A patio equipped with nice furniture is an inviting place for you and guests to relax throughout much of the year. But, it can quickly lose some of its luster if the outdoor cushions are dingy, worn or damaged.
Patio cushions are often neglected when it comes to maintenance, especially if they’re non-removable. In seeking out the best way to preserve them, it often leads to the question: can you leave outdoor cushions outside overnight?
A common-sense thought is that if they’re considered “outdoor” cushions, then they surely must be OK to leave outside 24/7 –right?
In many cases, outdoor cushions can be left outside without issues if the backyard is secure and the weather is dry. However, it’s still important to note that while outdoor cushioning is mostly resistant to water, lengthy exposure to rain and snow can cause irreparable damage.
In this article, we’re going to look at whether you should leave outdoor cushions outside overnight, and how to store outdoor cushions (both fixed and removable) –so let’s get started!
What Are the Risks of Leaving Outdoor Cushions Outside?
While these materials are suitable for the outdoors, leaving them outside overnight during inclement weather could shorten their lifespan. Exposure to heavy rain can soak into outdoor cushions resulting in unwanted growth of mold or mildew.
Even if it doesn’t rain outside, cool mornings can result in a layer of dew on outdoor objects. This dew has potential to foster unwanted growth on the cushions.
Another risk is that breezy conditions could blow removable cushions away if they’re light enough.
So, all in all, it would be highly recommended to protect your patio cushions overnight if you suspect damp conditions are going to occur.
How to Protect Outdoor Cushions from Harsh Weather
Protecting your outdoor cushions can help extend their longevity.
One way to keep outdoor cushions safe from the rain and snow is by getting them in the house. However, if you don’t have enough indoor space to accommodate them all, then keeping the cushions protected requires some extra planning.
Below are some protective ideas to consider before leaving your cushions outside for the night:
Wrap Them with a Furniture Cover
A common way to protect both removable and non-removable cushions is by using outdoor patio furniture covers designed to wrap the couch fully. These are also made of water-resistant materials, which helps keep the cushions protected from excessive moisture.
The first step is to slide it over the couch and pull each corner to make sure it covers the whole seat. Then, you can wrap the strap around the furniture’s leg and fasten it with the quick-release buckle clip or drawstring.
If you can’t find a match for your furniture, you can use plastic tarps or blankets to save you in a pinch. Just check that you cover the cushions from top to bottom without leaving any exposed.
When you’re ready to use the furniture, gently shake any water or dust off the cover before you remove it so that it doesn’t accidentally fall onto your cushions.
Get Some Drawstring Storage Bags
You may store outdoor cushions using drawstring storage bags as long as they’re made of breathable yet dust-proof cotton.
Just tuck your cushions in the bag, pull both ends of the strings, then tie a knot to secure the lounge chair cushions and pillows inside.
Use Stackable Plastic Storage Bins
Plastic storage bins are also great for keeping your couch cushions safe. These offer a well-protected solid surface, and you can also put them on top of each other to save space.
Make sure that the bin is dry and clean before putting the cushions in. Plus, it’s better to keep them away from direct sunlight if you plan to put them aside for extended periods.
Consider Heavy-Duty Deck Boxes
You can also get a deck box made of polyethylene because it’s light and durable. In addition, these boxes come in various storage capacities, so keeping large outdoor cushions shouldn’t be a problem.
Many deck boxes are designed as weatherproof, so this will allow you to store the box outside while the cushions are safely stowed away inside.
Keep Outdoor Cushions Safe in a Storage Shed
Another way to keep outdoor cushions safe is by putting them into a storage shed. If your cushions are non-removable, consider moving the entire piece of furniture into the shed if there’s room.
You can purchase a ready-made shed made of steel, plastic, or wood. Plus, they also come in various sizes, so it’s easy to find a suitable setup for your backyard.
Alternatively, you can build a storage shed yourself. Just make sure you put it near the patio and on a spot where water doesn’t build up when it rains.
Leave Trash Bags as a Last Resort
If you don’t have any of the tools listed above or what you have isn’t enough to cover all the cushions, trash bags can save you in a pinch.
However, it’s not ideal to use them for extended periods since they might leak. Instead, it will be best to transfer your patio pillows and seat cushions to a more secure container as soon as possible.
How to Dry Outdoor Cushions Soaked With Water
Let’s face it; sometimes, we forget to do things we’re supposed to do. One of them is storing our outdoor cushions when there’s a looming downpour.
Even though many outdoor cushions are considered to be water-resistant, heavy water can cause mildew to develop within the cushion’s stuffing material. So, it’s crucial to dry any outdoor furniture that gets soaked overnight before it molds.
Steps to Dry Removable Outdoor Cushions
- On a clean and dry surface, put a thick towel or two and put the wet cushion on them.
- Put some pressure on the cushion by pressing it against the towels. You can either use your hands or your feet by walking on it.
- Replace the towels if they get so wet that they can no longer absorb water.
- When you’re done squeezing the water out, air dry the cushion by putting it on its side.
Steps to Dry Non-Removable Outdoor Cushions
- Move the piece of furniture to a dry location.
- Use thick towels and press them against the cushions to absorb water.
- Use high-velocity fans to help the cushion dry faster.
- Let it dry further by leaving it in a spot with enough sunlight and air.
So, can you leave outdoor cushions outside overnight? In calm, dry weather your cushions will generally be fine. However, it’s not a recommended practice for unpredictable or wet weather.
Ultimately, it’s important to know the limitations of our outdoor furniture. While these cushions may be durable and water-resistant, it’s still best to keep them as protected as possible.
With a bit of maintenance and precautionary measures, they can give us years of relaxation on the patio with our family and friends!
Husband and father of three (actually, four if you include the pool). I’m an avid DIY-er and weekend warrior that enjoys taking up new projects around the house to help us maximize leisure right at home. I enjoy researching and sharing various tips, tricks and knowledge to help others make their home an oasis.