No matter what type of garden furniture you have, it is a major investment that you want to take good care of.

One way to extend its life and protect it from harsh weather is to pressure wash the patio furniture once every year or two. However, there are a few things that you need to know about pressure washing when it comes to the materials used.

Is Pressure Washing Patio Furniture Safe?

Yes. Pressure washing patio furniture is safe, as long as the pounds per square inch (PSI) is set low enough. If the PSI is too high, it will cause damage beyond just dirty patio furniture.

However, if you have teak furniture, then it is recommended to avoid pressure washing because teak is very sensitive to chemicals, and being blasted by a high PSI could strip the minerals out of it.

The same goes for cedar wood furniture, which can be stripped of its natural oils if pressure washed too much.

If you have any other type of patio furniture, then there’s no need to worry about using a garden hose or power washer on them.

Just make sure you don’t point it at the wood grain as this could cause splintering.

There are also good and bad times to use a pressure washer, depending on the time of year.

What Options Do You Have?

Some people use a mild soap solution in their outdoor faucet, then spray down their patio furniture with that, while letting the sun do the work scouring away dirt and grime without major damage to your patio furniture.

How Often Should I Pressure Wash Patio Furniture?

Once every two years is typically enough for regular maintenance. There’s no need to do it more often unless you have a really bad case of grime that just won’t go away with a garden hose

For the best results, start by scrubbing off as much mud and dirt as possible first, then use a cup of bleach mixed in your water solution before blasting the patio furniture with high-pressure water sprays to remove all remaining residue.

If you follow these steps, your patio furniture should make it through another year without needing too much elbow grease or expensive cleaners to clean up!

Related: The Patio Guide: (Everything You Needed to Know)

Can You Pressure Wash Wicker Furniture?

Yes, you can powerwash wicker furniture. As long as the pressure is set to low, you shouldn’t run into any problems.

It might help by giving it a gentle rub down with a stiff scrub brush to loosen up dirt and grime that gets stuck in the material.

Then you can use a sponge, rag, or mop to apply soap water onto the wicker furniture before using your pressure washer for best results.

Related: Can I leave my patio furniture outside in the winter?

What About Pressure Washing Plastic Furniture?

Pressure washing plastic is not a problem for your pressure washer. Unlike the other materials we talked about earlier, plastic can withstand a much stronger PSI.

Also, any bleach products you use will have no effect on it because plastic is not a porous material.

You can also mix in some dish soap with the water if you want to help remove dirt and grime from your plastic furniture, as well as lawn ornaments, patio chairs, and other accessories.

Related: Patio Chair Cushions And You

Can You Use A Pressure Washer To Clean Patio Cushions?

No, it is not recommended to use a pressure washer to clean patio cushions, because the water pressure can damage them.

The safest way to clean your patio cushions is by simply using a garden hose to spray them down with soap water.

If you have any other type of outdoor furniture or outdoors accessories that are made from plastic, wicker, or anything else, then feel free to use your power washer on it without any reservations!

Just be careful when using bleach-based cleaners as they could potentially discolor your furniture if left on for too long, so that’s why we recommend just mixing in regular dish soap into the water before starting up your power washer.

Can You Pressure Wash Picnic Tables?

Yes, pressure washing your picnic table is perfect, just be sure to keep an eye on the wood since it is sometimes more sensitive than other types of wood patio furniture.

If you have any splintering already or splitting boards, then you probably shouldn’t use a power washer for this project.

In the first instance, set the PSI level to low and then gradually increase the pressure if your wood is holding up well and not showing any signs of possible future damage.

Take a wire brush and gently scrub off surface dirt and grime on top of the picnic table by hand, then use a mop to clean off the soap water before rinsing it with the pressure washer.

You can also add some dish soap into your water if you want to help break down stubborn stains that just won’t go away, but make sure you keep an eye out for split boards or areas where the wood has begun to splinter or crack.

Can A Pressure Washer Damage A Patio Furniture?

Yes, a pressure washer can damage patio furniture if the PSI is too high and aimed directly at it.

However, if you’re just using a garden hose with soap to powerwash your patio furniture, then there’s no need to worry about damaging it or discoloring the wood grain because this won’t happen as long as the water pressure is low.

Use soft water

Where possible use soft water to clean your patio furniture with a pressure washer. The cheapest way to do this is to collect your water in a water butt attached to your gutter.

In essence, this is the rainwater you are using and there won’t be any chemicals in the water.

If you don’t have access to soft water, you could try buying some from your local window cleaner. Winder cleaners these days use deionized water to clean your windows and have plenty to sell you.

Use The Correct Nozzle

There are several different nozzles that are designed to do specific jobs so make sure you use the correct nozzle to avoid damaging your patio furniture.

The most common nozzles used are a 25 or 30-degree angle and it is this type of nozzle that you would want to use if the outer skin of your furniture has begun to peel and flake.

You can remove these flakes by removing paint from the wood itself and only at the same time as using a pressure washer on your patio furniture.

Be Careful With The Nozzle Height

Secondly, be careful of where you place the water spray or how high up you raise it when cleaning your patio furniture with a power washer because it could cause some damage if handled incorrectly.

If there is any wood on your furniture that has begun to splinter and crack, then you need to make sure the water pressure is kept at a low level.

If this happens while using a pressure washer, it could result in major damage because of the force of the water and it may affect how well other chemicals like bleach can do their job.

What Is The Fastest Way To Clean Patio Furniture?

Fastest way to clean your garden furniture

The fastest way to clean your garden furniture is with a bucket of soapy water and a sponge.

Here are the steps:

1. In your bucket, mix 1:3 detergent into the water.

2. Dip your sponge into the solution and clean the furniture.

3. Rinse with a garden hose, then set out in direct sunlight to dry.

If you don’t want to drag out your bucket of soapy water, then using a mop or even just some cheesecloth can get rid of dirt and grime on virtually any type of patio furniture without too much effort.

Related: Patio Laying Guide (In Just a Weekend)

Is There Anything Else I Should Know?

Yes, there are a few other things to consider:

  • Ensure that the furniture is completely dry before covering it with a tarp.
  • If you use your patio furniture often throughout the season, then using a little bit of castile soap or coconut oil can help protect your investment and keep it looking good for years to come.
  • Be sure to set up some outdoor fans on both sides of the cushions so they dry quickly without developing any mildew stains after being exposed to water. If this does happen, simply rub in some baking soda and rinse thoroughly before allowing them to dry outside.
  • Make sure you clear the patio of any other furniture before starting.
  • Also, keep in mind that stains can be stubborn, and be prepared to scrub at them with a wire brush or sponge if they just won’t come off with simple soap and water.
  • For super tough stains, mix some household bleach into the soapy water to help clean up any discoloring of wood grain caused by mold, mildew, or even cigarette smoke damage. Use only very diluted amounts of bleach though because otherwise, it can cause splintering on your patio furniture.


Now you are fully armed with the knowledge you need to keep your outdoor patio furniture in good shape throughout the summer.

Make sure you take your time when it comes to cleaning and scrubbing and in most cases, patience is a virtue in this situation.  

If anything in your garden can be pressure washed, it’s typically going to be something like a deck. I hope that helps!

Feel free to comment if you have any follow-up questions or thoughts on my answers.

About the Author

Passionate about helping households transition to sustainable energy with helpful information and resources.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}