How to Choose The Best Garden Furniture Cover
Garden furniture is a real investment, and furniture sets can be very expensive.
As with any purchase, you’ll want your garden furniture to last as long as possible, but this can be a little difficult if you’re planning on keeping it outside year-round. Rain, wind, snow and even strong sunshine can all have a detrimental effect on your garden furniture and shorten its lifespan.
Many garden furniture sets are marketed as being weather resistant, but when you’re spending hundreds of pounds on a set, do you really want to take that risk?
A garden furniture cover can solve all your British weather worries when it comes to your outdoor tables and chairs. Not sure what to look for? Take a look at the tips below to help you make an informed purchase.
The Benefits of a Garden Furniture Cover
As mentioned above, a garden furniture cover will protect your furniture set overnight or in bad weather. While some people opt only to use their cover when it rains, others cover their furniture whenever it’s not in use.
The majority of garden furniture is made from metal, wood or rattan, and most chairs also have cushions for comfort.
While most garden furniture is constructed with weather resistance in mind, there’s no denying that the elements can still have a detrimental effect on your furniture. A cover can help keep the wind, rain and sunshine off your furniture set.
Not only that, a cover can also keep your furniture clean. On windy days, debris, leaves and more can be blown onto your tables and chairs. Each piece can get dirty, debris may build up between the rattan weave and, let’s face it, visiting birds may use your table as a toilet!
Finally, a furniture cover can help keep your set dry. We’re all familiar with those days where it’s raining one minute, and bright sunshine the next. If you keep your furniture covered when not in use, there’s no need to wait for it to dry once the sun comes out – you can use it straight away!
Choosing the Right Size and Shape
There’s a range of sizes on offer when it comes to garden furniture covers.
You’ll want to choose a cover which is easy to put over your furniture, but not so large that the wind can get underneath it. A cover which is too small will be difficult to put on, while those that are too big may get blown off on especially windy days.
It’s worth deciding whether you want a single cover to cover your entire set, or multiple smaller covers for each piece. If you’ve got a cube furniture set (one that slots together neatly when not in use) a single cover is a great option.
For more extensive furniture sets, you may need to purchase a few smaller covers.
The covers I’ve recommended are suitable for a variety of furniture sets. Taller covers fit stacking chairs, while cube shaped covers may fit an outdoor table and multiple chairs.
One thing to look for is a drawstring cord. This will help keep your furniture cover in place and stop it from blowing off in high winds.
Some covers are very versatile in terms of their shape. Those in a rectangular or round shape can usually be fitted to a range of furniture sets, or even BBQs.
Material and Weather Resistance
It’s important that your cover is fully resistant to the elements. Most are made from heavy duty polyester which is waterproof and UV resistant. It’s also very easy to clean. Rain and snow should simply run off.
It’s important that your cover also has breathability. If your furniture is damp and you put the cover over it, mould and mildew may form. For this reason, it’s important that the cover allows your furniture to breathe, and that you fully dry your furniture before covering it.
Garden Furniture Cover FAQs
What time of year should you cover your garden furniture?
Garden furniture covers are particularly useful during the winter months, but they can also be used in the spring, summer and autumn months, as let’s face it, there are no guarantees when it comes to the weather! Many people choose to cover their furniture overnight and in bad weather.
Remember that even in summer your furniture can collect leaves, debris and bird droppings which means you’ll need to clean your furniture set far more frequently.
Of course, many people opt to move their garden furniture inside in the winter months, but unless your furniture folds up very small, you will need a lot of storage space.
What’s the best way to protect your garden furniture over winter?
Looking after your garden furniture will elongate its lifespan, so you can enjoy it summer after summer.
How to take care of your garden furniture depends on the material it’s made from. Wooden garden furniture will need a good clean at least once a year to remove dirt, algae and bird droppings. Dirty furniture will become damp – which can lead to decay.
Hardwood only requires cleaning, while softwood line pine will need to be treated for extra protection.
Metal garden furniture also needs to be cleaned around once a year. Any rust should be removed straight away using a sander. While aluminium furniture won’t rust, it still needs regular cleaning.
Rattan and wicker furniture should be vacuumed with a soft brush, then wiped with a damp cloth to remove any remaining dirt.
One of the best things you can do for your garden furniture is to store it correctly or protect it with a quality cover. Moving your furniture in and out of storage whenever the weather turns is a lot of hassle, and there’s still potential for it to get dirty when not in use.
A cover will protect your furniture set from UV damage as well as bad weather. Before covering, remove any cushions and seat pads, and ensure your set is dry.