How to clean garden furniture


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Properly maintaining and cleaning your garden furniture will help keep it in good condition year after year. And if you’ve spent money on high-quality wooden furniture, you’ll undoubtedly want to get the most out of it. Cleaning garden furniture is a quick and easy job that you can do just before summer starts to make the most of good weather.

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What to use to clean garden furniture

There are a few different ways you can clean your garden furniture.

  • Specially formulated garden furniture cleaner removes the build-up of dirt and can get rid of moss and algae while gently cleaning your wood
  • You can make a cleaning solution with household detergent and warm water
  • Or use a mixture of vinegar and bicarbonate soda for an organic cleaner

One thing we don’t advise using is a pressure washer.

While this might get the job done quickly, it can damage your wood and potentially strip away any protective coatings. Your furniture will then be vulnerable to rain and rot, undoing your hard work.

How to clean wooden garden furniture

This method works on any type of wooden garden furniture, whether it’s oak, teak, or mahogany.

You can tackle cleaning your furniture in phases.

First, wipe away cobwebs, dust and surface dirt with a sponge or a stiff brush.

If you’re cleaning your furniture on a surface other than paving, lay down a sheet to protect your grass and plants from absorbing any harmful chemicals.

Apply your cleaning product, focusing on a small patch at a time. Work in a circular motion, removing stubborn spots and rinsing with water as you go.

If your wood is stained, you will need to use a stronger cleaning solution to get them out. If that doesn’t work, you may need to use a wood stain or oil to cover the mark.

How to clean cast iron furniture

Cast iron furniture is often shaped and wrought in intricate designs, so dirt can get in all the little nooks and crannies.

First, use a soft-bristled brush to get rid of surface dirt and cobwebs. Test the bristles on a small hidden part of your furniture before you begin to make sure it doesn’t scratch the iron.

After you’ve brushed away the surface dirt, use a soapy bucket of water and your brush to clean the cast iron. A toothbrush is handy for really small intricate areas.

If you have spots of rust, you need to sand these areas down to remove as much rust as you can. Then, treat it with special rust-resistant paint.

How to clean plastic furniture

Plastic furniture only needs a warm soapy bucket of water and a sponge to clean.

You could even use a vacuum to get in any joints and clean up all the crumbs and dust.

How to store garden furniture

Storing your garden furniture in winter will help keep it in better shape for longer. It also means you probably won’t have to spend as long cleaning it when summer arrives!

If you can dismantle your furniture, it will be easier to store – especially if you’ve not got much space. Take it apart after you’ve cleaned it, and wrap it in a waterproof sheet and keep in your garage or shed.

If you can’t take your furniture apart, clean it and wrap it in a waterproof sheet or large zip-up bag and store it somewhere dry.

Cushions and soft furnishings can be kept out the way indoors or in a waterproof storage trunk.

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