Posted on October 4, 2021
What’s the Best Way to Store Garden Furniture & Cushions?
Our Top Three Tips for Keeping your Garden Furniture Looking its Best over Winter
With the leaves starting to turn, evenings drawing in and temperatures cooling, thoughts inevitably turn to “Winter prep”. One of the most common questions we are asked here at The Posh Shed Company is, “Can I keep my patio cushions in my shed?”. Well, the answer is yes! However, our simple good housekeeping tips will help to make sure that your furniture bounces into action next Spring ready to face another Summer.
You wouldn’t put your dirty dishes back in the cupboard without washing them and garden furniture is just the same!
Remove washable cushion covers and wash or dry clean according to the instruction label. Make sure that they are dry and aired thoroughly – an airing cupboard is perfect for this, or if you have a dehumidifier, pop this in the “drying room” for a day to extract the last of the moisture. Once dry, pop the covers back on the cushion pads.
If they are waterproof cushions, give them a clean with a soft cloth and gentle detergent. Mould can be an issue on waterproof cushions, and it is important to remove this as it will only get worse over winter. Use a mild bleach solution, spray (make sure the area is well ventilated and you use appropriate PPE to protect your skin and eyes) or wipe on with a cloth and leave for up to 20 minutes then rinse off and allow to dry naturally outside.
For the furniture itself, it is good practice to clean off any natural debris or dirt using an appropriate cleaner before storing for a long period.
For metal, a simple solution of warm soapy water followed by a thorough dry with a microfibre cloth should suffice. Once dry, inspect the surface for any damage, removing rust spots with a fine grade sandpaper and then seal with metal paint.
Plastic is perhaps the easiest to clean, a wash down with soapy water and perhaps a light scrub with a soft brush should be all that’s needed before drying off with a microfibre cloth.
Wicker and rattan furniture can prove a little awkward to clean so use the upholstery tool on your vacuum cleaner to get most of the surface dust off before wiping down with a cloth. Try not to saturate the material as they don’t tend to handle moisture well. You can weatherproof with various treatments such as yacht varnish but do check the manufacturer recommendations first.
Treating wooden furniture with a bit of TLC before the winter will pay dividends, and means that is nourished and ready for another season as soon as that spring sunshine appears. Use a soft brush in a mild detergent to clean off any green moss and dirt and allow to dry before applying the recommended preservation treatment for your furniture to ensure that it is protected against the effects of the external elements for another season.
Once dry, cushions should be covered or placed into storage bags such to keep them clean and dust free through the winter. Ikea “Dimpa” bags are affordable and perfect for a small number of cushions, while ManoMano have a huge range of solutions. Before sealing up, pop a large silica gel pack, readily available on Amazon, inside as an additional moisture protection.
Any shed, garage or outbuilding will offer protection for your furniture but the drier the better. If you don’t have a shed, a spare room, underbed space or loft can be used for your soft furnishings and custom fitted furniture covers, or a tarpaulin will keep the worst of the weather off your furniture if you have no choice but to leave it out over the winter.
Top Tip: Keep an eye on your furniture cushions over the winter. Check in on them once a month or so to make sure that no mould or mildew is growing and that rodents haven’t taken up residence (see our top tips to keep rodents out of your shed).
The Posh Shed Company range offers a waterproof build to include a unique triple layer wall construction, this helps to keep moisture out and the inside of your shed dry and is perfect for storing garden furniture over winter. The “Comfortably Posh” and “Unbelievably Posh” options go a step further and has an insulated layer added to the floor, walls and roof, and the benefit of double glazed windows and door.
Remove & clean patio cushions before storing
Where possible, store garden furniture out of the elements over Winter
A clean dry shed is a great place to store garden furniture over the Winter