Knowing the proper ways how to clean patio furniture mesh is a complex topic. Not due to the several processes to remember, but because plenty of mesh patio furniture owners fail to differentiate what type they own from the others.
There are multiple types of mesh patio furniture. They all differ based on what they’re made of and not their style. The common ones are metal, natural fibre, plastic, and cloth. Some are even mixed. To make things more complicated, these materials also have their subtypes.
If you were to use the wrong chemicals, tools, and methods in cleaning your type of patio furniture, you would end up damaging such a precious set of outdoor amenities. But don’t worry. This article will cover the proper techniques to keep your outdoor mesh furniture clean and beautiful for the years to come.
So get your housekeeping manual along with a pen. Write down what you’ll learn here. Not a fan of taking notes? You can bookmark this page on your computer or phone if you need a reference for later on. If that’s too much work, take screenshots. Now let’s get on with the topic.
Table of Contents
Why is it Important to Clean Patio Furniture Mesh?
We know that all patio furniture are made to withstand constant exposure to outdoor weather. While they’re assembled from durable materials, eventually, they will accumulate dirt and appear worn out. Not to mention the growth of mould and other forms of nastiness.
These factors will make the furniture set look uncomfortable and unwelcoming – the opposites of their primary purposes. It’s essential to clean your mesh patio furniture set at least once a month during the spring and summer seasons. Some suggest doing so four times a year: At the beginning of summer, twice in the middle of the season, and at the end. However, it all depends on where you live.
If you’re located in a tropical zone, it would be best to clean the outdoor furniture once a month for a whole year. However, if you’re living in a temperate region with more than two seasons, the right thing to do would be to clean your furniture thrice during spring, four times in summer, twice during autumn, and store them indoors during winter.
What Causes Dirt Buildup on Patio Furniture Mesh?
Dust and dirt, like pollen, are always carried by air and wind. Since mesh patio furniture is left outside day and night for the majority of the month, it’s no surprise that they accumulate these undesirable particles. They gather up on flat surfaces such as the arm, seat, and backrest most of the time. This isn’t a significant problem because it can be solved with a feather duster or brush-headed vacuum.
The ones you should keep an eye on are the joints, crevices, under areas, and anything else between major furniture components. Why? They aren’t often thoroughly rinsed by rain or in contact with human skin and clothing. When dirt or dust sets on these places and gets wet by rain, moisture, or snow, they will harden, turn into stains, invite rust, or allow mould growth.
Through regular cleaning, your mesh furniture will stay in pristine condition. Your regular visitors will even be baffled at how you can keep your outdoor furniture looking new after years of serving visitors on your patio.
How to Clean Patio Furniture Mesh
As mentioned, there are multiple ways how to clean mesh patio furniture. They differ based on which material the particular furniture set is made of. Before we go on, identify what type of material your mesh patio furniture is made of. This is so you won’t need to read everything in this section and go straight to the cleaning manual for your patio set.
How to Clean Natural Fiber Mesh on Outdoor Furniture
On mesh outdoor furniture, natural fibres such as bamboo, jute, rattan, wicker, teak, willow, and sisal require mild detergents such as Tide’s Free and Gentle and liquid dish soap. With regular cleaning, stronger detergents would cause the wood’s finishings to wear off faster.
Once this happens, the natural fibres will absorb moisture and allow mould to grow on both the surface and inner parts. You don’t want this to happen. Mix the mild liquid or powdered detergent (one part) in a bucket of cold water (two parts).
Soak the natural fibre furniture with water first using your garden hose. Lather everything with a wet sponge that you dipped in the soapy bucket. Dip a soft brush into the soapy bucket and clean the exposed areas using light strokes. For the tricky spots, you can use a discarded toothbrush.
Then, rinse the piece of furniture thoroughly. Dry it under the sun. If the tricky spots cannot be hit by sunlight, you can use compressed air to blow away the moisture. Compressed air alone is also a great way to clean your furniture weekly, especially if no dirt or dust is stuck and hardened due to being mixed with moisture.
Additional tip: Cleaning wood patio furniture follows the same processes as cleaning natural fibre mesh.
