If you’ve already had your outdoor furniture or your outdoor patio for a few seasons, then you already know what some of the wear and tear that happens. By now, you’ve probably even experimented with a few methods of damage control. It might be certain types of paint or finish that you’ve tried applying, or it might be certain types of plastic, canvas, or metal covers. However, if you’re just now getting around to purchasing some of these outdoor items, you might be surprised that the repair and maintenance are whole categories in themselves. Take a moment to consider some of the basics if you’re going to have seasonal items.
One of the easiest ways to spruce up your outdoor environments is by having outdoor furniture. This typically comes in the forms of outdoor chairs and tables. However, depending on the type of material these items are made of (think wood, stone, hardened vine, plastic, etc.), you’re also going to have to think about basic outdoor furniture maintenance. If you aren’t going to bring these chairs and tables in for the winter, or are planning on keeping them out the entire summer, day and night, you’ll start seeing immediate wear patterns, and it’s up to you to decide if you’re going to try to prevent them in the future.
A well-designed patio structure will often be the centerpiece of a backyard landscape theme, and there’s a huge difference in feel between a patio that’s maintained and one that’s just left to its own devices. Any kind of added weatherproofing is going to dramatically improve the look and feel of your patio structure, and the right weatherproofing means that it will be effective against your particular environmental conditions and will also make sense financially. If you have low-end patio gear, it doesn’t make a whole lot of economic sense to pay top dollar for weatherproofing materials or gear that will simply allow it to maintain its mediocre quality over time.
Check Your Labels
Now, why is it important to check your labels? And which labels do you check? Well, is the wood for your furniture and patio treated or untreated? Knowing that alone will give you entirely different sets of options as far as what kinds of nails and screws you can use on it, and what kind of paints, finishes, and varnishes are appropriate. In addition, some kinds of treated wood may be harmful if they are handled by small kids, as the treatment chemicals can sometimes be mildly toxic. The point of reading labels on wood, paint, finish, and varnish is to be sure that you understand what your options are when it comes to construction and maintenance.