Protecting Your Patio Furniture from Sun: Tips for Summer Days

Protecting Your Patio Furniture from Sun: Tips for Summer Days

Summer is the perfect time to sip some rosé (or frosé, if that suits your style) and catch up with friends on the back porch. After all, you’ve put in the time, money and effort to create that Pinterest-perfect patio that will make your friends jump at the chance to post a “casual summer day” picture to their Instagram account. So after all of that work (and obviously praise), you don’t want your furniture to be destroyed the first summer, do you? Unfortunately, without proper patio furniture protection, you run the risk of allowing the sun to permanently damage your furniture.

Patio furniture protection

One of the easiest ways to protect patio furniture is through the use of an umbrella. Aside from protecting your furniture, umbrellas can make a great backyard addition because of the wide variety of shapes, styles and colors they come in. In terms of patio furniture protection, umbrellas can help protect some of the more sensitive pieces from the sun’s rays. In addition to protecting the furniture from ultraviolet (UV) rays, umbrellas also add shade to a sunny patio where your sun-sensitive friends and family can take cover.

Outdoor wood furniture protection

The service life of your wood furniture can easily be prolonged. By purchasing UV stain-protected furniture (or applying it yourself), you will help protect that beautiful patio piece. In addition to protecting furniture from the sun’s rays, UV-protective stains actually help protect wood furniture from rotting. Like refinishing an indoor piece of wood furniture, restaining outdoor wood furniture will help revamp its aesthetics while refreshing its guard against the elements. Sounds like the best of both worlds, right?

Whether stained or not, you should consider using an outdoor wood protector to repel moisture and stains.

Protecting metal furniture

Outdoor metal furniture protection

Similar to how you would protect wood, teak, wicker, and other patio furniture, metals need to be safeguarded from the sun as well. By applying a material-specific protectant to your furniture, you will help shield the frame of your furniture from the sun and other elements. When applying any type of protectant, make sure to wear a mask and gloves since you’re working with chemicals! It’s also important to make sure the protectant gets in all of those nooks and crannies of the furniture. If you have an older piece of metal furniture that isn’t rust resistant (most new pieces are rust-free), a metal protector spray will help save your furniture from looking like it’s on its last leg after a few heavy rains.

Specifically for wicker furniture, you’ll want to apply a marine varnish to the piece. This will protect it from almost all of the elements aside from a torrential downpour. This type of varnish, which should be reapplied every two years, can also be used on bamboo and unfinished rattan furniture. In addition to the marine varnish, wicker pieces will last longer if Tung oil is applied to the reeds. This water-resistant oil will help protect your furniture in damp environments that could potentially soften and damage the wicker. This oil should be applied at the beginning and end of the season.

Cushions protection

Cloth cushions for chairs and couches are also not invincible to the elements. Similar to how you can protect upholstered furniture from the sun, your cushions will also need protection since the sun’s rays will directly hit them. Before bringing them outside, apply a fabric protector to help prevent patio furniture damage like stains, mold and mildew. Make sure the protectant you purchase repels moisture and stains.

Finally, at the end of the season, make sure to bring your patio furniture inside for storage. It can be stored in the garage, basement or a storage house — just make sure it’s protected from the harsh winter! Never store fabric cushions or upholstered outdoor furniture in plastic bags — this will prevent the cushions from being able to breathe, thus creating an environment that is ideal for mold and mildew.  True outdoor furniture and cushion covers are generally made with synthetic, high-grade polyester that helps prevent mildew and perspiration buildup while in storage. Even throughout the summer — if you see that a week might be abnormally hot, throw some furniture covers over the pieces to protect them.

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