How To Store Outdoor Furniture Covers

You’ve spent a great deal of time and effort finding the perfect outdoor furniture covers for your patio set – they’re durable, stylish, and protect your investment from the elements. But now that summer is coming to an end, you may be wondering what to do with them. Fear not! In this article, we will provide you with simple and effective tips on how to store your outdoor furniture covers, ensuring they stay in great condition for years to come. So sit back, relax, and let us guide you through the process of properly storing your covers during the off-season.

Table of Contents

Choosing the Right Storage Location

When it comes to storing your outdoor furniture covers, the first step is to choose the right storage location. This decision is crucial in ensuring the longevity and durability of your covers. Consider the climate in your area to determine the most suitable storage space for your covers.

Consider the Climate

The climate in your region plays a significant role in determining the type of storage environment your covers require. If you live in a hot and humid area, it’s important to find a cool and dry space for your covers. On the other hand, if you reside in a cold and snowy region, you’ll want to protect your covers from extreme temperatures and moisture.

Find a Dry and Well-Ventilated Area

To maintain the quality of your outdoor furniture covers, it is essential to store them in a dry and well-ventilated area. Moisture can lead to mold or mildew growth, which can damage your covers over time. Look for a storage space where air can circulate freely, preventing any trapped moisture. A garage, shed, or dry basement can serve as suitable options for storing your covers.

Avoid Direct Sunlight

Direct sunlight can cause fading and damage to your outdoor furniture covers. Prolonged exposure to the sun’s UV rays can lead to discoloration and deterioration of the fabric. It’s best to avoid storing your covers in areas where they will be exposed to intense sunlight for extended periods. Choose a shaded spot or consider using a cover or wrapping to protect them from harmful UV rays.

Protect from Extreme Temperatures

Extreme temperatures can also impact the quality of your outdoor furniture covers. Excessive heat can cause the fabric to weaken and degrade, while freezing temperatures can make the material brittle and prone to cracking. To protect your covers, avoid storing them in areas that are subjected to extreme temperature fluctuations, such as unheated attics or uninsulated spaces. Opt for a more controlled storage environment to ensure their longevity.

Cleaning and Preparing the Covers

Before storing your outdoor furniture covers, it’s important to give them a thorough cleaning and preparation. By following these steps, you can ensure that your covers are in the best condition for storage and will be ready to use when the warmer seasons return.

Remove Debris and Dirt

Start by removing any debris and dirt from your outdoor furniture covers. Use a soft brush or vacuum cleaner attachment to gently remove loose particles. This step will help prevent any dirt from becoming embedded in the fabric during storage.

Follow Manufacturer’s Instructions

Check the manufacturer’s instructions for any specific cleaning recommendations for your outdoor furniture covers. Different fabrics may require different cleaning methods, so it’s important to follow the guidelines provided to avoid damaging the covers. If in doubt, you can always spot test a small area before proceeding with full cleaning.

Spot Clean Any Stains

If there are any stains on your covers, spot clean them before storing. Use a mild detergent diluted in warm water and a soft cloth to gently treat the stained areas. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaning tools that may cause damage to the fabric. After spot cleaning, rinse the area thoroughly and allow it to dry completely.

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Make Sure They are Fully Dry

Before storing your outdoor furniture covers, it is crucial to ensure that they are fully dry. Any moisture left on the covers can lead to mold or mildew growth during storage. Allow the covers to air dry completely before folding or packing them away. Do not store them while they are still damp, as this can result in unpleasant odors and damage to the fabric.

Folding and Stacking Techniques

Properly folding and stacking your outdoor furniture covers can make a significant difference in utilizing storage space efficiently and keeping them in good condition. Follow these techniques to ensure that your covers are neatly organized and easily accessible when needed.

Fold Them Neatly

When folding your outdoor furniture covers, take care to be neat and precise. Avoid folding them haphazardly, as this can lead to creases and wrinkles that may be difficult to remove. Start by folding them in half horizontally, bringing the bottom edge up to meet the top edge. Then, fold them in half vertically to create a smaller, more manageable size. Smooth out any wrinkles as you fold to maintain the integrity of the fabric.

Stack Lighter Covers on Top of Heavier Ones

If you have multiple types of outdoor furniture covers, consider stacking them according to weight. Place the heavier covers at the bottom of the stack, with lighter ones on top. This arrangement helps prevent any potential damage to the lighter covers from the weight of the heavier ones. Additionally, it makes it easier to access specific covers without having to move the entire stack.

