It’s time to bring your patio furniture back to life

It’s that time again to clean and repair your patio furniture. If you’re like me and everyone in my circle of friends, you’ve left your furniture uncovered and in the hands of Mother Nature. No worries! You can bring your furniture back to life just in time for the first cookout of the season.

Glass

Clean with a mild soap, warm water and a sponge. Rinse with water and towel dry.

Fabrics

Avoid machine washing cushions or umbrella fabrics, unless instructed to do so by the care tag on the furniture. Most cushions and umbrellas can be cleaned with a mild soap, warm water and a soft to medium-bristled brush. Rinse off the soap and set in the sun to dry.

Metal Furniture

You can remove rust with store-bought rust removing chemicals or sprays at your local home and hardware store. You may also need a steel-bristle brush, a metal scraper, a metal file and/or sandpaper to remove the rust and chipping paint while also leaving your furniture smooth. When the rust is gone, remove dust, grease and other debris with a mild soap and water. Rinse and let dry.

Add an even coat of protective enamel spray paint to bring life back to your furniture. Some paints have a primer already in the formula.

Paint outside to avoid breathing in the fumes and make sure the wind is not blowing.

Wood

If your furniture has nicks, chips or splinters, use sandpaper to smooth the area.

Scrub the furniture with a soft to medium-bristled brush with a mild soap and water. If your furniture is made of a softwood such as cedar or pine, scrub with the grain.

To protect your furniture and keep your wood healthy you can apply an outdoor varnish, stain or water repellent.

Plastic

Start by rinsing the furniture with water. Use a mild soap, warm water and a sponge or cloth to clean off remaining dirt. Let the furniture dry.

Wicker furniture

Use a dry soft-bristled paint brush to remove stubborn debris. Avoid washing with a hard-bristled brush and using too much force because you could fray the material or alter the woven pattern. Rinse with water and let it dry.

If your wicker is dry and brittle, brush on boiled linseed oil to the furniture until the wicker stops absorbing the oil and let dry for about 24 hours. Purchase already boiled linseed oil. Linseed oil is highly flammable so do not try to boil it yourself.

For tough grime and dirt buildup, you may need to use a pressure washer which you can rent from a home and hardware store. Use the proper cleaning solution as instructed and adjust the pressure setting to the right objects. Be sure to follow the operating instructions.

Now that your furniture is clean, remember: You can always revitalize and upgrade your furniture with a new coat of paint or finish. And be sure to cover or store patio furniture and cushions in a dry place away from the outside elements when not in use.

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