How to Protect Your Outdoor Furniture and Tools When Going on Vacation


There are lots of little chores to get done before you head off on a trip away from home. If you’ve got a patio set and a tool shed or garage full of valuable items, making sure that they’re adequately protected during your travels is one such vital task.

So how can you go about doing this, and what else is there to think about aside from the threat of theft and third-party interference?

Remove the temptation

First off, remember that if you just leave expensive items lying around in the yard where anyone could peek in and see them, you’ll be much more likely to get targeted by thieves.

The solution is to store anything that’s valuable and portable out of sight, meaning that opportunistic criminals won’t have anything to tempt them into action.

If you’re struggling for space, clearing out your garage and keeping it organized will ensure that your pre-vacation prep doesn’t become a monumental challenge.

Lock storage spaces with modern systems

Sheds and garages are seen as soft targets by many crooks since they tend to lack the same kind of security measures as the rest of the property.

Rather than giving interlopers an easy ride, it’s wise to invest in the likes of a magnetic lock. That way you’ll have peace of mind about the security of your possessions throughout your vacation.

Keep outdoor furniture anchored

Outdoor furniture is less attractive to thieves than costly equipment, but that doesn’t mean it’s free from threats.

For example, high winds might snatch your tables and chairs away, and create a hazard for others in the area.

Securing furniture with deck anchors, storing cushions inside, and covering them with tarpaulin to keep the elements at bay will prevent this.

Reposition furniture to a shady spot

Harsh sunlight will bleach and degrade outdoor furniture over time, leaving it looking long in the tooth and also limiting its lifespan.

Placing it under a shady tree, or in any other position that won’t leave it directly exposed to the sun’s rays will preserve it for longer.

Put furniture away during the colder months

While modern outdoor furniture sets can be fairly resilient, they are also not immune to seasonal changes and are less susceptible to degradation if they are stored throughout the parts of the year when they’re not in use.

When autumn arrives, rather than leaving the furniture in a place where the damp and the cold can wreak havoc, move it to a shed or garage instead. Then your winter breaks can be scheduled without this even being on the agenda.

Treat furniture according to the manufacturer’s instructions

Every outdoor furniture manufacturer will provide details of how to look after and care for the materials from which its products are made.

Sanding back and re-treating wooden surfaces, for example, will not only help them stay protected even if they have seen many summers of frequent use but will also make them look a whole lot better as well.

Add surveillance to your outdoor areas

Weatherproof, wireless security cameras should be installed to cover the parts of your property that are visible or accessible from the outside, whether or not you have things like fencing in place.

The latest tech in this space is capable of not only recording images and video but also beaming this to you anywhere in the world. So if you get an alert about an intruder, you don’t have to hope for the best, but can actively check to see if there’s a genuine threat.

It’s also a good idea to combine security cameras with motion-sensitive lights. These can be a deterrent on their own since when tripped they highlight large areas and dissuade trespassers from proceeding any further. There are even infra-red options that allow you to covertly record the view in the dark, which are great for spotting wildlife as well as for catching crooks in the act.

Hire a house sitter

If all else fails and you simply don’t want to risk anything untoward happening on your property while you’re away, getting in touch with a house sitter and paying them to stay at your home until you return is the safest option.

In an age of widespread remote working, it’s easier than ever to find people who are willing to house sit for affordable rates, while also continuing with their own career while on-site.

Wrapping up

You shouldn’t leave anything to chance when taking a vacation, and that includes doing all you can to protect your property when you’re in a different part of the country or elsewhere in the world.

While the first efforts you make to protect outdoor furniture and tools might seem like hard work, once you’ve got into the habit, it’ll be simple.

William Eames
William Eames, with a background in industrial design brings over 18 years of experience in design and architecture. He joined our editorial team in 2019, offering insights into design trends and architectural innovations. Before this, William ran his design studio and lectured at various universities. His hobbies include photography and sustainable gardening, reflecting his commitment to aesthetics and the environment.

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