How To Make Your Outdoor Furniture Last Longer

Your outdoor furniture can be a large investment and most people can’t or don’t want to have to replace it every spring. Outdoor furniture can last for many years if you take care of it properly. Patio furniture comes in several types of materials and each needs to be cleaned in the correct way.

If you store your patio furniture out of the weather during the winter months, it’s the perfect time to clean it before putting it away. But, to keep it looking it’s best, most manufacturers recommend that you clean it once a month or so.

Most outdoor furniture can easily be cleaned with a little warm water and soap. You can get the furniture much cleaner if you use a pressure washer, but only use PSI from 1200 to 1350 so that you don’t wash the paint right off. The lower pressure you use the better, of course using a pressure washer depends on the materials that your outdoor furniture is made of.

Wicker is very popular for outdoor furniture, but it can get really dirty. Dust and grime flying through the air can get trapped inside all the little holes and be very hard to get out. If the wicker isn’t excessively dirty, you can usually just clean it with a water hose.

If you need more than just water to get it clean, use a mild soap in cold water and a sponge or soft brush. Once you’ve gotten it cleaned, allow it to completely dry then apply a coat of paste wax to retain the shine and help it resist water. Wicker should at least be well covered during the winter months, but it’s best if you can store it in a shed or garage.

If you have wood furniture that has been varnished, soapy water will generally clean away all the summers dirt. Make sure that you rinse all of the soap off of the furniture and let it thoroughly dry. Wooden furniture also needs to be stored inside through the winter, the damp, cold weather can cause it to start rotting pretty quickly.

Hammocks and other items made of fabric such as chairs, can almost always be washed in the washing machine. Make sure that you use cold water to minimize shrinking. You can also place the fabric back on the furniture frame to dry to keep it from shrinking. Wash fabric items on the gentle cycle, with a mild detergent and you can add a little bleach to white items. Clean the frames depending on the material and store fabric items indoors.

The umbrellas on your patio table can be cleaned with a soft brush and mild soap in cold water. Umbrellas require a little extra care as their joints will also need oiled. You can use a spray lubricant, but you have to be extra careful to not spray any on the fabric. Just use enough oil as needed for the shape that the joints are in, if they’re really stiff and looking like they’re starting to rust, apply several coats of oil over a few days.

Always remove acrylic furniture cushions before cleaning them. And, only spot clean them if you can. Some soapy water and a soft brush or sponge usually will be sufficient to remove the dirt. When you store your cushions for the winter, never place them in plastic bags, it will cause them to mildew and rot.

Some newer patio sets and outdoor furniture pieces are made of resin. Resin requires less maintenance than any of the other materials. You can usually just spray the piece with a water hose, but if you have any scuff marks, use a soft cloth with a gentle abrasive to remove them. If there’s any mildew, add about one cup of bleach to a gallon of water and two cups of soap.

If you have wither iron, steel or aluminum outdoor furniture you can generally clean it with just soap and water. Most newer metal furniture is treated to be rust resistant. But, if the set or pieces you have weren’t treated or their older pieces, you can apply some paste wax to restore the shine and protect them form moisture.