How to Clean Fabric Mesh Outdoor Furniture
Like natural fibres, fabric mesh furniture can be cleaned using soap. You can use stronger detergents or a bleach solution if there are stubborn stains, dirt, and moulds. One part detergent mixed with one part bucket of warm water is enough to clean the fabric without fading the colours.
Here, you can use a hard scrub brush for cleaning. Just remember that if you use bleach, make sure the bottle is colour appropriate. Chlorine bleach solution is good for removing tough stains on white fabrics but would damage coloured or patterned fabric patio mesh furniture. Oxygen bleach is the right product for removing stains on non-white fabric mesh.
Soak the mesh fabric with water using a garden hose. Lather the area with a wet sponge dipped in the detergent water. Put two or three drops of bleach on the stained area. Let the solution sit for 2 minutes before brushing the stain away with soapy water.
Once the stain is gone, brush all the fabrics until you can see the dirt has been removed and is mixed in the bubbles or foam. Then, rinse the mesh fabrics thoroughly with warm water. If there are no stubborn stains, dirt, or moulds on the mesh fabric, follow the soak-lather-brush-rinse process without using bleach.
How to Clean Plastic Mesh Patio Furniture
Plastic furniture is the easiest to clean because they don’t bond with dirt, aren’t easily stained, or get moldy. To clean plastic furniture, skip using soap and the water-soaking part. You can use a power washer on low to medium settings to deep clean everything, including the crevices.
However, if you don’t have a power washer at home, you can wipe all the dirt using circular motions with a soapy sponge or an all-purpose spray cleaner with a clean cloth. For plastic outdoor furniture maintenance, you need to avoid corrosive chemicals like bleach and acid-based cleaners.
It would help if you also stayed away from abrasive cleaning tools such as steel wool and hard-bristled brushes. They can scratch and dull surfaces. If you need to remove stubborn stains on outdoor plastic mesh furniture, mix baking soda into the soapy water before cleaning.
Lastly, wipe your plastic furniture using a dry cloth if you washed it with soap and rinsed it with water. Don’t let water droplets dry under the sun as water spots would appear on the plastic. If you used an all-purpose spray bottle cleaner, leave the furniture to air dry.
It’s also great to apply a plastic restorer and protectant to make the furniture shine and its colour last longer after cleaning.
How to Clean Metal Mesh on Outdoor Furniture
Metal mesh is the most difficult type of patio furniture to clean. So, where do you start on how to clean patio furniture mesh that are made of metal? You must first check the paint condition on the mesh before doing anything. If you see any paint chippings, scratches, rust, or oxidation, remove them using steel wool or sandpaper and repaint the areas.
Once the paint has dried, you can start washing the metal patio furniture as you do with a new set. Only repaint if the chippings, scratches, and rust are highly visible, negatively affecting the appearance of the metal mesh. However, if the paint of your furniture is in pristine condition or the furniture set is new, lather the metal mesh with soapy water, clean it with a soft brush, and rinse it with clean water.
Other metal furniture is made of non-rusting but corrodible elements such as aluminum. Some are stainless steel which won’t easily get rusty and oxidized. Wrought iron frames are prone to rust. Despite their differences, all types of metal patio furniture can be washed with soap and water.
Remember not to use corrosive chemicals like bleach and acid-based solutions as you clean iron frames. Always wipe the metal patio furniture dry with a clean cloth to preserve its shine and paint. Bare metal mesh patio furniture should be buffed with metal polish after washing and drying.
If your mesh patio furniture is mixed-style, clean each part according to the instructions found above for each specific material used.
How do you remove tough stains from mesh outdoor furniture?
To remove stains on your mesh furniture, determine which type of material the stain is on. If it’s wood or natural fibre, dilute ammonia in water, soak one small area of a sponge, and remove the stain using soft circular motions.
If the mesh is made of fabric, lather the area with soapy water and apply two to three drops of bleach. Let the bleach absorb. Use oxygen bleach on coloured patio mesh fabric and chlorine bleach on white or colourless fabric. Brush the stain with a soft-bristled brush until it’s completely removed.
