How to Clean Metal Patio Furniture

Metal patio furniture can make an excellent addition to outdoor spaces, but without proper care it can rust quickly. Luckily, cleaning metal garden furniture is relatively straightforward.

To keep your metal garden furniture looking its best, we suggest scheduling regular cleaning sessions. A comprehensive deep clean should take place at the start of every gardening season while quick cleanups should occur every four weeks throughout its use.

Use a Soft Brush

Maintaining metal patio furniture whether aluminum, steel, wrought iron or powder coated is vital to its appearance and lifespan. By employing specific cleaning methods tailored for each type of metal you can avoid rust and tarnishing while creating an inviting outdoor space that remains comfortable for all.

Use of a soft brush for wiping down metal furniture surfaces is an excellent way to maintain clean surfaces that are free from dirt, dust, and debris. Be sure that your cloth is slightly damp; not soggy–to avoid scratching its surface. Be patient as you scrub each piece carefully taking extra time in reaching corners and crevices that often get overlooked.

Gentle cleaning solutions consisting of warm water, mild non-detergent soap, and soft sponge or nylon scrubbing brush can effectively eliminate stains and grime from metal patio furniture. When selecting cleaning agents or scrub brushes to use on metal furniture, avoid harsh chemical cleaners or rough brushes as these may damage its finish or scratch it and lead to rust formation.

Rinsing metal garden furniture with clean, pH-neutral water is one of the best ways to avoid rust. Rainwater tends to contain an acidic component which speeds up oxidation processes on metal items like furniture.

When washing metal garden furniture, be sure to regularly change your water in order to flush away soap suds and residue from washing. Furthermore, ensure you dry each piece after each wash to help avoid the growth of mildew and fungus which could eat through paint or powder coating and cause it to deteriorate over time.

As well as protecting against abrasions and corrosion, high quality metal furniture finishes can also protect it against food stains from food and drinks. You can safeguard its finish by covering it when not in use or applying protective wax coating after every cleaning; this will keep it looking like new for an extended period of time.


As soon as mildew forms on metal furniture, it’s vitally important that it’s quickly eliminated before it spreads and becomes harder to eradicate. A combination of warm water and non-detergent soap should do the trick; otherwise if any stubborn stains exist you might require assistance with their removal using either a nylon scrub brush or scrub brush scrubbing pad.

Vinegar is an effective, cost-effective cleaning solution for metal patio furniture that can help deodorize, kill and inhibit mildew growth. To create your own vinegar solution mix half a cup of white vinegar with two tablespoons of liquid dish soap in one gallon of hot water before applying directly onto furniture containing mildew growth areas and gently scrubbing where mildew has formed before rinsing and drying it outdoors in direct sunlight.

Fabric patio furniture is more susceptible to mold and mildew than metal pieces, but with proper cleaning it should never become an issue. Most fabrics are machine washable for quick, simple restoration. A quick rinse in the washing machine may make your furniture look brand new again! However, it’s essential that you identify what kind of fabric it’s made out of; performance fabrics or solution-dyed (woven with pigment-infused fibers) fabric may resist fading better while withstanding harsh cleaners more easily than others.

To keep outdoor fabric patio furniture mildew-free, spray the surface with Concrobium Mold Stain Eraser or similar product and allow it to set. This will eliminate existing mildew while helping prevent new growth as well.

Fabric stains can also be treated by submerging them in a mixture of water and bleach. When testing this cleaner on an inconspicuous area of fabric first, allow it to sit for several minutes before scrubbing it off before rinsing thoroughly with cold water.

When it comes to storing metal patio furniture, it’s essential that it’s stored in an unblemished garage or shed without damp conditions – as this will reduce the likelihood of mildew developing. A plastic bag could also come in handy to keep everything clean during storage.


Maintaining clean metal patio furniture is the key to avoiding rusting on its surfaces, preventing build-ups of dirt and grime that could otherwise lead to corrosion. If rust does appear on aluminum, stainless steel, or wrought iron pieces you own, here are a few effective strategies for removal:

Use non-abrasive cleaners such as dish soap or mild household cleaner to quickly eliminate light rust spots from furniture, like dish soap. If the rust is severe, however, an abrasive scrub brush, scouring pad or sandpaper may be required; alternatively you could try non-toxic rust remover that works to dissolve only rust while leaving metal intact – such as Gloster suggests.

White vinegar is an environmental and natural way to cleanse rust, according to Gloster. You can use it alone or add table salt for increased acidic intensity and faster results in dissolving rust. Apply this solution directly onto rusted areas and leave for 10 minutes; scrub using brushes, scrubbing pads or sandpaper then rinse off after 10 minutes; repeat if necessary at 10 minute intervals until no rust remains; you could also try using WD-40 on the affected area to make removal easier with an abrasive scrub tool or by hand.

If non-toxic cleaners fail, try an abrasive tool like wire brush or steel wool. Sandpaper made specifically for outdoor use or an automotive rubbing compound may also work to sand away rust; then seal off your furniture using Hammerite metal spray paint as the final touch.

Preventing rust on metal patio furniture is simple. One effective strategy for doing so is covering it with plastic wrap or tarp when not in use and wiping down regularly; other preventive measures could include keeping it covered during stormy conditions and keeping it indoors during inclement weather.


Patio furniture can quickly become dirty from being exposed to wind and dust, and any spilled drinks or dropped ice cream could stain permanently without proper cleaning techniques being employed. Thankfully, there are some easy steps you can follow to effectively clean metal outdoor furniture so it stays looking brand new for as long as possible!

To effectively clean metal patio furniture of dirt and grime, the best method is using a dry cloth before turning to water-based cleaners. This will eliminate stubborn stains while protecting its surface from overzealous cleaning methods you might try out of desperation.

Cleaning patio furniture at home using household cleaners such as baking soda, bleach or borax is another viable option; just be sure to conduct a spot test first and apply evenly across your entire piece. Home-produced cleaners tend to be inexpensive and less abrasive than commercially available alternatives.

Powder-coated and painted metal furniture can be more challenging to clean than unpainted pieces due to their intricate crevices, tight curves, and numerous crevices. When cleaning these pieces it requires a more delicate touch; soft brushes with mild cleaner are typically preferred over more aggressive solutions like steel wool brushes. Once your furniture has been thoroughly cleansed rinse it well under running water so any leftover cleaners are rinsed away before allowing it to air dry completely.

If rust spots or corrosion appear on your metal patio furniture, an aluminum polish can help ward them off in the future. Available at most hardware stores, it is best to test these products first in an inconspicuous area before applying – any discolorations should be addressed immediately using another product to avoid damaging it further. To make sure any potential rust issues don’t arise later on it’s also a good idea to keep regular clean with waterproof cover on top!