Over time, weather – good or bad – can do serious damage to your patio furniture. A little wind, a lot of precipitation and too many direct rays can all turn your expensive patio set into a ramshackle pile-o-rust. Regardless of what type of outdoor furniture you use, it’s important to know how to properly care for it in any conditions.
Wondering how to protect outdoor furniture from rain? Need advice on how to clean your outdoor cushions? And does outdoor furniture need to be covered? At Eclipse Shading Systems, we’ve got you covered with simple answers to all your outdoor furniture questions. Protect your outdoor living space and prevent dirt, rot and rust with these simple steps.
1. Keep it clean. Even if your furniture is covered, it’s still going to accrue dirt and rot if you don’t clean it every once in a while. Pick a sunny day and take the time to clean your furniture with mild dish soap and warm water. Use a sponge to break up grime and a hose to rinse away any soap residue. Give it time to dry out before replacing any cushions or moving it back to a shady spot. Note: If you have wrought iron furniture, your set is going to need special care to prevent rust.
2. Protect fabric. Cushions are invaluable for uncomfortable wicker or wrought iron chairs, but they’re sensitive and easily ruined by precipitation. To protect your outdoor furniture fabric (upholstery or cushions), first give it a good wash with mild dish soap and warm water. Once the fabric is completely dry, spray it with fabric protector. Tip: Spray a small piece of fabric first to make sure the protector won’t discolor the furniture.
3. Hold it in place. A slight breeze can be enough to loosen cushions, and a heavy wind can send them flying across the lawn. One easy way to keep all your patio pieces in place is by using Velcro®! Fasten half of the strip onto the chair and the other half onto the bottom of the chair cushion. To make sure your Velcro® halves line up, keep them fastened together when you attach the Velcro® to the cushion. Then, peel off the paper cover so the Velcro® meant for the chair is sticky, and set your cushion down.
4. Use furniture sunscreen. One of your patio furniture’s biggest enemies is a hot, sunny day. Just like fair skin, UV rays can seriously fade your furniture. If your furniture is metal or plastic, apply an even coat of outdoor furniture protector (a paint brush can make this job easier). If your furniture is wood, regular ol’ paint is the best way to protect it from the sun. The pigments in paint work like sunscreen and protect the wood from harm.
5. Plan ahead. It’s not always possible to predict the weather. But, if you know extreme weather is about to hit your area (including a heat wave), go ahead and cover up your furniture or move it into a storage shed. Furniture covers won’t do much against wind, but they will protect against damaging UV rays and torrential rain.
Can you leave patio furniture outside in the rain without a cover? Technically, you can, but if you know heavy downpours are on the way, you should apply a cover to reduce the risk of rust and avoid overly soaked outdoor cushions.
6. Provide some shade. Speaking of damaging UV rays, one of the best ways to protect patio furniture is by keeping it out of direct sunlight, which can cause sun damage and fading over time. By installing an Eclipse awning, you can block 98% of the sun’s harmful UV rays.
Use these tips to keep your outdoor furniture in great shape for years to come. With a few simple steps, you can protect against rust, discoloration and other issues no matter what type of weather you’re dealing with.