Protecting Your Patio Furniture from Rain

Patio furniture is an excellent investment for any homeowner. Besides improving the appeal of your backyard, doing so can also increase the value of your property. It won’t last long if you don’t give your patio set the TLC it deserves. We’ve got you covered regarding what happens to patio furniture when it rains and how to re-dry it and protect it from rain and cold weather.

What happens to patio furniture when it rains

Most people know leaving their patio furniture in the rain is not a good idea. Cushions, in particular, can be quickly damaged by moisture and may never recover if left out for too long. However, many people don’t realize how quickly rain can damage cushions. 

Even a brief downpour can cause irreversible damage, so it’s essential to take precautions when bad weather is forecast. The best way to protect your cushions is to bring them inside or store them in a dry place. 

However, if you don’t have enough space to store all of your cushions, you can also invest in a storage bin with a detachable lid. This will allow you to keep your cushions dry and protected from the elements when they’re not in use.

How to Re-dry Wet Patio Furniture

If your furniture was in the rain, you’d need to take some steps to dry it off and prevent further damage. First, remove any cushions or other removable parts and set them in a sunny, well-ventilated area to dry. If possible, prop them up on a clothesline or drying rack to improve air circulation.

Here are a few pointers to dry your furniture:

  • Start by moving the furniture into direct sunlight. The sun will help evaporate any water that’s still on the surface.
  • If there’s any retained moisture, you can use a low-setting hairdryer to dry it. Slowly glide the hairdryer over the table, avoiding any extended stops.
  • Make sure all your cushions are dry before using them outside again. You can either sun-dry them or dry them with a hairdryer. (Just put them in a zippered bag until they’re completely dry to help prevent any mildew.)

Ways to protect your furniture from the rain

Cover It Up

You can purchase tarp or canvas covers at most home improvement stores. Should you have the budget, you can buy furniture covers specifically designed to protect outdoor furniture from the elements.

Treat It 

If your patio furniture is made of wood, one way to protect it from water damage is to treat it with a waterproof sealant before the rainy season begins. This will help to prevent moisture from seeping into the wood and causing it to warp or rot. Most home improvement stores carry waterproof sealants explicitly designed for outdoor use.

Keep It Covered 

Covering your patio furniture set is a clever tactic and a no-brainer really to keep the rain off of your furniture. If your patio furniture is made of metal, try to keep it covered when not in use to help to prevent rusting and other damage. You can purchase covers at most home improvement stores or make your own out of a tarp or canvas drop cloth.

Store It Indoors 

For fabric-covered patio furniture, wash and store the cushions indoors when not in use. This will protect them from mildew and mold growth. And if possible, try to find a storage area that is dry and well-ventilated. Most basements and attics fit this bill perfectly.

Cleaning and storing your patio furniture for the winter

When the colder weather hits, it’s time to start thinking about how you will store your patio furniture for the winter. But before you put it away, you need to make sure that you clean it properly first. If you don’t clean your patio furniture before storing it, it can lead to mildew and other problems. So what should you do?

Here are some options for properly cleaning and storing your patio furniture for the winter:

  • Remove any debris or leaves from the furniture before cleaning. Cleaning is much more manageable and prevents any additional dirt or debris from getting trapped in the fabric or cushions.
  • A soft brush or damp cloth to clean the furniture. You don’t want to use anything too abrasive as it could damage the finish on the furniture. When removing persistent stains, use a light detergent. Be cautious to thoroughly rinse away any detergent afterward.
  • Make sure to dry the furniture completely before storing it. This will help prevent mildew and other moisture-related problems. Once completely dry, you can move it into a covered area such as a garage or storage shed.

The Complete Guide to Clean Outdoor Furniture

Storing your patio furniture 

Ensure that the furniture is bone dry before storing it. Any moisture left on the furniture can cause mold and mildew to form, which will shorten the life of the furniture. If possible, disassemble any furniture parts that can be taken apart. This will make it easier to store and will help reduce the chance of damage.

Store the furniture in a dry, sheltered area. An enclosed shed or garage is ideal, but if that’s not an option, try to find a spot under a deck or porch where it will be protected from rain and snow. If you can’t store it inside, try to find a shady spot where it will be protected from direct sunlight. 

If you can’t store the furniture indoors, cover it with a waterproof tarp or cover. 

Additional tips for protecting your outdoor furniture

Protect the chairs or apply water sealant, and they'll remain safe in cold and rain.
Protect the chairs or apply water sealant; they’ll remain safe in cold weather. Photo by https://unsplash.com/@ralphkayden

In addition to cleaning and storing your patio furniture properly, there are a few other things you can do to protect it from the elements:

Avoid placing furniture in direct sunlight.

The sun’s UV rays can cause fading and crack over time, so it’s best to keep tables and chairs in shaded areas whenever possible. If you don’t have any shady areas in your yard, consider investing in an umbrella or patio cover to create some shade.

Bring furniture inside during bad weather conditions.

Another method to protect your furniture is to bring it inside during inclement weather conditions, such as rainstorms or heavy snowfall. This will help prolong its life by preventing water damage, rusting, and other issues when furniture is left outside in the elements. 

Inspect furniture for damage regularly and make repairs as needed.

Finally, it’s essential to inspect your furniture regularly for any damage that may have occurred over the winter months. Double-check that all the screws, nuts, and bolts are tight, and inspect for any cracks, breaks, or signs of wear and tear. If you sight any damage, make repairs as soon as possible to prevent further deterioration. 

A further strategy for maintaining outdoor furniture without the inconvenience is to get a customized set of waterproof patio furniture. In this short, Simon from the Norwich Camping & Leisure network demonstrates how the Life Outdoor Living Garden furniture cushions function, enabling water to drain.

Norwich Camping & Leisure. (2020, December 3). Life Outdoor Living Water Resistant Cushions | Garden Furniture [Video]. YouTube. Retrieved September 7, 2022, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqYLWZ_FAeM&t=162s

Conclusion

Now that you know how to correctly clean and store your patio furniture for the winter, it’s time to get a bit of practice! And ensure you take the necessary precautions to protect your furniture from rain, snow, and other elements. Using these tips above, you can help prolong the life of your outdoor furniture. And who knows? You may just be able to use it all through next summer too!

Thanks for reading

Leave a Comment