Don't let the changing seasons wreak havoc on your outdoor wooden furniture. Invest in furniture covers and paint them new to keep them safe, say experts.
Raghunandan Saraf, Founder and CEO, Saraf Furniture, and Mikita Laad Gupta, Senior Designer, Bonito Designs, suggest how:
* Invest in furniture covers that are available in various sizes and types to protect it and prolong the lifespan. These covers are made of polyester, vinyl or canvas, and are usually waterproof and UV-resistant. Choose covers that offer complete coverage from the wind, sun and the rain and ones that are easy to use.
* The best way to give your furniture a makeover and also protect it is to paint it. While there are chances of the furniture losing its original sheen and charm, the paint will keep the pieces looking new. Latex paint offers various levels of protection and is the most common one used for coating outdoor furniture. Apart from offering versatility and durability, the latex seals the wood fibres and protects against water penetration.
* Weather can be unpredictable at times. It is better to take precautionary measures beforehand and keep your outdoor wooden furniture completely protected. Applying water sealant to the furniture will retain the look of the wood and give the furniture adequate protection against rain. The water sealant not only guarantees protection against moisture outside but also dries up damp wood within the sealant faster. Even wood stains and water repellents protect wooden furniture and help retain the colour.
* Change the placement of the furniture according to climatic conditions. For instance, if harsh sun rays are directly falling on the furniture, shift it where there is ample shade.
* Most wood outdoor furniture will benefit from a mild scrubbing and rinsing at the start and finish of each season. Many pieces also work best with an annual sanding and a fresh coat of protectant such as a good outdoor varnish, to prevent drying or cracking.
Maintenance will vary depending on the type of wood. Variations in temperature can cause wood to crack. Help prevent further damage by cleaning with an oil-based soap and a soft-bristled brush, and hose off when complete.
* Use furniture glides to raise the piece slightly off the ground so it doesn't sit in puddles of rainwater.
* Select your furniture keeping in mind the climatic condition and the type of wood. Furniture made of teak would be appropriate. Make sure the furniture doesn't require layers of polish to get the effect or to ensure its durability. The wood must be termite-resistant and dense in nature, which is apt for outdoor furniture.