Mix baking soda into the detergent water for outdoor plastic furniture and scrub the stain off with a sponge, soft brush, or soft cloth. The best way to remove stains from metal or wood patio furniture is to file them away using sandpaper or steel wool and repaint the filed area.
How to clean outdoor mesh chairs handles and frames?
Soak the frames and handles with water. Lather them up with liquid or powdered detergent. Clean them using a soft brush, soft cloth, or sponge. Rinse the handles and frames with clean water. Air dry under the sun, blast compressed air or wipe these areas with a dry cloth.
Can you use Vinegar to clean patio mesh?
Yes, but you shouldn’t do this often, especially if you own wooden, natural fibre, or outdoor metal furniture, as vinegar can corrode metal and wood finishes. To use the sour condiment safely as a cleaning agent, pour a cup of white distilled vinegar into a gallon of warm water. Apply the vinegar solution to the patio mesh using a soft brush or cloth. Then, let it sit for ten minutes. Rinse the furniture with clean water using a garden hose to eliminate all the vinegar solution.
Is it safe to use Bleach To Clean The Mesh On Patio Furniture?
It depends on the mesh material of the outdoor furniture. If it’s not made of fabric, it’s not safe to use any bleach. Breaking this rule would result in damaging the furniture material. Some fabrics are damageable by bleach, such as leather, mohair, spandex, silk, and wool.
What Types of Mesh Fabrics Can you use Bleach on?
You can use bleach on high-energy polyester, acrylic, solution-dyed fibres, polypropylene, nylon, and polyethylene. These durable fabrics are commonly used in outdoor cushion covers and patio umbrellas. Remember to use the right bleach formula for the right fabric: Oxygen bleach for coloured and patterned fabrics. Chlorine bleach for white fabrics.
Chemicals and Tools to Avoid Using When Cleaning Fabric Mesh on Patio Furniture
Don’t use a bleach solution unless necessary. Avoid mixing cleaners of two different kinds. Chlorine bleach shouldn’t be used on coloured and patterned fabrics. Never clean fabrics with a hard-bristled brush or steel wool. Only use a soft bristle brush.
Tips to Maintain Patio Furniture Mesh Cleanliness
Cover your patio furniture with outdoor fabrics when not in use. Clean them with water and soap at least once a month. Dust your outdoor furniture once every week. Put your mesh patio furniture under the shade of umbrella fabric to prevent them from getting rained on. Wipe the furniture dry every time they get wet from the rain.
How Often Should You Clean Your Mesh Patio Furniture?
Clean your outdoor furnishings with water and soap once a month throughout the spring, summer, and autumn seasons. If you live in a dry area, maintain mesh cleanliness with feather dusters, blow the dirt away with compressed air, or wipe them with a cleaning solution once a week.
When should I replace patio furniture mesh?
The right time to replace mesh furniture is when the mesh is torn, natural fibres are poking out, rusts beyond repair are present, and they appear brittle. In summary, if the mesh is uncomfortable to sit on or appears could no longer support human weight, find a replacement for it as soon as possible.
FAQs – How to Clean Patio Furniture Mesh
What’s the easiest and safest way to clean mesh patio furniture?
Use soap, water, and a soft-bristle brush only. Wipe the furniture with cloth thoroughly and let it air dry under the sun. If there is no sun, use compressed air to blast the water particles away from the mesh.
What should you avoid doing when cleaning mesh patio furniture?
Avoid using the wrong cleaning solution and tool for the material of your outdoor furniture. It’s highly recommended to know what type of material your mesh furniture is made of before buying taking a trip to the grocery store.
What is the best cleaner for plastic mesh furniture?
A power washer with a stable and clean water source. Plastics don’t easily get stained which makes them not need commercial cleaners for maintenance. You can also clean mesh plastic patio furnishings using a wet cloth.
The key to cleaning your mesh patio furniture is to know what type of material it’s built from first. Once you do so, you’ll be able to buy the right cleaning agents and tools from the supermarket to keep your outdoor furniture in pristine condition for years.
One last thing to remember: If your outdoor furniture is made of different parts, like a metal frame with a mesh fabric, clean the different areas with the appropriate chemicals, tools, and methods. This will help avoid damages such as rust and color fading.