Wicker furniture made of artificial rattan is becoming more and more popular. Rattan outdoor furniture mimics nature, this is where its beauty and popularity lie. It can be found on the terraces of cafes and restaurants, bars, suburban areas, living rooms, gazebos, etc. This furniture has a lot of fans but it has just as many skeptics.
Rattan is native to the tropics. Elegant yet playful. Exotic and comfortable. Rattan garden furniture can be large and wide, robust sofas that are good for talking or just lying around on a warm summer day in pleasant shade. An armchair can also be made of rattan, which can be supplemented with comfortable pillows. The advantage of rattan is its versatility in addition to its style and elegance. It is also breathable, it is the natural tropical material from which the furniture is woven.
Material properties of rattan outdoor furniture
Natural rattan outdoor furniture
Natural rattan furniture is sensitive to various environmental influences thus requires careful care. It’s worth covering it, storing it in a weatherproof place, or for example, covering it with a waterproof foil in the rain.
Real rattan garden furniture should on occasion be wiped with lukewarm soapy water and let dry before applying a thin film of hydration oil. Natural rattan, even in premium class, spent a year outdoors can severely reduce its lifespan.
It’s worth mentioning that natural rattan offers primarily a selection of golden straw, while polyrattan comes in various shades of colors.
The disadvantage of natural rattan garden furniture is its high price as well as its sensitivity, as its maintenance requires attention and it does not tolerate temperature fluctuations. Wicker furniture is handmade. This process is very careful, requires patience and skill, so understandably such items have a higher price. The raw materials are expensive, so the wicker products derived from them cannot be cheap.
Synthetic rattan outdoor furniture
Polyrattan, as opposed to its “natural counterpart,” makes the cost of the material a little more affordable, while the furniture is weather-resistant. Outdoor furniture made of artificial rattan is resistant to seasonal weather changes without compromising performance. Cleaning means only hosing it down or wiping the furniture down every now and then, or removing stains with a wet cloth when needed.
Garden furniture often suggests that in case of bad weather one should immediately find shelter for it. Artificial rattan furniture does not need this. Leaving the synthetic rattan out in the scorching sun or heavy rain won’t change its appearance and properties. It perfectly tolerates extreme temperatures, high humidity, and UV rays. It does not swell nor does it crack in those circumstances. The frame is protected by corrosion and scratch-resistant coating.
The coloring of the material can mimic the natural hue or it can be painted with ultra-bright colors.
Aesthetically, the polyrattan is by no means inferior to its natural counterpart. Moreover, techno-rattan is much stronger and withstands a person’s weight of 250 lbs. Polyrattan is guaranteed to withstand mold and extreme weather conditions.
Difference between synthetic rattan fibers
The fibers of which the outdoor rattan furniture is primarily made are PND (low-pressure polyethylene) granules, polyurethane, and polyvinyl chloride (hereinafter PVC). Each material gives the final product its characteristics, which must be taken into account when buying outdoor furniture.
- recyclable, environmentally friendly material
- made of thermoplastic
- stiffer than polyurethane and PVC
- resistant to temperature fluctuations, UV rays, humidity
- Flexible material, resistant to cracks
- Resistant to mold and ultraviolet radiation
- Polyurethane loses its properties during processing, thus it’s unsuitable as a recyclable material
- PVC does not tolerate low temperatures
- Does not tolerate high heat and constant sun exposure
- Requires constant care and protection against the elements