Colorful Hula chairs at an outdoor dining space with staircase in the background and hanging bulb string lights stretching across the space

Caring for your Outdoor Furniture

by GR Chair

Feeling the chill in the air? Winter is on the horizon, so pools are closing, leaves are falling, and you might be thinking about bringing in or covering some of that outdoor furniture before the snow comes. If you have products from Grand Rapids Chair Company, this article is your guide on how to clean your furniture after a long busy season before you store them away for winter. They’ll be clean and ready to go when the frost recedes and patio season comes back around.

HulaHula Stools, Photo by Nolan Dean Photography

How to Clean Your Metal Furniture

To clean your metal stools, chairs, or tables, you will want a mild soap or liquid dishwashing detergent mixed with warm water. Pick a non-abrasive disinfectant, like Formula 409®, Fantastik®, Windex®, or diluted SimpleGreen®. If there are stains, spills, or grease on your metal furniture, tackle them with the soap and water mix.

When you use the disinfectant, be sure to follow the instructions on the bottle. Wipe each product dry with a clean, soft cloth. DO NOT let the cleaning product dry on the metal. It could weaken the finish and lead to an increased chance of scratching or chipping. Be sure to wipe all the product off of the furniture.

Our metal finishes all come with a one-year warranty on any finish defects or workmanship failures, but with proper care, you can keep your metal furniture looking good as new for much much longer.

Opla-Seat-PadOpla Chairs with Seatpads

How to Clean Sunbrella Outdoor-Grade Fabrics

If you’ve chosen an outdoor grade fabric like Sunbrella, your upholstered chairs are already built to handle tougher conditions than indoor fabrics. Still, a little care and maintenance goes a long way. We’ve got advice directly from Sunbrella on how best to care for your outdoor grade fabrics

When it comes to spills, Sunbrella advises that you BLOT. It can be tempting to scrub the stain out, but blotting is always the best option. Use a clean dry cloth. If the spill or stain is greasy, apply an absorbent like corn starch, and scrape it off with a straight edge. This should hopefully get most of the stain right out.

After that, you can spray on a mild soap mixed with water, rinse the fabric to get all the soap out and air dry it. Stains happen, especially outside or in commercial restaurants, but this should do just the trick to bring it back to looking good as new.

For non-removable fabric, mix soap and lukewarm water (1/4 cup of soap to 1 gallon of water), and get a soft bristle brush to clean. Rinse it to remove all the soap and air dry it.

While Sunbrella Fabrics do not promote mildew growth, it can happen if dirt or other substances are left in the fabric. For this you’re going to need a mix of 1 cup of bleach, ¼ cup of mild soap, and a gallon of water. Spray your fabric and soak for 15 minutes. Clean the whole surface with a clean sponge, towel, or very soft bristle brush and rinse. Air dry after that, and you’ll be all set.

bowen-Oct-27-2021-04-49-45-10-PMThe Bowen Outdoor Table

How to Clean ACRE

Some of our latest furniture pieces like the Bowen Collection are made from a material called ACRE, made from upcycled rice hulls. Wood tends to develop a patina relatively quickly when left in the elements. However, ACRE is rot resistant, UV resistant, pest resistant, and water resistant! This material is going to hold up to the elements.

When it comes to regular cleaning, do not use acids or harsh chemicals. A mild soap mixed with warm water will work just fine. 

Now you have all the info you need to keep your furniture looking fresh and clean without doing any damage to the materials. Your commercial seating and tables will look gorgeous for years to come. Enjoy the warmer days while you can!

If you'd like to learn more about outdoor fabrics, we recently revamped our guide to outdoor fabrics and added a new list of favorite patterns. Check it out here!

Care & Maintenance