Outdoor Furniture 101

Important: Never Use Your Indoor Furniture Outside

Wish you had an indoor outdoor couch? Sadly there's a reason you shouldn't use indoor furniture outside. Outside of weatherproof furniture, you can't have indoor and outdoor furniture.

Can you put an indoor couch outside?

We'd all love to have all weather outdoor furniture. That way we could have an indoor outdoor couch and change its location with the seasons. An indoor sofa in the winter and an outdoor sofa in the winter. Alas, there are many reasons why you shouldn't have indoor furniture outside. However, if you're dead set on having indoor furniture for outdoor use and there's nothing we can say that will stop you, then we'd recommend using an old couch that you were already planning to put out to pasture. If you want to have an indoor couch outside, then here's what you need to know:

  • Embracing the elements: Unless you have an all weather patio couch, outdoor conditions (including UV rays, rain, and humidity) can strain indoor furniture. If you expose your couch to the elements, brace yourself for its transformation over time, facing weathering, wearing, and change.
  • Mighty materials: Outdoor furniture stands tall against the great outdoors, crafted with materials that defy moisture, fading, and deterioration. In contrast, indoor furniture lacks this inherent resilience. They're simply made from different materials.
  • Shield and support: If you're determined to let your indoor couch taste fresh air, secure a high-quality furniture cover. This will also help you safeguard it from the elements when it's not in use. Regular cleaning and maintenance also aid in extending your indoor sofa's outdoor life expectancy.

For a long-term outdoor couch solution, it's best to opt for weatherproof furniture that's designed to brave the elements.

How do I make my indoor furniture last outside?

Again, we wouldn't recommend using your indoor furniture outdoors. But if you have a hankering convert an indoor couch to an outdoor couch, then here's how to make sure it keeps its composure.

  • Choose wisely: Opt for furniture purpose-built for the outdoors. Crafted with materials that defy moisture, UV rays, and nature's rigors, weatherproof outdoor furniture stands resilient.
  • Cover it up: Invest in top-notch furniture covers. Shield your now indoor outdoor furniture from the elements when not in use. This protection prevents harm from rain, sun, and outdoor conditions. Unfortunately even a cover won't let you truly waterproof indoor furniture.
  • Location, location, location: Position your indoor outdoor sofa in covered or sheltered spaces. This move reduces direct sunlight and rain exposure.
  • Regular maintenance: Clean and nurture your indoor outdoor furniture consistently. Wipe away dirt, debris, and moisture to thwart mold, mildew, and decay.
  • Store smart: When possible, tuck your indoor furniture inside during rough weather or the off-season. This practice stretches its lifespan while preserving its original allure.

While we don't recommend keeping your expensive Natuzzi leather sofa outdoors, we can at least make sure it keeps its stylish allure with proper precautions. Maybe stick to the cheap loveseats if you're taking furniture outside.

Is it OK to leave furniture outside?

A dirty and soiled indoor couch that was left outside in the rain and snow

Furniture is generally durable, but not all furniture is designed for full time exposure. Here's what to expect if you leave furniture outside.

  • Outdoor-friendly: Weatherproof furniture emerges as a marvel, crafted to endure the elements. These pieces boast materials that fend off moisture, UV rays, and the general toll of nature's embrace. For the outdoors, you'll want an all weather patio couch.
  • Material insights: Wooden furniture, even if treated, could twist or crumble with constant moisture exposure. Upholstered counterparts might fall prey to mold and mildew. It's wise not to place wood furniture outside.
  • Furniture covers: High-caliber furniture covers act as stalwart defenders. They shield against rain, sun, and the outdoors, giving your furniture longevity in the face of outdoor living. They'll also save you from having to buy replacement cushions for outdoor furniture.
  • Regular maintenance: Outdoor furniture beckons for consistent upkeep. Banish dirt, moisture, and debris to stave off damage, ensuring your furniture shines in its finest light.
  • Location consideration: Should you stand firm on leaving furniture outdoors, contemplate a sheltered haven. This thoughtful touch curbs direct exposure to the elements, safeguarding your treasures.

While select all weather outdoor furniture stands strong in the outside arena, not all creations share the same mettle. Outdoor furniture dazzles amid the open expanse, while indoor counterparts might falter. Therefore, prior to granting your furniture an open-air rendezvous, ponder the materials, maintenance, and the furniture's innate surroundings.

Can you put indoor furniture in a sunroom?

Sunrooms are indoor spaces, so you can absolutely furnish them with your favorite indoor (or outdoor) pieces! But be advised, sunrooms still have a few hazards you need to keep an eye on.

  • Sunroom chic: Sunrooms extend a hand to the outdoors while cradling you from the elements. This haven can gracefully accommodate many indoor furniture pieces.
  • Shield it up: If you're set on sunroom integration, armor up with furniture covers. They combat harsh sunlight and fend off fading.
  • Window wizardry: Employ blinds, curtains, or shades as guardians against intense rays, offering your furniture a refuge from UV exposure.
  • Material insights: Scrutinize your indoor furniture's materials. Wood and fabric, in their natural state, might yield to constant sun exposure through fading or decay.
  • Clean vigilance: The radiant sunroom calls for diligent upkeep. Regular cleaning is a vital ally against heightened sunlight and potential moisture exposure.

In the realm of sunrooms, your indoor furniture can savor a harmonious coexistence with outdoor style.

What furniture can you leave outside?

Thankfully there's an entire category of furniture that's perfect for outdoor use. Its name? Outdoor furniture! So whether you're aiming to create an outdoor bar with patio sofas, stools, and a behind couch bar table, you can accomplish your goal by finding all weather outdoor furniture. Here's what to look for.

  • Crafted for uutdoors: Opt for furniture designed explicitly for the outdoors. These masterpieces are tailored to confront rain, sun, and the whims of nature.
  • Embrace open air: Furniture like an all weather patio couch, lounge chairs, dining sets, and storage benches, engineered to thrive in the elements, emerges as top contenders.
  • Sturdy materials: Seek out furniture fashioned from materials like aluminum, teak, or all-weather wicker, meticulously crafted to combat the elements.
  • Versatility abounds: Choose furniture that wears many hats, such as versatile weather-resistant dining sets and snug loungers created for al fresco indulgence.

The point is: outdoor furniture is the best option for outdoor furnishings. Shocking, we know. But it's absolutely in your best interest to keep indoor furniture inside and outdoor furniture outside. If you end up loving your outdoor furniture, we have good news! You can always use outdoor furniture inside.

A smiling man with short brown hair and a beard stands on a beach during sunset. He is wearing a black short-sleeved shirt with small white dots. The ocean and sandy shore are in the background, creating a warm and relaxed atmosphere.
Alex Back is the founder and CEO of Couch.com. Previously, he was the co-founder and COO of the popular furniture brand, Apt2B, which was acquired by a large US retail furniture chain in 2018. He worked to integrate Apt2B, one of the very first online furniture retailers on the Shopify platform, into the operations of the 100 year old larger business entity and was deeply immersed in the business operations of both online and brick and mortar retail for 4 years before leaving in 2023 to start Couch.com. Working in various parts of the furniture industry since 2004, he has 20 years experience in retail sales, e-commerce, marketing, operations, logistics and wholesale manufacturing and distribution. He has worked extensively with partners such as Costco, Bed Bath and Beyond and Amazon and his work has been highlighted in many publications such as Forbes, CNN and HGTV, among others. Alex is delighted to bring his experience and authority on couches and the furniture industry to this platform, along with many of his industry colleagues who are helping him keep the Couch.com audience informed and engaged on a daily basis.
Alex Back
Couch.com CEO & Founder