What Is the Best Material for Outdoor Furniture?
Outdoor furniture enhances the function of your backyard, porch or patio. Benches, chairs, tables and decorative accessories are available in several durable, aesthetically pleasing materials. With all the choices out there, you might be wondering what type of material is best for outdoor furniture.
As you search for the perfect decorative elements to put in your yard, you’ll need to ensure they can withstand your area’s weather conditions. Your furniture should also complement your home’s overall design. Explore the features and benefits of the following common materials for outdoor furniture to find the best one for your property.
What Factors Affect Outdoor Furniture?
When looking for the right material for your outdoor furniture, remember that your benches, tables and chairs need to withstand the weather conditions you experience throughout the year. Since your outdoor furniture is a significant investment, you’ll want to choose products that’ll last for years to come. Choose furniture styles and materials that can withstand these outdoor conditions:
Rain and Moisture Damage
If your local environment has frequent rainstorms or high humidity throughout the year, you need your outdoor furniture to withstand water damage. Standing water and excess moisture in the air can wear down your decor and cause permanent issues, such as:
- Mold, mildew and rot: Moisture and humid weather promote fungi and other microbial growth. Besides creating unsightly stains, mold and mildew on your furniture can also cause health issues, such as respiratory problems and irritations in the ear, nose and throat.
- Rust and corrosion: Metal furniture with iron or steel can rust when exposed to oxygen and water. As metal furniture corrodes, it weakens and develops permanent spots and discoloration. Since salt and water in the air can make metal deteriorate more quickly, it’s not suitable for coastal climates.
- Warping: When water penetrates certain furniture surfaces, it can dry unevenly and cause warping. You may not notice it at first, but with prolonged exposure to moisture, your furniture can show signs of twisting throughout the surface, misaligned seams or loosened screws.
Sunlight and Temperature Changes
The sunlight and varying temperatures you experience in your area can wear down your outdoor furniture. If you live somewhere with plenty of sun or fluctuating temperatures, you’ll need to look for materials resistant to UV damage and shifts from extreme heat to cold. These weather conditions can have the following effects on your furniture:
- Fading: Prolonged exposure to sunlight may fade outdoor fabrics and materials over time. Some materials, such as wood, develop a unique, aesthetically pleasing patina in the sunlight. However, when others fade, their surfaces get unsightly spots or lose their colors’ vibrancy.
- Cracking: Some materials expand and contract when exposed to extreme heat or cold. Because of these changes, they can become brittle, crack, warp or split when the temperature changes throughout the year. Certain materials, like wood or particular plastics, can also bend and break when the air is dry.
- Holding heat: Patio furniture that conducts heat can get warm when it’s out in the sun. When people sit on your outdoor chairs or benches, they might get burned when they sit down or move. Metal and dark colors are particularly susceptible to heat retention.
If you live in an area that experiences hurricanes and other heavy winds throughout the year, ensure your outdoor furniture won’t tip over or blow away. Lightweight materials can easily get damaged during a storm, so you’d need to store them in your shed or garage when the forecast calls for harsh winds. Instead, you can find durable, heavy materials that are more likely to last in your windy environment. Metal and concrete are examples of sturdy outdoor furniture materials.
How to Know What Kind of Material Is Best for Outdoor Furniture
Besides choosing furniture that can withstand your area’s weather conditions, consider other factors to get a perfect fit for your home’s exterior. To determine the best material for your outdoor furniture, you can:
- Complement your aesthetics: Think about how your outdoor furniture will look with the current design of your deck, patio, porch or lawn. You can find traditional, modern or contemporary chairs, benches or tables to give your backyard a cohesive look. Some materials also offer more color, texture, shape and size options to help your furniture blend in with your home’s aesthetic.
- Prioritize comfort: You’ll want to select comfortable benches, chairs and accessories to create a relaxing, functional environment in your backyard. Look for soft, textured material for seating areas so you and your guests can sit for prolonged periods. You may also want to choose a table height that won’t strain guests’ backs as they bend over to use it.
- Look for resistance to wear and tear: If you have outdoor parties often, your patio furniture should withstand excessive use. Think about how you’ll use your tables, chairs and decorative elements to entertain your guests. Choose a material that resists abrasion from clothes, food spills and other sources of potential damage.
- Think about maintenance: Your outdoor furniture’s appearance depends on how well you take care of it. Some materials are convenient to clean with mild soap and water. However, high-maintenance furniture may require select cleaning products and sealants to keep them looking their best. Consider how much time you want to spend taking care of your furniture before investing in a specific material.
- Consider eco-friendliness: Consider how much waste the furniture manufacturer will produce to make your outdoor furniture. You can find businesses that focus on “green” practices when they handcraft their products. Some companies offer furniture made from high-quality, recyclable materials.
What Materials Is Outdoor Furniture Made Of?
