Wicker furniture is a beautiful, natural woven material that looks great both inside the house and outside, around the patio. Despite the lightweight nature of the tree fiber weave, real wicker furniture is exceptionally strong and durable. However, the weave does have a knack for collecting dirt, dog hair, dust, and other debris. If the furniture is outside, in a high foot traffic area, or you live in a house that, for one reason or another, seems to always collect dust, you will want to clean the furniture regularly. Thankfully, real wicker furniture isn't all that difficult to clean, and, in no time at all, you will have a beautiful, comfortable, and clean seat ready to be enjoyed.
First, you will want to remove the dirt and other gunk that has collected between the woven fibers. Because wicker is specifically durable, you can use a steel bristle brush on the material. Make sure to work the steel bristle brush over all the woven fibers. You will also want to scrub the underside of the furniture as well. The underside of the furniture can collect a surprising amount of dust and dirt, so it is essential to clean this area as well. Otherwise, when sitting down and enjoying yourself on the furniture, you will end up smelling the dust, dander, and even mildew from the piece of furniture. The steel bristles will let you get in between the fibers easily.
Now that you have worked the entirety of the furniture, you will want to remove as much debris as possible. To do so, take the wand attachment of your vacuum and work it over the furniture.
With the excess dirt and gunk removed, you are now ready to wash your wicker furniture. Use water and mild dish soap and scrub the furniture with a soft cloth. Again, you will want to make sure you work your cloth between the woven fibers of the furniture, as this is where most of the dirt will collect. Work from the top down; otherwise, you'll be forced to re-wash areas of the wicker. Once you have finished washing the furniture, let it air dry. If it is sunny outside, you can place the furniture outside in the sun or leave it in and place fans around it. It is important to expedite the drying time; otherwise, moisture might collect between the fibers and leave a musty smell on the seat. To help with this, you may want to dab a towel over the furniture before you set it out to dry. Whatever you can do to speed up the drying time is beneficial.
If you have plans to paint the wicker furniture, now is the time to begin painting it. However, even if you're not looking to paint the furniture, you should apply a clear protective coating over the top. This will protect the furniture from not only moisture but from sun bleaching as well. There are several protective applications you can use for this. There are tung oil options that will help the wicker maintain its natural appearance. Some tung oils will deepen the furniture's tone, so make sure to look over the color options for this. Tung oil should be applied to wicker sofas, wicker lounge chairs or even wicker dining sets once a year (if this is your chosen protection method). If you have the furniture outside, you should consider using a clear marine varnish on the furniture. This is an application often used on the wood found in boats. It helps lock in the fabric's natural moisture while protecting it against the elements, including rain and sun. This will not change the color of your wicker furniture, and you only have to apply it once every three years or so. You can also apply a marine varnish coat over any fresh paint (after it dries). Lastly, if you don't want to use the oil as it might alter the color of the wicker, and if you don't want to use the marine varnish, you can find a clear protective coat, often available in a spray can, from companies like Rust-Oleum, made specifically for wicker. These kinds of spray cans are good for maintaining the color of your furniture while also adding a protective coating. Much like you would with tung oil, you will want to re-apply this spray once every year or so.
The cushion is often an overlooked area of the wicker furniture. However, it is important to clean off the cushion as well. The cleaning method for cushions will vary depending on the material and whether the fabric can be removed from the cushion. If you can remove the fabric, toss it into the wash and let it run on a cold, low spin cycle. Avoid using any kind of heat. If you can't remove it, wash the fabric with mild soap and water and let it dry completely before placing it back onto the furniture.
Whether you're in the market to upgrade to rattan bedroom furniture or have owned your current wicker outdoor set for years and are ready to replace what you own, it is always a good idea to know how to clean what you have. With these easy-to-follow tips, you can extend the life of your current furniture. These are also excellent tips to follow if you're going to paint your wicker furniture as well. However, if you would rather purchase new wicker, or if your current set has run its course and is starting to show its age, check out the wide selection of furniture options. From wicker rattan loveseats and chairs to rockers and ottomans, you'll find your next wicker upgrade is just a click away.
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