Learn the right ways to clean lawn and patio furniture |

As soon as the days get a little longer and the numbers on the thermometer are a little higher, the fun outdoor season is just around the corner. Homeowners might be anxious to get back to the comfort of their backyards. However, your patio furniture may not be ready to relax just yet.

Some simple cleaning strategies make it easier to lighten up metal, glass, wood, and plastic patio furniture. Before homeowners know, their backyards will be ready for the outdoor entertainment season.

Storing patio furniture in the colder months of the year is a great way to protect items from the elements. This could include carefully shrinking and storing items outdoors, or moving furniture indoors to a shed or garage. The final cleaning of the furniture before storing it can also be useful.

Examine the furniture and be prepared to remove any clinging residue like bird droppings, sticky food particles, or even cobwebs and insect nests. Be sure to use a cleaning tool that is safe for the material being cleaned. First, test an inconspicuous area of ​​the furniture to make sure your tools won’t damage the furniture. For example, many brushes can scratch glass or aluminum.

Remove stains from furniture with a versatile detergent. According to the experts at Better Homes & Gardens, a mild cleaner can be made by mixing 1 to 2 cups of baking soda with 1 gallon of warm water. Regular dishwashing detergent can also be mixed with water as it contains mild bleach. This cleaner can be used on plastic resin furniture or metal furniture, which are popular patio furniture materials.

Check the cleaning instructions for outdoor fabrics as the labels may contain specific instructions. In some cases, the fabric can be removed and washed in a washing machine on a gentle setting. A solution of detergent and warm water is also a gentle way to clean outdoor fabrics. Once the items are clean, HGTV recommends using a water-repellent fabric protector to minimize staining and maintenance.

Wooden furniture may require special care. If stains cannot be removed with a mild detergent, hardwoods such as teak can be sanded to restore the items to their original appearance.

Pressure washers can often do more harm than good to patio furniture. It is therefore best to look for an alternative cleaning method. Usually, a little elbow grease and a detergent will do. Give the detergent time to work. Wipe and dry the furniture thoroughly to prevent powdery mildew from growing.

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