When the weather is bright and warm, we want to be outside more whether it’s dining al fresco or lounging poolside with a good book. To help enjoy our time in the sunshine, comfortable and stylish outdoor furniture can allow us to bring our indoor activities outside and create our own balcony or backyard oasis.
Over time, outdoor furniture can fade with stains and rust marks. Though with some proper outdoor furniture care and storage space, you can help ensure your patio set looks fresh and functional for years to come.
Most outdoor furniture fabrics are designed to be weather and mildew resistant. They could use the occasional gentle wash, especially if you notice any stains on them. Read the instructions on the tags of the furniture to check if they are machine washable. If they are, toss the fabrics in the washing machine on a gentle cycle. If you have any white fabrics, you can add some bleach to help prevent fading. Although they may be washing machine friendly, fabrics may not be dryer friendly so it’s best to leave them outside to dry. When it comes to storing fabric during colder months of the year, bring them inside your home and put them in air-tight bags.
While wicker is considered to be the most durable of all patio furniture, it can still use some TLC, especially if exposed by direct sunlight. To help maintain the condition of your wicker furniture, you can cover it with a tarp when you aren’t using it or keep it under an overhead shelter. To clean wicker, the Spruce recommends vacuuming with a brush attachment to remove dust from crevices and spot-cleaning with a sponge, mild dishwasher detergent and warm water. After, spray it with a hose and let it air dry. For storage, wicker furniture can be brought inside or covered by a tarp.
Wooden outdoor furniture can be cleaned with soap and a wet cloth. Rinse the furniture with a hose and let it dry outside. To help maintain the appearance of wood furniture, you can use a protective sealant to help prevent potential wear and tear. For storage, wood furniture can be placed inside or be covered by a tarp.
Resin furniture can be made from two types of high-quality plastic, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or polyethylene (PE). This type of material is considered to be weatherproof and doesn’t rot easily. To clean it, you can simply spray it with a hose and let it air dry. During winter, resin furniture can be stored inside or be covered by a tarp.
Any metal-framed outdoor furniture made up of aluminum, iron and steel can be cleaned with mild soap and water followed by a rinse with a hose. Since metal materials are capable of rusting, be sure to check the condition of your furniture every few weeks in the summer. A rust converter and primer can help treat rusting. For extra preventative measures, you can apply a thin layer of paste wax to help protect the metal furniture. For storage, you can bring your metal-framed furniture inside or be covered by a tarp.
A patio umbrella for your outdoor space can help you stay cool and covered from the sun. To clean the umbrella fabric, you can check the tag to see if it’s machine washable. If it is, wash it in cold water and use a strong dishwasher detergent. Otherwise, during the summer months you can move your umbrella off to the side and wash it with a soft bristle brush, dishwasher detergent and warm water. Be sure to brush away any dirt or soil. If you notice any tree sap stains, you may need to use a stronger detergent to get the stains out. After washing, rise the soap completely off with a hose and leave it open to dry. For cleaning the frame of an umbrella, you can use mild soap with water and wipe it with a soft cloth. To store your outdoor umbrella, roll it up in a large plastic sheet to help prevent mildew.