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How To Clean Mildew Off Patio Cushions

Clean Your Patio Cushions Before You Store Them

How to clean patio furniture cushions easily using gloves and dryer sheet

When its time to pack up your cushions for the colder months, be sure to check them for any stains or food spills. These will be harder to remove if theyre left all winter and can attract bugs. ;Also ensure that the pillows are thoroughly dry before you send them off to storage to prevent any mold or mildew. ;Waterproof storage bags are available if you dont have a completely weather-proof area to store them.

How To Clean Outdoor Cushions Treat Mildew And Stains By Hand And Without Borax

If youre anything like us, then as soon as the sun shines, youll head straight for the garden or whatever outside space you have. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, a good book and some clean outdoor cushions and your next few hours are sorted.;

Whether you have a covered balcony turned plant paradise, or a fancy-pants patio space in your backyard that’s filled with the very best garden furniture, youll know just how great it looks when its set up perfectly and filled with enough soft furnishings to make it feel like an outdoor living room space.

However, if youve had your throws, cushions and poufs for at least a year and through all the seasons, youll know all too well just how grimy and dirty soft furnishings can get with all the elements hammering them


Think mould, mildew and mud not to mention pet hair and other stuff if you have furry friends or kids around yours or not. Cushions go through hell: We sit on them, we nap on them, we hug them, we drop them, and we could go on, so knowing how to clean your outdoor cushions is a must for their survival.

Removing Mildew From Cushions

To remove mildew from your outdoor cushions, first, determine whether you have fabric or acrylic cushions.

Fabric Cushions: To clean fabric cushions, dilute a 12 cup of bleach into 1 gallon of water. Use a spray bottle to apply the mixture, then clean the mildew off of the cushion with a scrub brush. Once you have removed the mildew, rinse the cushion with water, and leave the cushions out in the sun to dry for the afternoon.;For deeper mildew, youll want to repeat the process several times.

We do have one word of warning. Not all outdoor cushions can tolerate cleaning with bleach. All Summer Classics cushions are designed to resist fading in the sun, and they can be cleaned with bleach. For cushions from other manufacturers, it is very important to do a spot test before using bleach on your outdoor fabric. To do a spot test, use the mixture on a small, inconspicuous spot to make sure that the color doesnt fade with the bleach.

If your fabric fails the spot test, never fear. There is a less harsh mixture that you can use. Pour a 12 cup of Lysol into a gallon of hot water and use this solution to scrub your cushion. You can then rinse it off with a mixture of 1 cup lemon juice and 1 cup salt dissolved into a gallon of hot water.


Acrylic Cushions: For acrylic cushions, mix 1 cup bleach and 2 cups of detergent into a gallon of water. It is easiest to apply with a spray bottle. Let is set for about 30 minutes before rinsing with water.

Also Check: How To Remove Paint Overspray From Concrete

How To Clean Outdoor Cushions

We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, when you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. This adds no cost to our readers, for more information read our;earnings disclosure.

Outdoor pillows and cushions can make your patio furniture more comfortable as well as adding a colorful touch to the decor.;

While these cushions are usually made to be weather resistant, they are still susceptible to natures touch in the form of pollen, bird droppings, dirt, and dust. They can also show water stains and mildew after time.


The good news is, there are ways to reduce the effects of nature by proper cleaning and storage of your outdoor cushions.;

Here are some simple steps to follow for cleaning your outdoor cushions and keeping your patio furniture looking like new!

In This Article

Cleaning Sunbrella Outdoor Cushions & Fabrics

How to Clean Mildew off of Patio Cushions

General or Light Cleaning Instructions

First, leave the cushions on the frame throughout the entire cleaning process. Brush off dirt or vacuum before using any cleaning product. Prepare a cleaning solution of not more than 2 ounces mild soap per gallon of lukewarm water . If you use too much soap, it will be hard to get it all out. Using a sponge or a soft bristle brush, clean the material and allow cleaning solution to soak into fabric. After youve cleaned the cushion, rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Finally, take the cushions off of the furniture and stand up on their sides to allow fabric to air dry thoroughly before use. Dry off the wet frames to prevent water spotting.

Spot Cleaning Instructions

First, brush off dirt or vacuum before using any cleaning product. Apply a light mist of mild soap and water using a spray bottle. Work the solution into the stain by lightly scrubbing the area with a sponge or very soft bristle brush. Rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue. Blot excess moisture with a clean, soft towel or sponge. Wet-vacuum or blot excess water. Finally, allow fabric to air dry. If you still see some spotting, repeat these steps and ensure all soap residue is removed. If you use a spot cleaner, please test in an inconspicuous area first.

Heavy Cleaning For Stubborn Stains and Mildew

If stain and/or mildew are severe, bleach quantities may be increased. View the stain chart for removal of specific stains.