Whether you want the most durable material for outdoor furniture, something stylish or a combination, you have many options to consider. Explore the following popular outdoor furniture materials:
Wood is an excellent material for your outdoor furniture because of its luxurious, timeless appearance. You’ll find outdoor chairs and benches in various wood species with unique graining patterns and colors to complement your exterior living space. Over time, natural solid wood develops a patina in the sunlight that enhances its aesthetic.
Note that you may need to treat your wood furniture every couple of years to maintain its one-of-a-kind appearance. Even though some wood species may rot or warp as the temperature changes, wood types like cypress and eastern red cedar are durable in moist, humid environments.
Manufactured resins and plastics are easy to maintain, durable and lightweight. Wicker-style furniture made with synthetic materials instead of authentic rattan is resistant to fading from sunlight exposure. It can also withstand the snow, wind or rain you may experience in your area. Synthetic materials are usually available in various colors and textures to make furniture that complements your backyard, patio or porch design.
The most common synthetic materials for furniture include polyvinyl chloride (PVC), polyethylene and nylon. For a long-lasting piece of outdoor furniture, look for products made from high-density polyethylene (HDPE). This high-grade thermoplastic has better heat endurance, strength and durability than PVC. It’s perfect for any weather condition and easy to maintain.
Metal furniture usually contains aluminum or steel. Consider the following pros and cons of each type of metal:
- Aluminum: This type of metal is extremely flexible, so manufacturers can cast it into any shape. You’ll have plenty of options for your furniture’s size and configuration. Aluminum is also lightweight and durable against rain, snow and sunlight. Unlike other metals, it doesn’t rust or corrode when exposed to salt or humidity in the air. However, aluminum isn’t suitable for windy areas because of its light weight.
- Steel: Steel is durable and long-lasting because of its heavy weight. Unlike aluminum, it won’t blow around in the wind. Galvanized and stainless steel can resist corrosion from outside elements, making them suitable options for coastal environments. Keep in mind that any steel will rust when exposed to chlorine, so it might not be suitable for poolside furniture.
Upholstered outdoor furniture is popular because of its comfortable cushions and pillows. By creating a relaxing environment on your porch, patio or backyard, you can bring the comfort of the indoors outside. Most upholstered furniture includes acrylic, vinyl or polyester threads. These materials tend to be resistant to moisture and UV damage.
Even if the upholstered furniture fabric is waterproof, you’ll have to make sure the fill material can also withstand water damage. Some types of foam manufacturers use to stuff upholstered furniture might be vulnerable to mold and mildew buildup. In that case, you’ll need to bring your outdoor cushions and pillows inside if you’re expecting a storm.
Concrete is usually a building material for permanent structures, but manufacturers can also use it to create modern outdoor furniture. Besides being durable, concrete benches, chairs and tables are sleek and aesthetically pleasing. You can paint or stain this material any color to complement your exterior living space.
While concrete is a suitable option for your outdoor furniture, keep in mind that it’s heavy, porous and vulnerable to staining. If liquids or acidic substances permeate the surface, your furniture can stain and dissolve, and you’d have to get it replaced. In place of natural concrete, you can also find products with a blend of concrete and fiberglass or resin that are more resistant to stains.
What Is the Best Outdoor Patio Furniture Material?
At AmishOutletStore.com, we provide a wide selection of handcrafted HDPE and outdoor wood furniture. Since we make each product by hand, you can be confident in the quality and unique design of our benches, chairs, tables and decorative elements. Consider each material’s benefits to discover why we focus on making our furniture from these materials instead of others:
Poly is the most durable material for outdoor furniture. Products made from recyclable HDPE resist rotting, cracking, peeling and fading. This material can withstand extreme temperatures and doesn’t produce harmful emissions during the manufacturing process. Here are some of the additional advantages of furniture made from polyethylene:
- Strength and durability: Our manufacturers use corrosion-resistant, high-grade stainless steel fasteners to make our poly furniture. Poly maintains its vibrancy and integrity during heavy snow, strong winds and pounding rain. It’s also resistant to moisture damage and pest infestations. As an upgrade from the flimsy plastic you’re used to seeing in outdoor furniture, HDPE is sturdy and won’t bend or break when it’s windy or hot outside.
- Low maintenance: Poly furniture is simpler to take care of than other furniture materials because of its resistance to fading and mold growth. You also won’t need to repaint or stain it each year to protect against fading. We treat all our poly furniture with a UV agent that prevents discoloration. As long as you wash it with soap and water often, you can be confident your poly furniture will last for many years.
- Versatility: Poly is highly pliable and can make furniture in different shapes and sizes. We offer poly furniture in various colors and styles to help you find the perfect product for your outdoor living space.
