Can Garden Furniture Be Left Outside? A Comprehensive Guide

Can Garden Furniture Be Left Outside? A Comprehensive Guide

Garden furniture is a wonderful addition to any outdoor space, offering a perfect spot to relax, entertain guests, or enjoy a meal al fresco. However, one common question arises among homeowners and gardening enthusiasts: "Can garden furniture be left outside?" The answer isn't straightforward, as it depends on various factors such as the type of furniture, the materials used, and the local climate. In this guide, we'll explore the considerations you need to keep in mind to ensure your garden furniture remains in excellent condition year-round.


Understanding Different Types of Garden Furniture



Wood Furniture

Wooden garden furniture is a classic choice that adds a natural, timeless appeal to your garden. However, not all wood is created equal when it comes to outdoor durability.


Known for its exceptional resistance to water and insects, teak is one of the best woods for outdoor furniture. It can be left outside year-round with minimal maintenance, developing a beautiful silver patina over time.

Cedar and Redwood:

Both are naturally resistant to rot and insects but require regular sealing or staining to maintain their appearance and longevity.

Pine and Other Softwoods:

These are less durable and more prone to weather damage. They should be treated with a protective finish and ideally stored indoors during harsh weather.


Metal Furniture

Metal garden furniture is popular for its durability and sleek designs. However, the type of metal makes a significant difference.


Lightweight, rust-resistant, and low-maintenance, aluminium furniture can be left outside without much worry. It might benefit from occasional cleaning to remove dirt and grime.

Wrought Iron:

Extremely sturdy but prone to rust. To extend its life, apply a protective coating and cover or store it during wet weather.


Often coated to prevent rust, steel furniture is strong but should be maintained regularly to avoid corrosion.

Plastic and Resin Furniture:

Plastic and resin furniture are budget-friendly, lightweight, and available in various styles. They are generally weather-resistant and can be left outside year-round. However, they may become brittle and fade over time due to sun exposure.

Wicker Furniture:

Wicker furniture, particularly when made from synthetic materials like resin wicker, is designed for outdoor use. Natural wicker, on the other hand, is less durable and should be kept under cover when not in use.

Climate Considerations

Sun Exposure:

Prolonged exposure to the sun can cause fading, cracking, and warping in many materials. Furniture covers or shade solutions like umbrellas and pergolas can protect your garden furniture from UV damage.

Rain and Humidity:

Excess moisture can lead to mould, mildew, and rust. Ensuring proper drainage around your furniture and using waterproof covers can help mitigate these issues. Wood and metal furniture benefit from regular sealing and protective coatings to enhance their water resistance.

Cold and Snow:

Freezing temperatures and snow can be particularly harsh on garden furniture. Metal can become brittle, wood can crack, and cushions can become waterlogged. If you live in an area with severe winters, consider storing your furniture indoors or in a shed when not in use.

Maintenance Tips for Outdoor Furniture

Regardless of the material, regular maintenance will extend the life of your garden furniture.


Regularly clean your furniture with appropriate solutions. Mild soap and water work well for most materials.

Cushions and Fabrics:

Store cushions indoors when not in use and clean them according to the manufacturer's instructions to prevent mould and mildew.

Protective Covers:

Invest in high-quality, weather-resistant covers to protect your furniture from the elements.

Inspection and Repairs:

Periodically inspect your furniture for signs of damage and perform necessary repairs promptly to prevent further deterioration.

So, can garden furniture be left outside?

Yes, with the right materials and proper care, many types of garden furniture can withstand the elements and provide years of enjoyment. By understanding the specific needs of your furniture and taking preventative measures, you can keep your outdoor space looking beautiful and inviting no matter the season.
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