How to clean, maintain and recover old garden furniture seat cushions

It is not as difficult as you might think to ‘make-do-and-mend’ and restore your well-used patio furniture instead of throwing them out for a new set.

It is not as difficult as you might think to 'make-do-and-mend' and restore your well-used patio furniture instead of throwing them out for a new set. Most of the time, all they need is a little face-lift to freshen things up.

It could even be that your garden furniture is only a couple of years old, but you left the cushions out for a few months and they've faded in the sun or developed a few unsightly mold and mildew stains.

Garden furniture is not cheap and you need to give it the same care and attention you would the sofa in your living room. If your outdoor furniture has seen better days or if you have no choice but to leave it outside all year round, then the elements can reek havoc on your cushions even though they are usually designed to stay outside.

Recovering your old garden furniture seat cushions

So why not recover your patio furniture seat cushions and bring them back to life or create something a little more unique for your garden furniture?

After all, you just need some good quality outdoor canvas, some scissors, pins, a tape measure, new latex foam if the existing is damaged by mold/mildew, a sewing machine, thread and an iron/ironing board. There's plenty of guides online that'll show you how to recover a cushion, and its not as difficult as you'd think!

These two great videos from YouTube will also show you how its done:

In order to maintain your patio furniture and extend its life, we always advise our customers to only put the cushions on the furniture when you're going to use them. Do not leave them outside for an extended period of time, even though they look nice when your garden furniture is all set up.

Our aluminium garden furniture can stay outside regardless of the weather, but the cushions will fade if left in the sun for a prolonged period of time. If they do get caught in a sudden downpour, then bring them indoors to dry out before using again.

After use, wipe down your patio furniture cushions to remove any dirt, dust or salt deposits before storing them and always give them time to dry to prevent mildew from forming.

Cleaning your garden furniture seat cushions

Regular cleaning is vital if you want to keep your garden furniture cushions looking like new. Don't just wait until summer to give them a good clean, get them ready now and they'll be looking their best and ready for the first rays of sunshine.

And Springtime is the best time to obtain tips for cleaning patio furniture cushions, so you will be ready before the summer comes. By following Lazy Susan's cleaning tips, I promise you'll be able to prolong the life of your garden furniture cushions for many years to come.

If your cushions are fairly new or they've been well taken care of, then you will only have to do a little gentle basic cleaning. At least once a year, you need to give your cushions a basic clean to help retain their appearance.

If your cushions are zipped as per the type we retail at Lazy Susan or a velcro fastening, then remove them and place them in the washing machine using a low cycle and a mild detergent.

To preserve the life of your patio furniture cushions, do not to wash the foam insert. If you saturate the foam inner, you run the risk of causing mildew or mold growth.

If your foam inserts do get wet or you can't remove the covers and therefore you have to wash together, then make sure you dry them completely before replacing the cover.

Best way to do this is place between two towels, walk on the cushions to squeeze any moisture out and leave to dry against a radiator or in an airing cupboard if you've got one. Do not tumble the foam or covers!

In order to reduce the amount of cleaning you will have to do on your patio furniture cushions (and prevent the need to replace them), it's a good idea to be proactive.

For example, consider spraying the cushions with Scotchgard™ Outdoor Fabric Protector before using them. This forms an invisible barrier which repels water-based liquid such as rain, wine and coffee and helps protect against stains, making them easier to clean in the future. 

Another way to cut down on cleaning time is to properly store the cushions during the winter. Consider using airtight containers to store your cushions. Please, whatever you do, don't wrap your cushions in plastic or store them in bin bags, because mold and mildew will grow rapidly if air is trapped inside the plastic.

At Lazy Susan we always advise our customers to store in an airtight container with a few Cedar Balls in the container alongside your cushions. This is the most effective way to prevent spiders/bugs etc (especially if you're storing in a shed), it will give a long-lasting fresh fragrance to your cushions and prevent build-up of mustiness and mildew.

And if you want to purchase new garden furniture cushions...

At Lazy Susan we offer five classic colours – Stone, Apple Green, Navy Blue, Stripe (shown in the image above) and Terracotta. Free Fabric swatches are available please call +44 (0) 845 073 7136 or use our Contact Us form. 

The Cushion pad is 5cm thick and is really nice to sit on. Our covers are manufactured from a fast drying waterproof acrylic, which has been treated to prevent mold/mildew and fire.

So if you do happen to leave them out in the rain they will dry out pretty quickly and they’ll last for quite a few summers if looked after. Ties are also added to the cushions to prevent them slipping from the chairs and the cushion covers have a zip opening to enable them to be washed and make them even longer lasting.

Share this article
Please enter these characters in the following text field.

The fields marked with * are required.