How to Clean Vinyl Strap Outdoor Furniture the Easy Way

Last updated on July 25th, 2022

Vinyl outdoor furniture is durable and resistant to most weather elements, including rust and heat. While this versatile material can withstand the elements, it will still get grimy and gradually unappealing when left outside without care and maintenance for long. Read along to learn how to clean vinyl strap outdoor furniture, so you don’t have to spend money on a replacement. 

Use a damp rag or microfiber cloth to remove dust or pollen from the surface of your vinyl strap outdoor furniture. To remove stains, scrub the vinyl with a soft-bristled brush or sponge dipped in a solution of ¼ cup of dish soap and hot water. If the stains persist, add one or two tablespoons of bleach to half a gallon of the soapy solution. Remember to rinse off the cleaning solution thoroughly once you finish scrubbing.  

What do you clean vinyl patio furniture with?

Water from your garden hose is an excellent option for cleaning dirt and pollen off the surfaces of your outdoor vinyl and plastic furniture. Alternatively, you could use a damp microfiber cloth to wipe the seats clean.

How to Clean Vinyl Strap Outdoor Furniture - Furniture placed outside

A mixture of mild dishwashing soap and hot water should be sufficient to clean sticky dirt and discoloration off your vinyl patio furniture. 

For stains that persist after trying to remove them with the solution of dishwashing detergent and hot water, a more robust cleaner should get the job done. Add one or two tablespoons of bleach to a half-gallon of soap-and-water solution.

While there are specialty products to use for stubborn stains that require much stronger stain removers, we recommend natural solutions instead. They are the safest and most effective because they remove stains without damaging your furniture. 

A solution of apple cider vinegar will remove stains from the surface of your vinyl straps outdoor furniture without affecting any protective coatings or finishes. Many professional cleaners use this household product for various purposes, such as removing tree sap, degreasing and window washing.

When you use it as a cleaning solution, the environmentally friendly vinegar will deliver a residue-free deep clean for your vinyl furniture. You’ll be amazed at how its acidity is effective against mold and mildew

Washing soda is the other natural stain-removing agent that you likely already have in your pantry. To create your washing soda cleaning solution, mix one-part baking soda with 10-parts water in a bucket. 

Using this solution will require only a little scrubbing to remove the most stubborn stains from your vinyl straps. This way, the cleaning solution will remove stains from the patio furniture safely while preventing scratching and fading.

You can buy washing soda at any major grocery store near you. You can also create your own at home by baking a skinny layer of baking soda on a cookie sheet – at approximately 200 degrees Celsius for 30 minutes, stirring from time to time. 

Why Clean Vinyl strap outdoor furniture

Much as the vinyl straps on deck chairs and chaise lounges are weather-resistant, they are simply not immune to getting dirty. 

How to clean vinyl strap outdoor furniture

The seats become stained and oily from pollen, grass clippings, and debris from trees, blowing dust, suntan lotions, and dirt. These can stick on the outdoor vinyl straps, making them appear dingy over time. 

Everyday exposure to the elements can damage the vinyl fabric with time – starting with the protective finish and coatings. 

Polishing and cleaning the vinyl helps remove any dirt and stains that could accumulate on the surface, nooks, and crevices. This kind of care also preserves and restores the straps’ original luster and shine.  

How to clean vinyl strap outdoor furniture

Always start by checking the vinyl seats’ care and maintenance instructions for any specific guidelines. There is no one-size-fits-all rule for cleaning vinyl seats; each is slightly different from the other. 

The care instructions that come with your vinyl seating provide important cleaning tips that apply to your specific furniture. The instruction could include the recommended cleaning methods, products to use, and more. 

The next thing you want to do before you start to use your vinyl chair cleaner is to remove the cushions. You will usually wash these separately, although you might use the same cleaning products.

Method 1: Using soap and water 

Step 1: Start by hosing down the furniture thoroughly to remove any pollen and loose dirt trapped on the frame and straps. Spraying the seat with the spray nozzle dislodges a great deal of dirt and makes cleaning a lot easier.  

Step 2: Squirt ¼ cup of dish soap into a bucket and add 1 gallon of hot water. Swish the water around with your hand to mix the solution and ensure the dish soap dissolves, creating significant suds. Note that you can also use ¼ cup of powdered dishwashing detergent. 

Step 3: Dunk your soft-bristled scrub brush or sponge into the soapy water and scrub the pool furniture with it, one strap at a time, working from the top downward. 

Alternatively, you can apply the cleaning solution to the furniture using a spray bottle and let it sit for 15 minutes before scrubbing.

