Patio furniture might be made for the outdoors, but without care and maintenance, even the sturdiest pieces can suffer from damage from the highs and lows of summer weather. The following three warm weather staples may be unavoidable, but their harmful side effects definitely aren't.
Just as your delicate skin is susceptible to the harmful effects of UV rays, so is your outdoor patio furniture. No matter the material, constant exposure to bright sunlight during summer is going to cause discoloration, bleaching and fading in even the toughest fabrics and materials.
Protect your furniture with weather-proof covers made of vinyl or other water-resistant fabrics, weather- and stain-proof fabrics and materials with appropriate formulas, and consider bringing upholstered items inside during rough weather.
Whether an all-out storm or a simple sun shower, furniture, decks and paving stones can all suffer from damage and staining from heavy downpours. Don't trust the high temperatures to dry out puddles and pools of standing water after a rainfall – left alone it could cause mold to grow, wood to swell or split, metals to rust or plastics to peel.
Treat decks, paving stones, concrete, furniture and upholstery with weather-proof sealants, which will also protect from spills and stains during those fun summer get-togethers.
Not only will this help protect it against sun damage and the elements, but it also keeps it from absorbing the party beverages that will inevitably be spilled on it, like beer and fruit punch. Even if your deck has been sealed in the past, it may need another coat. Deck products are only meant to last a couple of years at most before they need to be reapplied. The ideal time to seal is right after you give it a good cleaning.
Hair styles aren't the only thing suffering from high humidity, your outdoor furniture can also suffer from too much moisture in the air, especially natural woods. Make sure furniture and materials are coated in a good quality water repellent, which will prevent water from soaking into your furniture, and quickening the evaporation of moisture from seeping into the wood and causing it to warp, weaken, or rot.
General Care Tips
How well will your furniture weather the weather? Follow these few simple tips to protect your investment so you and your loved ones can enjoy it for years to come.
- Make sure furniture is in good condition and clean before taking steps to protect it.
- Focus on the frames – most sun damage that occurs to furniture comes from UV radiation, water, and humidity. Protect your frames against the elements to prolong the life of outdoor pieces.
- The best protection against the elements for wood furniture is a good coat of paint, reapplied at least once a year.
- Regularly clean upholstery with soap and water, and dry thoroughly to prevent growth of mold and mildew. Once dry, spray each piece with fabric protector, and reapply at the start of every season.
- When outdoor furniture is not in use for an extended period of time, either cover it or store it in a cool, dry shed or garage.