During the summer and fall months, we treasure being able to enjoy the outdoors. We envision relaxing in the backyard on our comfortable furniture and perhaps soaking up some sun. If this is your first-time purchasing patio furniture, finding waterproof outdoor furniture can be a challenge. We outline five mistakes to avoid so you can make your summer more pleasant.

Today, there is no longer the need to go through the drudgery of getting out every outdoor cushion from storage or worrying about rain. Technological advances in fabric and materials have provided many gorgeous options for furniture that can be out in all weather, whether you want a dining set, coffee table, lounge chair, or patio chair. 

5 Mistakes to Avoid

There are several things to avoid when selecting patio furniture. Most of them are common issues that many first-time buyers overlook or aren’t fully aware of.

1. Purchasing Cushions in the Wrong Fabric

Unless you live in the desert, your furniture will experience the effects of rain unless you take it in every time you are not using it. Moving your furniture around can quickly become cumbersome and unenjoyable. 

If cushions are mistakenly left out in the rain, unless they are sheet plastic (which is not advisable as they are sweaty to sit on), the rain will penetrate the foam and fabric. Finding cushions made of the right materials will allow them to dry and resist mold.

Rain isn’t the only thing to be concerned about. Rain can equally damage furniture. Therefore, purchasing furniture with the proper material will enable you to avoid the frustration of having to move cushions indoors when not in use and create a more enjoyable atmosphere.

There is a push for materials to feel more like linen, cotton, and other indoor fabrics. If you are looking for a manufacturer of all-weather products, consider someone like Sunbrella.

Sunbrella creates outdoor furniture with a fabric lifespan of ten years for outdoor use. Their fibers are fully saturated with UV-stable pigments, making them fade resistant so they will not degrade with sunlight. They also resist mildew and mold. If they are exposed to water and mildew, you can safely bleach them clean. 

Additionally, furniture made with these fabrics can withstand the elements without having to be continually removed. 

Synthetic waterproof outdoor furniture on patio with glass of wine on table beside

2. Investing in Materials that Will Rust or Corrode

While there are vast choices in outdoor furniture, they won’t all withstand the elements or the test of time. What seems like a bargain can quickly turn into a nightmare if it’s not made to last.

When selecting your furniture, consider the maintenance that you have time for. Read the labels and ask questions about how to maintain them. If they cannot ascertain whether the furniture will withstand the weather, it could be high maintenance.

Instead, invest in the following materials. These are extremely durable, and many of them will not rust or corrode with changes in the weather.

Powder-coated Metal. Powder-coated metal is a good choice for your outdoor furniture. It is lightweight, durable, and easily configured. With some manufacturers, it is possible to see rust around the joints in lower-quality material, but you can apply an anti-corrosion coating to prevent this. Check for UV-resistant paint finish as well. It will aid in helping colors look saturated and bright.

Synthetic Rattan and Wicker. This material is frequently used with aluminum frames for armchairs, loungers, dining chairs, and sofas. While natural rattan contains a natural grass fiber, it cannot be left outside all year. It is highly susceptible to mildew and mold. It will eventually rot and disintegrate. 

Those that mimic natural wicker or rattan and are waterproof and fade-resistant are a better choice. The furniture is more durable and can be safely left outside. However, watch for quality variances as some are more durable than others. Make sure the furniture you purchase is of good quality.

Wood. This material is durable if left outside, but to prevent water from penetrating it, you may need a moisture prevention stain. This will prevent water from penetrating the material leading to splitting and expansion. 

Homeowners should search for marine-grade woods like teak, which is ideal for an outdoor space. The best thing about teak is that it doesn’t have to be sealed or stained since it produces natural oils. This keeps the wood in optimal condition.

If the wood is untreated, it will turn grey–which many people love. However, please note that if you seal the wood, it slows the natural oil production of the wood. It ends up relying on a manual application of oil.

Set of waterproof wicker furniture on deck.

3. Buying Inconvenient Furniture

Many people think that you must store outdoor patio furniture when not in use. The convenience of being able to use it at any time is a luxury. When you wake up to a sunny day and consider having a coffee or tea outside, you will enjoy the availability of furniture that can withstand the elements.

4. Not Protecting the Outdoor Furniture

Furniture for an outdoor patio isn’t cheap. If you don’t want to buy new furniture each year, you may need to invest in protecting them beforehand. This may be in the form of protective sprays or building or purchasing an outdoor container for convenience. 

5. Selecting High-maintenance Furniture

You should spend most of your time enjoying your patio – not maintaining your garden furniture. Look for garden furniture that is easy to keep, like teak, metal, cedar, and all-weather wicker. This will withstand anything the environment throws at it. 

Even with regular cleaning, these materials are forgiving and look spectacular for years. Also, look for the best outdoor furniture covers that can be machine washed in case of spills.

Summary

While there are other mistakes to avoid regarding weatherproof outdoor furniture, these are the most important and often overlooked when buying it for the first time. If you follow these simple tips, you can enjoy your outdoor furniture for many years to come.

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