Rust-Resistant Patio Furniture You'll Want For Your Outdoor Space

Metal furniture is durable and hard-wearing, making it a natural choice for the patio and other outdoor applications. Unfortunately, however, many metals are subject to oxidation and rusting. This weakens and discolors metal frames. Rust can also transfer to clothes, leaving unsightly stains. For metal patio furnishings that will last, year-after-year, look for frames made of stainless steel, galvanized steel, aluminum, copper, bronze, or brass. These corrosion-proof materials will serve you well, even if left out in the rain, saving you from having to cover your furniture or drag it under an overhang when it starts to drizzle.

Your options are plentiful, so we will guide you through them. Aluminum has been a popular material for furniture since the 1920s, and cast aluminum patio pieces are made in a variety of styles, from the very basic to the ornate. Stainless steel is available in a variety of textures and coatings but can be particularly hot to the touch. Brass, copper, and bronze are less common for patio furniture today but can still be found in antique garden and patio pieces.

Aluminum patio furniture is lightweight, corrosion-proof, and versatile

Aluminum patio furniture has so many benefits it's hard to know where to begin. Aluminum is easy to clean and famously lightweight, making it easy to shift and re-organize your furnishings to suit different seating arrangements. Aluminum tables and chairs come in a variety of colors, textures, and coatings. The material is easily painted to offer bright and quirky hues. You can even find examples of aluminum pieces which have been powder-coated for further weather-proofing. An additional benefit of powder-coating is that even in direct sunlight, it prevents the metal from becoming scorching hot.

There are two different manufacturing processes for aluminum furniture. One involves casting pieces in a mold, which results in solid, sturdy furnishings that can be produced in innumerable designs. The second requires aluminum sheets to be fed into a machine which bends and folds them. These pieces are usually hollow, making them even more lightweight. Either way, aluminum is a versatile option for rust-free patio furniture.

Stainless steel, brass, and bronze are also great rust-proof metals for outdoor furniture

Stainless steel is a common material for outdoor furnishings. It is especially popular for commercial furniture due to the stiffness of steel and resulting designs which tend to be more blocky and industrial. Stainless steel is heavier than aluminum and holds more heat, but it's also nearly indestructible. Be aware that you may pay extra for this ultra-tough material. If you'd like to invest in a durable stainless steel patio set but you're on a budget, consider shopping secondhand markets and thrift stores. Bronze, brass, and copper are also corrosion-proof but much less common in outdoor furniture design today. Pieces advertised as "bronze" are often aluminum that is treated to look like bronze. 

Don't be afraid to mix-and-match rust-proof materials if the opportunity presents itself. For example, hammered copper tabletops are becoming increasingly popular for a retro, industrial look on brushed aluminum bases. Both materials are corrosion-proof and will last outdoors for years to come.