How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

When it comes time to spiff up your porch or patio for spring, cleaning your furniture cushions ranks high on the to-do list—particularly if those cushions have been out in the elements all winter long. All that exposure to moisture doesn’t bode well for these comfy pieces when it comes to mildew potential. Fortunately, many cushions are designed with removable covers that can be slipped off and thrown into the washing machine on gentle cycle. (Thank goodness for zippered slipcovers!) But even if yours don’t have removable covers, you can still get your cushions clean in preparation for a summer of outdoor fun—just follow these simple steps.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

As always, the best way to clean patio furniture is to prevent it from getting heavily soiled in the first place. You can accomplish this by spraying clean cushions with Scotch Guard to repel stains. Be sure to wipe up spills when they happen, and frequently give your furniture a wipe-down with a damp cloth to keep dust, pollen and grime from building up over the course of the season.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

The easiest way to avoid complicated cleaning operations is to maintain cushions day to day. Regular brushings of cushion surfaces with a whiskbroom will cut down on stains from visiting insects and plant debris. When cushions get soaked by an unexpected shower, turn them on edge to speed up drying time. If an accidental spill occurs, sop it up quickly with a paper towel or a clean rag. Keep a spray bottle on hand with a solution of 4 cups water, 1 teaspoon clear dishwashing liquid soap, and 1 tablespoon of borax. When a troublesome spot appears, spray it with the solution, let it soak for 15 minutes, and rinse with cool water to remove soap residue. Set cushions on edge to air dry.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Preventive Maintenance The easiest way to avoid complicated cleaning operations is to maintain cushions day to day. Regular brushings of cushion surfaces with a whiskbroom will cut down on stains from visiting insects and plant debris. When cushions get soaked by an unexpected shower, turn them on edge to speed up drying time. If an accidental spill occurs, sop it up quickly with a paper towel or a clean rag. Keep a spray bottle on hand with a solution of 4 cups water, 1 teaspoon clear dishwashing liquid soap, and 1 tablespoon of borax. When a troublesome spot appears, spray it with the solution, let it soak for 15 minutes, and rinse with cool water to remove soap residue. Set cushions on edge to air dry.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Step 2 Wait, Wash and Dry Let the cleaning solution sit for 15 minutes. Then with the garden hose on high, spray the cushions thoroughly to knock the dirt and cleaning solution off the cushions. Stand the cushions up on edge to let them dry to just damp.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Wait, Wash and Dry Let the cleaning solution sit for 15 minutes. Then with the garden hose on high, spray the cushions thoroughly to knock the dirt and cleaning solution off the cushions. Stand the cushions up on edge to let them dry to just damp.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Over time, cushions become soiled or discolored, but can be refreshed with a thorough cleaning. Cleaning cushions before storing for the winter months ensures a trouble-free start in the spring. For non-removable cushion covers, sponge surfaces with a solution of ¼ cup clear liquid detergent with 1 gallon of lukewarm water. Work the bubbles into the fabric with the sponge, then rinse thoroughly with a high-pressure garden hose to remove detergent residue. Set cushions on edge to dry. To wash removable cushion covers by hand, soak in a solution of ¼ cup of clear liquid detergent per gallon of lukewarm water. Rinse thoroughly to remove detergent residue and air dry. To machine wash removable cushion covers, set water temperature on cool, use a normal amount of laundry detergent and add 1 cup of chlorine bleach to each load and finally, air dry.
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How To Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Cleaning Heavily Soiled Fabrics Over time, cushions become soiled or discolored, but can be refreshed with a thorough cleaning. Cleaning cushions before storing for the winter months ensures a trouble-free start in the spring. For non-removable cushion covers, sponge surfaces with a solution of ¼ cup clear liquid detergent with 1 gallon of lukewarm water. Work the bubbles into the fabric with the sponge, then rinse thoroughly with a high-pressure garden hose to remove detergent residue. Set cushions on edge to dry. To wash removable cushion covers by hand, soak in a solution of ¼ cup of clear liquid detergent per gallon of lukewarm water. Rinse thoroughly to remove detergent residue and air dry. To machine wash removable cushion covers, set water temperature on cool, use a normal amount of laundry detergent and add 1 cup of chlorine bleach to each load and finally, air dry.
