The transition between the seasons is sometimes rough and can leave its mark on your garden swing, especially when it is made of wood. At the end of the season, you must then clean your swing and treat the wood so that it retains its original texture. The maintenance of a wooden swing is done in 3 steps: cleaning, sanding and varnishing, which we have detailed here.
Step 1 – Start with a good cleaning of the wood
When dragonflies land in your garden in the spring, it’s time to take out your wooden swing to enjoy the show. But first it must be cleaned, if you have not done so before returning it to the shelter, to preserve it. If you have chosen a good garden swing, the job will be done quickly.
Use hot water soaped with black soap or liquid Marseille soap, and a brush hard enough to rid the wood of all its stains, but not too much either, so as not to damage its texture. Then, rinse with clean water.
For rinsing, it is not recommended to use a metal brush or a garden hose with strong pressure because this can also damage the wood. If you have fabrics, such as cushions, or you’ve opted for a hammock seat rather than swings, don’t forget to put them in the washing machine before putting them away.
2nd step – Sand the wood to make it uniform
Sanding reinforces cleaning, because it allows a more in-depth maintenance of wood which is one of the best materials both aesthetically and for strength. It consists in making the wood uniform by adjusting the fibers that would have jumped during cleaning with the brush. Experts recommend using fine or medium grit sandpaper for scrubbing, and a damp sponge or cloth for dusting afterwards.
Sanding allows the wood to recover its original colors, to renew its “skin”. After sanding, if the original appearance of the wood is not fully restored and stained with gray, you can coat it with a product to sober up for a few minutes, brush, rinse and dry to remove the gray stains.
3rd step – Apply varnish to protect the wood
After cleaning and sanding, the wooden swing should be coated with varnish that protects against the sun’s UV rays and ambient humidity, at each beginning of the spring, summer and fall seasons. Varnish is usually an oil or wood stain for exterior wood, which nourishes and shines the wood.
For varnishing, you must understand that exotic woods (foreign to the climate of your region) sometimes require a specific oil, but not a particular maintenance method.
Store your swing in a dry place and sheltered for the winter
When autumn gives way to winter, you must store your wooden swing in a dry room, sheltered from snow, to protect it. The room must be large enough and prepared in advance to accommodate the swing. A garden shed, a cellar or a garage would be suitable.
In the room, bring in the wooden structure of the swing, foldable or not. Then machine or hand clean the cushions and seat of the swing in lukewarm soapy water before storing them in airtight plastic covers.