Regardless of the season, there are few things more refreshing than a breath of crisp, outdoor air. Pair this fresh air with a set of comfortable patio chairs and you can enjoy the backyard, deck, or patio for hours. Adding patio chairs to the patio or deck begins the process of creating an inviting space for meals, morning coffee, and a place to host small get-togethers with family and friends.
Patio chairs come in several different types, materials, designs, and color patterns, so it’s best to educate yourself on the critical shopping features in order to be confident in your decision when you find the best patio chairs for your home. Consider the top products listed below to get a better idea of the style that’s right for your outdoor space.
- BEST OVERALL: PAMAPIC 5 Pieces Wicker Patio Furniture Set
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Devoko Patio Porch Furniture Sets 3 Pieces
- BEST LOUNGE: LOKATSE HOME Outdoor Patio Adjustable Metal Chaise
- BEST ADIRONDACK: POLYWOOD AD5030TE Classic Folding Adirondack Chair
- BEST ZERO-GRAVITY: Best Choice Products Set of 2 Zero Gravity Chair
- BEST DINING: TITIMO 5-Piece Outdoor Furniture Dining Set
Features to Look for in the Best Patio Chairs
Before choosing a set of patio chairs, take a few minutes to learn about the most important shopping considerations to keep in mind, including chair type, size, and material.
There are several different types of patio chairs, including club, lounge, Adirondack, zero-gravity, recliner, hammocks, and dining chairs, that offer a range of positions, stability, and functions.
- Club chairs are a type of armchair. They were developed for indoor use, with a smooth leather cover and thick, comfortable cushions. However, the patio-style of the club chair is typically made with metal or wicker, though it retains the armchair appearance.
- Lounge chairs are slightly longer than normal patio chairs, and the backrest typically reclines, allowing someone to stretch out completely on a lounge chair for a little sunbathing.
- Adirondack chairs are typically made of wood, with a distinct design that slopes downward to a deep seat that is only a foot or so off the ground. Yet, these chairs also feature broad armrests that can act as a small table for a mug of coffee.
- Zero-gravity chairs have a design that balances and evenly distributes the body’s weight when the chair is reclined in order to release tension. This type of chair is a good option to help reduce stress, promote better circulation, and maintain a neutral spine alignment.
- Recliner chairs are essentially any type of patio chair that has a backrest capable of reclining to allow the person sitting in the chair to lay back. Due to this broad definition, recliner chairs can have a wide variety of appearances.
- Hammock chairs can be suspended from patio roofs or they may have a specifically designed suspension base. The hammock seat is usually made with woven cloth, though rope is also used.
- Dining chairs are generally meant to be used around a dining table and may come as a part of a full outdoor dining set. These chairs don’t have the same flexibility for relaxing poses as the other patio chairs, but the slim profile allows more of them to fit in a close space.
The size of the patio or deck should be measured to ensure that the patio chair set fits comfortably. Taking the measurements ahead of time and referencing the product information provided by the manufacturer, will help plan the layout of the patio furniture without problems.
Keep in mind that some patio chair types have a reclining feature that needs to be taken into account when measuring the furniture. Zero-gravity chairs and lounge chairs should be measured at the front and the back to account for a rising footrest and a reclining backrest, while the wide armrests of an Adirondack chair could cause spacing problems for a side-by-side layout.
The materials that are used to make a patio chair commonly include hardwood, plastic, or metals, like aluminum, wrought iron, and stainless steel.
- Hardwood has a classic, clean look that can make a patio look great. The heavy material has strength and durability only met by some types of metal. However, wood needs to be sealed in order to protect it from stains and water because wood is a porous material that easily soaks up liquids.
- Plastic is an inexpensive material that comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns. These patio chairs won’t rust or corrode in the rain, sleet, or snow. However, plastic is not as durable as wood or metal, and the color of the plastic can fade in the sun.
