How to Protect Your Garden Furniture
January 7, 2019
Unpredictable weather can cause extensive damage to outdoor furniture when subjected to rain, sunlight, cold wind and humidity.
Wood, steel or iron pieces are susceptible to such wear and tear, especially when the materials haven’t been treated with any protective sealant, coating or paint.
And even when the outdoor furniture has been treated, it takes only one or two years before reapplications or repairs are needed.
It’s essential to protect your outdoor furniture; to keep them as functional and attractive for as long as possible, follow these handy tips.
Keep it covered
The easiest way to make sure your pieces stand up to the rain, sun and wind is to cover them properly.
There are coverings made specifically for outdoor tables, garden umbrellas or patio heaters. Otherwise, a large piece of tarpaulin also does the job; drape it over your furniture to cover all surfaces.
This isn’t guaranteed to keep the rain off, but it’s a massive help.
The most effective method to protect your garden furniture is to store it in the shade, like a garage, covered patio or storage area.
If you have an open patio or terrace, consider investing in an awning or sunshade, not only to deflect rain but also to minimise heat and UV damage.
Keep it clean
This is one step you shouldn’t skip. Dirt, dust and grime quickly can accumulate on furniture left outdoors, and if left unchecked, can do a lot of harm.
Pieces in storage easily build up mould and mildew too, so it’s best to check all the furniture you have covered, and out in the open, at regular intervals.
Different materials require different types of cleaning. An aluminium table, for example, only needs to be hosed down with mild soap and water, but a wooden bench should be thoroughly wiped and inspected for resealing or repainting.
Regardless, the first step in cleaning your outdoor furniture is to remove all cushions and coverings and wash separately.
Carefully examine your pieces for rust spots, cracks, chipped paint, and other structural or cosmetic damage.
For cushions and coverings, use manufacturer-recommended cleaning solutions to deal with stains and remove mildew.
Then, allow them to dry properly before putting them back on the furniture. If you’re not sure about how to clean your outdoor furniture, you can always ask the manufacturer or the shop you bought the items from.
Wood and wicker
Wooden outdoor furniture is notoriously high-maintenance. Moisture and UV rays easily break down wood, the main types of damage being warping, cracking and wood rot.
Hardwood furniture, like redwood, cedar or teak have natural protective qualities to help them resist rain and water damage – to a point. Softer wood furniture, however, has to be chemically treated to prevent damage.
Ultimately, all kinds of wood furniture can succumb to rot if you don’t give it enough attention.
To keep wooden furniture looking great for years to come, check if any coatings have worn off. Then, give the pieces a light sanding and an application of protective oil or stain, in a selection of different colours and finishes.
Regularly doing this kind of maintenance will keep your wooden outdoor furniture as beautiful as the first time you bought them.
Opt for aluminium
Preventive maintenance is the key to long-lasting outdoor furniture. But, if you’re looking for something that doesn’t require too much time and effort to maintain, aluminium outdoor furniture is the answer.
Sturdy enough to withstand any weather condition, aluminium pieces only need to be washed down occasionally and brought into storage when not in use to lengthen their lifespan.
Aluminium outdoor furniture is cheaper than other kinds, and won’t succumb to structural damage, making it perfect for coastal homes and beach houses.
In addition, aluminium is so versatile – check out these Colonial Castings outdoor furniture designs to see for yourself. From ultra-contemporary to vintage and classic, you can create your ideal outdoor space, without worrying about damage.