Outdoor furniture adds a pleasant and relaxing atmosphere to your outdoor living space. One of the modern pieces of furniture known for being stylish, aesthetically appealing, and durable is Polywood furniture.
Despite being a little more expensive than other furniture products, poly lumber is widely preferred for its versatility, durability, and low maintenance. Outdoor furniture made of this material typically comes in various beautiful colors and designs and can last for many years.
Despite the overflowing praises, poly lumber furniture is far from perfect. So in this guide, we will look at the pros and cons of Polywood furniture: what makes it tick and where it draws the line. But first, a little overview of the material in question:
What Is Polywood Furniture?
For a long time, furniture pieces were made of wood and aluminum. However, with the advancement of technology, new alternatives were introduced into the market.
One such alternative to wood furniture is recycled plastic lumber, commonly known as Polywood, manufactured by POLYWOOD inc.
While poly lumber is artificial, it is usually shaped into planks and boards that resemble natural wood in appearance and texture, although it contains no wooden byproducts.
Polywood Inc uses Polywood lumber to design furniture that can survive under various outdoor weather elements.
What Is Polywood Made Of?
Polywood is made of recycled post-consumer high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic materials. Such materials usually include detergent bottles and milk jugs, which undergo a cleaning process to remove the labels and content residues.
The plastic is then mixed with foaming agents and dye and pressed into plank-shaped boards to create a wood-like appearance.
For furniture products, poly lumber makes wide varieties, including Adirondack chairs, outdoor benches, picnic gliders, outdoor tables, and armchairs.
Since poly lumber furniture is made primarily of HDPE plastic, it is naturally durable and can withstand harsh weather conditions, although prolonged exposure to sunlight may cause discoloration.
Types And Sets Of Polywood Outdoor Furniture
Polywood furniture comes in various types, styles, and collections. From classic Adirondacks to chaise lounges, gliders, and picnic tables, below are a few examples of Polywood outdoor furniture.
The Adirondack chair has a rich history, and while it has a single unique design and a little bit more expensive, it comes in all sorts of colors and variations. These chairs look great on patios, decks, gazebos, pool sides, and other outdoor settings. They are the epitome of class, style, and the number one luxury patio furniture.
Benches bring life into any garden or intimate outdoor corner. They can be set in an archway, a gazebo, or a quiet garden alcove to create that beautiful romantic touch. You can also put them under a shade beside a trail to provide a relaxing stop point.
Chaise lounge is the epitome of outdoor relaxation. Whether you want to chill by the pool or read in a quiet shade, they’re great for unwinding and spending some quiet time in isolation. They also make for great patio furniture.
Gliders and Swings
Gliders and porch swings provide a relaxing and fun time with loved ones or a quiet moment to meditate and reflect alone. If you enjoy having some quiet time by yourself, consider hanging a porch swing or glider in your outdoor space. You’ll appreciate the extra addition and aesthetics.
Nothing makes for a complete dining set made of recycled plastic. These beautiful dining chairs and a table allow you to bring life to your backyard with romantic outdoor dinners, parties, and entertainment. Polywood dining sets are designed for outdoor use and come in different shapes and colors.
Conversation sets are for outdoor use, designed to create the perfect outdoor living room. Such furniture can be placed on your front or back patio and include a coffee table with several small chairs. As the name suggests, these furniture sets are a great fit for outdoor socializing with drinks as conversation flows.
If you’re inclined to romance, a bistro set makes for the perfect bonding environment in a small outdoor space or quiet corner. Bistro sets typically include a small table with two poly chairs for two, something like a French cafe, as these furniture types originated from France.
Pros And Cons Of Poly lumber Furniture
And now to the focus of this post. What are some good reasons why you should buy Polywood furniture, and which challenges do you need to look out for?
Let us look at the advantages and disadvantages of Polywood furniture to help you make informed decisions when selecting your favorite outdoor patio furniture.
If you’re passionate about environmental conservation and prefer to buy eco-friendly products, you’ll find poly lumber a great choice.
Part of this can be attributed to the high levels of recycled materials found in the formula.
As stated above, raw HDPE plastic is manufactured from post-consumer plastic bottles, milk jugs, grocery shopping bags, other pipes, and other post-industrial waste.
That means poly lumber is chiefly produced from recycled materials that would otherwise end up in landfills, where they tend to affect the environment.
Poly lumber is often produced with a wood-like appearance, color, and texture without using a single tree.
This alternative material is highly durable and weather-resistant and can serve you for many years with just minimal cleaning and maintenance.
You won’t need to apply any insecticide to control pests or paint to improve the color quality of your Polywood chair. The patio furniture is built to retain its original color for a long time.
This product retains most of its colors despite many years in use. As an opaque material with UV protection, HDPE can infuse various colors. The colors run deep into the material, making scratches on the furniture less noticeable.
Another benefit of this patio furniture is its adaptability and versatility. It can be designed into just about any shape to fit consumer preferences, and embossed surfaces are made to retain an authentic wooden feel.
Poly lumber is unlike wood. Therefore, it is not susceptible to pest invasion, cracking, splintering, or ordinary wear and tear.
This type of material can withstand different temperature levels, making it ideal for outdoor living as it can survive in any climate.