- Metal patio chairs can be made with heavy-duty wrought iron, lightweight aluminum, or balanced stainless steel. These patio chairs range in durability, but are typically as robust as hardwood, though they have a lighter design. Some metal is susceptible to water damage and corrosion, but stainless steel and aluminum have a natural resistance, while wrought iron is typically powder coated to protect the metal. However, make sure the chairs are properly stored in winter weather conditions.
The comfort of a patio chair is a necessary consideration given that they could be used for hours at a time. This factor is typically reliant on the cushion, handles, and backrest of the chairs, which vary between patio chair types, and even between individual products.
- Cushions are made with the singular purpose of making the seat more comfortable while supporting the main portion of the body’s weight when a person is sitting down. Outdoor chair cushions have a standard depth of 2 to 3 inches, though deeper cushions can be over 4 inches thick. Foam cushioning lasts longer than polyester fiberfill, which is a less expensive alternative that tends to flatten over time.
- Armrests or handrests allow the upper body to relax because the weight of the hands, arms, and shoulders, as well as a portion of the weight of the neck, back, and chest, is supported. Some handrests also have cup holders, making them convenient as well as comfortable.
- Backrests and headrests help to support the weight of the upper body, providing a stable surface to gently lean against so that the core muscles can relax. Without a backrest, a chair is hardly a chair at all. It’s closer to a stool, which is several levels of comfort below serene patio relaxation. Some backrests also recline so that they can be set to an ideal angle to take a nap or read in the sun.
Patio chair sets can come with multiple chairs, tables, ottomans, and even canopies, depending on how the various manufacturers and sales companies decide to package them. Chairs typically come in a set ranging from one to six, though larger dining sets may have more.
These sets may include small coffee tables, tall bar tables, or large dining tables to host the family. An ottoman or footrest is a great way to relax tired feet and legs after a day at work. They improve blood flow and oxygen circulation through the lower extremities. Other patio chair sets may come with a canopy or an umbrella that can be set up to block the sun or possibly rain.
It’s important to store patio chairs properly to ensure that they aren’t damaged by intense sunlight, heavy rain, powerful winds, or freezing snow. If the chairs are being left on the patio throughout the warmer months, it’s a good idea to invest in patio chair covers that will protect against the sun and rain. Chairs that can fold up are easier to slide into a shed or stand up against the wall of the house, out of the wind, sun, and rain. This feature also makes it easier to store for the cold winter months.
Winterizing the patio furniture is a step that has to be done by anyone living in an area that experiences extreme cold and snow. This typically involves covering up the patio furniture and storing it safely in a shed, basement, or garage where it won’t be damaged by the snow or frequent frosts and thaws of early and late winter.
Our Top Picks
These top patio chair products have been selected based on their chair type, material, comfortable design, overall efficacy, and the other critical shopping factors mentioned above in order to find the best patio chairs for enjoying the serenity of the outdoors.
This patio furniture set comes with two club chairs that have soft, sponge-padded cushions to sit on and a pair of back pillows, with one for each chair. The frames are made of sturdy stainless steel that is wrapped in plastic resin wicker to create a strong seat, capable of supporting up to 250 pounds. The plastic resin wicker isn’t a natural material, but this is actually beneficial because it’s waterproof, making it effective at protecting the steel frame.
The set also includes a coffee table and a pair of ottomans or footrests that also have their own sponge-padded cushions to support the weight of the feet and legs. The coffee table has a shelf at the bottom and a solid tabletop with a plastic resin wicker coating. The chairs measure 28 by 27 by 30 inches, allowing the ottomans, which measure 24 by 22 by 11 inches, to slide naturally underneath the chairs for safe storage.
Creating a nice place to sit on the patio doesn’t need to put anyone back a paycheck when there are affordable, quality products like this three-piece set of Devoko patio furniture. The two club chairs have comfortable sponge-padded cushions that are about 2 inches thick. The covers on the cushions can be removed for cleaning during yearly maintenance, helping to ensure that the chairs look great for years.