- Eco-friendliness: Companies that mass-produce their outdoor furniture may pollute the air and create waste in the process. We craft our poly furniture by hand by recycling non-biodegradable waste, keeping it out of landfills and giving it a new purpose. Every product on our site is also free from volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
- Longevity and savings: Certain furniture materials corrode or rot, so you have to replace them after a couple of years. Furniture made from HDPE will last for a long time, so you can save money on replacing your chairs and tables in the future. Since this material is more affordable than other furniture options, it’s a better financial investment than other materials.
Wood is a luxurious material that adds warmth and texture to your outdoor living space. Keep in mind that some types of wood might be vulnerable to damage from warping and temperature changes. Look for furniture from AmishOutletStore.com that comes in the following rot-resistant wood species:
- Cypress: This wood species is ideal for outdoor use because of its natural resistance to insects and moisture damage. It usually grows in swamps, so it’s accustomed to high moisture levels. It also has natural oils that repel decay, bugs and fungi. Cypress doesn’t need special pressure treatment like other types of wood. Though you can paint or stain it, you can get it unfinished from our site.
- Eastern red cedar: This wood species is another popular outdoor furniture material because of its resistance to pest damage. It produces an oil with a strong scent that naturally repels pests. As a result, it’s more resistant to rot and decay than other wood species. Eastern red cedar furniture will thrive in your backyard for many years if you maintain it properly.
- Pressure-treated pine: Pine is usually vulnerable to rot and decay, but you can get it pressure-treated to enhance its resistance to moisture damage. Chemically treated or pressure-treated wood makes affordable outdoor furniture, but it might not have the same quality as cypress or eastern red cedar.
Shop Poly and Solid Wood Outdoor Furniture
AmishOutletStore.com offers an inventory of high-quality wood and poly furniture to enhance your backyard, porch, deck or patio. Explore some of the types of outdoor furniture you’ll find on our site:
- Grilling accessories: A grilling table or cabinet makes hosting summer barbecues more convenient. Our durable, handcrafted tables have an indentation for your grill and storage space for all your cooking utensils. Some tables even offer space for serving food, so your guests can grab it after you’ve finished cooking. Choose from a variety of colors and shapes to complement your grilling set to your backyard’s design.
- Accessories and accents: Depending on your lifestyle, you might need well-made accents and accessories. Maybe you’d like a doggie dish for your pet or a planter to go outside your window. No matter your needs, we offer functional, aesthetically pleasing decorative elements to make your backyard even more enjoyable.
- Benches: A sturdy outdoor bench gives you or guests a place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of your outdoor property. Our durable, Amish-made seating solutions are available in various sizes, colors and materials. You can find the perfect fit for your backyard among our selection of styles.
- Chairs: We offer a unique variety of long-lasting outdoor chairs for your yard, porch or patio. These Amish-made seating products have endless style options, such as fan-back swivel chairs, barstools and Adirondack chairs, to add more function to your outdoor living space. Our inventory also comes in a wide selection of colors to complement your property’s design aesthetic.
- Dining sets: If you like to host outdoor meals with your loved ones, browse our collection of luxurious outdoor dining sets. We offer tables and chairs in multiple colors and styles to accommodate your lifestyle and design needs. Invest in a table that’s big enough for the whole family to gather around for lunches and dinners in the backyard.
- Gliders: You may enjoy having an Amish-made outdoor glider on your patio, porch or yard to relax in the pleasant weather. Sway back and forth, enjoying the breeze in your glider made from recycled plastics or cypress wood. Gliders with Amish construction are durable and aesthetically pleasing.
- Occasional tables: An outdoor decorative table transforms your porch, patio or backyard into a place where you’ll want to spend more time. This decorative element makes your outdoor area more functional and relaxing for you and your guests. Choose from our wide selection of side, end and coffee tables to get the accent piece you need for your home.
- Tables: If you want your backyard to be the place where your friends and family gather for outdoor events, add one of our other high-quality outdoor tables. We offer tables at different heights and shapes to accommodate the number of people you plan to host. You can use your table to play a game or have a delicious meal with friends and family.
- Rockers: Sitting on an outdoor rocking chair on your porch or patio is the ultimate way to relax. As you rock back and forth, you’ll unwind and enjoy the view from your yard. We offer a versatile collection of wood rockers, Adirondack rockers and plastic rockers to help you find what you want for your outdoor living space. These durable products are among the must-haves for decorating your home in the summer.
- Swings: For the finishing touch to your outdoor decor, consider an outdoor porch swing, available in countless designs and styles. Enjoy your front or back porch as you relax on your high-quality swing, or choose a free-standing model to place in your yard. Our long-lasting, Amish-made furniture will provide a treasure that you and future generations will enjoy for many years.
Trust AmishOutletStore.com for High-Quality Outdoor Furniture
At AmishOutletStore.com, we offer aesthetically pleasing, handcrafted poly and solid wood furniture for your backyard. Our products come in various colors, shapes and sizes to accommodate your lifestyle and enhance your outdoor property’s design. Bring the whole family together around one of our dining tables, or relax on a cool summer’s night with an outdoor porch swing.