Consider Stacking by Size or Type

Another way to organize your outdoor furniture covers is by stacking them according to size or type. Group together covers of similar sizes or those designed for the same type of furniture. This method helps keep your storage area organized and makes it easier to locate the specific cover you need. Consider using dividers or labeled bins to further enhance organization within the stack.

Avoid Overstuffing

While it may be tempting to fit as many covers as possible into a single storage area, it’s important to avoid overstuffing. Overcrowding can lead to unnecessary pressure on the covers, causing creases, wrinkles, and even tears. Instead, leave some room between the covers to allow for air circulation and reduce the risk of damage. If you find that you have more covers than storage space available, consider getting additional storage solutions or decluttering your collection.

Using Storage Bags or Boxes

Storage bags or boxes can provide an added layer of protection for your outdoor furniture covers. They can help keep the covers clean, organized, and easily accessible. Here are some tips for effectively utilizing storage bags or boxes for your covers.

Choose the Right Storage Bags or Boxes

When selecting storage bags or boxes for your outdoor furniture covers, opt for ones that are durable, moisture-resistant, and appropriately sized. Consider using clear bags or boxes to make it easier to identify the covers without having to open each one. Ensure that the bags or boxes are sturdy enough to withstand the weight of the covers and any stacking or moving that may occur during storage.

Label and Organize

To keep track of your outdoor furniture covers, it’s helpful to label each storage bag or box. Use labels or markers to indicate the contents, such as the furniture type or cover size. This labeling system will save you time and effort when searching for a specific cover. Additionally, organize the bags or boxes in a logical manner, such as by furniture type or color, to further streamline the retrieval process.

Consider Vacuum-Sealed Bags for Extra Protection

For added protection against moisture, dust, and pests, consider using vacuum-sealed bags for your outdoor furniture covers. These bags remove the air and create a tight seal, minimizing the risk of any contaminants reaching the covers. Vacuum-sealed bags can also help save space by reducing the volume of the covers, making them easier to store and transport.

Avoid Plastic Bags in Humid Environments

While plastic bags may seem like an easy storage solution, they are not ideal for long-term storage of outdoor furniture covers, especially in humid environments. Plastic bags can trap moisture and promote the growth of mold or mildew. If you must use plastic bags, ensure that the covers are completely dry before sealing them and periodically check for any signs of moisture buildup during storage.

Hanging Storage Solutions

If you have limited floor space or prefer a more accessible storage method, hanging your outdoor furniture covers can be a great option. Hanging storage solutions keep the covers ready for use and minimize the risk of creases or wrinkles. Here’s how you can effectively utilize hanging storage for your covers.

Install Hooks or Pegs

To hang your outdoor furniture covers, start by installing hooks or pegs in a suitable location. Choose a spot that allows easy access to the covers, such as a wall or the back of a door. Ensure that the hooks or pegs you choose are sturdy enough to support the weight of the covers. Use a level to ensure proper alignment and spacing between each hook or peg.

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Hang Covers by Their Handles

Most outdoor furniture covers come with handles or straps for convenient handling. Utilize these handles to hang the covers on the hooks or pegs. Gently fold the covers in half vertically to ensure a smooth hang. By utilizing the handles, you can prevent any unnecessary strain or stress on the fabric, ensuring that the covers stay in good shape during storage.

Keep Them in a Dry Space

When hanging your outdoor furniture covers, ensure that the storage location is dry and well-ventilated. Moisture can still build up in a closed-off area, so it’s important to choose a space that allows for proper air circulation. Avoid hanging the covers in areas prone to high humidity, such as a bathroom or a basement that lacks ventilation. Keeping them in a dry environment helps prevent mold or mildew growth.

Consider Using a Garment Rack

If you have multiple outdoor furniture covers or limited wall space, consider using a garment rack for hanging storage. Garment racks are designed to support the weight of clothing items and offer a convenient solution for storing covers. Choose a garment rack with adjustable heights to accommodate the varying lengths of your covers. Place the rack in a suitable storage area, such as a garage or a spare room, to keep your covers organized and easily accessible.

Utilizing Vertical Space

When it comes to storage, utilizing vertical space can greatly maximize the storage capacity of your outdoor furniture covers. By thinking vertically, you can create a more efficient and organized storage system. Here’s how you can make the most of the vertical space available.

