Wooden outdoor furniture is a popular choice for homeowners due to its natural beauty and durability. However, leaving outdoor furniture unprotected can result in wear and damage caused by sun, rain, and temperature changes. To maintain wooden outdoor furniture, it's important to choose a protective finish that is durable and resistant to water, UV rays, and stains.
Here are the most common outdoor furniture finishes and their pros and cons.
1. Oil-based Stain: Oil-based stains are a popular choice for outdoor furniture because they penetrate deeply into the wood, providing a long-lasting finish that resists fading and scratching. However, they require frequent reapplication, and they attract dirt and grime.
2. Varnish: Varnish seals the wood with a thick, glossy layer that is durable and easy to clean. However, varnish can chip and crack over time, and it can be difficult to remove once it has worn down.
3. Paint: Paint is a popular finish for outdoor furniture because it provides a thick, protective layer of color that is resistant to the elements. However, paint can crack and peel over time, and it can be difficult to touch up.
4. Water-based Stain: Water-based stains are a more eco-friendly alternative to oil-based stains. They are easy to apply and dry quickly, but they don't penetrate the wood as deeply and aren't as durable.
5. Polyurethane: Polyurethane is a clear, plastic-like coating that provides a tough, protective layer over the wood. It's easy to apply and can last for years, but it can yellow over time and may crack in extreme temperatures.
6. Epoxy: Epoxy is a two-part system that creates a hard, durable coating that is resistant to water, UV rays, and stains. It bonds tightly to the wood, making it a long-lasting option, but it can be difficult to apply and requires adequate ventilation.
In conclusion, no one finish is perfect for all outdoor furniture. It's important to consider the specific needs of your furniture and choose a finish that is appropriate for its location, exposure to the elements, and level of use. Consult with a professional before deciding on a finish to ensure that your furniture will last for years to come.