How to Clean Mold from Patio Furniture Cushions

The patio is a beautiful backyard getaway. Filled with furniture and cushions, it’s the ideal place to host a gathering or relax in its intimate spaces. But when mold infests the cushions, it turns the outdoor sanctuary into a revolting mess. Rather than panic, clean the mold with these steps.

nice outdoor patio furniture

Why does mold grow on patio furniture cushions?

Unless the homeowner invests in mold-resistant furniture, the cushions are bound to grow mold. As moisture from rainwater and humidity penetrates the cushions, leaving them consistently damp, mold eventually flourishes. The cushions’ organic materials are excellent nutrient sources for spores.

Mold develops rapidly under optimum conditions. A steady supply of moisture, access to organic materials, and oxygen are all the spores require to thrive on outdoor patio cushions. Infestations develop rapidly upon exposure to moisture, often in as little as 24 to 48 hours.

How do homeowners identify mold on patio cushions?

Mold on the patio furniture cushions can be detected through the visual and olfactory senses. Colonies appear as dark splotches on materials. Sometimes, instead of black discoloration, mold can exude a greenish or bluish hue. Seeing unexpected fuzzy growths can also be an indication of mold.

Moldy furniture gives off an unpleasant scent. If the odors smell musty, it can be a sign of mold growth. Mold has a distinctive odor, which some people liken to wet, dirty socks or earth. Upon seeing or smelling mold on the patio cushions, it’s imperative to clean it off.

How is mold cleaned from fabric cushions?

Before beginning the cleanup process, it’s critical that homeowners protect themselves from the mold spores. Breathing in the mold can have negative health consequences. Work in a well-ventilated space, wear gloves and a mask during cleaning, and avoid mixing chemical cleaners.

1. Gather Supplies

A few supplies are necessary to clean up mold from patio furniture cushions. Most of these are household staples, such as bleach and dish soap. The tools needed include a spray bottle, soft cloth, hard-bristle brush, pressure washer, and washing machine.

Some homeowners avoid cleaning mold with bleach, as it can discolor certain outdoor fabrics. Furthermore, individuals may be sensitive to the fumes emitted by bleach. Eco-friendly tactics to remove mold from the cushions are recommended and these steps are provided below.

cleaning supplies

2. Clean with Borax

Natural cleaning is achieved with borax, a mineral salt known as sodium borate. Applying borax to the moldy cushions is effective. Mix a solution of one cup borax and a few drops of dish soap. Dip a bristled brush into the solution, scrub away the mold and rinse.

3. Clean with Vinegar

Clean away light mold growth with white vinegar, another household staple. Remove the outdoor cushion covers and launder them in the washing machine with one cup of distilled white vinegar. Spray the vinegar to all sides of the cushions if their covers are not removable.

After allowing the vinegar to sit for 10 minutes, prepare a solution of one tablespoon dish soap in three cups of warm water. Dip a sponge into the solution, wipe away the mold, and finish by rinsing the fabric with a clean, damp cloth. Air dry the cushions.

4. Clean with a Pressure Washer

Severe mold infestations can be eliminated with the help of a rented pressure washer. Dampen the cushions with water. Add soap to the pressure washer soap reservoir. Hold the pressure washer two feet away from the cushions and set the PSI to a low level to protect the soft materials.

Using a sweeping motion, pressure wash the cushions, covering them with soap. Let the soap penetrate the fabric for three minutes—but do not let the suds dry. Scrub the mold off with a hard-bristle brush. Rinse all lingering soap residue with water. Wring out and air dry the cushions.

2 men cleaning outdoor patio furniture

How is mold cleaned from acrylic cushions?

Cleaning mold from acrylic patio cushions requires a slightly different approach. Acrylic tends to stain more readily upon being infested by mold colonies, thereby necessitating swift treatment. Do not use a hard-bristle brush to scrub the mold off acrylic fabrics.

Instead, mix one cup bleach (read the fabric label first), 2 cups detergent, and water in a spray bottle. Spray the moldy spots on the acrylic fabric, let it sit, and then use a sponge to rinse off the solution. Take caution if the fabric is sensitive to water temperature.

How is mold prevented on outdoor cushions?

Preventing mold from developing on the patio cushions should be a priority. When rain or humid weather is in the forecast, bring the cushions inside. Clean cushions stored in a dry environment prevents mold growth. If the cushions become damp, absorb the moisture with a towel and air dry.

Cleaning mold from patio furniture cushions is a straightforward process. Regular cleanings keep the cushions mold-free and usable season after season. But before you can enjoy the comfy patio furniture, you’ll need a beautiful patio built by Pavestone Brick Paving, Inc.

We are a highly regarded patio contractor with extensive experience in quality patio installation in residential homes. Our attentive design team discusses your vision and helps you decide on the various materials available, such as durable brick pavers or attractive natural stone slabs.

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Natural stone slabs are valued for their long-lasting beauty, resistance to chipping, cracking, or fading and versatility. You have several color, texture, shape, and size options at your fingertips. We’ll incorporate the stone slabs into the patio build to achieve the aesthetic you strive for.

Brick paver patios are also desirable. Our installation team is skilled in creating patios using brick pavers from Unilock. We treat the surface with coatings to ensure the pavers remain dirt-, weather- and stain-resistant. Brick patios endure and support heavy loads, like outdoor furniture and grills.

Pavestone Brick Paving, Inc, offers patio repair and maintenance services. We are every homeowner’s one-stop company for all patio design, installation, and maintenance needs. Our company proudly serves Des Plaines, Illinois, and the surrounding areas. Call us today at (847) 895-7004 to begin the building of your dream patio.

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