Finding the right outdoor furniture can be a tricky task at best, especially when it comes to deciding on the right materials for your home and the region in which you live.
While many opt for poly lumber, there are some who swear by wrought iron for its durability and weight.
But which material is better, poly lumber or wrought iron?
Which Material Is Better?
Generally speaking, poly lumber is the better material for outdoor furniture – based on many factors ranging from durability, its eco-friendly production process, its weather resistance, and the fact that it doesn’t require any upkeep.
Why Not Wrought Iron?
Wrought iron is a sturdy material that is great for making long-lasting products from. However, it has many disadvantages that can make it cumbersome and hard work for homeowners.
One problem is its propensity to rust – caused when oxygen and moisture react with the iron. This means that wrought iron needs regular treatment and coats of paint to keep it looking good.
It is also heavy and often uncomfortable, meaning that those looking for comfort should look elsewhere.
What Is Poly Lumber?
Poly lumber is a wood-like material made from recycled plastic.
As such, poly lumber is considered an environmentally friendly alternative to most conventional materials and has many advantages when it comes to commercial use.
Shaped into sheets or solid stocks that can then be cut into planks that can be used for creating numerous consumer products such as patio furniture, often texture to resemble wood to the touch and eye – perfect for those who want wood, but without the work. A lot less maintenance.
No, you won’t trick a carpenter or wood lover that it’s wood. Not even PolyTeak which resembles wood the closes is still not wood to the keen observer.
There are many good quality brands of HDPE patio furniture to choose from. One of the more prominent is Polywood but there are many other manufactures with similar products made from poly lumber.
What Are The Benefits Of Lumber?
When it comes to using poly lumber, there are several benefits that make it a logical choice for outdoor furniture.
Does Not Rust
Firstly, poly lumber is incapable of rusting, something that cannot be said for most kinds of metal furniture.
The fact that it is made from plastic means that it is free from the damage that moisture and the elements can cause, making it more resistant across a number of different environment types.
Its durability is not limited to the avoidance of rust, however, and the material itself is also remarkably strong, making it resistant to cracking and breakages that can happen when most materials are left out in the elements.
It does not attract common pests and insects – such as termites – and will not splinter, crack, or rot like wooden furniture does after time.
This means that you are guaranteed longevity from your furniture and that even without treatment, it will last longer than most forms of wood.
It is also incredibly resilient against the weather, including frost, snow, high winds, heavy rainfall, and hot weather, making it a versatile choice – regardless of where you live or the weather you experience.
Well, everything can break in some form or another. What makes a good product is one that can withstand the everyday accidents and risks that can befall them.
As far as outdoor furniture goes, it is constantly under attack from the elements in one form or another, sun, wind, rain or hail, and of course the humans who sit in them.
This means that chips, dents, and cracks can be prevalent.
However, poly lumber is coloured all the way through, meaning that even if you do manage to dent or chip its durable, hard surface, then you will not see a difference in colour.
This means less work in repairs and touch-ups, and a continued aesthetic symmetry that will keep your furniture looking nice for longer.
It also doesn’t require any treatment associated with most materials like wood and metal, making it labour-saving and low maintenance in all aspects.
As we mentioned above, poly lumber is also environmentally friendly, due to the fact that it is made from recycled plastics.
This means that trees do not need to be cut down to create this furniture, and the potentially environmentally damaging processes for metalwork do not need to take place.
Does It Have Any Disadvantages?
Of course, it does have some disadvantages that consumers should be aware of before purchasing.
Can Be Heavy
Poly lumber furniture can be heavy. Making it harder to move around on your deck or patio. Along with increasing the potential for scratching the decking.
This can be especially true for people with limiting physical conditions. Life takes a toil on as all.
Of course, the benefit of this is that they will not blow away in the wind and that they are difficult to steal, but if you cannot physically move them, then they might not be suitable for your needs.
But when compared to Wrought Iron, there is not much difference in weight. They both are heavy patio furniture.
Can Be Expensive
Poly lumber outdoor furniture can also be quite expensive, at least more so than other materials such as wood and aluminum.
However, while more expensive than some materials, what you are getting is furniture that is guaranteed to last longer than most, potentially creating savings years down the road – as they will need replacing far less than pieces made from other materials.
When compared to Wrought Iron, though, generally, Poly lumber costs less.
Poly Lumber Is Rigid
While materials like wood are prone to benign and warping over time – becoming more comfortable and worn in – poly lumber remains rigid and hard, meaning that depending on the style of furniture you buy, and your specific needs as far as comfort goes, they could prove uncomfortable for you.
The same can be said about Wrought Iron chairs. A cushion is a must for comfort.
And there we have it, everything you need to know about polywood and wrought iron, and which material is best for outdoor furniture.
It’s true that both materials have their pros and cons, and while poly lumber seems to be the clear winner in this contest, wrought iron is still a popular material appreciated by many in their yards and homes.
But if you are looking for some outdoor furniture that is durable, attractive, environmentally friendly and good for your wallet, then why not give poly lumber a try? Something tells me you won’t be disappointed!