Furniture Care

Casegoods Care & Cleaning Tips

Each piece of Bernhardt furniture is created to provide exceptional performance with minimal care. Attention to a few basic points will help you protect your investment.

  • Fine wood furniture should not be exposed to extreme heat or humid conditions, such as placing it near a heat outlet or an open window. Try to avoid direct sunlight which may cause certain finishes to fade.
  • Do not place plastic, rubber or hot objects directly on a wood finish. Chemicals in plastic and some rubber may soften or discolor the finish if left in contact with the furniture for a period of time. To avoid these markings, place a strip of felt, leather or cork under accessories.
  • Remove household dust with a soft, clean cloth, dusting with the grain. The cloth may be dampened with a furniture dusting-aid product, or a furniture care polish may be used. Follow the manufacturer’s directions on the product. Avoid products that leave an oily film on the furniture since they may cause a clouding of the finish and have a tendency to collect dust.
  • Every six months or so, there may be a need or desire for a more thorough cleaning of wood furniture. The furniture may be washed with a mild soap intended for that purpose or a furniture cleaning product available in most grocery stores. Following the directions on the product, use a soft cloth and wipe with the grain.
  • Occasional polishing with a high quality, non-silicone furniture polish will enhance the beauty of the fine Bernhardt finish. Avoid using oily polishes or waxes.
  • Spilled liquids should be wiped from the surface immediately with a soft, slightly damp cloth, in the direction of the wood grain.
  • Over time, scratches from normal use may be noticed on furniture. These can be touched up with a scratch remover or special touch-up pens/sticks available at your furniture dealer.
  • For stone, metal and other non-wood surfaces, wipe off anything that spills immediately by blotting, avoid setting beverages on these surfaces, do not use abrasive cleaners and use felt pads under object that may scratch.
     

Upholstery Care & Cleaning Tips

Bernhardt upholstered furniture is crafted for many years of comfort and performance. To help keep your upholstery looking new, certain precautions and cleaning instructions should be followed.

  • Proper placement of your upholstery in a room can contribute to its life. Try to avoid placing your fabric or leather furniture in direct sunlight and maintain a safe distance from a heat source.
  • Remember to vacuum your furniture often. This will help prevent dust and other debris from becoming embedded in the fabric. Use the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner for leather upholstery.
  • As you settle into your new fabric or leather upholstery, “comfort wrinkles” will begin to appear. This is a natural part of the upholstery maturing process. Cushions and pillows should be reversed on a regular basis, where applicable. This keeps the filling evenly distributed to minimize wrinkles and maximize comfort.
  • All fabrics have a cleaning code. You can learn this code and the published cleaning instructions for the piece or pieces you have purchased by going to www.bernhardt.com/design-resources/fabrics-leathers.
  • Any product or technique should always be tested on an inconspicuous area before attempting overall cleaning. Bernhardt cannot endorse any particular product or cleaning method for fabric. We recommend using a professional cleaning service whenever possible.
  • Leather Upholstery: Frequent dusting or vacuuming with an upholstery attachment is recommended for preventative maintenance. Do not use furniture polish, saddle soap, oils, varnishes, ammonia water, soaps or dusting agents. To help remove soil or stains, take a lightly dampened cloth and using a mild solution of non-detergent soap and water gently wipe the area of the leather that includes the stain. Avoid dabbing the stained area only. Do not rub. Let dry naturally and repeat if necessary. Avoid using ink pens, nail polish, nail polish remover or other harmful products near your leather furniture to avoid spills and avoid placing newspapers or magazines on the surface, as the inks may transfer onto the leather. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight should be avoided at all times, as it will cause fading.
     

