How to Waterproof Garden Bench Cushions

Lead Image
  • 1-2 hours
  • Beginner
  • 20-30
What You'll Need
Waterproof silicone spray
Iron-on vinyl
Plastic cushion cover

Garden bench cushions are great in the summer and make sitting outside much more comfortable. However, showers and rain will inevitably happen and you won’t always have time to get your bench cushions inside when they arrive. Rather than end up with ruined, waterlogged bench cushions, you can actually waterproof them. All you need to be sure of is that you waterproof all of the fabric or your bench cushions will still end up wet.

Step 1 - Spray

If you have the harder type of bench cushion rather than the soft kind often found on a couch, using a waterproof silicone spray can be the ideal way to protect them. There are different types of spray available for different types of material. If your cushions are made of cotton, buy the appropriate spray for them.

When you apply the spray, do it outside or in a very well-ventilated area as the fumes can be very strong. The trick is to make sure that you spray all the fabric. Spray back and forth, letting the strokes overlap, and make sure you spray into the edges and seams of the cushion. Spraying will be most effective if you spray one side thoroughly then let it dry before spraying the other side. Let the cushion dry fully before leaving it on your bench. Remember, also, that it can be difficult to determine whether you’ve sprayed the entire cushion. It’s safer to spray thoroughly and give the cushion more time to dry than to risk not spraying enough.

Step 2 - Iron-On Vinyl

An alternative to using a waterproof spray, which needs to be periodically renewed, is to use iron-on vinyl on your bench cushions to make them waterproof. You can buy the vinyl in many different stores and from there, you simply need to follow the instructions.

It’s best if you take the cushion out of its cover beforehand because it will be easier to use the iron and have the vinyl adhere properly. You have to be very careful to be sure the vinyl bonds properly to the fabric and that it forms a proper envelope for the cushion. Once you’ve finished, inspect carefully before putting the cushion back in the cover. You will need to be careful with the cushions outside because water can still enter through the zip.

Step 3 - Plastic Cushion Cover

One of the best ways to keep your bench cushions dry is to cover them in plastic, much as some people do to protect their indoor furniture. The plastic is clear so the material is still visible and the cushions are completely usable. The plastic will keep away all moisture and rain. The problem here is that these are not to everyone’s taste.

Step 4 - Vinyl Cushion

If you don’t want to take the trouble to waterproof your cushions, you can always buy vinyl cushions that are filmed with foam which are designed to be waterproof. These are made for outdoor use, making them great for utilization as a bench cushion.