Invest in Shelving Units

Shelving units are an excellent investment for creating vertical storage space. Choose sturdy and weather-resistant shelves that can withstand the weight of your outdoor furniture covers. Install the shelves in a designated storage area, such as a garage or a shed, where they will be protected from the elements. Arrange the covers on the shelves, stacking them neatly to optimize the available space.

Utilize Wall-Mounted Racks

Another way to utilize vertical space is by installing wall-mounted racks. These racks can be attached to the wall and provide space for hanging your outdoor furniture covers. Opt for racks with adjustable hooks or pegs to accommodate covers of different sizes. By utilizing wall-mounted racks, you can keep your covers easily accessible while utilizing unused wall space for storage.

Make Use of Overhead Storage

Don’t forget about the overhead space in your storage area. By utilizing overhead storage solutions, such as overhead racks or ceiling hooks, you can free up valuable floor or wall space. Make sure to securely mount these storage solutions to ensure the safety of your outdoor furniture covers. Use caution when storing heavier covers overhead to prevent any accidents or damage.

Secure Covers to Prevent Slipping

To prevent covers from slipping or sliding off shelving units or racks, consider securing them in place. Use adjustable straps or bungee cords to fasten the covers together or to the shelving unit. This additional step will help keep your covers organized and prevent any unintended mishaps during storage. Regularly check the straps or cords to ensure they remain secure and in good condition.

Covering or Wrapping the Covers

Covering or wrapping your outdoor furniture covers can provide extra protection against dust, dirt, and potential damage. By following these steps, you can ensure that your covers are well-preserved during storage.

Use a Breathable Covering

When covering or wrapping your outdoor furniture covers, it’s important to choose a breathable material. Non-breathable covers, such as plastic sheets or tarps, can trap moisture and lead to the growth of mold or mildew. Opt for covers made from breathable fabrics, such as cotton or canvas, to allow proper air circulation and prevent any moisture accumulation.

Avoid Plastic Sheets or Tarps

Although plastic sheets or tarps may seem like an inexpensive solution, they are not recommended for storing outdoor furniture covers. Apart from being non-breathable, plastic sheets or tarps can create a condensation effect, leading to trapped moisture that can damage your covers. Additionally, these materials can cause the fabric to stick and result in potential color transfer or damage.

Consider Using Old Bedsheets or Blankets

A cost-effective alternative for covering or wrapping your outdoor furniture covers is to use old bedsheets or blankets. These materials offer a layer of protection against dust and minimal moisture. Select bedsheets or blankets that are clean and in good condition. Avoid using heavily stained or worn-out sheets, as they may transfer debris or contribute to the deterioration of your covers.

Keep Away from Moisture

When covering or wrapping your outdoor furniture covers, ensure that they are stored in a moisture-free environment. Even with breathable coverings, it’s important to minimize the risk of exposure to moisture. Choose a storage area with low humidity levels and proper ventilation to prevent any buildup of condensation or mildew. Regularly inspect the covers and coverings for any signs of moisture and replace or reposition them as necessary.

Protecting from Pests and Critters

Protecting your outdoor furniture covers from pests and critters is crucial to maintain their quality and usability. Follow these tips to safeguard your covers from unwelcome visitors.

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Seal Openings and Crevices

Inspect your storage area for any openings or crevices that pests or critters could use to gain access. Seal any gaps, cracks, or holes to prevent pests from entering. Use caulk, weatherstripping, or other suitable materials to seal off potential entry points. By securing the storage area, you can minimize the risk of pests and critters damaging or nesting in your covers.

Use Mothballs or Cedar Chips

Mothballs and cedar chips are known for their repellent properties against pests and critters. Place mothballs or cedar chips in your storage area to deter insects and rodents from approaching your outdoor furniture covers. Remember to follow the instructions on the packaging and use caution when handling these products. Avoid direct contact with the covers, as some materials may be sensitive to certain repellents.

Inspect Regularly for Signs of Infestation

Regular inspection of your outdoor furniture covers is essential to prevent any potential infestations. Check the covers regularly for signs of pests or critters, such as droppings, gnaw marks, or nests. If you notice any indications of infestation, take immediate action to eliminate the pests and protect your covers. Consult professional pest control if necessary.

Consider Pest-Repellent Spray

If you live in an area prone to pest or critter activity, you may consider using a pest-repellent spray in your storage area. Look for environmentally friendly options that are safe to use around fabrics. Test the spray on a small, inconspicuous area of the covers before applying it more broadly. Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer to ensure proper use.

