Accessibility Statement Skip Navigation
Room & Board blog homepage
A blog on modern living

We’re big fans of Sunbrella® outdoor fabric, which you’ll find offered on all of our outdoor furniture, pillows and umbrellas. This outdoor fabric is stain-, water- and mildew-resistant, making it perfect for the patio and really easy to clean. Read on to see how to clean Sunbrella fabric!

For light cleaning

Brush off any loose dirt and then spray the fabric with your garden hose. If you aren’t able to do this in your outdoor space (like on a balcony), vacuum the fabric with an upholstery attachment to remove dirt and dust. Easy.

For spot cleaning

Stains? Not a problem. We like using Folex® spot cleaner, or a mix of 1/4 cup mild soap with a gallon of water. A soft-bristle brush or a sponge will help you lift the stain from the fabric. Once the spot is removed, give it a good rinse because soap residue will attract dirt.

For serious cleaning

If you have a tough stain, some mildew or the need to disinfect, it’s okay to use a bleach solution on Sunbrella. Here’s the solution you should use: 1 gallon of water, 1/4 cup of mild soap, 1 cup bleach.

Grab a bucket of the bleach-soap mix and a soft-bristle brush or sponge. Wet the entire surface (to prevent water rings), let the fabric sit for 15 minutes and then scrub. Give the fabric a thorough rinse with the garden hose to remove soap residue, but be careful about getting the cleaning solution with bleach on your plants or grass. A driveway or patio is the best place to clean and rinse.

Sunbrella can go in the washing machine, too. (Just don’t dry it.)

If you don’t want to mess around with a hose or bucket of soapy water, many of our outdoor cushions and pillows have zippered, removable covers that can go in your washing machine. Use the delicate cycle with a normal amount of mild laundry detergent and a cup of bleach. Don’t use the dryer—just let the covers air dry.

One last pro tip: using outdoor furniture covers will reduce how often you need to clean your furniture. Find more furniture cleaning tips in our care information, and as always, feel free to ask us questions or share your own tips in the comments!

Photos by Room & Board

pinterest houzz facebook twitter


  1. Robyn says:

    If you wash sunbrella in a washing machine do you need to ( replace) spray stain repellent on it afterwards?

    • Lyndsay LeClair says:

      Hi Robyn, we don’t recommend re-applying any finishes to our fabrics because we can’t test them all to make sure they’re effective or don’t cause damage.

  2. sheila law says:

    I have sunbrella cushion covers without zippers. Can i buy replacement covers
    from Sunbrella?

  3. Heidi says:

    my cushions do not have zippers. Can i still use the washing machine?

    • Lyndsay LeClair says:

      With caution – that may work with a thin chair cushion, but you run the risk of twisting or damaging the foam in the washing machine. I would recommend cleaning by hand and using a bleach solution as recommended if it’s badly stained or has mildew.

  4. Melanie says:

    My cushions have zippers but I am finding it impossible to get the covers off — especially with the larger seat cushions. I would love to wadh the covers in the washing machine. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Gjerda RhodeHumphries says:

      Hey Melanie, sorry the cushion covers are tough to get off, oftentimes they are designed to be really tight to get a clean look or counteract stretching over time. Once you do get them off, you can machine wash them. Here is what we recommend:

      You may also machine wash or hand wash any removable fabric casings. To wash, first close all zippers. Machine wash in cold water on the delicate cycle with normal amounts of mild laundry detergent. For severe mold or mildew, add 1 cup of bleach. Allow fabric to air dry. Do not tumble dry.

  5. Gail says:

    I will machine wash my umbrella cover. You recommended a cup of bleach be used with a mild detergent. Will the bleach discolor the fabric?
    Thank you for your help.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.