6 Secrets You Didn’t Know About Cleaning Outdoor Furniture

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If you have an outdoor seating area, you’ve probably already realized that your outdoor furniture gets dirtier quicker than your indoor furniture. Dirt and other debris gather on furniture, especially after storms and on windy days. And if the furniture is regularly exposed to rain or moisture, you might have problems with mold, rot, or rust.

If you’re not careful about maintaining your outdoor furniture, you might find your furniture deteriorating quickly. However, with routine cleaning, you can keep your outdoor furniture looking great for years to come. Here are some tips you’ll want to keep in mind.

Take furniture inside in harsh weather

Even if your furniture is marketed as outdoor furniture, that doesn’t mean it can’t get dingy and disgusting if left outside during heavy storms and harsh winters. If you want to keep your outdoor furniture as nice as possible, try to store pieces in a garage or a shed during off-seasons.

If storing the furniture inside isn’t a possibility, look for waterproof covers or at least bring in any upholstered cushions. While bringing furniture inside or covering it up during bad weather can be time-consuming, it helps keep your furniture looking as nice as possible.

Look for all-weather fabrics

If you want upholstered furniture outside, make sure you look for furniture that is covered with an all-weather fabric. This type of fabric is more durable and typically has a special coating on it to help protect it from UV rays and make it water-resistant.

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Most upholstered furniture has cushions that can be unzipped so that the fabric can then be thrown in the washing machine. If the fabric can’t be removed, you will have to scrub it gently with a sponge and warm soapy water, hose it down, then let it dry in the sun. If you prefer to have your furniture professionally cleaned, then there are lots of companies offering upholstery cleaning in London and other cities.

Dealing with stained fabric

If for some reason upholstered outdoor furniture gets stained, the first thing you’re going to want to do is to check the manufacturer instructions. Deep cleaning for upholstered outdoor furniture varies, but the manufacturer should have some general advice.

You might be tempted to try and steam clean outdoor furniture, but this generally isn’t recommended because it can damage some types of all-weather furniture. Speak to a professional before going this route.

Wipe down hard surfaces

Metal, wood, and plastic can all become grimy and dirty over time. Avoid pressure washing outdoor furniture; this can result in paint chipping or wood becoming damaged. Most of the time, all you’ll need to do to get these surfaces clean is to wipe them down with soapy water and then hose them off.

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If you get in the habit of wiping and hosing off furniture regularly, you can prevent a build-up of grime from occurring. At a minimum, you’ll want to do this at least once a year; some households do it once per season.

Vacuum wicker furniture

Sometimes, dirt and debris can fall within wicker furniture, even if you’re regularly wiping and hosing the furniture off. If this happens to you, don’t be afraid to vacuum your wicker furniture! However, you should still wash the cushions of the furniture separately.

Vacuuming your wicker furniture helps to remove dirt from small crevices. Cleaning wicker furniture can be a tedious and time-consuming process. If you find that you still have grime build-up after wiping down with soapy water and vacuuming, you may need to use a toothbrush to help further break up dirt.

Restoring wood and metal furniture

In some cases, you may find yourself needing to restore wood and metal furniture if rot, rust, or stains start to occur. For damaged wood or metal furniture, you’ll need to strip or sand the furniture down.

You’ll then want to apply a new coat of water-repellant stain or paint to the bare surface. Most of the time, it is possible to restore wood and metal furniture if the damage is caught early enough. Keep in mind that rot, rust, and stains on wood and metal furniture can be prevented by bringing the furniture inside during harsh weather.

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Final thoughts

Just because it is outside doesn’t mean your patio furniture needs to look dirty and grimy! You should be able to enjoy your outdoor garden space. While outdoor furniture will never quite look as good as it did when you first bought it home, regular maintenance of your outdoor furniture can help keep it looking as clean and fresh as possible.