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Garden Bench Buyers Guide 2018

Garden Bench Buyers guide

To help you choose the garden furniture you want to buy online, we have collected this guide on purchasing the right garden bench.

There are various things you need to consider before guying your bench, including:

  • what size of garden bench do I need?
  • where is the best spot to put my bench?
  • what material should my garden bench be made from?
  • do I want to maintain my garden bench?
  • would I prefer a weatherproof bench?
  • how many people will be sitting on the bench at one time?
  • do I need a bench cushion?
  • do I need a cover for my bench?
  • how much do I want to pay for my bench?
  • do I want to buy a bench or make my own?

Once you understand your situation and can answer these questions, then you can make a better decision on the type of garden bench you will be looking for.

Garden Bench Sizes

How to choose the right sizes garden bench?

So this relies on two factors from the questions above: how many people you want sitting on the bench at one time, and where you want your garden bench to go. This will determine the potential space you have for a bench.

You want to leave enough space to move around the bench while you aren't using it, so make sure your space is large enough to contain the size of the bench, plus a little extra room.

You will find a 2 seater bench is often around 4ft in length (or 1.2m) and a 3 seater is roughly 5ft (or 1.5m). 4 Seater benches can range from 6-7ft (or 1.8m+).

Where is the best spot to put my bench?

This is a combination on the view you want while enjoying your bench, and also how the bench will look when it's sitting in your garden. Many people often have their bench at the end of their garden, facing back towards the house, as this gives an enjoyable view of the entire garden, and stops the bench looking out of place.

Garden Bench Materials

What material should my garden bench be made from?

You have a choice of materials, and they all have unique qualities which you may find more beneficial to your particular situation.

There are rattan benches, Winawood™ benches, metal benches, hardwood benches, and softwood benches.

They can be categorised into benches that are weatherproof and require no maintenance, and those which require regular maintaining.

Weatherproof Benches:

These are the materials Winawood and rattan.

  • Winawood - these benches require no maintenance, and come with a 3 year guarantee. They also give the appearance of a traditional wooden bench.
  • Rattan benches - these benches are also weatherproof, and come in a range of colours (grey, light brown, and black). They have aluminium frames, making them easy to move around your garden.

Benches requiring maintenance:

People are becoming less inclined to purchase these types of benches, as they require a lot more time and effort to keep in a usabe condition.

  • Hardwood benches - materials such as Keruing wood, must be teak oiled regularly to maintain the colour and prevent cracking.
  • Softwood benches - not seen very often as they are far less weather resistant.
  • Metal benches - these can range from cast aluminium, iron and steel, the later 2 often discolouring due to weather damage. Cast aluminium can help give you the metal effect without the damage, and is often the best choice.

The longevity of these benches is directly a result of the maintenance you put in, so if you are interested in making an investment in a bench that will last, we recommended purchasing a weatherproof garden bench.

Choosing a cover for your bench

For a bench that requires maintenance, covers are essential to prevent them from the elements. For weatherproof benches, they can help keep the furniture clean, but are not essential for ensuring the longevity of the bench.

You will need to take the bench measurements, and then cross reference them with the appropriate bench cover, making sure that there is a little excess to avoid and tight squeezes. It is also a good idea to choose a cover with a draw string tie at the bottom, to stop the cover being blown around.

-> If you prefer furniture that doesn't require a cover, you can see our rattan furniture sets available to buy online here.

-> Reclining rattan furniture is also a great option for your garden.

Garden bench cushions

Choosing a garden bench cushion

Cushions for your garden seats can help make their use even more comfortable. There is often plenty of choice available, from high backed garden chair cushions, to smaller cushion pads, with the option of weatherproof cushions as well. Some armchair cushions will have extra parts to attach to the arms, while larger cushions can be found in two different sections (seat and back cushions).

-> You can find Winawood bench cushions exclusively at Gardencentreshopping.

How much do I want to pay for my bench?

You can often offset the cost of the bench against how much you value your time when having to maintain it. So for example, while the Winawood bench range costs a little more than a traditional hardwood bench, it requires no maintenance what so ever, and so can end up saving you money in the long run.

-> Prices for Winawood benches start from around £259

Other garden bench questions:

Wooden garden bench questions:

What is a wooden bench made from, and how much does it cost to make?

A wooden bench can be made by hand for as little as it takes to purchase the wood and nails to assemble it. It also depends on the size of the bench you need, and the thickness of the wood used.

Can you spray paint or grind a wooden bench?

It is more advisable to sand a bench down as opposed to using a grinder. After this process, you can spray paint your bench without fear of lumps or dust particles.

How much weight can a wooden bench hold?

This depends on the thickness of the wood, and the average weight of the people sitting on it. It is best to contact the manufacturer of the bench for this information,.

What is a high backed wooden bench called?

It is called a high backed bench, and carries no other particular name.

Where can I buy a wooden bench?

You can purchase a wooden bench online, or from your loca garden centre.

Why is the wooden bench turned to face the house?

This is often because it offers the best view of the entire garden.

Metal garden bench questions:

How to paint a metal garden bench?

To paint a metal garden bench, remove as much of the old paint as possible by sanding or grinding it down, then remove any dust, and apply your coat of paint.

How to polish a metal bench with a grinder?

You would be best to purchase a specific bench grinding kit.

Why is a meta bench colder than a wooden one?

This is because metal conducts heat more efficiently than wood, and so transfers the heat from your hand away from your body at a noticeably faster rate, making it feel colder.


Updated 16th February 2018 by Matt.

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