s permeable. By making the tabletop more resistant to stains and spills that may seep into the material, this will increase its lifespan.

  • Make sure the tabletop is dry and clean, then lightly dust it.
  • Place the table away from the sun’s direct rays.
  • Apply the sealant to both sides of the slate with a lint-free cloth, brush, or roll.
  • Clean up any extra sealant.
  • Allow the surfaces to dry for about three hours.

After being treated, a slate tabletop is quite simple to clean.

  • Warm water, a soft, damp cloth, and a light detergent should be used to clean the surface.
  • The cloth should be often wrung out and re-wetted to prevent you from merely spreading the filth.
  • Spraying them with a solution of hydrogen peroxide and water will get rid of little spots.
  • Lightly clean the area with a brush or pad with soft bristles.
  • Allow the air to dry.

Regular use can cause slate to readily scratch or chip. Hard-edged objects should only be placed or moved carefully on the table to avoid scratching it. By softly sanding the area using fine-grade sandpaper, small scratches can be eliminated. After cleaning and dusting, reapply sealant to the area.

Getting stubborn stains out of slate

There are a variety of techniques to clean stains off slate worktops or tabletops, depending on what was spilled. Use of vinegar or other cleansers containing acidic elements may cause the slate to deteriorate. Reapply sealant after treating the isolated region and doing regular cleaning.

Oily spots – Hydrogen peroxide and flour paste overnight wrapped in plastic wrap
Tea and coffee stains -Hydrogen peroxide (1 tablespoon) with ammonia (3-4 drops)
Ink stains – use nail polish remover

Outdoor Furniture Fabric Care

Patio furniture used to be made for a straightforward backyard barbecue on a Weber grill or an afternoon spent lounging by the pool. Most chairs were unstructured, foldable, or had rubber/vinyl straps. A movement toward holistic architecture and fabrication advancements have produced more opulent, upholstered items that blur the boundaries between indoor and outdoor areas. These lounge chairs, outdoor sectional couches, and dining chairs have cutting-edge designs and high-tech fabrics that hold up well in a range of environments. While the majority require very little maintenance, there are a few suggestions that help preserve their pristine great condition.

Durable, fade-resistant synthetic textiles and quick-drying foam are used for the cushions of high-end patio furniture.  These are specially formulated materials that are engineered for outdoor longevity.

Sling Mesh

The majority of premium patio sling furniture is comprised of polyester mesh with a PVC coating. This durable synthetic fabric is very simple to clean, stretch- and tear-resistant, and durable. The holes in the weave enable the fabric to dry rapidly while the resin coating guards the woven fibers from deterioration and fading from the sun and weather. High-end outdoor brands frequently use the sling fabrics. Every three months, clean the sling pool furniture to stop mold and mildew from forming.

  • When cleaning, keep the slings attached to their frames.
  • With a cloth or whisk brush, remove any dirt or other organic material from the surface.
  • Use warm water and a liquid dish soap mixture.
  • Directly cleaning the mesh using a sponge or microfiber cloth
  • Before using a soft-bristled brush to gently wipe the surface, give the material time to absorb the soapy water.
  • Don’t forget to wash the slings’ backs and bottoms as well (you might need to set the furniture on a towel to prevent the frame from getting scratched by the ground)
  • Rinse the material with fresh water.
  • Air-dry the mesh sling.

Vinyl Webbing and Straps

For flexible comfort, some outdoor furniture has parallel roping or crisscrossing straps. The open weave is frequently a combination of polypropylene, polyester, and other materials,  in high-end seats. Remove any debris that may have been stuck in the weave’s gaps or where straps overlap before washing synthetic webbing. Otherwise, cleaning it involves using mild soap and water, moderate scrubbing, and a clean rinse, like sling furniture. Avoid using metal-bristled brushes or cleansers with alcohol, solvents, or acids.

Chair Upholstery & Pillows

Cushions and pillows for upholstered outdoor seats are covered with UV and weather-resistant fabric. The coverings are often made of acrylic, polyester, or vinyl threads and coated to guard against fading and water damage. While some covers are sewn shut, others include zippers or other closures that let you remove the foam contents. Look for Sunbrella patio furniture with  QuickDry foam if you want your outdoor couch and loungers to survive for a long time.

