Outdoor furniture is a great way to add functional and aesthetic value to your outdoor living space. However, exposure to the elements makes outdoor furniture susceptible to mildew growth. Mildew is a fungus that grows in warm, damp conditions and can leave your furniture looking and smelling unpleasant. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to prevent mildew growth and keep your outdoor furniture looking and smelling fresh.
Tips for Keeping the Outdoor Furniture from Mildewing
Choose Mildew-Resistant Materials
When selecting outdoor furniture, consider materials that are resistant to mildew. Some naturally resistant materials to mildew include teak, cedar, and redwood. Synthetic materials, such as plastic and resin, are also mildew-resistant. Avoid using fabrics or materials prone to mildew growth, such as cotton or natural fibers.
Clean Your Furniture Regularly
Regular cleaning is key to preventing mildew growth. Use a gentle cleanser and warm water to clean your furniture, and rinse it thoroughly. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that can damage the surface of your furniture. Once your furniture is clean, allow it to dry completely before using it again.
Store Your Furniture Properly
If you live in an area with high humidity, consider storing your outdoor furniture in a dry, covered area when it’s not in use. This will prevent moisture from building up on the surface of your furniture, which can lead to mildew growth. If storing your furniture indoors is not an option, consider using furniture covers or tarps to protect your furniture from the elements.
Use Mildew-Resistant Products
Several products on the market are designed to prevent mildew growth on outdoor furniture. Look for products specifically formulated for outdoor furniture use and safe for the materials used in your furniture. Some popular products include outdoor furniture sprays, mold and mildew inhibitors, and surface protectors.
Allow Air Circulation
Good air circulation is important for preventing mildew growth. Avoid placing your furniture in poor air circulation areas, such as under a tree or in the corner of your yard. If your furniture is placed in an area with poor air circulation, consider using a fan or other ventilation system to improve airflow.
Remove Stains and Spills Promptly
Stains and spills can attract moisture and provide a breeding ground for mildew. To prevent this, cleaning up any spills or stains on your furniture as soon as possible is important. Use a clean, damp cloth to blot the area, then allow it to air dry completely.
Use a Dehumidifier
If you live in an area with high humidity, consider using a dehumidifier to reduce the moisture in the air. This can help prevent mildew growth on your outdoor furniture and other areas of your home.
Apply a Sealant
Applying a sealant to your outdoor furniture can help protect it from moisture and mildew growth. There are several types of sealants available, including water-based and oil-based options. Before applying a sealant, clean your furniture thoroughly and allow it to dry completely.
Trim Back Foliage
If your outdoor furniture is located near plants or trees, consider trimming back the foliage to improve airflow and reduce the amount of moisture in the air.
Use Proper Drainage
Proper drainage prevents water from accumulating on or around your outdoor furniture. Make sure that your furniture is located on a level surface that allows for adequate drainage, and consider using gravel or other materials to improve drainage in the area.
What Kills Mildew On Outdoor Fabric?
Mildew is a type of fungus that thrives in damp and warm conditions. It can grow on any organic material, including outdoor fabric, such as cushions, umbrellas, and awnings. Mildew on outdoor fabric can damage the material and create an unpleasant odor. Fortunately, there are several effective methods for killing mildew on outdoor fabric.
- White Vinegar
White vinegar is a natural and effective solution for killing mildew on outdoor fabric. Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle, and spray the affected areas of the fabric. Allow the solution to sit for at least 30 minutes, and then rinse the fabric thoroughly with water. Repeat the process as needed until the mildew is gone.
- Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is another natural solution that can kill mildew on outdoor fabric. Mix equal parts of hydrogen peroxide and water in a spray bottle, and spray the affected areas of the fabric. Allow the solution to sit for at least 30 minutes, and then rinse the fabric thoroughly with water. Repeat the process as needed until the mildew is gone.
Bleach is a powerful solution for killing mildew on outdoor fabric, but it should be used cautiously. Mix 1 cup of bleach with 1 gallon of water in a bucket, and soak the affected areas of the fabric in the solution for at least 10 minutes. Rinse the fabric thoroughly with water, and then wash it with a mild detergent. Be sure to wear protective gloves and clothing when using bleach, and avoid using it on colored fabrics.
Borax is a natural mineral that can kill mildew on outdoor fabric. Mix 1 cup of borax with 1 gallon of hot water in a bucket, and soak the affected areas of the fabric in the solution for at least 30 minutes. Rinse the fabric thoroughly with water, and then wash it with a mild detergent. Borax can also be added to the washing machine when washing outdoor fabric.
- Commercial Mildew Removers
Several commercial products are specifically designed to kill mildew on outdoor fabric. These products can be found at home improvement stores or online, usually in spray or concentrate form. Follow the instructions on the label carefully when using commercial mildew removers.
Mildew growth on outdoor furniture and fabric can be a common problem, but it can be prevented and treated with proper care and maintenance. Regular cleaning and drying of outdoor furniture and fabric and avoiding damp and humid conditions are crucial in preventing mildew growth.