How does outdoor furniture withstand weather elements such as wind, rain, and humidity? The answer: high-tech materials, of course! Find out what most outdoor furniture is made of, and how to maintain it in tip-top condition.
(design: Distinct Identity)
Polystrand wicker: It is produced by melting dyed polyethylene. It is hand-woven around an aluminium frame and protected with a powder coating that makes it resistant to tearing, UV rays, and various weather conditions.
Aluminium: It is light and used mainly as furniture legs. A layer of aluminium oxide stops oxidation so the metal doesn't corrode.
Teak: It is coated with natural oil that rises to the surface and, when oxidised by contact with the air, produces grey tones that act as a protective film. Teak wood also repels small parasites.
Sunproof fabrics: These contain colour pigments that make them fade-resistant even when exposed to the sun and rain. Among the most popular is Sunbrella, a premium brand of weatherproof fabric first used for industrial-grade awnings, and later on for outdoor furniture. The fabric is protected against sunlight and mildew.
Viro fibre: This is a premium synthetic polyethylene fibre that is UV- and weather-resistant, 100 per cent recyclable, and resistant to chlorine and salt water. It is often used in wicker furniture.
Batyline fabric: It is a durable material consisting of polyester fibres coated with PVC.
Want to make it last? The general rule of thumb for any surface is to clean it immediately with warm soapy water and a cloth before the stain sets. For more specific tips, read these:
(design: Ultimate Interior Creation)
- For polypropylene, polyethylene, and weaved products, clean with water or a jet-spray if required. Stains may be removed by mild soap but refrain from abrasive solutions, which might damage the furniture.
- For polyester fibre furniture, wash the mesh with a liquid dishwashing detergent and water. Use a soft-bristled brush, rinse, and dry with a cloth to avoid water stains settling on the stainless steel frames, if any.
- Teak wood should be cleaned regularly as mould and mildew can build up on its surface. Use a teak cleaner and a bristle brush to restore old, weathered teak. Apply a teak protector after the wood has dried.