Regular Maintenance and Inspection

Proper maintenance and regular inspection play a vital role in keeping your outdoor furniture covers in good condition. By taking care of your covers throughout the storage period, you can ensure they remain durable and ready for use when needed.

Check for Mold or Mildew

Regularly inspect your outdoor furniture covers for any signs of mold or mildew. Look for discoloration, musty odors, or visible growth. If you notice any of these signs, take immediate action to address the issue. Remove the affected covers from the storage area, clean them according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and thoroughly dry them before returning them to storage.

Inspect for Damage and Tears

Examine your outdoor furniture covers for any damage or tears. Check the seams, edges, and corners for any signs of wear and tear. Small holes or rips can quickly worsen and compromise the effectiveness of the covers. Repair any minor damage using a fabric repair kit or patch. If the damage is significant, consider replacing the cover to ensure proper protection.

Reapply Protective Coating if Necessary

Some outdoor furniture covers come with a protective coating that enhances their resistance to water, UV rays, and other environmental factors. Over time, this coating may wear off. If your covers are no longer repelling water effectively, consider reapplying a protective coating. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the appropriate product and application method.

Keep Them in Good Condition

To maintain the quality of your outdoor furniture covers, it’s important to handle them with care. Avoid dragging or tossing the covers, as this can cause unnecessary stress on the fabric and potentially lead to tears. Be mindful of sharp or abrasive surfaces when handling or storing the covers to prevent any accidental damage. By treating your covers gently, you can ensure that they remain in good condition for years to come.

Monitoring after Storage

After storing your outdoor furniture covers, it’s essential to periodically monitor their condition. By checking on them regularly, you can address any issues promptly and prevent prolonged damage. Follow these tips to monitor your covers effectively.

Check for Moisture Buildup

During storage, check your outdoor furniture covers for any signs of moisture buildup. Look for condensation, damp spots, or a musty odor. If you notice any of these indicators, take immediate action to dry the covers thoroughly and address any underlying causes of moisture. Proper airflow and regular checks can prevent mold or mildew growth.

Inspect for Any Pest or Critter Activity

Continuously inspect your outdoor furniture covers for any signs of pest or critter activity. Look for droppings, gnaw marks, or nests. If you detect any indications of pests or critters, take action to eliminate them and prevent any further damage. Regular inspections can help you identify and resolve issues before they escalate.

Ensure Covers Are Still in Good Shape

As you monitor your outdoor furniture covers, assess their overall condition. Look for any changes in color, texture, or elasticity. Ensure that the covers are still in good shape and capable of providing adequate protection. If you notice any significant deterioration or degradation, consider replacing the covers to maintain the integrity of your furniture.

Make Any Necessary Repairs

If you come across any damage or wear during your monitoring process, make any necessary repairs promptly. Perform minor fixes, such as patching small holes or resewing loose seams, to extend the lifespan of your covers. By addressing repairs as soon as possible, you can prevent further damage and ensure that your covers remain functional and effective.

In conclusion, storing your outdoor furniture covers properly is crucial in preserving their quality and extending their lifespan. Consider the climate in your area and find a dry, well-ventilated storage location that protects the covers from direct sunlight and extreme temperatures. Clean and prepare the covers before storage, using the manufacturer’s instructions and spot cleaning any stains. Fold and stack the covers neatly, considering weight and organization. Utilize storage bags or boxes, label and organize them, and consider vacuum-sealed bags for extra protection. Hanging storage solutions and vertical space utilization can optimize storage efficiency. When covering or wrapping the covers, choose breathable materials and keep them away from moisture. Take measures to protect the covers from pests and critters, seal openings, and use repellents. Regular maintenance and inspection are crucial, checking for mold, damage, and applying protective coatings if necessary. Finally, monitor the covers after storage, checking for moisture buildup, pests, and critter activity, ensuring the covers are still in good shape, and making any necessary repairs. By following these comprehensive steps, you can ensure that your outdoor furniture covers are stored properly and ready for use when the outdoor season returns.

Maci Morgan Photo

Maci Morgan

We spend a lot of time on our patio. So why not have the style and decor to your own specific taste. Not only will you feel great and relieve some stress, but so will your relatives and friends when they come to visit and chill out. Small party or special events, they all will be enjoyable once you find the right patio decor.

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