Outdoor Care & Cleaning Tips

Upholstered Seating, Cushions, and Pillows

General Care

  • To maintain structure and evenly distribute wear, frequently reshape and rotate back cushions and pillows.
  • Occasionally vacuum your furniture fabrics and cushions using upholstery and crevice attachments to remove all dirt and debris before it becomes embedded in the fabric.
  • For general fabric cleaning, use the following steps.
    • For light cleaning:
      • Lightly brush off or blot any loose dirt and light stains.
      • Blot or mist spray with a lukewarm water/mild detergent solution. Avoid oversaturating.
      • Rinse with water until clean and allow to dry thoroughly.
    • For stubborn stains, mold and mildew:
      • Substitute the water/detergent solution with a bleach solution of 30 parts lukewarm water to 1-part liquid bleach.
    • Refer to our fabric listing on Bernhardt.com for specific cleaning instructions by fabric brand and stain type.
    • We do not recommend removing fabric covers from the cushion core.
  • While our fabrics are mildew resistant, spores that create mold and mildew thrive in environments where there is dirt and moisture. To deter build up, keep cushions clean and free of debris. Always remove wet cushions from furniture frames and allow to dry.
  • If upholstery or cushions require extensive cleaning, please contact a professional.
  • We strongly recommend storing your furniture under cover or covering it when not in use with our custom furniture covers to protect it from dirt, debris, heavy rain and inclement weather.
  • Always ensure your furniture and fabrics are clean and dry before covering and storing.

Caring for Cushions and Upholstery in the Rain

Choose the proper instructions based on the cushions specified for your furniture and avoid water standing on the surface of your cushions.

  • Exteriors Plush Cushions - If moisture does penetrate the fabric, open the zipper of the cover and dry the layer between the fabric and the sealed cushion using a towel. Excess water will continue to drain through the mesh panel on the underside.
  • Reticulated Foam Cushions - The open cell construction of this cushion allows water to drain through when wet. For saturated cushions, open the zipper of the cover and stand on end with zipper facing downward to allow excess water to drain through.
  • Back Cushions and Throw Pillows - Open the zipper of the cover and stand on end with zipper facing downward to allow excess water to drain through.

Teak

  • Our teak furniture has a hand applied polyurethane finish to achieve a weathered look and feel. A six-step process is used applying multiple layers of PU stains, hand sanding and a final artisan dry brush finish, giving this furniture its desirable aged appearance.
  • Like natural teak, our finished teak will slowly change color over time. After one to two years of exposure, the finish will give way to the natural silvery patina of aged teak.
  • Although our teak furniture is finished, it does require cleaning and maintenance.
  • To clean the finished teak, use a mild soap and water solution applied with a soft cloth or brush. Rinse thoroughly.
  • To prevent water, moisture and food stains from penetrating into the teak, Golden Care Teak Shield can be applied to the surface. Prior to application, be sure to let new furniture sit outdoors for two weeks to allow the natural oils in the teak to be drawn to the surface.
  • Imperfections, such as hair-line cracks, are natural to the teak aging process.
  • When not in use or during inclement weather, store indoors or under cover using our protective furniture covers.

Endura Wicker

  • Our Endura all-weather wicker is made of superior strength, high-density polyethylene. Each fiber is created using a proprietary color blend that gives it rich visual depth.
  • This high-performance material is intricately hand woven in a variety of artistic patterns, over an aluminum frame. Some of the woven patterns on sofas and chairs can take an artist several days to complete.
  • This material is UV and mildew resistant and has been tested to maintain its color and to withstand cracking for up to five years.
  • To preserve the look of your outdoor woven furniture, regularly clean it with a mild soap and water solution using a soft brush, cloth or water hose. Do not tug on the fibers while cleaning. Rinse thoroughly.
  • If furniture is in a salty environment, rinse weekly to prevent accumulation of damaging salt deposits.
  • When not in use or during inclement weather, store indoors or under cover using our protective furniture covers.

Rope & Knitted Material

  • Our rope and knitted materials are designed with multifilament yarns artfully woven or wrapped in unique, dimensional patterns that give our furniture its distinct look.
  • They are made from durable, solution dyed Olefin yarns. This fiber is UV, mold and mildew resistant.
  • Lightly brush or vacuum the material regularly to avoid a buildup of dirt and debris.
  • Wash occasionally using a 15:1 lukewarm water and mild detergent solution.
  • Wipe and brush in the direction of the rope to reduce friction.
  • When not in use or during inclement weather, store indoors or under cover using our protective furniture covers.

Stainless Steel

  • Our stainless steel is 304-grade with a powder coat finish. This finish helps guard against corrosion and other deposits, when cleaned regularly. 
  • Although stainless steel is generally resistant to corrosion, the surface is susceptible to cosmetic deterioration from saltwater and airborne chemicals. Superficial dark spots that may show on the surface do not affect the strength or integrity of the furniture.
  • To clean these spots and to help prevent stains from building up, use a mild soap and water solution.