Be sure to clean all the crevices and the underside of each piece as well, where the greatest amount of dirt often collects. While cleaning, ensure you keep rinsing the brush’s bristles as they become dirty.

Once you have finished scrubbing, spray the furniture down thoroughly with the hose to remove all soap residue along with any remaining dirt. Allow it to air-dry in the sun. 

This last part (rinsing) is pretty crucial. Many dishwashing detergents contain whitening agents that can accelerate your vinyl seat’s fading process when combined with exposure to sunlight. 

Rinsing your furniture well will help remove all the whitening agents and prevent the possibility of accelerated fading.  

Bonus: Consider wearing gloves in this process, as the detergents can be harsh on your skin.  

Method 2: Using more potent stain removers to clean severe stains

For more stubborn stains, you could use a specialized cleaner. You can get a commercial vinyl cleaning solution in most general stores near you. Popular options include Marine Vinyl Coat and Rejuvenate Leather & Vinyl Cleaner

Study the specific use instructions available on the container. The exact techniques for cleaning your vinyl patio seats may vary from one product to the other. 

Whatever you choose, you will usually begin by wiping down the furniture with a damp microfiber cloth or rag. This step is supposed to remove any loose dirt and make cleaning with the product easier. 

The next part is to apply the cleaning product to the vinyl straps with a clean microfiber cloth or damp rag. Spread the cleaner gently across the surface, ensuring you cover all areas that you want to clean.

If you prefer a natural stain remover, you can use a solution of apple cider vinegar. To prepare this natural cleaning solution, mix one cup of cider vinegar with a gallon of hot water, then use a damp rag to clean the seat. 

You’ll need to keep rinsing the mop frequently with hot water as you clean.

Stains that defy the above cleaning agent may require a bit of bleach. Mix one tablespoon of ammonia with ¾ cup of water and ¼ cup of hydrogen peroxide. Swish the mixture well to prepare your cleaning agent. 

Wear protective gloves and scrub the vinyl seats with the mixture using a sponge or soft-bristled brush. Once all the stain has come off, wipe down the vinyl seats with a dry cloth. 

You may sometimes have to use a more robust bleaching solution, depending on how stubborn the stains are. Ideally, a potent bleaching mixture should be in the ratio of one-part bleach to one-part water. 

The procedure for stain removal using bleach is essentially the same. You dip a sponge, microfiber cloth, or soft-bristled brush into the mixture and scrub the vinyl seating with it. Then you dry it thoroughly with a clean, dry cloth.

Always test your bleaching solution on the underside of the furniture before you use it in the more conspicuous areas. Wipe it out with a white paper towel and study the towel for any coloration. You want to ensure that no color comes off before you go all in, using the bleach.

If you are still not satisfied after using the bleach to dry clean the vinyl, add two or one tablespoons of bleach to a half-gallon of a soap and water solution. Mix well and apply to the vinyl webbing seat, then rinse thoroughly.

How do you clean vinyl patio chair straps?

Regardless of how well you keep your garden tidy, your vinyl patio furniture will still get pollen and other forms of dirt from the weather. 

A combination of dust, pollen, and moisture can create a greasy, unappealing film over the seating surfaces. Using a damp cloth to wipe the straps from time to time or as soon as you notice the dirt will do the trick.

For vinyl straps stained with pool chlorine, tree debris, suntan oil, and more, try a solution of ¼ cup of powdered or liquid dish soap. If the stains persist, add one or two tablespoons of bleach to half a gallon of the soapy solution. 

Remember to rinse off the cleaning solution thoroughly once you finish scrubbing. 

How to maintain and care for vinyl straps on outdoor furniture

Regular cleaning is all the maintenance your outdoor vinyl seats require. Ensure you use the methods discussed in this guide to keep your vinyl strap outdoor furniture clean at all times.

Also, avoid using harsh or abrasive chemicals or cleaners on your vinyl furniture as much as possible to maintain their protective finishes and coatings for long. 

Pool water has chlorine, so desist from dipping your strap furniture in the pool. The water could strip the straps’ UV protection and cause fading.

For the same reasons, ensure you use only soft cleaning implements to care for your seats. A soft-bristled brush or sponge will not scrap the surface of the vinyl furniture and cause it to fade.


Maintaining and caring for your outdoor vinyl furniture is an easy task but a crucial one.

Taking these preventive and corrective steps and cleaning your vinyl furniture – preferably weekly – will go a long way in keeping it looking its best and prolonging its life. 

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