Some detachable coverings can be washed in a machine, but hand washing them is quite simple.

  • Remove the foam core.
  • Clear the fabric of any debris.
  • Spray it with warm, soapy water until thoroughly saturated, or just submerge the cover in a pail of soapy water.
  • To get rid of light stains, gently clean the cover from seam to seam with a soft-bristled brush.
  • To get rid of tough stains, clean both the interior and outside of the fabric.
  • Wash off with fresh water.
  • Before re-inserting the foam core, let the cover dry completely in the air.

It’s a little bit different with non-removable covers, but it’s still really simple.

  • Utilizing a sponge, apply the soapy water to the cover’s outside.
  • Work the soap bubbles into the cloth by rubbing the surface.
  • The detergent residue can be removed by using a high-pressure hose.
  • Place the cushions on an angle so they can air dry.

Cleaning synthetic fabric stains left by mold and mildew

The majority of expensive outdoor upholstery textiles are resistant to the formation of fungi, but mildew and mold can develop over time if moisture and organic materials are not routinely wiped off.

  • Make a solution using a gallon of water, one cup of bleach, and one fourth cup of mild detergent.
  • Spray the stain and give the fabric about fifteen minutes to absorb it completely.
  • Clean the entire region with a soft-bristled brush, sponge, or cloth until the stain is gone.
  • The cloth should be carefully rinsed to remove any leftover soapy residue
    until the cover is completely dry and free of moisture.

Additional strategies for protecting and caring for patio furniture

Making every effort to extend the lifespan of your high-end outdoor furniture sets makes sense when you have invested good money in them. The first step is to keep things clean and maintain them all year long. The next step is to safeguard your items while they are not in use, such as during bad weather or the chilly winter months.

Additional methods to care for and safeguard outdoor furniture include furniture covers and storage

Individual pieces of furniture or complete patio sets can be protected with waterproof coverings.

Furniture covers – All-season waterproof protection
Consider longer-term protection after you’ve cleaned your patio furniture components and sealed them to prevent wear and tear from regular usage. When not in use, furniture covers are an excellent method to protect outdoor furniture including couches, tables, and chairs from the elements and fading UV radiation. If you store outdoor items indoors or in protected places throughout the winter, covers can also help keep dust and pests at bay.

Protective coverings are often made of coated vinyl, canvas, or polyester and are waterproof. As long as the furniture fits inside the covers’ dimensions, generic covers are made to protect different types of furniture. Even modest patio furniture sets may be shielded by a large tarp. In most cases, they offer sufficient protection, but depending on how well they fit, they might have problems. Manufacturers frequently provide custom-tailored coverings to match certain collections and suit individual pieces of furniture. Maximum protection is provided by their snug fit, however they are often more costly than their generic alternatives.

Whether you select a standard or customized cover, make sure to pick one that is waterproof, can be fixed securely, and has enough airflow. Protective coverings that can resist rain, sleet, and snow are crucial since furniture that is always damp might develop mildew, rust, or wood rot. Good patio furniture covers include a way to fasten the cloth to the pieces. Elastic straps grasp the furniture components while tie-downs are wrapped around the legs. Choose coverings with built-in vents to let some air through while keeping the furniture protected from the outdoors. Keeping moisture from escaping can cause mold to grow, therefore it’s crucial to allow your outdoor furnishings to air.

Protect your furniture from insects, birds, and rodents with outdoor pest control

Patio furniture is susceptible to harm from pests as well as exposure to the weather. Bugs, birds, and other little fuzzy creatures are everywhere in gardens, backyards, and other outside areas seeking for food and shelter. The lifespan and visual appeal of your outdoor lounge and dining sets are both enhanced by protecting them from these pests.

These pesky pests may be thwarted by taking simple maintenance measures like keeping goods clean and covered while not in use. Additionally, keeping the area clean of trash, leftover food, and standing water can lessen their attraction to your location. However, there are certain ways to deal with some insect kinds.

Insects

Patios offer a variety of areas for insects to nest or live. In outdoor wicker chairs, tables, and sofas, nooks and crevices are particularly attractive to crawling and biting insects. Additionally, heat-producing lights attract a variety of flying insects that may bite you and your visitors or simply be an annoyance.

