How To Remove Mold From Patio Furniture Fabric (DIY Steps w/ Videos)

Do you have moldy patio furniture fabric?

Do you want to clean it instead of replacing it?

Would you like to learn about the different methods that can help you accomplish this?

In this article, we’ll walk you through three types of cleaning methods to help you find the one that best suits your needs when dealing with moldy patio furniture.

There are several reasons why your furniture might become moldy. Here are the top three factors that contribute to patio furniture fabric developing mold:

Furniture that is often rained on may become moldy sooner than furniture that is covered when it rains.

Furniture that sits underneath a tree is more likely to develop mildew or mold from the tree itself.

If your patio furniture is buried under ice and snow in the winter, it may mold.

When you learn how to remove mold from patio furniture fabric, you won’t have to worry about this even if it does happen to you! Of course, it’s a good idea to remove any problems before they cause mold to prevent future issues like this, as well.

Read on to learn more!

1. Multi Surface Cleaner

Materials

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  • Multi surface patio furniture cleaner
  • Goggles
  • Rubber gloves
  • Tarp or plastic sheet
  • Bucket of water
  • Sponge

Steps

  • 1
    First, wet the cushion that needs to be cleaned with water from your bucket.
  • 2
    Next, spray the multi surface patio furniture cleaner all over the cushion, making sure to saturate the mildewed areas.
  • 3
    Let the cleaner sit on the cushion for about 10 minutes.
  • 4
    Make sure to put on your rubber gloves and goggles first, and then scrub the mildew away with your sponge. Do this gently enough that you won’t damage your fabric, but keep in mind you may need to put some elbow grease into it.
  • 5
    Repeat this process once more if necessary.
  • 6
    Rinse with clean water and let dry completely, preferably in the sunlight.
leaning patio furniture cushions

Why it works

This method works because this type of cleaner is designed specifically to remove mold from patio furniture fabric. The cleaner is chemical-based and does its job well.

How long it works

This method should last for a whole season as long as you keep up with regular, smaller cleanings throughout.

Pros

  • check
    It’s easy to find multi-purpose patio furniture cleaner just about anywhere.
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    This is a quick and easy method that doesn’t take too long to complete.

Cons

  • This cleaner is chemically-based, so it may not be ideal for anyone looking to avoid harsher chemicals in their cleaning products.
  • This method may not work with every type of fabric, so be sure to read on the label for your cleaner before you give it a try.

2. Borax

Materials

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  • Rubber gloves
  • Garden hose
  • Spray bottle
  • White distilled vinegar
  • Borax
  • Bucket of water
  • Sponge
  • Clean wash cloth

Steps

  • 1
    Put your rubber gloves on before you begin.
  • 2
    Stir ½ cup of borax into 2 cups of hot water until it is fully dissolved.
  • 3
    Dip the sponge into this solution and scrub it into the patio cushion fabric, thoroughly saturating the areas where the mildew is present.
  • 4
    Let the borax solution sit on the cushions for 2-3 hours.
  • 5
    Hose down the cushion with your garden hose or use your clean wash cloth to wipe it down.
  • 6
    Let air dry in the sun.
  • 7
    Spray with white distilled vinegar and let air dry in the sun once more.
cleaning patio furniture cushions

​Why it works

This method works because borax is a very strong and potent cleaning substance. It’s usually used for laundry, so it’s meant for use on fabrics, and it’s great at pulling stains and mildew out of most surfaces.

How long it works

This method should last for several months as long as you keep up with regular cleaning and maintenance in between.

Pros

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    Borax is very affordable, so this is a low-cost alternative that will come in well under the price of the previous method.
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    Borax is very strong and should be able to remove mold and mildew after just one round of cleaning in most cases.

Cons

  • This method is not intended for dry clean only cushion fabric.
  • Borax can be very harsh if it gets in contact with your skin and it can be dangerous to children or pets, so take extra precautions when using it.

3. Rubbing Alcohol

Materials

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  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Bucket of water
  • Spray bottle
  • Rubber gloves
  • Sponge
  • Garden hose

​Steps

  • 1
    First, put on your rubber gloves.
  • 2
    In your spray bottle, combine water from your bucket with rubbing alcohol in a 1:1 ratio (equal parts).
  • 3
    Spray the mildewed cushion fabric, making sure to thoroughly soak the areas where the mildew or mold is present.
  • 4
    Let stand for at least 20 minutes.
  • 5
    Use your sponge dipped in water to scrub the fabric until the mold is removed.
  • 6
    Let air dry in the sun.
  • 7
    Spray with white distilled vinegar and let air dry in the sun once more.
how to clean patio chairs

​Why it works

This method words because rubbing alcohol kills the mold and makes it easier to remove the spores from the fabric. It also helps because it prevents mold from growing back very easily, too.

How long it works

This method should last a whole season, although you will need to monitor your cushions for potential new mold growth just in case.

Pros

  • check
    The rubbing alcohol method is perhaps the most affordable and the easiest to complete without having to worry about safety concerns.
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    It is possible to repeat this process as many times as needed to make sure your cushions are completely mold and mildew-free.

Cons

  • Rubbing alcohol has the potential to pull the color out of fabric as well, so depending on the type of fabric you’re treating and the way it was dyed, you may want to try another, gentler alternative.
  • There is a chance that rubbing alcohol will make your fabric more brittle and susceptible to damage from UV rays, so be sure to look up the type of fabric you’re treating before you use it to see if this is a risk you’ll need to consider for your patio furniture.

Conclusion

Were you able to find a great method for cleaning your patio furniture that will work well for your needs? You may be wondering if it’s really all that necessary to do any of these, but keep in mind that it’s very important to remove mold and mildew from your patio cushions as soon as you notice either of these problems. The longer you let mold sit on fabric, the more it will spread and seep into the fabric and cushion below. You’ll end up with a much bigger problem than you had before, and mold can be dangerous, as well.

For the safety of yourself, your family, and your fabric cushions, it’s important to clean them regularly and treat them for mold before it starts. Clean any mold off as soon as you find it and your cushions and fabric will last for a long time to come!

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