If you want to get the most from your garden furniture you’ll need to protect it and take good care of it. The type of furniture you have will determine what you should do to look after it.

You’ll very likely want to keep your furniture out during the warmer summer months, but even then some basic care is a good idea. For example, if you have seat cushions you should avoid having them in direct sunlight for long periods of time. If the cushions are designed to be turned every now and then, this will minimise the amount of fading that will occur.

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Plastic

Plastic furniture is the easiest to keep but make sure you weigh it down in the event of bad weather. Bring all cushions inside no matter what type of furniture you have; you may want to move your table and chairs to a sheltered spot in the garden too.

Wooden

As far as wooden garden furniture is concerned, it makes sense to protect it as best you can by treating it regularly. Be aware of the type of wood your furniture is made from though; some woods are best left alone. Teak can be particularly difficult to treat successfully, and actually looks wonderful when left to its own devices. It weathers beautifully and mellows to a lovely silver colour.

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Hardwood

The best thing to do is to wash down hardwood furniture once or twice a year if it is showing signs of algae or a build up of dust and dirt. You can then leave to dry naturally. If you have bought relatively cheap wooden garden furniture you can buy protective stains and paints that are specifically designed to be used with it. Indeed this is a good way of brightening up your garden: you can even paint the table a different colour to your wooden chairs if you wish. Various wooden finishes are available in terms of colour, and you can also get a nice range of natural colours to choose from.

When it comes to the colder months of the year, it is important to protect all your garden furniture. The best way to do this is to buy some good quality furniture covers to put over the top. Most protectors are designed to cover a table and a specific number of chairs. All you need to do is make sure the chairs are well tucked in and you can then put the cover over the top of the entire set. Make sure it is well anchored down so the wind cannot get underneath it and lift it off. A good cover will last several years and protect your garden furniture from the elements.

Once the new season begins and the weather warms up, you can take off the cover and make sure your furniture is ready for the warmer months. Simply dust it down if need be and give it a wash before allowing it to dry. Then it is ready to enjoy once again.