How to Clean Wicker Furniture

How to Clean Wicker Furniture

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Cleaning wicker furniture can be a hard and delicate process but we are here to help you find out how to clean wicker furniture properly.

To clean unpainted wicker furniture dip a soft cloth or sponge in warm, mildly soapy water. Then simply wipe the wicker and gently rinse and dry with a clean cloth.

The above is a fairly simple process but there are a number of other steps you should follow when cleaning wicker furniture.

However, before you grab the soap and sponge, you need to identify the type of wicker and the best method on how to clean your particular wicker furniture.

Wicker is defined as different types of plants, grasses, and vines that are used to weave into the furniture. This weaved furniture is further categorised into three types, natural, synthetic, or a combination of both.

If you’re not sure what you have take a look at our Cane, Rattan, Wicker Conservatory Furniture – Whats the Difference? article to find out more.

How to Clean Wicker Furniture

Cleaning your wicker furniture on a regular basis will ensure it lasts a long time. A quick hoover and wipe down will suffice on most occasions but we’d always recommend you give your furniture at least a couple of thorough cleans each year.

Cleaning all types of wicker is very similar with a few differences that we’ll mention below.

1) Vacuum the Surface

Your first port of call when cleaning wicker furniture is to give it a good going over with a vacuum cleaner.

Using a vacuum will remove any bits and bobs that have managed to squeeze into the cracks and crevices over time. The reason you want to remove and foreign bodies are that they can run on the wicker causing the material to fray and break.

Use a normal vacuum cleaner with a brush on the end to hoover up any loose pieces of dirt and grime. Make sure you do this carefully to ensure you don’t damage any varnished or painted surfaces.

If there are any tight gaps or crevices the hoover can’t get to, use a small brush such as a toothbrush to help sweep the area.

Although this can seem quite time-consuming it will prevent any long-term damage from occurring so make sure you don’t rush.

2) Trim Frayed Wicker

Although removing particles will help to prevent fraying, you may find that when you come to clean your furniture some pieces have already come loose or broken.

If this is the case you will need to take some action. If you see any stray pieces that are sticking out, use a pair of scissors to gently cut them out. This will make it flatter and looks better. Never try to pull any stray pieces of wicker because you could do more harm than good.

3) Cleaning with Soap and Water

Once you’ve completed removing any bits and pieces then you can start with the cleaning.

Wicker is not meant to be drenched in water and it is also not meant to stay wet so for this stage you need to make sure you don’t go overboard.

Let’s start with painted wicker furniture. Unless you want your furniture to look dreadful don’t go at it like a bull in a china shop.

If you rub a painted piece of furniture with a wet cloth there’s generally one thing that will happen, the paint will come off. Instead, use a damp cloth or microfibre towel to gently wipe the furniture.

For synthetic and unpainted wicker you can use a solution made of warm water and mild soap. Use a damp cloth to wipe down all surfaces of the furniture. If your furniture has some mould on it you can add a small amount of vinegar to the solution to help.

Remember do not soak your furniture and do not rub too hard.

4) Drying

Although drying is the last on the list it is one of the most important.

The less water you can use to clean your furniture the better and make sure you dry it as soon as you’ve finished.

Never leave your furniture to dry overnight as the longer you leave your furniture wet, the more chance there is that it will become damaged through mould or through deformity.

We’d always suggest drying your furniture off with a dry cloth. You can also use a hairdryer or fan on a cold setting and also leave some furniture in the sun but whichever method you choose you are really better off drying it as soon as possible.

Tips for Maintenance of Wicker Furniture

Below is a list of some other important tips to take notice of.

  1. Always keep your wicker furniture dry. A combination of heat and cold can damage the wicker easily.
  2. Do not expose to direct sunlight unless after cleaning with water. Too much sunlight will damage the fiber of the wicker.
  3. Always check if the weave shows any gap and if does, simply push it back to its original place.
  4. If you have a stubborn mark do not use any abrasive substance as this will damage the wicker. Instead, try an old toothbrush. The soft bristles should not damage the fabric.
  5. Never place any heavy object on top of the wicker if it is wet because this will damage the surface and you cannot repair it.
  6. If you do see mildew or mould on the surface use some water and vinegar with a microfiber cloth and wipe it off. The combination should be 1 part of vinegar for 4 parts of water.


Wicker furniture is beautiful and stands out in a conservatory but you must take good care of it and clean it regularly.

Try to make sure you give it a hoover and wipe it down once a week and at the very least once a month. We’d also recommend giving it a full clean twice a year if possible to ensure it lasts a long time.

The above steps on how to clean wicker furniture will hopefully help yours last longer!

If you haven’t bought your furniture or are looking to renew some old furniture, take a look at some of the best wicker furniture sets.