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How To Clean Outdoor Cushions And Fabric Furniture

  • Total Time: 3 hrs
  • Skill Level: Beginner

Outdoor cushions, pillows, canopies, and umbrellas make patios and poolsides beautiful and comfortable. Unfortunately, they take lots of abuse from dirty feet;and outdoor weather, and they need to be cleaned often to remove dirt and stains.;

While most outdoor fabrics are treated to prevent sun damage and to repel stains, the protective finish can deteriorate over the years. If you choose to boost the finish with a spray-on fabric protectant that acts as a;water and stain repellent, you must be sure that the fabric is completely free of stains and dirt before treating or you will simply seal in the dirt.

When purchasing outdoor pillows and furniture, look for styles that have zippers or snaps that make the fabric removable for easier cleaning.

Mixing The Cleaning Solution

If youve read through the cleaning section of this blog, then you probably recognize the power of Qxygen Bleach. It really works to scrub tough stains and to get rid of nasty moldy smells.;


This solution uses the power of oxygen bleach along with stain boosting laundry detergent. I mix those together with dish soap in some warm water and then used elbow grease to just scrub down the cushions.

If you want to try using a hose, you could, but that could damage the foam in the cushions and it will take a lot longer to dry. Its the;best way to clean outdoor patio cushions.

If you want to check out some other uses for oxygen bleach, have a look at how I use it to deep clean my stainless steel sink! There are so many other incredible ways to use oxygen bleach to clean your whole house. Have a look here.

You might also want to see our DIY Chevron privacy wall tutorial. We had to take it down after a hurricane but we are plotting to add it back into space at some point soon.;

Read Also: How To Get Dog Hair Off Patio Cushions


Iosso Mold & Mildew Stain Remover

For this second step, we recommend using a mold and mildew removing cleaner like Iosso Mold & Mildew Stain Remover. Mix this concentrated powder with water to clean vinyl, canvas and sails plus plastic, wood, carpeting, fiberglass and painted surfaces. Free of bleach and chlorine, Mold & Mildew Stain Remover is safe on colorful fabrics as well as sewn seams, zippers, and hook and loop fasteners.

To use this Iosso cleaner, mix one scoop of powder for every quart of water. The mixture will turn blue at first. Stir until the color disappears. Wet down your fabric with water first, then apply the solution to the fabric using a sponge, soft brush or gentle sprayer. Let the mixture stand on the fabric for at least 15 minutes. Agitate the solution on the fabric with a soft bristled brush or sponge before rinsing with fresh water. Let dry completely outside in the sun.

How To Remove Mildew From Lawn Furniture: Materials

Shocking Transformation of a Chair Being Cleaned, How to Clean Patio Furniture. Mold Algae Gone!

Most outdoor furniture comes with cleaning instructions, but if you’ve lost those instructions or your furniture was purchased secondhand, then the following cleaning solutions can help to restore and maintain your outdoor furniture. Before getting started you need to grab:

Recommended Reading: How To Keep Chipmunks Off Patio Furniture

Attach The Hose + Check The Water

Attach a garden hose to the pressure washer, and turn the water on high. Before turning the pressure washer on, pull the trigger on the spray gun to make sure that water is flowing through the entire machine. Once water is flowing freely from the spigot to the end of the spray gun, you are ready to turn on the pressure washer.


Keep Them From Getting Dirty

An easy way to keep your patio furniture like new is to do all you can to prevent dirt buildup and stains. For heavily used patios, consider vinyl or plastic cushion covers. You can also treat your fabric with upholstery protectors to avoid stains. Moreover, theyre usually safe for all fabrics, even silk. There are also many options that dont contain harmful chemicals, making them safe for household use. One example is Vectra, which is available in large hardware stores.

Another way to keep your cushions clean is taking them inside during seasons when theyre not in use. This might mean storing them in your garage during rainy seasons or snowy months. This will help prevent mold, sun damage, and general breakdown.

Even if you know how to wash patio cushions, its still a good idea to take some preventive measures. This way, you save time scrubbing down cushions and surface stains in the future. And, even if your cushions seem beyond cleaning, try one of our cleaning tips to bring them back to life.

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How To Clean Outdoor Rug With Mildew

Outdoor rugs in the right climate can easily get mildew. To get rid of it, you need the power of white vinegar.

  • Pour straight white vinegar onto the mildew.
  • Allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes.
  • Add a ½ cup of white vinegar to 4 cups of hot water.
  • Dip a scrub brush in the mixture.
  • Use the scrub brush to scrub the area of the outdoor rug.
  • Rinse with water.
  • Allow it to dry in the sun.
  • What Happens If My Cushions Fade

    How to Clean Patio Cushions in 6 Steps

    The majority of outdoor cushions are made from fabrics that are resistant to the suns UV rays. No matter how durable the fabric is, direct exposure to sunlight over a prolonged period leads to fading. Once the material begins to fade, there is nothing you can do to fix it, aside from buying new cushions.

