Cleaning Deck Furniture

by Karen Bates
(last updated April 20, 2009)

The deck is a wonderful place to relax and spend time outdoors with friends and family. Having outdoor furniture for your deck is a perfect way to eat outside and enjoy more time in your yard. There are many kinds of deck furniture. You can get tables, chairs, benches, umbrellas and more made from various materials like wood, plastic, or wicker.

Because these pieces of furniture are kept outside and spend so much time exposed to the elements, it makes sense that they would become dirty over time. After a while, you might not even want to sit on or use your deck furniture because it is covered in dust or dirt. But you can quite easily clean this furniture and bring it back to looking like new.

For each different kind of furniture, different care may be necessary. Here are some tips to help with cleaning various kinds of deck furniture:

  • Wooden Furniture. For wooden deck furniture that has been varnished, use soapy water to clean. With a sponge or wet cloth, wipe all over the furniture until dirt is gone.
  • Wicker. It is usually safe to simply rinse this furniture off with a hose after removing the cushions. You can also work on particularly dirty spots by wiping with a cloth or sponge and mild soapy water.
  • Wrought Iron, Steel, and Aluminum. Soapy water will work well for these furniture pieces. Wipe with a wet sponge or cloth and dry off. A water and vinegar mixture may also be effective.
  • Resin. Using a hose, simply spray off the furniture to clean. For any detail cleaning that may be necessary, use some all-purpose cleaner or soapy water and a sponge.
  • Cushions, Fabric and Umbrellas. Be sure to remove any cushions from the furniture before cleaning. If the cushions are acrylic, use a wet sponge to clean any spots and rinse with water. For fabrics, you can usually wash these in your washing machine on a gentle cycle and air dry. To clean an umbrella, try a soft brush or sponge with soapy water.
  • Plastic. Use soapy water to remove dirt. If there is deeper mildew or other stains, you can use a little bleach to clean. Don't leave it on very long—rinse away after a minute or two.

If you are putting your furniture away for the season, do a thorough cleaning so that it will be easier to get ready again next summer.

Author Bio

Karen Bates

An English student who enjoys writing and art, Karen has had her poetry published in her university's literary journal and has several novels in the works. ...

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