Which Furniture Material is Right for Your Climate?
All outdoor furniture needs to be able to withstand the local climate, but each one of those climates offers a different set of challenges. That means that it is crucial to pick the right furniture material when purchasing anything that will be exposed to the elements. Doing otherwise will lead to a short lifespan for the furniture, which will either fall apart or need expensive repairs to stay in good condition.
Aluminum is one of the more popular and versatile choices when it comes to outdoor furniture. Aluminum is fairly affordable, reasonably strong, and quite light. Most importantly, it does not rust like most other metals that are used to produce furniture.
That makes it a great choice for rainy climates, where other pieces of metal furniture will tend to rust, or where wooden furniture runs the risk of rotting. On the other hand, its low weight makes in unsuitable for areas that got strong winds unless the owner takes steps to anchor it to the ground or a more stable piece of furniture.
Temperature is also a factor with aluminum furniture. Like all metals, aluminum conducts heat very easily. It will get hot quickly in a hot climate, and get cold quickly in a colder one. That can make it uncomfortable during periods of extreme temperature, but a layer of padding can provide insulation that stops it from being a problem. It will be fine during at least part of the year in almost every region, but there are areas and seasons where aluminum will be an uncomfortable choice without protection. Be careful about using unpadded aluminum furniture outside of moderate climates, but do not rule it out as an option.
Wood is another popular choice. In many ways, it is the opposite of aluminum. Wood is a relatively heavy material, and it is fairly good at resisting sudden shocks and other physical damage. On the other hand, wood can rot if it gets exposed to too much water. Treatments are available that will prevent that damage, but they do need to be repeated from time to time to ensure that the furniture stays in good shape. That gives the owner the choice between keeping the wooden furniture out of wet weather or putting in the work to make sure that it can stay in pristine condition regardless of the climate. There are a lot of different types of wood, and some of them are much more resistant to varying environmental conditions than others, so smart shoppers can also hunt down a variety that will be a perfect fit for their property.
These factors make wood an ideal choice for dry, windy climates. Wooden furniture is unlikely to blow away outside of the strongest wins, and an arid climate will make sure that it does not rot. With a little bit of care, it can also be used in most other regions, as long as they are not excessively wet.
Plastic is another light material. It will never rust, and it needs very little maintenance to stay in good shape. On the other hand, it is relatively easy to break through collisions with other objects, and some plastics can fade when they are left exposed to the elements for too long.
Plastic is a poor choice for windy areas because it is so light and easy to break, but it is a great choice for wet climates because the water will not damage it. The cost of plastic is low, so it can also be used in adverse conditions as a disposable option in an emergency. The combination of low weight and price means that it also works well as a portable option, regardless of climate. Sheltered areas are best for it in that case, but not strictly necessary.
Steel stands out for its weight. It is vulnerable to rust, and it conducts heat, but very few things can cause damage to it. The precise traits will vary from one type of steel to the next, but most share those general qualities.
Steel is ideal for climates where wind can be an issue. It is highly unlikely to blow away, and few options that get blown into it will cause any damage. It isn’t appropriate for hot areas because it will also get hot, and water will cause it to rust, but it is the best option for dealing with wind.