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Matt suggested that I use the pressure washer on them. I said no. I thought for sure a pressure washer would rip the cushions to shreds. Then I thought hmmm….maybe if I try it and they rip to shreds we wouldn’t have any choice but to buy new ones. I’m usually pretty smart this way! So, in an effort to prove Matt wrong and get this girl some new patio cushions, I broke out the pressure washer and got to work.
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Take a look at that! I really thought that the strength of the pressure washer would be too much, but it worked perfectly. So, all I really needed was water. No soap, no scrubbing and no money lost! Whoop! Grab your dude’s pressure washer, or borrow your neighbors, or you could even rent one for around $25 and get your patio cushions clean!
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Faith Sheridan Regular cleaning. Brush off dust and debris. It’s best to vacuum the cushions, Pirhonen says, since it’ll do a much better job at removing the dirt, especially along seams, which can trap debris inside, where mildew and mold can grow.Spot cleaning. Sunbrella, a major manufacturer of outdoor fabrics, recommends these steps to remove a stain:1. Blot — don’t rub — liquid spills with a clean, dry cloth. For oil-based spills, apply an absorbent, such as cornstarch, and then remove it with a straight edge.2. Spray on a mild cleaning solution of a quarter-cup soap (such as Dawn or Woolite) per gallon of lukewarm water.3. Rinse the fabric thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Air-dry.It’s best to clean the entire surface area of the fabric to avoid water rings and stains.
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Regular cleaning. Brush off dust and debris. It’s best to vacuum the cushions, Pirhonen says, since it’ll do a much better job at removing the dirt, especially along seams, which can trap debris inside, where mildew and mold can grow.Spot cleaning. Sunbrella, a major manufacturer of outdoor fabrics, recommends these steps to remove a stain:1. Blot — don’t rub — liquid spills with a clean, dry cloth. For oil-based spills, apply an absorbent, such as cornstarch, and then remove it with a straight edge.2. Spray on a mild cleaning solution of a quarter-cup soap (such as Dawn or Woolite) per gallon of lukewarm water.3. Rinse the fabric thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Air-dry.It’s best to clean the entire surface area of the fabric to avoid water rings and stains.
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Susan Jay Design Mold and Mildew Stains1. Prepare a solution of 1 cup bleach and a quarter-cup mild soap per gallon of water.2. Spray entire surface and allow to soak into the fabric for 15 minutes.3. Clean surface with a sponge, clean towel or very soft bristle brush.4. Rinse the fabric thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Air-dry.For severe mold and mildew growth, bleach quantities may be increased. Most solution-dyed acrylics, even colored fabrics, can be treated with diluted bleach, but check with your manufacturer first. Pirhonen suggests testing the bleach on a small, inconspicuous part of the cushion, especially if the cushion is patterned, like these, to make sure it doesn’t discolor. In its written materials, Sunbrella advises against power-washing cushions because it can damage the material or break the seams.
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Mold and Mildew Stains1. Prepare a solution of 1 cup bleach and a quarter-cup mild soap per gallon of water.2. Spray entire surface and allow to soak into the fabric for 15 minutes.3. Clean surface with a sponge, clean towel or very soft bristle brush.4. Rinse the fabric thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Air-dry.For severe mold and mildew growth, bleach quantities may be increased. Most solution-dyed acrylics, even colored fabrics, can be treated with diluted bleach, but check with your manufacturer first. Pirhonen suggests testing the bleach on a small, inconspicuous part of the cushion, especially if the cushion is patterned, like these, to make sure it doesn’t discolor. In its written materials, Sunbrella advises against power-washing cushions because it can damage the material or break the seams.
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But let’s face it: between the spilled beverages, skin covered with greasy sunscreen, and that nasty stuff that grows on outdoor seating after a week of non-stop rain, your favorite chair can get mighty ugly. Here’s how to clean your patio furniture — or deck furniture — quickly and easily.

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