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How to maintain your garden furniture?

How to maintain your garden furniture?

Whether your garden furniture is made of plastic, Wicker, teak or resin it always ends up tarnished either because of the weather, the pollution or even the rays of the sun. These conditions can bleach the colour of your furniture or make it really dirty. Here is some advice to give it back its first day glow.

Resin furniture

It's important to know that with resin garden furniture you should never use abrasive products containing chlorine or solvent; if you do the material will become porous and will ultimately have to be replaced. So you need to use specialised products with antistatic properties that offer a long term protection against dirt, pollution and humidity.

Usage of these products is quite simple, if your furniture is a dirty: dilute a bit of product in some warm water, wash with a sponge then rinse off. If the piece of furniture is really dirty: apply the product directly, let it act a little bit then wash off with soft water.

Teak or exotic wood furniture

This material is very resistant to sunrays as well as humidity, but it is advised to preserve the colour and to protect the wood from water or grease stains to apply a coat of linseed or teak oil. You need to sand the furniture down before oiling it with a piece of cloth or a brush. You should treat your furniture twice a season and to sand it completely every three years to maintain the quality of the wood.

If you prefer the retro look, you can let your furniture "age". In this case, you do need to watch out for moss growing. To avoid all problems wipe down your furniture after every shower and bring it in for the winter.

Wicker furniture

Wicker furniture is not advised for the outdoors but it's perfect for a covered terrace or a veranda. If your furniture is dirty: vacuum it to remove all the dust then wash it with a solution of water and sea salt and let dry in the shade. If your furniture is really dirty: wash it with a mix of water, washing powder and a few drops of ammoniac and don't forget to rinse it off. If your furniture is damaged: you can repaint it with a paint gun to allow the wood to absorb the paint.

Plastic furniture

It's the easiest kind to clean, all you need is a bit of water and washing-up liquid to remove the stains. If you prefer a more ecological approach, try using clay diluted in some water. If damaged just repaint with some special plastic paint.

Maintaining accessories

Fabric umbrellas: mix a bit of vinegar in lukewarm water and apply to the stains. Rinse with clean water and let dry in the shade. Plastic umbrellas: give it a wipe and let it dry in the shade. Pillows: take the covers off and pop them in the washing machine at 30 or 40 degrees depending on the fabric. Haemic: take the cloth off can be machine washed but be carefull is it's a bright colour to wash it alone.

The important thing to remember when you're buying garden furniture is to ask about maintaining it. Don't hesitate to ask the salesperson for more advice. The look and style are essential but without a bit of care, you're furniture will fade and become a stain in your yard. Lara Ronayne Casimiro

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