Signs – Check the corners where the legs and frames meet for spider webs and egg sacs. Don’t forget to look below chairs because many insects like wet, dark, out-of-the-way areas. On or around tables where food and beverages are often served, you could also notice white or brown specks (bug droppings), light debris, or clumps of dirt or mud. During the day, flying insects like flies, bees, and mosquitoes are more easier to see, but at night, you may also find a few dead ones under scorching lamps.

Solutions – Aside from routine cleaning, remedies for preventing bugs include using odors that repel them. Mint, lavender, rosemary, and eucalyptus plants or essential oil sprays are excellent choices since they not only keep insects away but also fill your outdoor space with enticing fragrances. Marigolds are a flower that blooms and works, as do cedar chips, which repel spiders. Flies and mosquitoes will be kept at bay by burning citronella lamps, and the heat that some flying insects are attracted to will be removed by converting to LED lighting.

Birds

While the gentle chirping of our feathered friends may enhance the pastoral mood of your patio or backyard, they may also be rather bothersome, cause possible damage to your outdoor furniture, and be quite obnoxious. Fortunately, there are several methods to prevent them from sabotaging your upcoming barbeque or informal gathering.

Droppings are a surefire indicator that you have an avian problem. Not only is bird waste unattractive, but if it isn’t cleaned up right away, it can harm fabrics and finishes in the long run. Additionally, their talons may leave scratches on the chair frames or pierce holes in the fabric.

Solutions – You may deter birds by frightening them, making them feel uncomfortable, taking away their favorite spots, or enticing them away. Smaller birds will be deterred from entering your outside space by predator decoys like bogus owls or eagles. To prevent the bothersome birds from becoming accustomed to them in one location, be sure to relocate them sometimes. Because birds are scared of bright and moving objects, reflecting pinwheels, hanging miniature mirrors, CDs, or metal wind chimes are effective bird deterrents. The chimes and ultrasonic gadgets both emit noises that make people feel dizzy. Like insects, birds are sensitive to certain odors. Peppermint and chili pepper sprays or plants are effective. By cutting neighboring trees and bushes, you can get rid of places where birds could nest, perch, or hide. You might also put a bird feeder distant from where you want to have guests or eat.

Rodents

As they gather supplies for their nests, gnawing rats may severely destroy patio furniture with their claws. Financial repercussions result from this devastation as well because manufacturer warranties typically do not cover it. Additionally, raccoons, mice, and squirrels can spread illnesses to your family and pets. For both bugs and birds, many of the same deterrents also work for rodents.

Signs – Chewing on cushions and tearing apart wicker fibers are the most common rat damage. The fine fibers and foam filling imitate the organic materials that they usually utilize to construct and line their nests. Around bird feeders, you could also discover feces or signs of their attempts to get at the seeds.

Solutions – These tiny rodents can be scared away by hawk and owl decoys, but, just like with birds, you must switch up the location and/or kind of predator. To make your backyard a bit less attractive, plant or spray citronella, mint, lavender, red pepper, or eucalyptus. You may even burn citronella. If rodents do decide to enter your property, use solar-powered ultrasound devices or motion-activated sprinklers to deter them. If you have a dog, let it run around the house and bark sometimes each day. They either scare off mice and squirrels or give them pause. Ascertain that any bird feeders are inaccessible to little, nefarious paws or mouths. By pinning corn cobs to trees or fencing far from where you place furniture for the living room or dining room, you could entice rats away.

You could need to turn to store-bought insecticides and pesticides or expert services if these non-invasive remedies are insufficient to get rid of your pest issue. Additionally, there are more drastic methods like surface spikes and predator urine.

Shelter and Storage: Protecting furniture from bad weather

Bring your patio furniture inside during the rainy season or when the temperatures begin to fall during the Fall. Your outdoor furniture’s lifespan might be significantly increased with a little cover. Make sure that the components are clean and dry before storing them, whether that be under your deck, in a storage shed, in your garage, or in the basement.

You should look for a location that is cold and dry since warm and humid environments might cause mildew. To protect the furniture from damage from snow, ice, or standing water, you should ideally lift it off the ground. To prevent dust from building up on the furniture, use a drop cloth or cover. Instead of placing pillows in plastic bags, use cloth bags or vented storage boxes.