After buying the perfect outdoor set for relaxing and gathering around during the summer, what do you do when the weather starts turning cold and wet? Although most outdoor furniture can stay outside all year long, you can extend your furniture lifespan by taking the proper steps to keep it clean and dry this winter. Storing outdoor furniture properly is key to it’s longevity.

When buying your outdoor furniture, it can be an investment. You want that to last as long as possible so it’s a good idea to take the time to give your furniture the proper maintenance and care that it deserves.

Proper Cover

The best way to keep your furniture from fading, warping, cracking, etc. is to find a storage indoors. Sometimes space is limited and that is not an option, so investing in a weather-proof cover is recommended. The goal is to keep water from pooling on your furniture which can cause a multitude of problems such as warping, mildew and discoloration. 

For cushions the best is to keep them inside as well however storing them in airtight bags will do to keep moisture out. Even though sunbrella material is waterproof and does well through all weather conditions, storing them properly when not in use reduces fading and any other maintenance.

When buying Harbour Outdoor furniture, we offer covers that fit your furniture perfectly in light grey or toast beige. Cover your tables, chairs, sofas and lounges with these customized covers so that you can enjoy your outdoor furniture for years to come. 

Before storing outdoor furniture it should be properly cleaned and repaired (if needed) and protected. Although all materials have different methods needed for cleaning and repairing, this is usually an easy task and essential to extend the life of your furniture. 

Cleaning

Before storing or covering your outdoor furniture, be sure there is no dirt, debris or moisture on it. This not only helps keep your furniture in great condition, it makes taking furniture out in the summer, a breeze. Although your furniture should be regularly cleaned, it doesn’t need to be made into a huge ordeal. Depending on the material of your furniture, just follow a few simple steps:

Cushions

For cushions you can remove the covers if possible and launder them. Once dry replace on the cushions and stack in a dry place. If the covers are not removable or for a quick clean, there are fabric cleaners such as the Harbour Outdoor Fabric Cleaner. It removes dirt, oil and pollutants from outdoor fabrics. It is also water-based and environmentally and pet friendly. 

Harbour Fabric Cleaner

Metal

For Metal scrub with soap and water and then rinse. Inspect for rust or other damage. You can use a rust neutralizing primer to treat any rusted areas. 

Wicker

For wicker you can wash the surfaces with a bleach and water solution to clean dust, dirt and mildew build up, rinse well and let dry before storing or covering. You can also apply moisture repellent to the legs to ensure no mildew forms. It is also a good idea to store wicker furniture so that the feet are not on the ground, place on blocks for example. 

Teak

For teak furniture clean thoroughly with a soap and water solution. Another option is the Harbour Outdoor Teak Cleaner which cleans helps to brighten all in one. It aids in restoring weathered teak to its natural hue and is water based and environmentally friendly. 

Treated teak can be left outdoors but if you have space, it’s always a good idea to store indoors to expand the lifespan. 

Harbour Teak Cleaner

Storing Options

Storing outdoor furniture in a shed, garage a self storage unit is ideal for keeping your furniture in top condition through the winter months. When storing it is also important to keep furniture right side up. This way moisture is able to escape through drainage holes in hollow furniture. 

Cushions can be stored in a storage bench, rubbermaid container or a patio storage bag/ air tight bag. This will ensure that cushions don’t accumulate dirt, dust or mildew.

Good quality outdoor furniture is worth the investment for those warm summer nights with friends or family. Keeping your furniture clean and dry over the winter will extend their lifespan so you can get more years of gathering around a table or firepit, lounging by the pool or reading a book on your outdoor furniture.