How To Clean Outdoor Furniture & Great Pieces To Elevate Your Outdoor Space

When it comes to cleaning your indoor couch cushions and furniture, it’s usually as easy as a quick wipe-down or vacuum. Unfortunately, cleaning patio cushion covers and outdoor furniture isn’t always so straightforward. The changing seasons can leave your patio furniture looking dingy and uninviting, but there are some hacks you can employ to make sure that your patio looks worthy of hosting gatherings all year long.

Along with giving you the low-down on how to clean outdoor cushions on items like chairs, sofas, and dining sets, we’ll let you know how to spruce up all kinds of materials and protect your patio furniture so that it lasts you many more years. Read on for our ultimate cleaning hacks as well as the best outdoor patio pieces you can buy online right now.

How to Clean Outdoor Furniture, According to Materials

Materials you’ll need:

  • Soft-bristled brush
  • Bucket
  • Water
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Material-safe cleaner
  • Sponge
  • Steel wool

Before you get started on any surface, get rid of any loose debris that’s coating uncovered items. This can include, dust, leaves, and spider webs. Use your brush to wipe this away. Hard surfaces that aren’t upholstered can be sprayed down with a garden hose if debris is lingering.

  • Wood: If it’s a soft wood, you’ll want to skip the power washer and use soapy water or a mild oil soap. Combined with a soft sponge or brush, this should do the trick. You can also remove signs of wear and tear by sprinkling dry dishwashing soap and rubbing in with a soft brush. To condition it, rub vegetable oil in afterward.
  • Metal: Using some diluted dish soap  (a quarter cup per gallon of warm water) use a sponge or brush to clean the surface. Rust is the major concern with metal, and signs of oxidation can be removed with steel wool. You can also re-paint it with rust-resistant paint if rust has occurred.
  • Plastic/Resin: The easiest furniture to maintain, it’s best to avoid abrasive cleaners or sponges and instead spray with an all-purpose cleaner and use a damp cloth or soft sponge to wipe down. Surprisingly, shaving cream can also act as a plastic furniture cleaning. Spray liberally and let it set for five minutes before scrubbing it off with a toothbrush.
  • Glass: Use a glass-safe, non-abrasive cleaner like Windex and a microfiber cloth to gently wipe the surface. Remember to wipe the underside as well. 
  • Wicker: Liquid soap and warm water with a microfibre cloth should do the trick for wicker pieces. You can also regularly dust it and use a soft-bristled paintbrush to remove more stubborn debris.  A vacuum set on low can also help.
  • Fabric: Cushions, seat covers, and hammocks can be made from a blend of materials, so dish soap and water are your best bet. Some cushion covers are washing-machine friendly on a gentle cycle, but always air dry. If hand-cleaning, apply cleaning solution and scrub with a brush to work it in. Then rinse with water and finish off with a hose spray.  Air dry in a sunny area, leaning vertically.

Mold and mildew are common issues with fabric-covered patio furniture. If you see surface mold, dry-scrub it and then scrub it with white vinegar. Vinegar is also suitable for regular cleaning maintenance on upholstery and can naturally remove bacteria and stains. 

How to Protect your Patio Furniture

While there are many ways to clean a variety of materials, prevention is the best tactic. Rather than leaving furniture uncovered, protect them by investing in furniture protectors when they’re not in use. This will protect them from dust and inclement weather. Often made from coated vinyl, polyester, or canvas, you can also use a tarp if you don’t want to spend any extra money.

Unless you’re buying a custom-made, matching cover, be sure to measure your furniture beforehand to avoid buying one that’s too small. Additionally, look for covers that are waterproof and can be secured to the furniture with tie-down wraps. Vents are another perk that can protect furniture while allowing some air in, preventing the build-up of mold and mildew. 

Best Outdoor Furniture to Elevate Your Patio

Outer patio furniture offers stunningly minimalist design, easy set-up, and durability in their outdoor furniture that’ll last years. The biggest game-changer is the brand’s patented OuterShell, which is an included protective cover that zips over cushions to protect them from the elements. With these shells with built-in handles, you’ll never have to worry about how to clean your Outer cushions and protect them from poor weather conditions. Cushions are also stain-resistant and water-resistant, with stains washing off quickly and easily – they’re even machine-washable. 

Here are the best compliment-earning statement pieces and accessories to help keep your furniture as clean as possible. Live Outer Furniture’s modular line is well worth the splurge and the first time you sit on an Outer chair, you’ll know what we’re talking about.

This set, complete with the brand’s signature OuterShell protection system, is a must for outdoor dining and comes with six chairs. A huge upgrade from plastic folding chairs, these chairs do fold but are made to last, with memory foam cushions covered by fabric that’s both waterproof and mildew-resistant. Sold in gray and white, it’s a must-have for minimalists. 

This elegant, timeless set is a modern riff on the rocking chair. A unique patio set that’s superb for small spaces and makes an impact without having a large footprint. It’s also a breeze to assemble and has comfortable cushions, made even more relaxing by the rocking chair aspect.  The polyester fabric on the chairs is water-repellant and easy to clean. Whether it’s on a front porch or a backyard, these chairs work great anywhere.

Not everyone has a disposable income that they can spend at Whole Foods, and that’s nothing to be ashamed off. Healthy food purveyor Trader Joes has just as many organic options as their more expensive competitor, allowing you to stock up on other pantry essentials while you’re also searching for your favorite pesticide-free fruits and vegetables.

Want to buy a set of outdoor furniture but don’t want to shell out the hundreds or even thousands required? If you’re on a budget this three-piece bistro set is the best way to start out. The wicker and metal frame on these chairs can easily be wiped down, and so can the matching coffee table. While the wicker is weather resistant and the frame is made from durable steel, you may want to invest in furniture protectors for this set.

5. Floyd Outdoor Set

Yes, the team behind the famous Floyd bed has now come up with a line of cheery, no-frills patio sets made from durable matte powder aluminum. Their look is minimalist with a pop of color, setting them apart from the crowd. Available with two chairs or four, this set is super simple to wipe down, but you can always add your own cushions if you prefer a more plush seat. Available in chic tones like sunny Citrine and Jade, these sets are available in a ton of different configurations and shapes. 

While a wicker outdoor sofa is a classic, this aluminum frame is lightweight and easy to clean, making it a winner in our book. A suitable starter L-sectional to fit in any corner and maximize your space, this sofa has one side with an arm for reclining. The material on cushions is fade-proof, stain-resistant, and water-resistant, with a cushioned level that’s as comfortable as a high-end mattress.

Interested? Shop outdoor furniture Here.

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