Weather-proof your garden furniture
Thursday 14 February 2013
England isn’t the most forgiving country when it comes to the weather. While many of us invest in garden furniture for those summer months, weather-proofing it is essential all year long.
Buy waterproof furniture
The easiest way to weather-proof your furniture is to buy pieces which are naturally waterproof and don’t weather easily. One of the best materials is poly or resin rattan, made from resin or plastic instead of the authentic rattan cane. This is a best kept secret of hotels as they need their furniture to withstand regular use in outdoor settings! The majority of this material is manufactured with aluminium frames and a resin mesh and is woven to mimic the appearance of the rattan palm which although attractive, is not naturally waterproof.
Hardwoods like teak are largely oil-based. This makes them a good second option as they’re also waterproof. However, they develop cracks along the grain following sun and rain exposure. The weathering is a matter of personal taste as rather than tarnishing the furniture, they can be said to adopt an appealing silver tone.
Treat the material
Applying three coats of marine varnish every two years to unfinished rattan and other natural wicker will waterproof them and preserve their natural colour. Only a continuous downpour will affect their performance. Slightly less effective is tung oil which doesn’t safeguard against heavy rain but will keep out moisture and maintain rigid bonds between the fibres.
Treating outdoor furniture every three months with waterproofing sprays can also help to prolong their life. The most popular sprays are hardwood sprays which come in a range of colours. A water-resistant film builds on top of the wood’s surface to create a barrier between the material and moisture. Check the ingredients label for silicone as this will work wonders on all types of metal too.
Waterproof lacquer works well on other natural furniture but it’s not ideal for rattan or wicker. It’s easy to trap moisture underneath the coating which will slowly damage the fibres from the inside over time.
Clean and cover
While treating the material protects against rainwater, cleaning your furniture will remove other air-based debris. Artificial resin and wicker can be hosed down every few months with cold or warm water, while hardwoods should be sponged down with soap and warm water once a year. Metal can be cleaned as often as you like with soap and warm water to prevent rust from forming.
Of course, the ultimate fail-safe option is to cover your bench, chair or dining table with a PVC backed polyester cover. The best of these will have water taped seams on their joints. These are breathable as well as waterproof and hence they will prevent any mould growth on your furniture, particularly with hardwood. A cheaper alternative to polyester is polyethylene, averaging between £0-£15 (half the price) but keep in mind that you will be saving money while increasing your risk of mould.
All of these treatments are simple weekend DIY projects, but if you’d prefer not to get your hands dirty you can hire a local tradesman to do the job.
<p>Paying attention to your gas system is extremely important to guarantee the safety of you and your family.</p>
<p>To get the most out of your tradesman experience, it’s important that both yourself and the tradesman are happy. For this to happen you’ll need to be 100% comfortable with who you hire. </p>
<p>Now that winter is upon us, many of us are spending more time indoors. Top of everybody’s checklist is a home that can deal with the cold days and nights ahead. Your first priority should be your b...
<p>For anyone looking for the next big thing in the home fashion sphere, the exhibitors at the Parisian Maison & Objet, can give you a glimpse of what’s hot or not right now. The fair is the first...
<p>England isn’t the most forgiving country when it comes to the weather. While many of us invest in garden furniture for those summer months, weather-proofing it is essential all year long.</p>
Life & Style blogs
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
- 2 Why this father didn’t hide his daughter’s heroin overdose in her obituary
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 The most powerful passports in the world
£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...