Metal Garden Furniture Care Guide

Credo 6 seater dining set with sage seat pads on a garden patio

For the ultimate mix of reliability and style, metal garden furniture is a popular choice. Metal garden furniture avoids the plethora of pitfalls faced by more natural materials; positioning itself as a dependable material for your outdoor entertainment needs. Available in a wide variety of styles and designs, it’s versatile enough to be used across all kinds of design schemes, while continuing to last the test of time.

However, metal garden furniture isn’t indestructible, so it needs the occasional bit of cleaning and maintenance. In this guide, we’ll show you how to keep your furniture looking good as new, showcasing some of the tools you’ll need, the steps to take, and some additional tips along the way.

Things You’ll need:

Metal furniture can be tricky to clean, depending on its condition. Therefore, you’ll need a variety of tools, including:

  • 1x Soft brush
  • Damp cloth or sponge
  • Warm soapy water
  • Dry cloth
  • Gloves (optional)

How to Clean Metal Garden Furniture

4 seater Savita dining set with stone cushions on a garden terrace in the sunshine

Pictured Savita Range

To clean metal garden furniture, follow these steps:

  1. Brush: Start by removing any loose dirt or debris from the surface of the furniture using a soft-bristled brush or a clean cloth.
  2. Mix: Next, mix a solution of mild soap and water in a bucket. You can use a few drops of dishwashing liquid or a specialised metal cleaner designed for use on outdoor furniture. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the Thermoguard coating.
  3. Apply: Dip a soft sponge or cloth into the cleaning solution and wring out the excess water. Then, use the damp cloth to gently scrub the surface of the furniture, paying special attention to any areas that are particularly dirty or stained.
  4. Rinse: Once you’ve cleaned the entire surface, rinse the furniture thoroughly with a hose or a bucket of clean water. Be sure to remove all traces of soap or cleaner, as any residue left on the surface can cause damage to the Thermoguard coating over time.
  5. Dry: Finally, allow the furniture to air dry completely before using it again. Avoid using any towels or cloths to dry the surface, as they can leave behind lint or fibres that can damage the coating.

How To Clean Rust Off Metal Garden Furniture

If your metal garden furniture is out of warranty and starting to show signs of rust, there are ways of bringing it back to life:

  1. Rust removal: Start by removing any loose rust or paint with a wire brush or sandpaper. Use a coarse grit sandpaper to remove any rust that is flaking or loose.
  2. Clean: Next, clean the surface of the furniture with a mixture of warm water and mild detergent. You can use a sponge or cloth to scrub the surface and remove any remaining dirt, debris or loose rust.
  3. Rinse: Rinse the surface with water and dry it completely with a towel or cloth.
  4. Treat: If there is any remaining rust on the surface, you can use a rust treatment solution to neutralise it. Rust treatment solution chemically ensures that the rust is stopped from spreading and that it can be painted over.
  5. Sand: After the rust treatment has dried, you can sand the surface again with a fine grit sandpaper to smooth out any rough spots or raised areas.
  6. Prime: Once the surface is clean and smooth, you can apply a metal primer to prepare the surface for painting. A metal primer will help the paint adhere to the surface and provide an additional layer of protection against rust.
  7. Paint: Finally, you can apply a coat of paint or a new layer of Thermoguard coating. (available to purchase from our website in 5ml bottles) to protect the furniture from future rust and weather damage. If you are treating large areas of rust then you may wish to source a suitable outdoor metal paint from your local DIY store.

Metal Furniture Maintenance Tips

Metal Café Roma bistro set on a garden patio in the sunshine

Pictures Café Roma Bistro Set

To keep your metal furniture free of rust, debris, and general grime, follow these maintenance tips to use in between cleaning sessions:

Rinse Occasionally

The water from your hose is different to rainwater. Rainwater is slightly more acidic thanks to the additional carbon dioxide added via the atmosphere. Acidic water is known to speed up the oxidation (rusting) process on metal garden furniture. So, if your furniture has accidentally been exposed to rainwater, it’s a good idea to rinse the water off with a source of clean, pH-neutral water such as from your own water supply.

Keep Dry

After rinsing your metal garden furniture, the number one step you can take to protect it from rust is to keep it dry. Using either a small cloth or large, dry towel, simply pat the furniture completely dry and the risk of rust will be significantly reduced.

Use Wax/Oil

As an additional precaution, you can even coat your metal garden furniture in either specialised waxes or oils. Such things will form a protective outer barrier that defends against rust, spills, etc.

How Often Should You Clean Metal Garden Furniture?

Metal furniture is fairly robust, meaning that its cleaning frequency is mainly dictated by how dirty it is. If you keep on top of the above maintenance procedures, it’s highly unlikely that you’d need to clean your metal furniture more than 3-5 times a year. This frequency can increase in the summer periods, where your furniture is prone to more use.

How Long Does Metal Garden Furniture Last?

Metal furniture is tough and resilient, so with proper care, you can expect your metal garden furniture to last as long as 10-15 years.

Durable, Desirable Metal Garden Furniture, Here

Is your current garden furniture showing its age? Do you need something to last a bit longer? KETTLER has you covered.

Explore all the styles and collections we have available in our metal garden furniture category. There’s classic designs, like the mesh-backed Caredo range, as well as more relaxing recliners and side tables within the Novero collection.