Before purchasing your outdoor patio furniture, it is necessary to research the best materials beforehand. No matter whether you are looking to establish a lavish outdoor space in your patio or create one in an area with a tiny footprint, you will need to know what to expect with different kinds of materials like synthetic material, wood, and plastic. We outline what is the best outdoor furniture material for your patio.
Things to Consider
You will need to consider what you are using your outdoor patio furniture for prior to buying it. You should also think about how it should be maintained and where it will be stored in the off-season. There are many options when it comes to material and wood. Styles range from traditional, durable metals, eco-friendly furniture, and a classic rattan look.
In addition to the overall visual appeal, you need to be aware of how to maintain the material. If you want your investment to last, you may have to do annual maintenance prior to storing it. Maintenance is especially important if you don’t have a storage location as you’ll need to protect it from poor weather conditions.
You will further need to think about the furniture’s weight as anything that is light may topple over during a strong wind compared to a heavy metal which will remain in place.
Our handy guide will help you navigate through the process of buying your next garden furniture set as we outline the benefits and detriments of commonly used materials.
What Is the Best Outdoor Furniture Material?
The best outdoor furniture material for you may depend on longevity, appearance and style, or price. Therefore, you need to know what factors will influence your decision prior to making a purchase. This guide will assist you in selecting the best style for your space.
This Southeast Asian material is reddish gold in color. It is one of the few hardwoods that is heavier and stronger than teak. Heat exposure improves the strength of this wood, and it is a highly sustainable material.
High oil content protects the wood against any insects. It naturally resists water damage and rot. If not regularly oiled, it will develop a greyish patina. Like teak wood, it can last for 50 years.
- Less expensive compared to other woods
- Weather-resistant, insect-resistant, and strong
- Eco-friendly and sustainable
- Limited availability in some areas
- Not familiar to many retailers, therefore, they don’t carry it
Teak tends to be the most popular choice for outdoor furniture. The limited availability and high demand has pushed the price of teak higher than other types of wood furniture. In terms of outdoor usage, teak wood is ideal for the patio. Teak furniture will not warp, it’s strong, and it won’t crack or become brittle.
Teak wood repels water and will not contract or expand when drying. Its high natural oils make it resistant to rot damage, insects, and decay.
Teak outdoor furniture is also durable against weather change, enabling it to be the longest-lasting material on the market. It can last for up to 50 years.
- Minimal maintenance required (wash with water and mild soap)
- Resistant to weather changes, decay, rot, and insects
- Lasts a long time
- Higher price point
- May require additional protectant
This metal tends to be the strongest when it comes to outdoor furniture. This makes it the best option for weight-bearing dining tables, sectionals, and outdoor sofas. The high-density material prevents damage and dents that come with frequent use.
While under the summer sun, this metal can become hot, although it endures extreme temperature swings better than other metals.
Stainless steel is immune to corrosion and rust. However, powder coating is recommended to provide added resistance. This is especially important if you live in a coastal area where water and salt air are very present in the atmosphere. Chromium steel, in this case, will better resist corrosion while sitting on your patio.
- Won’t topple over
- Rust-resistant and easy to clean
- Provides contemporary, chic appearance
- Retains heat
The most popular material among metals, this material is strong, lightweight, and durable. It is easily worked into a variety of detailed shapes. The cost is inexpensive, it doesn’t rust, and it involves low maintenance on the part of the homeowner.
On its own, this modern outdoor furniture is very weather-resistant, making it the ideal outdoor patio furniture. However, a polyester powder coating is recommended. The electrostatic process will increase protection against changing weather and scratches. It will also allow you to add color to the furniture if you’d like.
Aluminum can be purchased painted, but the powder coating will adhere better to metal if it is left bare, making it more fade-resistant.
- Resists weather changes and is low maintenance
- If protected, it is scratch- and fade-resistant
- A hollow tube frame can topple over in a high wind
- Retains heat, so you will need seat cushions
Almost all wicker furniture found outdoors is made of synthetic polyethylene resin. A natural wicker comes from an organic source like seagrass, rattan, banana leaf, bamboo, and willow. The material is visually pleasing. However, it is susceptible to damage from rain, high humidity, and moisture. This makes it a poor choice when it comes to coffee tables, sofas, and chairs kept outdoors.
If a high-quality resin is used, it will be resistant to damage from weather. It is more dense and very eco-friendly. A high-density polyethylene (HDPE) will not leach chemicals, will resist punctures, and will not degrade if exposed to UV rays from the sun. This type of wicker is lightweight, strong, easy to clean, and fade-resistant.
A lower quality wicker composed of PVC will crack and become brittle as time lapses. Most of this type of furniture is built with an aluminum frame to increase the amount of weight it can support.
- Some types resist weather changes well
- Cleans easily
- HDPE is completely recyclable
- May blow away in windy conditions
- Some wickers are better than others
Conclusion: Which Material Is Best?
The best outdoor furniture material for your home will depend on your location. Teak, shorea, and stainless steel are all great options. Teak and shorea tend to be more expensive but will last significantly longer than other types of materials if properly maintained, making it worth the investment. However, stainless steel resists rusting, corrosion, and the effects of the weather.