Find out how to clean outdoor furniture cushions for a fresh, new look

It’s inevitable…

...Your outdoor furniture cushions are going to get dirty, stained, and messy.

No matter how many precautions you take or how durable the fabric of the cushions, accidents and regular wear and tear will occur.

That is why you need to know how to clean your outdoor patio cushions so you can keep them looking brand new.

Cleaning your outdoor furniture cushions should be high on the to-do list. Not only does it look fresh and feel more comfortable, but a clean cushion will complement the appearance of your outdoor space.

In this article, we are going to take a look at how to clean outdoor furniture cushions, the different cleaning methods you can do, and the best way to maintain and care for cushions.

So let’s get started and jump into the best ways to maintain the new look of your outdoor furniture cushions.

5 Ways to Maintain The New Look of Outdoor Patio Furniture Cushions

Patio set that features clean outdoor patio furniture cushions

  1. Prevent Extended Exposure to Moisture

Ideally, your cushions will never get exposed to water, but chances are that they will get caught in a rain shower at least a couple times.

If you didn’t have a chance to bring your cushions inside before a rainstorm and they get wet, turn them on their edge as quickly as possible to help them dry faster.

  1. Clean Up Accidents or Spills Right Away

Drinks will spill and accidents will happen, but you must act and clean up the mess quickly to avoid the spill from soaking too long, leading to more damage. 

We’ll go over how to treat these stains later if you can’t get to it right away, but the faster you can treat the spill, the better.

  1. Regularly Flip Your Pillows Over

Most outdoor furniture cushions have some sort of UV-resistance, but it is still good practice to flip your pillows over so one side doesn’t get prolonged exposure to the sun.

  1. Vacuum or Brush Cushions Often

Take a vacuum or whisk brush and sweep away any debris, dirt, bugs, etc. that may be on the cushions. 

Vacuuming or brushing your outdoor furniture cushions regularly will prevent stains, mold, or mildew from appearing and helps maintain the beauty of the cushion fabric.

  1. Invest in High-Quality Cushions

Our last tip is to buy high-quality patio furniture cushions. The fabric that cushions are made of makes a big difference in performance and helps maintain the beauty of the cushion.

Clean outdoor furniture cushions made of high-quality

Now that we went over the different ways to prevent your patio furniture cushions from getting dirty and stained, let’s take a look at the different cleaning methods and how to remove specific stains from outdoor furniture cushions.

How to Clean Patio Furniture Cushions

Different Cleaning Methods

Hand Wash Outdoor Patio Cushions

Equipment used when hand washing outdoor patio cushions.

If you prefer to hand wash your cushions or you don’t have removable covers, hand washing is a great and effective way to keep your cushions looking fresh.

Here are the ingredients and supplies you’ll need:

  • Garden Hose with Adjustable Sprayer
  • Bucket
  • Hard-Bristle Brush 
  • Dish Detergent (Approx. 2 Tablespoons)
  • Borax (½ Cup)

First, take your cushions and place them on a surface you are okay with getting wet. A driveway, sidewalk, or deck is usually a good spot to place your cushions.

Next, take your garden hose and spray a generous amount of water on each outdoor furniture cushion until they are damp, but not completely soaked.

After the cushions are damp, grab your bucket and create your cleaning solution. To create the solution, mix the dish detergent with the borax, then fill the bucket up with water.

Now it’s time to apply the solution to your outdoor patio cushions. Take your hard-bristle brush, dip it into the bucket, and scrub the entire cushion with a sufficient amount of cleaning solution. Let the solution sit and soak in for about 10 minutes. 

Once the cleaning solution is soaked in, grab your hose again and completely rinse away all of the cleaning solutions from your outdoor furniture cushions.

Finally, press out as much moisture with your hands as you can, and sit the patio cushions vertically in an area that gets plenty of sun.

Machine Wash Outdoor Furniture Cushions

Machine washing your patio furniture cushions is a great option if you have removable covers. 

Before you place your cushion covers in the washing machine, shake your cushion covers to remove any loose debris. You can also take a vacuum or a brush to remove debris as well.

Next, place your cushion covers in the washing machine and wait until the load is finished. 

Once the covers are done in the washing machine, place them in an area that gets plenty of sun so they can properly air dry.

Finally, place the outdoor furniture cushion covers back over the inserts to prevent shrinking. If there are still stains on your cushions, you may need to hand wash or power wash it to fully remove the stain.

Power Wash Outdoor Cushions

Power washing outdoor furniture cushions

The last cleaning method we will talk about is powering washing your outdoor furniture cushions. 

However, use caution if you decide to power wash your cushions. This method can permanently damage the fabric or even break the seams. This method should only be used as a last resort.

Here are the ingredients and supplies you’ll need:

  • Pressure Washer
  • Garden Hose
  • Hard-Bristle Brush
  • Pressure Washer Solution
  • Soap Spray Tip

Similar to the first step in hard washing, take your cushions and place them on a surface you are okay with getting wet. Avoid any surface that has grass, mud, leaves, etc.

Next, apply the cleaning solution to the pressure washer and ensure the spray hose is firmly attached. If you want to learn more about how to operate and operate a pressure washer, then check out Family Handyman’s article on how to use a pressure washer.

After you applied the solution, attach your garden hose to the pressure washer. Before you pull the trigger on the spray gun, ensure that water is flowing through the entire machine. 

Now that the water flowing through the pressure washer, it’s time to clean the cushions. Attach the soap spray tip to the washer hose and spray the entire surface of the outdoor furniture cushions. Keep a modest distance and don’t spray too close, since this can damage the fabric surfaces.

Then, grab your brush and do a deep scrub on the patio cushions to get the cleaning solution deeper into the fibers of the fabric. 

Once you are done scrubbing, rinse all of the remaining solution off with the spray tip. Remember, keep a modest distance when spray to prevent fabric damage.

Finally, take your hands and press out any moisture you can from the outdoor furniture cushions, then set them up vertically in an area that gets plenty of sun.

Keep Your Outdoor Furniture Cushions Clean & Looking New

Clean outdoor furniture cushions on a 3-person patio swing

Cleaning your patio furniture cushions is a satisfying task once you are finished. Not only will your cushions look better, but so will the whole theme or your outdoor decor. 

Remember, regularly maintain your cushions and be proactive with spills or accidents to prevent stains from appearing.

Sometimes stains or the condition of the fabric is past the point of no return. If you have tried these cleaning methods and the stains continue to stand out, it’s time for replacement outdoor furniture cushions.

Also, if you’re looking to update the look of your patio, make sure to check out our wide Sunnydaze Patio Furniture collection and our outdoor furniture related blogs for helpful tips.

Outdoor livingPatio furniture

About the Author

Alyssa Geary
Alyssa Geary
Alyssa Geary is a product specialist who loves the cozy ambiance that the right lights can bring to indoor and outdoor spaces. In the summer months, you’ll find her relaxing under the shade of an umbrella reading a good book, or scrolling through Instagram.

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