Aluminum

  • All our aluminum frames are powder coated and fully welded for strength.
  • Occasional cleaning of the aluminum frames is recommended using a soft cloth or sponge and a mild detergent mixed with lukewarm water to avoid buildup of salt and other potentially damaging deposits.
  • Never use abrasive cleaners or brushes.
  • To enhance and further protect the finish, a high-grade automotive paste wax can be applied to surfaces that are smooth.

Concrete & Glass Reinforced Concrete (GRC)

  • GRC or Glass Reinforced Concrete consists of high-strength glass fiber embedded in a concrete composite.
  • Our concrete and GRC furniture is hand finished with a protective layer of polyurethane.
  • The organic beauty of concrete furniture is evident in the natural variations in color, small surface depressions and non-structural hairline cracks that can develop over time.
  • The porous nature of concrete is susceptible to stains. Resealing the concrete regularly will help protect it from food stains, water and scratches.
  • Quickly wipe up spills to keep them from penetrating the surface.
  • Avoid placing acidic foods and oils on the surface.
  • To prevent damage to your furniture, do not drag or place sharp objects on the surface. Use coasters, trivets and felt pads for additional protection.
  • Do not allow moisture to collect at the bottom of items placed on the surface. 
  • Do not place hot materials directly on the surface.
  • When not in use or during inclement weather, store indoors or under cover using our protective furniture covers.

Stonecast

  • Our stonecast products are made of a composite of crushed stone, indigenous to Southeast Asia, mixed with resin and/or fiberglass. 
  • To create some of the sculptural shapes and to provide structure, some of our stonecast products may have an internal frame made from treated wood or metal.
  • The finish of our stonecast products may patina over time.
  • To keep stains from absorbing into the naturally porous surface, immediately blot spills and wipe clean with a soft, damp cloth.
  • For regular cleaning, use mild soap and water solution. Be sure to rinse thoroughly.
  • Avoid using chemicals and abrasives, as these will damage the surface.
  • Avoid sitting or standing water on the surface.
  • Move the furniture with care.
  • When not in use or during inclement weather, store indoors or under cover using our protective furniture covers.

Outdoor Fabrics

  • We have partnered premium brands, like Sunbrella, to create a unique collection of fabrics designed to perform, endure and correlate beautifully with our furniture. The ultimate goal is to create a premium product that will not only last, but will also elevate the look and feel of your outdoor space.
  • The collection boasts a fresh, modern color palette with an array of patterns, luxurious textures, as well as clean, classic plains.
  • All our outdoor fabrics are made from 100% solution dyed yarns, so the performance features are not just an applied finish but are engineered into the fibers. As a result, each fabric will maintain its rich color and durability through normal wear and tear and exposure to the elements.
  • Our premium vinyl offers a look and feel so close to real leather that we are confident in calling it Endurance Leather.
  • Our exclusive line of trims offers the perfect finishing touch and allows you to create a look that is uniquely your own.
  • Below is a general overview of the contents, features and cleanability of each brand. For detailed cleaning instructions by brand and stain type, click on the links in the chart.
Brand Content* Features/Benefits Cleanability
Sunbrella 100% Solution Dyed Acrylic

• UV stable
• Fade resistant
• Water resistant
• Stain resistant
• Mold and mildew resistant

Mild soap and water solution
1 cup bleach, 1/4 cup mild soap to 1 gallon water

Revolution 100% Solution Dyed Olefin made with upcycled fibers • UV stable
• Fade resistant
• Water resistant
• Stain resistant
• Anti-microbial
Mild soap and water solution
1 oz bleach to 30 oz water
Outdura 100% Solution Dyed Acrylic • UV stable
• Fade resistant
• Water resistant
• Stain resistant
• Mold and mildew resistant
Mild soap and water solution
10% bleach to water solution
Inside Out Endurance Leather 80% Thermo Polyurethane, 20% Polyester • Water repellant
• Fade resistant
• Mold and mildew resistant
Mild soap and water solution
1 oz bleach to 30 oz water

*Some patterns may contain small amounts of other fibers