Outdoor spaces are valuable for many reasons, and wicker furniture is a lively part of that space. These furniture pieces can be in various styles, shapes, and fabrications. But they are sure, not short of beauty.
With these cool pieces out in the cold, one may ask the question; how long does outdoor wicker furniture last?
Wicker furniture in the outdoor space can last up to 15 years. If the wicker furniture is properly maintained, it can last well more than ten years. The synthetic types are generally more durable than the natural ones.
Wicker furniture is not limited to outdoor usage. It can be placed indoors. But for outdoor use, it is important to take care of the furniture. There is the exposure of the furniture to more adverse weather out there.
Read on to find out the different ways to care for the wicker furniture outside.
The term wicker refers to the technique of making wicker furniture. It is a process of weaving natural materials into different products. It is an ancient way of making furniture invented by the ancient Egyptians.
It is considered the oldest way of making furniture.
Wicker furniture can be made from natural materials or synthetic. The natural materials that are used in making the furniture include:
Seagrass is an aquatic plant. It is commonly used in Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines. The seagrass material is sturdy and durable.
The rattan plant is a relative of the palm tree with its origin in South East Asia. The plant grows into a vine but starts as a tree until it bends back to the earth. It is a very strong and durable vine that is flexible.
Steam is often used to bend the rattan poles into desirable shapes.
Water Hyacinth is a fast-growing aquatic plant that can produce sturdy stems. The stems are similar to rattan. They are also used in making wicker furniture, though not as common as other natural materials.
Bamboo is a giant grass with a hollow timber stem. The very largest has been reported to grow over 90 feet tall. The bamboo timber is very strong and has been used for flooring, walls, and wicker furniture.
These are the common natural materials used in making wicker furniture. Synthetic materials are also used in making these products. Polyethylene resin and paper rope are common synthetic wicker furniture materials.
Paper rope is made from chemically treated kraft paper which is twisted. High-density polyethylene plastic is used in making resin synthetic wicker furniture.
These synthetic materials are highly durable, sturdy, and weather-resistant. These materials are also lightweight making them easy to carry.
Wicker furniture can get wet once they have been made waterproof. Synthetic wicker furniture is made waterproof and thus can get wet. The ones made with natural materials need to be waterproof to withstand the effect of the water.
Water on the natural wicker furniture will cause the plant materials to rot. It is also an invitation for molds and mildew to grow on the furniture.
The use of waterproof paints and sprays on them will help keep them immune to the adverse effects of getting wet.
Resin wicker furniture can be left outside because it is water-resistant. This has made it immune to mold and mildew attacks.
Another good thing about resin wicker furniture is that they are stable and can withstand sunlight without fading or becoming brittle.
They are stronger than PVC plastic that will fade and become brittle with long exposure to the sun. This is why polyethylene resin wicker furniture is one of the most commonly used outdoor furniture.
They are more durable and lasting than natural materials. They also require less maintenance.
Molds and mildew grow more in a humid environment. This is why it is important to waterproof the natural wicker furniture. The synthetic ones do not attract mold as they are waterproof. Mold cannot grow on a dry surface.
When a piece of natural wicker furniture gets wet and did not dry in time, mold will begin to grow on them. If this is the case, the surfaces should be cleaned to remove the mold and the furniture made waterproof or dried and stored in a dry place.
Continuously staying under the sun can make wicker furniture become less brilliant and appealing in look. This is usually the case with those made with natural materials.
They may fade with time as they dry out under the intense weather. You can treat them with some oils to keep their brilliance and beauty.
Linseed oil can be used to restore the natural look of unpainted wicker furniture. The oil is applied with a brush over the furniture and left to dry. As the oil dries, the natural look of the furniture will be restored.
Lemon oil can also be used to reinvigorate the fibers of natural wicker furniture.
It is very important for natural wicker furniture to be made waterproof. This is necessary for their life span to be extended. There are several sprays that can be used on them to keep water away from penetrating them.
A polyurethane product designed for outdoor use is good to make the furniture waterproof. Use a brush to apply a tiny coat of polyurethane on the furniture surface.
Wait about 8 hours for it to dry, then apply another layer.
Marine Varnish can be used to waterproof a piece of wicker furniture. It can be used alone or in combination with a paint of choice. The Varnish can be applied in two coats on the furniture without painting. This is best when the natural color of the wicker material is preferred.
Preferred paint color can be used. An outdoor paint of the color is applied all over the furniture, and two coats of marine varnish are used to seal it.
The varnish keeps the furniture waterproof. This is done repeatedly after 3 years to keep the wicker furniture protected.
Tung oil is commonly used to waterproof wood. Dilute the oil in a spray bottle and use it on the whole surface of the wicker furniture. Leave it to dry well, and that is all.
Wicker furniture, either made from natural or synthetic materials, is a good piece for an outdoor space. The main challenge with natural materials is that they must be kept waterproof.
This will preserve them and allow them to last long. Synthetic ones are more sturdy and durable, requiring less maintenance. But they also need little caring for.
Furniture covers are not too much of protection for wicker furniture, either natural or synthetic. This will increase the lifespan and preserve the look.
Natural ones need an extra bit of protection. They can be moved out of the open space to protect them. They can be brought outside when they are needed, even if they have been made waterproof.