Whether it is sun, rain, fog, mildew, snow fuels, or salt sprays, it only requires water and soap to clean and maintain it.
Again you won’t need to paint your Polywood furniture. Neither is it necessary to do sanding, coating, waterproofing, or staining the furniture to prolong its lifetime.
Otherwise, all you have to do to ensure the furniture stays for many years is have each piece made with stainless steel corrosion-resistant fasteners with the legs measuring 1.5″ x 3.5″ in thickness to avoid warping over time.
Durability And Versatility
Polywood is popular due to its adaptability to any climate or temperature and its ability to retain its premium quality regardless of what nature throws at it.
Polywood can be modified into any type of furniture according to your preferred shape.
Whether it’s a table, a chair, bench, chaise lounge, dining set, a porch swing, or gliders, it can fit into any object of desire suited for any living space.
It also comes in various colors and textures, so whether you prefer charcoal or marble furniture sets, or something that mimics mahogany furniture, there’s something for everyone.
Cons Of Polywood Furniture
Considering everything that makes Polywood tick, what not-so-good things can we say about these types of furniture? Since there are always two sides to a coin, let us flip it over and examine the disadvantages of Polywood furniture.
Poly Furniture Is Rigid
HDPE, once dry, is naturally rigid. That means it cannot adapt or conform to the natural shape of your body.
Spending extended periods sitting on your Polywood chair, you’ll start feeling more and more uncomfortable.
In addition, the darker-colored furniture retains the most heat after prolonged exposure to the sun and heat.
While this may not significantly damage your chair, the heat may affect you physically if you sit on the chair while hot. We recommend you cover the chair with a towel to absorb the heat before sitting.
Polywood Is Expensive
Polywood has an impressive ratio between density and strength, making it more expensive than other types of plastic furniture. Polywood outdoor furniture can cost anywhere between $200 to $3,000 in most online stores.
The prices depend on design, color size, and surface texture, among other factors. In short, the quality of Polywood furniture is always higher compared to different plastic furniture types.
Poly lumber Is Very Heavy
Polywood furniture tends to be heavier than similar outdoor pieces. However, the heavier it is, the safer it is to leave it outside in stormy weather.
But if you like to organize and rearrange your outdoor living spaces, the bulky weight can be disadvantageous and tedious when you need to move the furniture around.
Is Polywood Furniture Expensive?
For most deck owners, homeowners, and beach lovers, Polywood is the outdoor furniture of choice.
The multicolored and eye-catching appearance makes them highly attractive for any outdoor living environment, although they cost quite a fortune.
Still, given that it is produced from high-quality high-density polyethylene (HDPE) that contains a wide variety of post-consumer plastic waste, the quality speaks for itself.
This level of quality ensures that your furniture is protected against the unforgiving elements making them highly popular.
Another factor that explains why this type of outdoor furniture is expensive despite the materials being readily available is the costly process involved in manufacturing.
To produce the purest material possible, recycled plastic is taken through the decontamination process, a costly process that is unfortunately paid for by the consumer. So that leaves the decision to buy or not buy Polywood furniture to the final consumer.
FAQs – Pros and Cons of Polywood Furniture
How long does Polywood outdoor furniture last?
Many years. Polywood furniture is one of the most readily available and popular types of outdoor furniture. They’re usually built following the highest production standards to withstand natural elements for a long time.
What is more durable poly lumber vs. Trex?
Polywood is primarily made from high-density polyethylene, manufactured by Inc, while composite decking materials are usually made from polyethylene and wood remnants. POLYWOOD Inc is an outdoor furniture brand that relies on recycled high-density polyethylene and employs innovative processes to manufacture unique, wood-like products. Trex is a sister company that uses composite materials and simple methods to create beautiful decking, railing, flooring, and other types of décor to decorate outdoor living spaces.
Does Polywood scratch easily?
No. The HDPE plastic materials are UV protected and deeply fused with adhesives and protective substances to achieve a unique color and texture. In addition, the color is embedded deep into the furniture from the core to the surface to ensure it doesn’t scratch or crack easily.
Is Polywood better than plastic?
Yes, for many reasons. The materials and processes that go into producing Polywood far surpass that of average plastic. In terms of quality, durability, aesthetics, and density, Polywood is much better than plastic.
Is white Polywood hard to keep clean?
Depends on your location. If you live where it’s incredibly windy and windy, you’ll need to clean your furniture more regularly since white attracts dirt faster than other colors. However, it only takes a power washer, detergent soap, and a washcloth to keep your white furniture sparkling clean.
Pros And Cons Of Polywood Furniture: Final Thoughts
Considering all the factors involved in the manufacturing of poly lumber and designing Polywood furniture, we can identify the product’s strengths and weaknesses.
Although the raw materials are readily available, the sole production process undergoes various stages and employs innovative techniques that give life to what would otherwise be ordinary recycled plastic.
Polywood is an alternative to wooden patio furniture and is built to last under some of the harshest environmental conditions meaning its quality is guaranteed.
It’s also eco-friendly, UV resistant, and requires minimal maintenance. On the flip side, it can be heavy, rigid, slightly uncomfortable, and, of course, expensive.
If you’re keen on quality and support environmental conservation efforts, you might find this type of furniture worth it compared to other alternatives.
The extra cost comes with an assured quality that is always worthwhile in the long run.