How to Clean Folding Banquet Chairs?

Folding banquet chairs are a versatile seating option for events, parties, and gatherings. However, they can easily accumulate dirt, grime, and spills that need to be cleaned off regularly. Properly cleaning folding chairs helps maintain their appearance and extend their lifespan. With some basic supplies and a little elbow grease, you can get your folding chairs looking like new again. This comprehensive guide will walk you through all the steps and best practices for cleaning various types of folding banquet chairs.

Supplies Needed

Before getting started, you’ll want to gather the following supplies:

  • Mild detergent or all-purpose cleaner
  • Clean cloths or sponges
  • Soft-bristle scrub brushes
  • Vacuum with hose and brush attachments
  • Bucket of warm water
  • Old towel
  • Protective gloves and eyewear (optional)

For tough stains or dirt, you may also need:

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar or lemon juice
  • Magic eraser sponge
  • Toothbrush for scrubbing small crevices
  • Upholstery shampoo (for fabric chairs)

Clean Folding chair: Prepping the Chairs


Prepping the Chairs

First, prepare your workspace by laying down some drop cloths or moving the chairs outside if possible. This protects your floors and walls from excess water and cleaner.

Unpack stacked chairs so you can access all sides and components. Check under seat cushions and remove any debris or personal belongings left behind.

Use your vacuum attachments to suck up any loose dirt, crumbs, or dust on the chairs before wet cleaning. This prevents debris from getting smeared around. Pay close attention to crevices and grooves where grime collects.

Cleaning Metal Folding Chairs

For simple metal folding chairs with no upholstery, follow these steps:

1. Mix a Mild Detergent Solution

Fill your bucket with warm water and add a small amount of mild detergent, dish soap, or all-purpose cleaner. The soapy solution helps lift dirt and grime from the metal.

2. Wipe Down Frame and Joints

Dip your cloth or sponge in the detergent solution and wring out excess water. Carefully wipe down the metal frame, scrubbing gently to lift dirt. Pay extra attention to crevices and joints where grime collects.

Use a soft-bristle scrub brush for tough dirt or rust spots. Avoid stiff brushes that can scratch the metal finish.

3. Rinse and Dry

Wipe the chairs with a clean damp cloth to rinse off any soap residue. Allow chairs to fully air dry before stacking or storing.

4. Touch-up Paint Chips

Inspect for any chips or scratches in the paint while cleaning. Use touch-up paint that matches your chairs to cover any damaged areas. Allow paint to dry fully before use.

Cleaning Padded Folding Chairs

Upholstered folding chairs with padded seats require some extra care. Here are tips for cleaning fabric and vinyl padded chairs:

1. Vacuum Seat, Back, and Under Cushions

Use a handheld vacuum with a brush attachment to remove surface-level dirt, dust, and debris from the chair cushions and crevices. Make sure to lift cushions and vacuum underneath.

2. Spot Clean Stains

Inspect for any visible stains or soiled areas on the fabric or vinyl cushions. Treat these immediately with an upholstery cleaner designed for the specific material. Lightly dab or spray the stain, allowing it to soak for 2-3 minutes.

3. Scrub With Upholstery Shampoo

Mix an upholstery shampoo concentrate with water per label instructions in your bucket. Use a soft scrub brush dipped in the solution to gently scrub the entire cushion surface. Avoid over-saturating.

Rinse with a clean damp cloth until water runs clear. Let chairs fully air dry before further use.

4. Steam Clean For a Deep Clean

For a deeper clean, use a handheld steam cleaner on fabric cushions to sanitize and lift stubborn odors. Follow any specific instructions for your steam cleaner model. Allow the fabric to fully dry before stacking or sitting.

Cleaning Plastic Folding Chairs

Cleaning Plastic Folding Chairs

Here is a simple process for cleaning plastic folding chairs:

1. Rinse With Water

Rinse chairs with plain water using a hose or bucket to remove light dirt and debris. Allow water to drain out of crevices.

2. Mix Soapy Water

Fill a bucket with warm water and add a small amount of mild dish or liquid hand soap. The soap helps break down oily grime.

3. Scrub With Soapy Water

Use a soft-bristle scrub brush dipped in the soapy water to gently scrub down the seats, backs, and frames. Focus on built-up grime or sticky spots.

