5 Important Tasks to Do Before You Put Your Patio Furniture Out for the Season

Wooden floor on terrace with comfy furniture and green plants.

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The weather is warming up, the days are getting longer, and it’s time to start getting our outdoor spaces ready for the season. From cleaning up gardens to reseeding lawns, clearing out gutters and downspouts, and cleaning garages and other outdoor structures, there are lots of spring cleaning tasks to tackle outdoors.

One of the most fun and exciting is setting up your deck or patio again for the season. However, before you rush to put your patio furniture out, there are a few things you should do to properly prepare the space. Here are 5 important tasks to do before you put your patio furniture out for the season.

Clean Your Deck or Patio

Before you set up your deck or patio for the summer it’s a good idea to give it a good deep clean.

“This step will help ensure that your patio looks clean and fresh, providing an inviting environment for you and your guests,” says Alessia Lamonaca, owner and lead designer of New Mode Home.

Use a hose or pressure washer (set to a low setting if you are using it on wood) to clear away debris, dirt, and grime that has accumulated over the winter.

Check for Damage and Perform Minor Repairs

Once your patio or deck has been cleaned it’s a good time to inspect the space for damage and perform minor repairs. Check the condition of the materials along with the stability of the railings and supports. If needed, don’t be afraid to get a professional involved as well. This is particularly true for elevated decks and balconies that are attached at the rim joist to the house, according to professional deck and balcony inspector, Bill Leys.

“As spring emerges and people get out on their decks, fasteners, hangers and other hardware as well as wood needs to be checked,” Leys says.

This will help to ensure the safety of the deck and prevent accidents throughout the season.

Thoroughly Clean Outdoor Furniture

Whether your outdoor furniture was stored away for the winter or not, the beginning of the season is an ideal time to give it a thorough cleaning. For the most part, a mixture of water and mild detergent along with a scrub brush is usually enough to clean outdoor furniture.

However, if your furniture hasn’t been cleaned for a while or was left unprotected over the winter, you may need something a bit stronger to get the job done. For plastic or hard metal furniture, Jeremy Yamaguchi, CEO of Lawn Love, recommends using WD-40 to break through tough dirt and grime to bring your furniture back to life. For upholstery that can’t be thrown in the washing machine, Yamaguchi recommends using a mixture of three parts water to one part powdered laundry detergent to scrub away tough stains.

“The grittiness will help, I promise,” he says. “Use a garden hose to thoroughly wash off this solution [and then] repeat if you still see stains or anything unsavory. Then towel dry as best you can and leave in the sun to dry completely before returning to the furniture.”

Evaluate the Condition of the Furniture

Once your furniture is clean, take stock of the overall condition of your pieces. Perform any minor repairs you may need to make, such as tightening screws, patching holes, or replacing damaged pieces. Then make a list of any replacements or new items you may need.

“To extend the life of your patio furniture, apply a protective sealant or coating based on the material of your furniture,” says Eric Bramlett of Bramlett Residential. “For example, use a waterproof sealant for wood furniture or a rust inhibitor for metal pieces,” he says.

Plan Your Space

Last but not least, it’s a good idea to plan how you want your patio to look before you start lugging heavy furniture around. This could include creating a mood board to help you visualize the space, or arranging things digitally or on paper to get a feel for your measurements, says Lamonaca. Not only will this help you take stock of your current patio furniture and accessories, but it will give you an idea of new pieces you may want to purchase for the upcoming season.