Used Table and Bench Set Buying Guide

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Used Table and Bench Set Buying Guide

Every English garden needs good garden furniture, so occupants can enjoy the garden’s lush environs. Whether for dining in the garden or for whiling away time listening to birds chirp, a table and bench set lets one get the most out of a fleeting English summer. However, garden tables and benches can be expensive, and are thus out of many people's financial reach. One solution to this problem is to furnish one's outdoor area with a used set. Buying a table and benches together in a set saves money in the first place, and purchasing the item used can yield significant additional savings. It is common to find used table and bench sets in great condition, making them an excellent value. This guide describes the common features and storage considerations, and explains how and where to buy a fine used set at an affordable price. Using the information in this guide, readers will be able to select and purchase the perfect set for their garden without without breaking the bank.

Features

The following sections describe various features of a garden furniture table and bench set, including construction materials, the shape of the table, the seats, the bench cushions, and options to provide shade. Understanding these features will help buyers decide which used set best suits their tastes and needs.

Material

The table below describes several common garden furniture materials and provides maintenance information for each type.

Material

Description

Maintenance

Wood

Natural material that always blends well with its surroundings; pine, oak, cedar, and teak are a few common wood types

Treat with brightener and oil periodically; if repainting, make sure paint is fade-resistant; clean regularly with soap and water

Plastic

Synthetic material that is sometimes recycled; lightweight, durable, and inexpensive

Rinse with water regularly and treat it with cleaners to guard against mildew

Stone

Natural, heavy, durable material; can be different types, such as quartz or granite

Stone should be sealed for lifetime protection; clean the sealant with soap and water regularly

Metal

Metals such as aluminium and iron are durable; aluminium is lightweight, and iron is sturdy and can be elegantly shaped

Car wax and mineral oil protect aluminium, and iron requires rust protectant; clean with soap and water

Rattan

Rattan comes from palm trees; lightweight and woven, but still durable; casual, yet stylish

Needs frequent dusting; wash with water and a mild soap

Wood, metal, and stone tend to be the most expensive materials, though the type of wood greatly influences the price. Plastic tends to be the least expensive.

Table Shape

There are variety of table shape options when it comes to choosing a table and bench set. Rectangular tables are the most common, as they can accommodate several people on each side. Benches tend to be long and straight as well, so rectangular tables work well with these kinds of benches. Round tables make it easy for everyone to see each other, so they are a good choice for those who want to stimulate conversation. The same is true for square tables, though they tend to take up slightly more area than do round tables. Oval tables are great for keeping all of the members of larger parties engaged during a meal.

Seating

There are several things to consider when selecting a bench. The first is whether or not the bench offers back support. Some benches have a backrest, while others do not. Also, although most benches are straight, others are curved to match the shape of a round or oval table. Benches may also be of various lengths, depending upon how many people are meant to sit on them. A set may include two or four benches. The size and shape of the table usually determines how many benches the set contains.

Cushions

Another consideration for a garden table and bench set is whether the set includes cushions. Some sets include the cushions, while others require they be purchased separately, if the user desires. Cushions are important if the table and bench set is to be used frequently and for long periods of time. Particularly for older users, sitting on a hard bench for any length can be uncomfortable. Some wooden benches are curved to accommodate the sitting shape, but even these can be made more comfortable with the addtion of a soft cushion.

Shading

The final table and bench set feature buyers should consider is something to provide shade. Many tables have a hole in the middle to accommodate an umbrella. The umbrella unfolds to shade users from intense sun or to provide protection from rain. An umbrella also has a secondary function. UV rays from sunlight cause the paint on the table and bench set to fade, so an umbrella protects the pieces in the set, as well.

Some people prefer not to have an umbrella in the middle of the table. Some find it claustrophobic, while others find the pole location inconvenient. For such people, a separate awning may be a good shade choice, though the awning is not directly incorporated into the set like an umbrella is.

Storage Considerations

It is also important that buyers take into account how they will store their sets when not in use. Moreover, since winter storage keeps outdoor furniture from exposure to harsh elements, those shopping for a used set should check with sellers to see how (or whether) the set was stored, before purchasing.

Portability

Proper storage is important to maintaining the quality of the pieces in the set. Portable pieces are easier to move, which makes it more convenient to bring them inside for the winter. Plastic and rattan are very light materials, so these are relatively easy to store. Moreover, some plastic and wood pieces are designed to fold up, which means they take up less space during storage.

Covers

If the table and bench set must remain outdoors year-round, it is wise to invest in a protective cover, if the set does not already include one. British winters are wet and windy, so covers protect a table and bench set until they are again ready for use in more pleasant climes.

Where to Buy Used Table and Bench Sets

It can be more difficult to locate sources for used garden furniture table and bench sets than new ones, but there are a few places buyers can check. Local classified ads are a good place to start. Buyers can check listings to see if any sets appeal to them, and then make arrangements with sellers to view the sets. Another place to find a used set is at garage sales, though these tend to be even more informal affairs than a classified ads transaction, and there are no guarantees either that a conveniently located garage sale is taking place, or that such a sale will feature a table and bench set for sale.

No matter the source, buyers should inspect the table and bench set thoroughly before purchasing. It can be frustrating to bring an item home and discover previously unnoticed damage.

How to Buy Used Table and Bench Sets on eBay

One good source for used table and bench sets is eBay. The site has a large selection of table and bench sets, and the listings are constantly changing. This provides buyers a lot of good options from which to choose. To search eBay for used garden table and bench sets, go to the homepage, type in "used table and bench", and click Search. The results will include all items for sale on eBay related to the search term, so some of them may not be relevant. Select the Garden & Patio Furniture category filter to see used garden furniture table and bench sets. All the resulting listings should now be relevant to your search.

You can also filter listings by the seller's distance from your home. Do this by entering the number of miles from your postcode as your search radius. Buying from a local seller can reduce shipping times and costs, and you may even be able to arrange an in-person pickup with the seller.

Conclusion

Garden furniture can help people get the most of out their yards and gardens. A table and bench set is a particularly good idea, because they enable groups of people to congregate and enjoy the garden or yard setting together. Buying a table and benches together in a set is a good way to save money, and buying a used set can reduce costs even further. The intent of this guide was to describe several common features of table and bench sets, and to provide a list of storage considerations buyers should take into account before purchasing a table and bench set. Lastly, this guide has tried to offer advice as to how and where to buy a high quality used table and bench set at an affordable price. eBay makes shopping as convenient and easy as surfing the web, and it offers a wide selection of styles, materials, sizes, and materials.

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