When you’re looking to invest in some outdoor furniture you want to make sure you’re purchasing something that is going to serve your family for years. There are a bunch of different options for you to choose between. But we swear by polywood, or High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) and we’ll tell you why.
Factors That Affect Your Outdoor Furniture
Whatever furniture you choose for your outdoor areas need to be as weather-resistant as possible. There are a lot of different elements that can slowly wear down and damage your patio furniture.
Sunshine & Heat
Persistent heat can cause several problems for your furniture sets. For starters, heat retention of your furniture can make them uncomfortable or even dangerous to sit on after long exposure to direct sunlight. We’ve all experienced sitting on a hot seat and almost burning our thighs.
Beyond just causing a hot seat, constant heating and cooling can cause some materials to become more brittle and prone to cracking over time.
But sunlight also bombards your outdoor furniture with UV light which can cause fading over time. What starts out as an appealing furniture color can quickly fade and look dingy. That’s why some materials tout the fact that they are UV resistant.
Rain & Moisture
The second biggest threat to your outdoor furniture is moisture. Given our area we see plenty of strong rains and periods of high humidity that can leave some materials at a greater risk.
Mold & rot are the biggest issues that rain can cause. As moisture penetrates through the material it begins to break down the organic material causing it to become weaker. As mold begins to grow on the surface it doesn’t just make the furniture look unseemingly, but it can even cause some skin irritation from contact and in extreme cases it can cause respiratory issues.
Warping is the next issue to watch out for. As water seeps into the furniture it does so unevenly, and then begins to expand and contract. For wood based outdoor furniture this causes the wood to twist and change shape. Meaning the joints and fasteners to the furniture can become weaker and compromised.
For metal based outdoor furniture water creates the issue of rust and corrosion. If it’s not properly maintained for rust resistance the metal will begin to oxidize and rust. This can be dangerous for your family because the weakened metal will eventually break, but in extreme rust there can become exposed sharp edges.
We’re all trying to find the best options for our outdoor spaces while keeping the costs reasonable. There are the obvious costs like the purchase price, but there are also the costs of ongoing maintenance that you should be factoring as well. How often will it need sanded and restained? How long will it last before it needs replacing?
Most Common Types of Outdoor Furniture Materials
These are the most common and most available materials for outdoor furniture. We’ll quickly look at their pros and cons to show why we believe polywood is the best choice for your dining set and outdoor seating.
Outdoor wood furniture is a classic choice. The appearance of a well maintained teak or oak set of Adirondack chairs is amazing. However, they are not always the cheapest option. You could opt for some cheaper wood materials like pressure treated pine, but these are going to wear out much faster than the harder wood options.
Even your hardest woods like black walnut are going to require ongoing maintenance to battle the elements, and in truth it’s just a stalling game. Wood must be sanded and restained to restore the color and visual effect, and proper sealing and epoxy layers are necessary to prevent UV and moisture from damaging the wood.
Metal outdoor furniture is often appealing because it is usually a cheaper alternative to hardwood, and doesn’t need to be stained. But metal has a similar problem of wear and damage over time.
Water will slowly begin to oxidize and rust the materials and few metals are finished to be UV resistant. The means over time your metal furniture is going to fade and weaken.
There are metal options like stainless steel that are more rust resistant and UV resistant. But these options once again start pushing the price of the furniture up. Plus they still retain heat which can make them almost unusable on really hot days.
Another option is wrought iron furniture. These are great for resisting UV damage, and although they can rust their construction makes cleaning and removing the rust easy. Wrought iron is incredibly durable. On the other hand wrought iron is very heavy and very expensive.
Plastic furniture is an incredibly cheap and lightweight option for your deck and patio. They also won’t rot or retain moisture. And with the right materials they won’t fade from sun exposure. But the main drawback to plastic is they are not very durable.
So be prepared to buy a new set after only a couple years of use. Plus, they don’t always add that high quality look to the design of your outdoor space.
So what’s so great about polywood? High Density Polyethylene (HPDE) is made from recycled plastic materials that are molded and combined with a resin-foam compound. Other additives are included that means the colors are incorporated into the entire piece, instead of just onto the top. And UV resistant materials are added to make them durable against fading.
Polywood furniture is not the cheapest option, but because of the quality building materials it can save money in the long run because it means spending less on maintenance and replacing broken down furniture.
Come Check Out Our Poly Lumber Outdoor Furniture
We carry a wide variety of outdoor furniture options. From Adirondack chairs, to swivel gliders, picnic tables, and more. Anything to help your home improvement project by making your outdoor living space more enjoyable with minimal maintenance. We also have a wide variety of color options. Choose one color, choose two colors, choose a rainbow of colors. Click here to see what we have in stock.