After our guide about how to clean patio slabs, we decided to create an article about ways to clean garden benches. From the start we want to note that cleaning of a garden benche depends on what kind of bench you have. The outdoors can be harsh on all kinds of benches. Over time, exposure to the elements can wear down even the best protected materials. Keeping your benches in tip-top condition is easier than you might expect, however.
The best approach to take when you want to look after your outdoor seating will largely depend on what its made from and its age. To help, here are our 4 top tips for how to clean your garden benches.
1. Metal benches: Retouch protective coatings
Because metal is strong and hard-wearing, it’s well-suited to making garden benches and other outdoor furniture. Another advantage of metal is it can be bent, shaped and moulded into a variety of designs relatively easily. As a result, metal benches often feature aesthetically pleasing curves and ornate patterns.
- Usually, the bench will be covered by a protective coating that’s been painted or sprayed onto the metal framework, giving it a sophisticated sheen. The protective coating is easy to clean: simply wipe it down with a cleaning cloth soaked in a mixture of water and washing-up liquid.
- When the bench is clean, dry it with a towel.
- You may spot areas where the protective coating has chipped or worn away, particularly if your garden bench is several years old. Paint over the exposed parts of the metal framework with outdoor paint or varnish.
Remember that if the metal has rusted at all, you will need to sand the area down before painting it.
2. Wooden benches: Sugar soap is key
Wood is a comfortable, durable material from which to make outdoor furniture and so has long been a popular choice for benches.
However, timber is more prone to getting grubby and stained than metal. Dirt and other signs of the great outdoors tend to soak into wood, especially if it’s unpainted or unvarnished. Cleaning wooden benches therefore requires some elbow grease.
- Arm yourself with a scrubbing brush dipped in a sugar soap solution in order to make your benches look as good as new again.
- When the benches are clean, rinse off the sugar soap solution, remove excess water with a towel and let them dry.
- If you notice any rough or damaged areas of timber, you should sand them down until they’re smooth in order to avoid the risk of getting splinters.
If the benches are several years old, the timber may have dried out. You can revive it by applying treatment oil, designed to nourish wood and protect it from stains, etc.
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3. Stone benches: Hose them thoroughly
Garden benches not only last the ages, they are also incredibly beautiful. When the time comes to clean your stone bench, the process is straightforward.
- Begin by hosing down the benches until they’re thoroughly wet. That will prevent the stone from re-absorbing any of the grime you intend to clean off.
- With a scrubbing brush dipped in a mixture of water and a gentle, pH neutral detergent, remove dirt and stains.
Once the benches are clean, hose them down thoroughly again and dry them.
4. Protect your garden bench from harsh weather
During autumn and winter, bad weather can take its toll on garden benches and other outdoor furniture.
- Ideally, store yours in a garage or shed. If there isn’t room to do that, cover them up but ensure air can still circulate.
- Remember that in wet weather benches fare better sat on paving stones than water-clogged grass.
Whether you want to entertain friends and family al fresco or simply enjoy some peace and tranquillity on your patio, garden benches make a wonderful addition to your garden. Our secret is beautiful stone, from which we produce truly breathtaking straight and curved garden benches to complement a wide range of garden styles.
The question of how to clean your garden benches shouldn’t stump you. Whatever your bench is made from, make the most of your new patio or paving slabs with beautiful, well-maintained seating.