Care and Maintenance Tips for Cane and Wicker Furniture

21 March 2017
 Categories: , Blog

Cane and wicker furniture are popular choices for any outdoor space, as these materials are comfortable and typically very affordable. They also don't hold heat as does metal furniture, so they're good for areas with lots of direct sunlight. However, cane and wicker can be a bit delicate and may begin to sag or crack over time; note a few care and maintenance tips for these pieces so you can avoid this as much as possible, and keep them in good repair.

When it sags

Cane and wicker may eventually start to sag in the middle of a seating area, as these materials are soft and have elastic properties that cause them to pull out of place. When furniture piece begins to sag, soak a cloth in warm water; turn the furniture piece upside down and put the wet cloth on the sagging area. Set the piece aside and let both the furniture and the cloth dry together, typically overnight or for a full day. Once those are both dry, set aside the furniture piece for another few days so the material can dry fully. This should tighten and shrink that stretched and sagging area so it's as good as new.

Use oil soap

Oil soap is good for wood furniture as it adds hydration and moisture as it cleans, and keeps the wood from drying out; use this same oil soap on cane and wicker pieces to keep them from getting dry and brittle as well. Only use bleach if you notice mould or mildew on your cane or wicker furniture, and be sure to cut the bleach with plenty of water, as just a small amount should address those contaminants. Rinse the furniture completely after washing it with bleach so there is no residue left behind.

Leave a side unpainted

One advantage of cane and wicker furniture is that you can paint it yourself; however, if you do, always leave one side unpainted. Allowing this material to get too dry is a common reason for it to crack, split, sag, and pull away from connectors, and paint will cover and "choke" the material, causing it to dry out. Leaving a side unpainted allows the cane or wicker to "breathe" and will keep it from drying out and cracking. Be sure you use a paint meant for exterior wood, as this will have additives that protect the furniture from sun, rain, and other harsh elements. This will ensure the paint looks its best and that your furniture pieces are as protected as possible.