The club chairs have a durable steel frame and plastic resin wicker that helps to protect the chair from water. Each chair measures 21.5 by 19.5 by 33.5 inches and can hold up to 330 pounds. The set also includes a small tea table that measures 16 by 16 by 18 inches and features a tempered glass tabletop to hold beverages and snacks.
Soaking up the sun is much easier with the LOKATSE HOME Lounge Chairs that are capable of reclining down into a completely flat position that’s great for afternoon naps. The set includes two lounge chairs and a glass-top table, each featuring a durable, powder-coated steel frame. The chairs have UV-resistant Textilene fabric that is made to be flexible and breathable. The table has a strong, tempered glass surface.
The lounge chairs don’t just lock into the up or down position, they also have several additional positions between the two extremes, allowing the exact angle of the backrest to be customized to the user’s preference. The chairs measure 27 by 64 by 40 inches and the table is 18 by 18 by 18 inches—just enough space for a couple of drinks or to enjoy lunch by the pool.
This Polywood chair provides the look and feel of real wood, but has a more durable recycled plastic build. It’s resistant to weather and sun, with UV inhibitors and stabilizers built into the pigments which prevent fading. This hardy chair is built to withstand a range of climates including hot sun, snowy winters, and strong coastal winds.
One of the best features of this chair is the foldability. When folded, it’s easier to store, move around the yard, or take on a trip. The Classic Folding Adirondack Chair comes in 13 colors to complement the patio decor.
Zero-gravity chairs, like this set of two Best Choice Products patio chairs, are a great option for relieving sore muscles and correcting poor posture. The chairs are lightweight and foldable, allowing them to be packed into a vehicle, stored for the winter, or just moved around the patio. Each chair is capable of holding up to 250 pounds and they feature a removable utility tray with two cup holders, a phone holder, and a tablet holder.
The unique design of the gravity chairs allows them to open smoothly, lifting the legs and extending the back into an ergonomic position that relieves tension throughout the body, creating a relaxed, or “zero gravity” feeling. The fabric of the chair is made with a flexible UV-resistant Textilene, and it includes a removable, padded headrest for additional comfort.
Typical patio chairs are used for relaxation, reading, sunbathing, and comfort, but dining chairs are designed to provide an organized, ergonomic place to sit while enjoying a meal outdoors. This set comes with a square dining table and four dining chairs, each made with durable cast aluminum and molded into attractive blooming flower designs. The furniture is rust-resistant and comes with four comfortable seat cushions. The table measures 36 by 36 by 30 inches and each chair is 27 by 27 by 36 inches, with a maximum weight capacity of 350 pounds. To stay out of the direct sunlight and gain cover from the rain, add an umbrella with the built-in 2.2-inch diameter umbrella hole in the center of the dining table.
FAQs About Patio Chairs
Take a look at these frequently asked questions and their answers below to learn more about patio chairs and how to maintain them.
Q. What are the most durable patio chairs?
The most durable patio chairs are typically made out of stainless steel, wrought iron, or aluminum. Aluminum is more resistant to water than stainless steel or wrought iron, but it isn’t as strong. Whereas wrought iron is less water-resistant than either stainless steel or aluminum, it has greater strength. Stainless steel shares the beneficial qualities of both, but to a slightly lesser degree, so the most durable could be said to be any one of the three, with an average lifetime of about 20 years.
Q. What is a zero gravity chair?
Zero-gravity chairs are recliners that balance and evenly distribute the bodyweight of the person reclining in the chair. This has the effect of releasing built-up tension in the muscles and allowing the spine to settle into a neutral position.
Q. How do you maintain patio furniture?
Maintaining patio furniture during warmer months is as simple as wiping them down before and after use and covering the chairs up with furniture covers when they aren’t being used. In the colder months, the chairs should also be covered, but it would be best to store them in a basement, shed, or garage to protect the material from frigid temperatures and snow.