    To prevent fading, store your cushions in a storage bag, bring them inside, or place them in the shade when they are not being used. These simple measures increase the color life of your cushions by at least five years.

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    Removing Bird Droppings From Patio Pillows

    Before applying a pre-treating stain remover to the bird droppings, allow the mess to dry and remove as much as possible. Use a microfiber towel or cloth to gently wipe away as much as you can. This method also works to remove blueberry stains from cotton.

    • 1-quart warm water

    Pour water, Borax, and dish soap into a spray bottle and shake to mix. Spray the solution directly onto the bird dropping and let it sit for a few minutes.

    Use a soft bristle scrub brush to work the cleaning solution into the stain and allow it to sit for several minutes. Rinse away all soap residue with clean water and let the pillow air dry.

    This simple mixture is also a great way to clean plastic patio furniture to get rid of grime that accumulates from being outside in the elements. Spray on the furniture, scrub with a soft-bristled brush or old rag and rinse clean. Wipe or air dry.

    How To Prevent Mildew On Outdoor Cushions

    The best way to prevent mildew on outdoor cushions is to bring your cushions inside when theyre not in use.

    If you forget and it rains, then move the cushions into a dry place with lots of ventilation so that they can quickly dry. Laundry racks are great for this. Flip them over every half hour to allow the entire cushion to dry.

    If you live in a humid place or can never seem to remember to bring them in, invest in quality acrylic or olefin cushions. Yes, theyre not natural materials, but theyre more sustainable in the long run when you dont have to replace your cushions every season.

    In the off-season, store outdoor cushions in a well-ventilated, low humidity place.

    And clean the cushions regularly. When you clean regularly, you stop mildew from penetrating deeper into the cushion, and you can use more natural, less toxic methods. Regularly spray your cushions with white vinegar and give them a light scrub.

    Recommended Reading: How To Remove Mildew From Patio Furniture Cushions

    What Will Take Mildew Off Of Outdoor Cushions On Lawn Furniture

    Because the spores are prevalent in the air, cushions and furniture left outdoors with moisture on them can develop unsightly mold and mildew. The cleaning solution you choose to remove mildew from outdoor cushions and lawn furniture depends on the material in the cushion. Plastic and vinyl furniture and cushions can take harsher chemicals, but fabric-type cushions may require special precautions.

    Cleaning Outdoor Furniture Cushions Couldnt Be Easier With These Expert Tips

    How To Clean Patio Furniture

    Follow these tips for cleaning outdoor furniture cushions and enjoy garden seating that looks like new

    Cleaning outdoor furniture cushions can be a difficult task. First, even the best garden furniture often uses cushions with non-removable covers, which makes the cleaning much more labor-intensive. Next, outdoor cushions are prone to mold and mildew, which can be particularly hard to remove. And, finally, depending on what fabric your cushions are made from, the drying process after cleaning them will be different.;

    Fear not, though: cleaning outdoor furniture cushions is easier than it may seem, if you follow these simple expert tips. These are all for cushions that have non-removable covers; if yours are removable, just wash them in the washing machine.

    Read Also: How To Stop A Patio Umbrella From Spinning

    Types Of Patio Cushion Materials

    To know how best to remove mildew and clean your patio cushions, you must first know what fabric the cushions are made from. Look for the care instruction tag to find out, or if yours has no tag it is easy enough to discern between the different fabrics. All patio cushions are made from synthetic materials. They manage to feel soft yet are hardy to withstand the harsh effects of the suns rays and rainy days too, as well as being exposed to food sauces, sunscreens, drinks, and other debris, while still looking new. Thats due to the water- and weather-resistant coatings sprayed on them by the manufacturers, but repellents do eventually break down and thats when mildew, permanent stains, and fading become problems.

    Soak The Cushion Before Washing

    Good for: Mildew or mold

    You might have thought about replacing your patio furniture cushions especially after noticing the mold buildup but wait, there are solutions. Your patio furniture cushions might become riddled with mildew or mold if left in wet or humid conditions. Beverage spills left untreated might also lead to mildew on and within the cushion. In this case, youll need a container, water hose, brush, and cleaning solution of dishwashing detergent, borax, and water to get this dirt out.

    You can use a spray bottle;to soak the cushions or create a large amount of mixture in a bucket to submerge your cushions. Leave the cushions for 15 minutes to an hour and then wash off the mixture and dirt with your garden hose. Instead of borax, you can add some bleach to thoroughly eliminate mold.

    Another common dirt might be tree sap on your cushions. SFGate suggests applying detergent on the affected area and wait 30 minutes before wiping it off. Another suggestion is using an enzyme-based stain remover to break down the sap. Keep the solution on for at least 15 minutes. Alternatively, you can use an extra-strength detergent and a handheld brush to scrub away the sap. Wash off any leftover solution and sap with water.

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