Here's How To Weatherproof All Of Your Outdoor Furniture

Outdoor living spaces offer a place to relax, spend time with friends and family, and enjoy the fresh air. According to The New York Times, investing in a beautiful outdoor living space benefits the whole family. Children are more likely to play outside and spend less time sitting in front of a screen. Adults benefit from lower levels of stress, lower blood pressure, and a better overall quality of life when they can relax in a comfy space outside.

Because your outdoor living space is an investment, its furnishings should be weatherproofed so you can continue to enjoy it year after year. Some maintenance is required to keep your furniture looking great, regardless of the material from which it is made. This includes plastic, metal, wicker, or wood pieces. Cushions and other items made of fabric are particularly susceptible to the elements, but a little weatherproofing goes a long way to keep your outdoor furniture pieces looking their best.


Plastic furniture is a budget-friendly, low-maintenance way to add seating and storage to your outdoor living space. According to WD-40, the best way to weatherproof your plastic pieces is to keep them clean with soap and water. You do not need special solvents, thanks to the non-porous nature of plastic. Clean your furniture with a rag, sponge, or cleaning brush. For pieces with lots of nooks and crannies, an old toothbrush can help remove dirt from those hard-to-reach spots. Never use abrasive cleaning tools like wire brushes or steel wool while cleaning and maintaining your plastic furniture.

Weatherproofing plastic outdoor furniture includes removing extra stubborn stains or sticky residue like tree sap which, if left over the winter, will be almost impossible to extract. Use rubbing alcohol or vegetable oil to help get rid of stubborn sap. Apply undiluted dish soap to a stain and let it sit about 15 minutes before gently scrubbing it to remove unsightly marks.


An outdoor metal furniture is a durable option if you weatherproof it properly. Because metal is prone to rust, maintenance is the key to longevity, according to GZ Industrial Supplies. At the first sign of chipped paint or rust, sand down the area and touch up the spot with a color suitable for metal, and this will prevent rust damage from spreading.

Storing metal furniture away from bad weather is also important. When your items are not in use, store them in a shed, in a covered space, or anywhere away from the elements. This is particularly important in regions with snowy or rainy winters. When you are not outside enjoying your furniture, you are less likely to notice damage, and by the time you see it in the spring, it may be too late to salvage the piece. Before storing your furniture, make sure it is clean. Remove all dirt and debris, which can harbor moisture and spread rust.


The natural look of wicker makes it a beautiful addition to an outdoor space because it blends so well with the organic surroundings. Unlike plastic and metal, this outdoor furniture requires a little more work to protect it from weather and decay. Design Furnishings suggests the first step to weatherproofing outdoor wicker furniture is to keep it clean by using a vacuum to remove dirt. Then, wash the piece with the same type of oil-based soap you would use for wood floors. Never leave wicker furniture outside over the winter; store it in a garage or shed to prolong its life.

Another way to increase the longevity of wicker furniture is to apply paint which not only freshens up an older piece but also protects it from damage caused by sun and rain. Design Furnishings states outdoor wicker furniture should be repainted at least once every three years for maximum weather protection.


Wooden furniture is a timeless option that always looks beautiful in an outdoor space; however, in order to weatherproof this type of furniture, it must be sealed. According to The Backyard Pros, when unsealed wood is left out in the rain, it can soak up water. Before long, rot and decay set in. Once that happens, the furniture is ruined. Even furniture made from pressure-treated lumber should be sealed. Although this type of product has some protection from the elements when it is new, that protection breaks down over time.

There are a number of options for sealing wooden outdoor furniture. Spar urethane allows the beauty of natural wood to shine while protecting it from sun and rain. This product comes in clear or tinted options, so if you are looking to give your pieces an updated look, you can stain and seal them in one step. Another option is outdoor furniture paint. Look for a product with sealant to save time, money, and energy as you weatherproof your wooden outdoor furniture.


Regardless of what your outdoor furniture is made of, it may have cushions for added comfort. Many outdoor cushions are made with waterproof fabric, but you can add an extra layer of protection by applying a waterproof spray. These products not only weatherproof the material but also prevent mold from growing since they encourage water to roll off. Store your waterproofed cushions indoors when not in use to keep them looking great for years.

Consider purchasing furniture covers if you have plastic, wood, metal, or outdoor wicker furniture. According to theĀ Cushion Factory, this investment will help keep your outdoor furniture weatherproofed year round. If you expect a week, month, or a whole season of bad weather, waterproof covers can keep your furniture dry and safe from the elements. You can also use them to protect your furniture while you are on vacation or anytime you know you will not be using your outdoor furniture for an extended period.