4. Rinse Away Residue

Rinse the chairs thoroughly with clean water to remove all soap residue, which can attract dirt over time.

5. Air Dry and Inspect

Allow chairs to completely air dry before stacking. Inspect for any cracks or damage that may need touch-up repairs.

Cleaning Wooden Folding Chairs

Wood folding chairs require gentle cleaning methods to avoid damaging the finish. Follow these best practices:

1. Vacuum Loose Debris

Use a soft brush attachment to vacuum up any loose dirt or crumbs from the wood surfaces.

2. Mix a Mild Solution

Make a gentle cleaning solution of warm water, mild dish soap, and a splash of vinegar.

3. Wipe Down Surfaces

Dip a soft cloth in the solution to wipe down the wood seats, backs, and frames. Avoid over-saturating wood.

4. Remove Stains

For tougher grime or stain spots, dip the cloth in baking soda and gently rub the area. Rinse with a clean damp cloth.

5. Dry Thoroughly

Carefully dry wooden chairs with a clean towel. Allow them ample time to fully air dry before further use or storage.

6. Condition Wood

Twice per year, apply wood conditioner or treatment to protect and restore the finish. Buff the wood grain in the direction it runs.

Cleaning Wooden Folding Chairs

Maintaining Folding Chairs

Along with periodic deep cleaning, some simple maintenance habits can keep your folding chairs looking their best:

  • Add felt pads to the feet to prevent scratches on floors.
  • Frequently vacuum around and under chairs to prevent dirt buildup.
  • Immediately treat any spills or stains to prevent setting.
  • Tighten any loose bolts, screws, or joints that may come loose over time.
  • Avoid dragging chairs when moving them to prevent scuffing.
  • Check for damage after each use and apply touch-up paint as needed.
  • Store chairs stacked neatly and cover them to limit dust exposure.
  • Consider keeping fabric/upholstered chairs indoors to limit sun and moisture damage.
  • Arrange an annual deep clean of frames, cushions, and components.

With proper care and cleaning, folding banquet chairs can give you many years of use! Stay on top of routine maintenance and repairs to keep them looking presentable for any event or function.


  1. How often should folding chairs be cleaned?

General recommendation is to thoroughly clean folding chairs every 2-3 months with regular use. Inspect chairs after major events or gatherings and spot clean as needed.

  1. What’s the safest way to clean wooden chairs?

Use a soft brush and microfiber cloth dampened in a mild/natural solution. Avoid harsh chemicals. Wipe in direction of the wood grain and immediately dry.

  1. Can I pressure wash folding chairs?

Pressure washing is not recommended as it can damage the finish and force water into components. Stick to handwashing only.

  1. How do I sanitize folding chairs?

Mix 1 tbsp bleach per 1 gallon of water for a sanitizing solution. Spray or wipe chairs and let sit 5 minutes before rinsing. Steam cleaning also sanitizes.

  1. How can I get mildew off folding chairs?

Mix equal parts vinegar and warm water and scrub with a soft brush. Rinse thoroughly and allow to fully dry before further use.


Keeping folding banquet chairs clean should be an essential part of your event maintenance routine. Don’t wait until chairs look grimy to give them some attention. With the right supplies and techniques for your chair material, you can keep them looking fresh and prevent long-term damage.

Be gentle in your cleaning approach but thorough – carefully getting into crevices and joints where grime loves to hide. Treat stains immediately before they have a chance to set. And take preventative steps like vacuuming before wet cleaning.

Although it takes some time and elbow grease, clean chairs are essential for hosting professional events that leave great impressions. Investing in durable wrought iron outdoor furniture ensures longevity and timeless appeal. Just be sure to follow the specific guidelines for the materials used in your folding chairs. With routine deep cleaning and preventative maintenance, your folding chairs, including any wrought iron components, will provide many years of durable service, enhancing the charm of your outdoor space.

News Reporter
Mark Buckingham grew up in a Plumbing and HVAC family business. Mark has over 21 years of professional internet marketing and SEO experience (in results). He’s a leading expert in helping Plumbing, HVAC and Electrical businesses get to the top of Google, boost leads, get more customers and grow their company. As the founder of Skyrocket Results SEO, he's on a mission to help HVAC contractors, Plumbers and Electricians avert internet marketing mistakes, avoid wasted marketing dollars, increase profits and build wealth. His free Plumbing, HVAC and electrical company marketing blog is:

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