How to clean your patio and garden furniture
Easy ways to spruce up your deck and garden furniture…
You know the drill: the first sign of sunshine, and everybody’s outside to make the most of it.
If you’re super organised, your garden furniture was washed down, prepped for winter and tucked cosily away in the garage or shed, and your patio is free of moss or mildew. If, on the other hand, this is a bit of garden maintenance you just didn’t get round to, you could have a serious clean up on your hands before you can sit outside in the sunshine.
How to clean your decking or patio
Don’t allow leaves and debris to build up because moisture can become trapped and can promote mould growth and rot, even on wood that’s been treated. Use a stiff broom or a leaf blower to keep them clear. For a deep clean, use a decking cleaner solution. Decking made of hardwood – teak, walnut, mahogany or oak – do not need usually need preserving. Wipe over with teak oil twice a year to help preserve their colour. Softer woods – such as pine and cedar do need preserving. Apply a wood preservative, followed by a varnish.
To restore painted and varnished wood, rub down with fine sandpaper, then reapply the coating.
Tip: if you are planning to blitz the slabs with a pressure washer, take care not to remove the pointing between paving stones.
Now spruce up your garden furniture…
If you’ve left this outdoors all winter, you could be looking at buying a new set. The advice is never to leave cane outside, as it’s just not robust enough.
Wipe clean with a solution of washing up liquid. Touch up chipped paint with an enamel metal paint such as Hammerite, rubbing off any loose paint first.
Cast and wrought iron
Rub down with wire wool and repaint if necessary, first with anti-rust primer and then with exterior metal paint.
For plastic furniture, use a detergent solution and plastic brush to clean. Use a mild bleach solution on any staining. Alternatively, use a pressure washer.
Tip: If there are stains and dirt on chair seats that just won’t budge, cover them with decorative seat cushions and an outdoor rug. Your guests will never know what lurks beneath!
Wash down plastic coating with a warm detergent solution. Protect with a light application of wax polish. Store indoors.
Hardwoods – teak, cedar, mahogany or oak – do not need usually need preserving. Wipe over with teak oil twice a year to help preserve their colour. Softer woods – such as pine, ash, elm and beech – do need preserving. Apply a proprietary wood preservative, followed by a varnish. To restore painted and varnished wood, rub down with fine sandpaper, then reapply the coating.
Tip: If you don’t have a garage or shed to store everything away, look after your outdoor furniture with protective covers to prolong their life and avoid damage from the elements.