Cleaning Tips For Patio Furniture
Cleaning your patio furniture twice a year is highly recommended to keep it fresh and looking new longer. You should clean your patio furniture at the beginning of the summer season and again at the end of the season, before you pop it back into storage or cover it for the winter season.
Patio furniture is meant for outdoor use so it can handle a good scrubbing. In fact if you keep the dirt, tree sap and spills at bay you can save yourself a bigger cleaning job and prevent stains that cannot be removed.
How to Clean Your Patio Furniture
Check the labels for your patio furniture for recommended cleaning and by all means follow those instructions. If there are no manufacturer guidelines, here are some tips to help you get your patio furniture sparkling in no time.
You will need a garden hose, nylon brush, a bucket of warm water with dishwashing liquid and for cushions add a bit of chlorine bleach to prevent mildew. If you have colorful fabric cushions that might fade or bleed, skip the chlorine bleach. Use an old toothbrush to clean crevices if your nylon brush is too bulky to reach the smaller areas.
Do not use steel wool, wire brushes or other abrasives to prevent scratches, especially on plastics and vinyl. These finishes can be scratched easily and result in permanent damage.
Aluminum patio furniture can discolor and corrode due to oxidation. It looks like pitting or fine grit stuck to the surface. Although it will be tempting, do not use alkaline cleaners like ammonia, trisodium phosphate or baking soda on aluminum. Before you use a harsh cleaner, test it on an inconspicuous area. If the aluminum is discolored due to oxidation clean it with a one to one solution of vinegar and water, pre-test first. The acid in the vinegar will restore the shine of the aluminum.
Patio Cushion Cleaning Tips
One great way to clean patio furniture cushions is to take them to a self service car wash. You will have access to great water pressure, dynamite cleaners and a drainage system. Check the manufacturer’s recommendations to make sure your cushions can withstand this heavy duty cleaning. To protect the cushions apply a light coating of hot wax after you have finished the wash cycle. Dry cushions in the sun for several days to make sure you don’t leave dampness that will encourage mildew. A leaf blower can help you speed up the drying process.
Your patio furniture will stay clean, fresh and look new much longer.