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Thread: Cover for wood patio table?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    San Francisco, CA

    Cover for wood patio table?

    I'm working on a big patio table -- twelve feet by four feet. The people I'm building it for would like a shiny surface like what's on their indoors furniture -- y'know, varnish. I don't think they want to be doing annual strip-and-refinish, and I don't want to do it for them. So I've been thinking about a cover. It would be fabric, so it can easily be removed and stowed when they want to use the table. The cover would keep sunlight off the finish, which is good. I think the cover should also keep water off the wood.

    However, I'm not sure about the details. One of my big concerns is the issue of waterproof versus water-resistant cover. In this context, waterproof means that water does not penetrate the cover. Think sheet vinyl. Water resistant means that some water can go through the cover. Breathable seems to be another word to describe the same class of fabrics. It seems to me that keeping water off the finish would be better -- that is, a waterproof fabric. However, manufacturers of patio furniture covers recommend breathable fabric. The only way I can see this being good is if you're covering a piece which is made of metal and glass. But putting a breathable cover on wood furniture ensures it gets wet, which defeats the purpose. In fact, the cover acts to hold the water on the wood.

    Advice, opinions, experience?

  2. #2
    Not sure about the cover material but I think you need to seal the top (all six sides) in marine grade epoxy, preferably one with UV resistance. I wouldn't put much trust in the cover being put in place on a regular basis.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Kansas City
    I have to replace the waterproof cover on my grill every couple of years as it deteriorates in the sun. I would think a table cover would need the same. Plus thats a pretty big (expensive) size. My grill cover accumulates moisture under it from condensation as well.

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