So long summer…
How will you be protecting your outdoor furniture from the elements this winter?
Any outdoor cushions should be stored inside elevated inside your shed, garage, lined or plastic deck box, or basement for the colder months. If you have Sunbrella cushions, it would be durable enough to sit through winter – but its the little critters you need to worry about. They will try to burrow inside anything they can to keep warm and your cushions would provide just that for them and their friends.
Most aluminum furniture made for outdoors will be powder coated to prevent rusting and should be able to brave the cold all winter long without having to store inside, as well as PE treated resins made to look like wicker. These types of furniture can be covered and left in the same spot all winter long and be ready to use again come spring with a little cleanup.
The options of covers for your furniture has evolved nearly as much as outdoor furniture has. Covers used to protect your furniture can now come with their own warranty of up to 3 years – individual covers for each piece of furniture you have, or one large cover to fit over everything… whatever is most convenient for you! They are an investment well worth the protection they will provide. Although not always necessary, covering your furniture will help the longevity of your purchase and keep it strong and dependable for years to come.
Cleaning your furniture before storage
Regular cleaning of your outdoor furniture during patio season is always recommended. Weekly removal of twigs, leaves, debris, and dirt will help your furniture last and keep it in the best condition possible. Come to the end of the season, it is a good idea to do more of a thorough clean with mild soap and water. Whether from a bucket or hose – but never high-pressure water systems as that could damage finishes. Allow sufficient drying time of your furniture to prevent any mildew or mold that could accumulate while covered or stored inside.
Storing Umbrellas & Fire Tables
If storing away in a shed or garage, umbrellas should be stored standing upright and should avoid being left lying on the ground. Just like cushions, if critters find their way to your umbrella they will nibble through to get inside. Just like furniture, your umbrella should be cleaned and wiped down before storage. Lubricating pivots and switches will help prevent rust while not being in use. Alternatively, umbrella covers are also available, especially for larger umbrellas that may be too large to move inside.
Fire tables are generally safe to be left outside year-round and covered during the winter months. Depending on the material of your table, it may be recommended that you do put a sealant on your table come fall or spring every year. This could prevent cracking, peeling, and any deterioration the cold might cause.
If your furniture is made of plastic, natural wicker, or wood it should be brought into a warm dry space over the winter. These materials would not take so kindly do to the colder temperatures.
Although it is nearly time to say goodbye to our beloved outdoor spaces for another season, taking these extra measures of proper storage, cleaning, or covering will ensure your furniture is ready to enjoy come the warmer days of Spring!