Prolonged exposure to the elements will affect outdoor furniture. So, caring for and maintaining outdoor furniture is important to ensure its longevity and appearance. Exposure to various weather conditions, dirt/dust and wear & tear, so proper care can make a significant difference. Here are some tips to help you care for and maintain your outdoor furniture:
- Choose the Right Materials: When purchasing outdoor furniture, opt for materials that are specifically designed for outdoor use, such as teak, cedar, aluminum, wrought iron, resin wicker, or outdoor-grade fabrics. These materials are more resistant to the elements and require less maintenance.
- Regular Cleaning: Regular cleaning is essential to prevent dirt, pollen, bird droppings, and other debris from accumulating on your furniture. Check manufacturer’s recommendations. Use a gentle soap and water solution and a soft brush or cloth to clean surfaces. For stubborn stains, you can use mild detergent or specialized outdoor furniture cleaners. Rinse thoroughly with water afterward.
- Protective Covers: Consider using protective covers when your furniture is not in use, especially during harsh weather conditions or when you’re not using it for an extended period. Covers can help shield the furniture from direct sunlight, rain, and dust.
- Umbrellas and Shade: If your outdoor furniture includes umbrellas or other shade structures, make sure to close them when not in use, especially during windy conditions. This can prevent damage to the umbrellas and the furniture.
- Storage: If you live in an area with harsh winters, consider storing your outdoor furniture indoors or in a dry, covered area during the off-season. This can significantly extend the life of your furniture.
- Oiling and Sealing: If you have wooden outdoor furniture, such as teak or cedar, you may want to periodically apply a protective oil or sealant to prevent the wood from drying out and to maintain its natural color.
- Cushion Care: If your outdoor furniture has cushions, store them indoors when not in use or during inclement weather. Use mildew-resistant and UV-protected cushion covers to prevent fading and mold growth. Spot clean or hand wash the cushions as needed.
- Avoid Harsh Cleaners: Avoid using abrasive cleaners, bleach, or harsh chemicals, as these can damage the furniture’s finish or materials.
- Regular Inspections: Periodically inspect your outdoor furniture for any signs of wear, loose screws, or structural issues. Address any problems promptly to prevent further damage.
- Sunscreen and Chemicals: Be cautious when using sunscreen, bug spray, or other chemicals while sitting on your outdoor furniture, as some ingredients may cause staining or damage.
By following these tips, you can ensure that your outdoor furniture remains in good condition, providing you with a comfortable and inviting outdoor space for you to enjoy for years to come!