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How to Pick Durable Outdoor Furniture That Lasts

How to Pick Durable Outdoor Furniture That Lasts

Your backyard and patio are both extensions of your living space, so you should furnish them with outdoor furniture that is just as comfortable and durable as the furniture you use in your living room. Patio furniture that is strong, weather-resistant, and well-crafted will let you enjoy summer breezes and afternoon gatherings for years to come. Continue reading to learn how to choose durable furniture for your outdoor space.

Choose Weatherproof Outdoor Furniture Materials

The keys to long-lasting, durable outdoor furniture are solid materials and a little bit of upkeep. When you start with the right medium, keeping your lawn chairs and outdoor sectional sofas inviting for guests becomes a breeze. The top materials for outdoor furniture that stand the test of time are hardwood, metal, and, believe it or not, plastic. Read on to learn the benefits of each weatherproof outdoor furniture material.


For outdoor furniture that is durable but also provides a natural aesthetic, hardwood is the way to go. Chairs, tables, sofas, and lounges can all be found made from sturdy wood. Furniture crafted from eucalyptus, cedar, and teak are the best options because they can withstand outdoor weather better than softwoods, like wicker, pine, or oak. Teak has a 100-year durability rating, so you can pass on the deck dining set to the kids. Meanwhile, cedar and teak woods are naturally resistant to insect damage.


When shopping for reliable patio sets, it’s often a good idea to go with durable outdoor furniture made from cast iron, wrought iron, or aluminum. Iron contributes to the durability of furniture, especially if it features rust-resistant powder coating. Aluminum outdoor furniture sets are naturally rust-resistant and can last a long time.

Plastic & Resin

When it comes to durable outdoor furniture, plastic patio sets have improved over the years. Believe it or not, plastic-based resin wicker is hardier than wicker made from natural materials like rattan or bamboo. This is because softwoods and reedy vines tend to break down and get mildewed in humid, rainy environments. High-quality plastic outdoor furniture is both weather- and fade-resistant and waterproof. Plus, it’s recyclable. So when your patio furniture lasts so long that you’re ready for a style refresh, you can put plastic furniture straight into the blue bin. The only downside of choosing durable plastic outdoor furniture is how little it weighs. While being light is a benefit if you like to rearrange your outdoor furniture frequently, plastic patio sets aren’t the best bet for areas with regular high winds.

Pick All-Weather Outdoor Cushions and Pillows

If you plan on buying pillows or seating pads for your outdoor furniture set, then consider weather-resistant cushions with ventilation slits and high UV ratings to avoid sun and moisture damage. Acrylic is a mildew-resistant fabric that is especially long-lasting, but cushions made from similar materials will also resist natural wear and tear. For more tips on choosing cushions for your outdoor dining set or pool-side lounge chairs, read our outdoor furniture cushion guide.

Don't Forget Regular Upkeep

Protecting your patio furniture from harsh weather in every season will greatly lengthen its life. During cold seasons when you aren’t using outdoor areas, store your patio furniture in your garage, basement, or garden shed. During warm seasons, wash the seat cushions once a month using a mixture of one part bleach, ten parts warm water, and a few drops of dish detergent. Some outdoor furniture materials don’t require special treatment. For example, wrought-iron furniture just needs to be washed and waxed a few times a year. Aluminum outdoor furniture forms its own natural, protective oxide layer when it’s outdoors, so rinsing off dust with your garden hose is sufficient. Check out The Complete Guide to Cleaning Patio Furniture for tips on keeping all of your outdoor furniture fresh and clean.


If you live in a climate that sees afternoon storms or lots of sunshine during peak patio season, close up the umbrella and tuck away smaller outdoor decor in an outdoor storage bench or locker when they’re not in use. After all, nobody wants to chase after wind-blown throw pillows in a thunderstorm. You can rest assured that your colorful cushions aren’t fading in the sun and your umbrella won’t crash down on stormy days.

Now that you have the scoop on durable outdoor furniture materials, it’s time to deck out your deck, patio, balcony, or porch. Find your patio furniture on Overstock.com and get FREE SHIPPING* on everything, with no weight maximums or price minimums. Soon enough, you can kick back and relax in your outdoor oasis.

*Not eligible in Alaska or Hawaii.