This month we wanted to take a closer look at how best to protect our garden furniture. It’s that time of year, the clocks have gone back, and the leaves are falling. We’ve had some heavy rain and wind, but to be fair to Mother Nature, it’s been pretty mild so far for the time of year.
That said, the opportunity to sit on the patio on our Lazy Susan Garden Furniture has long since passed and the forecast is predicting some cold stuff coming our way. ...Although, we can’t blame the brave customer below for giving it a good go!
I’m lucky that if needed, I have space in the garage to store my own Lazy Susan set. The garage needs a bit of a cleanout, so I’m yet to move it in. I’m not sure I’ll even bother this year to be honest.
When we had some high winds a month or so back I stacked the chairs and moved it all to a more sheltered corner of the patio. That feels like sufficient protection for now. If we look like we’re in for some rough stuff, I may change my mind.
Why do you need to protect our garden furniture?
Our Metal Garden Furniture is designed to be left outside in all weather. It is constructed from Cast Aluminium that is then painted with a protective finish. It is that painted finish that protects the raw metal from the elements, whilst one of the advantages of Cast Aluminium is that it gives stability without it being so heavy that you can’t move it.
However, whilst it is weatherproof, we do need to add a few caveats…
It is only weatherproof if that painted finish is maintained and looked after. Compromise integrity and it could lead to problems. And what we mean by that is, if for example, you chipped the foot on a chair whilst pulling it out on a stone patio, then moisture could get in.
How to protect our garden furniture
Now, this is rare but it does happen. The solution is just to keep checking all the feet, and if you do spot a chip, touch it up with our Touch Up Kits.
Our Antique Bronze Touch Up Kit consists of:
- 2 small tubs of paint specially designed to match your furniture - 1 x Black and 1 x Bronze.
- Each tub also features a built-in paintbrush applicator.
Step 1 - Carefully apply the black paint
Step 2 - Dab with kitchen roll to remove excess paint and leave to dry
Step 3 - Carefully dab on bronze paint
Step 4 - Remove excess paint with kitchen roll and leave to dry
Repeat as necessary until the desired finish is achieved.
The video below walks you through the above process step by step and shows you how to achieve our distinctive Antique Bronze paint effect:
Give our garden furniture a good clean
Of course, the best way to protect garden furniture is prevention. Look after it, keep it clean, protect it, that’s what will keep it looking new and ready to use.
Anything left exposed to the elements for any period of time, be it a car, patio surface, garden shed or a piece of Lazy Susan Garden Furniture will get dirty. And nobody wants to sit on dirty garden chairs!
The wind, rain and sun can all create issues, individually, and especially when combined. And that equation doesn’t even factor in things like birds, trees, and yes, even our own friends and family.
So, keeping that painted finish clean will not only keep the furniture looking good and ready to use when the weather picks up next spring, it will ensure any potential bigger issues from things like sunbaked-on bird droppings or tree sap don’t get a chance to taking hold.
And we’re not talking about any extensive maintenance such as that which would be required with say timber. A quick wash with warm soapy water, a rinse off with the garden hose and leave to dry will suffice.
We generally advise you to avoid using a pressure washer, they are just too powerful. Warm soapy water to remove the grime, rinse with the hose on spray to remove soap will do the trick.
If you do want to use a pressure washer, then wide spray, and don’t be tempted to get too close with any stubborn spots of muck. Stubborn marks from bird droppings or tree sap are best softened first to avoid potentially damaging the painted finish.
The 3 ways we advise you do this are:
- Soak a microfibre cloth in warm soapy water and let it sit on there for a few minutes or so, then wipe off.
- A light squirt of WD-40, leave for a minute or so, and then wipe off with warm soapy water.
- Apply a car bug cleaner such as Turtle Wax Tar & Bug Remover (pictured above).
In fact, on that last point, when it comes to the type of soap to use, washing up liquid is OK, but a car wash and wax product is our preference. They offer a more powerful clean (they’re specially formulated for painted metal) that will remove dirt and grime but not damage our painted finish. You’re also applying wax at the same time as washing, which just helps to bead off rain and leave you with a streak-free sheen for longer.
Protect our garden furniture from the elements
Once clean, our top tip, and this is one we recommend in probably all of the cleaning/maintenance articles we’ve published on this blog, is to apply a light coat of car wax. Whatever ‘carnauba’ style wax you’d apply to your car will do the job, no need to purchase one they’d use on a classic car at the Salon Privé Concours d’Elegance.
My personal preference is again Turtle Wax (pictured above). Easy to pick up from the local Halfords or online from the likes of Amazon, easy to apply, not too expensive, and most importantly, easy to buff. I find it leaves our furniture with a nice lustre that’s not too glossy. Plus, it gives you that all-important extra protection against the elements, whilst helping to just keep the furniture cleaner for longer.
Cover & secure our garden furniture
At this time of year, it is also worth covering your furniture or, if you have the space, storing it in the shed or garage. If you have no choice but to leave outside, then the key with covers is to ensure they fit, are secured in place and are constructed from a breathable waterproof fabric.
You can pick up large covers that will fit over the full set, however, our advice would be to get ‘fitted’ individual covers for each piece from somewhere like Covers & All. They supply tabletop (pictured above), chair, sun lounger and parasol covers, etc that are custom made to fit any size or shape.
As well as being waterproof, they are UV and tear-resistant, and they can be supplied with that all-important tie-down option.
Insure our garden furniture for theft accidental damage
Garden furniture can be an expensive purchase, especially if you have one of our larger sets or multiple pieces. They can also be an easy target for thieves. Gardens are easy to access, furniture is easy to resell. We have looked at security in much more detail in our recent garden furniture security tips article, so we would definitely recommend you give that a read too.
However, if you want to protect your garden furniture, especially when it comes to accidental damage, and for total peace of mind, it is worth taking out or checking your existing policy to see if it would be covered. And that goes for all expensive items in the garden, not just furniture. Gardening tools, even planters, they’re expensive, so worth ensuring they’re covered.
Now, I’m also not suggesting that our furniture getting struck by lightning or blown away in a strong gale is a common occurrence too but it could happen. I know if I had paid over £2000 for our 10 seater Victoria Set (pictured above) for example, then I’d seriously consider getting it insured.
At the end of the day though, garden furniture is meant to be enjoyed. Take it off the patio or out of the garden and it just doesn’t look the same. My own patio with it stacked in the corner looks a little bare.
And that is why many are happy to leave it outside all year round. Plus the weather in the UK is unpredictable, to say the least. We could have snow one week then mild and 16+ degrees the next. So, whatever you do, if you choose to protect your garden furniture or not, please just make sure you enjoy it!
If you have any further questions about how to protect our garden furniture, then please don't hesitate to Contact Us.