How to Store Outdoor Furniture During the Winter Months
This past summer we spent a lot of time in our own backyard creating our very own outdoor oasis, inspired with all the Joanna Gaines touches! Now, as the seasons change and it’s a bit cooler outside, it may be time to put away the patio furniture and break out the holiday decorations. Storing those bulky outdoor items isn’t always easy, so here’s a guide to help you plan to successfully store those outdoor items! It’s worth noting that now is the time to repair and clean your furniture before putting it away for the season! This will ensure its stored in optimal condition while making your life that much easier when you go to unload it all next season!
When you have beautiful outdoor furniture that you have invested in, it’s essential to store it properly during the cold and damp winter months. If you don’t have a garage or basement with enough room, then finding high-quality storage for your expensive outdoor chairs, tables, and sofas might be your best option. Fortunately, Amazing Spaces Storage Centers is available for short-term leases so that you only need to pay for storage throughout the winter, or as needed.
Clean Outdoor Furniture Before Storing It
Before you store your outdoor furniture, you should prepare it so that it will remain in optimal condition until spring. First, remove the cushions from the furniture so that you can clean the sofas or chairs. If there is dried debris such as tree sap on the furniture, then you may need to use a soft-bristled brush dipped in warm soapy water to wash it away. Next, use your garden hose to rinse away any additional debris from the furniture, remembering to clean underneath the chairs and sofas.
When the cushions are stained, it’s better to scrub the items with the soft-bristled brush and soapy water before storing the items. After the cushions are dry, place these inside large trash bags to keep the dirt away until the weather gets nice again.
Here’s your guide to treating all different types of furniture: *Always check your manufacturer’s cleaning directions before using any cleaning products. Recommended cleaning solution: 1 cup bleach, 2 cups detergent, & 1 gallon of water.
- Fabric cushions – If the cushions are removable, take them off and wash them with the recommended cleaning solution to kill the mildew. Let them dry, stack loosely in a clean, dry space.
- Umbrella fabric – Wash with a brush and mild detergent. Let it dry in the open position and then store in a closed position.
- Metal – Wash all surfaces with water and detergent; scrub with a brush and rinse. If there are any rust spots, treat with a rust-neutralizing primer, smooth with steel wool and apply spray paint to match original finish. Protective car wax serves as a perfect finishing coat!
- Wicker – Brush all surfaces with the recommended cleaning solution to clean and remove mildew; rinse and let dry. Touch up any areas in need of a fresh coat of paint, apply moisture repellent on feet and legs, and store in a dry place. Apply paste wax to protect against moisture.
- Wood – Wash with the recommended cleaning solution and a mildly abrasive sponge. Rinse thoroughly and let dry. Sand and paint any areas where needed. Apply clear water repellent and a protective coat of paste wax.
Fully “Winterize” your Furniture Before Storing
The winterizing process for each furniture type:
- Wood Furniture: Apply a protective sealant in order to protect the wood from any moisture. If moisture freezes in the wood during the winter, this will cause breakage. It’s best to use both a protective sealant and a cover for the wood furniture because without the protective sealant the cold air will still pass through the cover. If the wood is painted, repainting it before putting it away into storage will improve durability. Washing the furniture with a water-detergent-bleach solution and a mildly abrasive sponge will make it as clean as possible before storage as well!
- Plastic Furniture: Plastic furniture is quite durable in winter conditions, however, leaving it out in below freezing temperatures will cause damage. It’s best to keep plastic furniture indoors and to wash it with a detergent solution before storage. Be sure to thoroughly dry it as well so mold doesn’t grow.
- Metal Furniture: Rain and snow will cause metal to rust outdoors, thus, breaking down the structure of the furniture itself. Treat any potential rust before storing metal furniture outside with a rust-neutralizing primer. Applying a coat of spray paint that matches the original color of the metal will fix any discoloration. For maximum protection, automotive wax will protect your metal furniture in even the most extreme conditions.
- Wicker Furniture: The first step to cleaning wicker furniture is brushing off the surface with a bleach and water solution to remove any mildew within the nooks and crannies of the wicker. Then rinse off the solution with a light spray and let dry. Apply a spray paint to any areas with discoloration and a moisture repellent to the feet and legs where the grain may be exposed.
- Cushions & Fabrics: For cushions and fabrics it’s most important to prevent the damage of freezing and thawing in the winter as well as the cushions growing mold and mildew. The first step in this cleaning process is vacuuming the cushions and then washing them with a bleach-detergent mix. It’s ideal to store this furniture inside to avoid any rain, snow, and rodents.
Where to store your furniture
Outdoor furniture is best stored indoors over the winter months. If you have a clean area to store this furniture, save space by stacking your furniture on top of each other and covering those piles with furniture covers secured by straps. Most outdoor furniture will be perfectly preserved in a non-climate space. However, we do recommend covering the furniture with one of our chair or sofa covers to further protect it during storage. Remember, non-climate spaces are similar to storing items in a garage. Amazing Spaces non-climate spaces have painted and sealed floors to minimize exposure to dirt and dust, and are insulated to further protect your items.
Wondering where to store those bulky outdoor cushions? It’s not easy finding the perfect spot, but, here’s some things to consider before selecting your next storage location. Be sure that you choose a dry and cool environment and avoid placing cushions directly on the floor of a garage or basement. You’ll also want to avoid placing the cushions in storage in direct sunlight as it fades the cushion material. Here’s a few of our favorite storage hacks:
We make it easy to buy insurance to protect your stored items, and you can pay your monthly storage fee online from the convenience of your own home. In addition to storing large items such as furniture, you can use your rented storage space to hold smaller items. If you need boxes, tape, cushioning materials or any moving supplies, we have all of these items available at any of our storage facilities or you can simply order them online.
Use Caution While Transporting Outdoor Furniture
Stack your furniture and cover
To save space you can stack your furniture on top of each other and cover with either furniture covers or poly/vinyl tarps secured with straps or weighted down.
Preserving the life of your outdoor furniture takes time, but, it’s well worth it in the long run—think of it as adding value to your home! Store your furniture safely away for many more AMAZING memories next season!
If you’d like additional insight in storing outdoor furniture, we recommend you check out the following helpful blog posts from the Today Show and Huffington Post.
If you need more space and simply can’t store these items at home, we can help! Give us a call today, 281-378-4343 and one of our A-team members will be happy to assist in selecting the right option for your storage needs!