Lawn furniture comes in a wide variety of materials, shapes, designs and price points including the modest vinyl chair. Because they are made from lightweight materials, vinyl chairs are quite portable and well suited for a day spent watching a parade down main street or hanging out at the beach. They also have a tendency to deteriorate after prolonged exposure to the sun, especially the vinyl strapping. After continued use the vinyl strapping tends to stretch and give way, but that doesn’t mean that the chair needs to be discarded. The vinyl straps may be inexpensively and easily replaced. Here is how:
Materials Needed to Repair a Vinyl Lawn Chair
In order to complete a vinyl lawn chair repair you will need to gather together the following materials;
1 utility knife
1 roll replacement vinyl strapping
1 metal tape measure
1 can outdoor use spray paint (optional)
1 pair safety goggles
1 pair rubber work gloves
1 pot of boiling water
1 box sheet metal screws
1 box plastic rivets
1 pair cooking tongs
1 pair scissors
1 flat head screw driver
1 rubber mallet
Step 1: Examining the Vinyl Lawn Chair for Damage
Begin by examining the vinyl chair to see which vinyl straps need to be replaced. You may even wish to completely change the look of the chair by changing all the vinyl straps and repainting the metal frame as well. The choice is yours. Either way, you will need to assess how much as well as what type of materials are needed.
Pay particular attention to how the vinyl straps are attached to the metal frame as that will help you to determine whether you will need to buy sheet metal screws or plastic rivets. If sheet metal screws are used, make a note of whether or not you will need a flat head or Phillips screw driver during the strap attachment phase of the project. If plastic rivets are used you will need to have a rubber mallet handy during the strap attachment phase.
In order to determine how much vinyl strapping is needed, take out your tape measure and calculate the distance from one attachment slot to the other. Be sure to reduce your strap measurement by one inch as you will want the strap to be taut. Failure to do so will result in a loose strap and a sloppy finished product. With measurements and a materials list in hand, head down to your local hardware store and pick up everything you will need to complete the vinyl lawn chair repair.
Step 2: Removing the Damaged Sections of Vinyl
Start this task by turning the chair upside down and using your utility knife or heavy duty scissors to cut the damaged vinyl straps where they meet with the attachment slots. You will also need to remove any screws or rivets in the damaged areas. In most instances, plastic rivets may be carefully pried off using a flat head screwdriver. Though you will most likely be discarding the old plastic rivets, you do not want to scratch the lawn chair’s paint as doing so could cause rust problems down the road.
Step 3: Preparing the Replacement Vinyl
Measure and cut out all the vinyl straps that you will need to complete your repair. Once the straps are cut, use your pencil to make a hash mark ¼ inch from each end. This is where you will be attaching the straps to the frame. Proceed by taking out an awl and punching a pilot hole in the straps everywhere you made a hash mark.
Because new vinyl strapping is not very pliable, you will need to soak it in boiling water for 10 minutes. This will make the vinyl strapping malleable enough to use during the attachment phase. To avoid a serious burn, don rubber gloves and employ the use of kitchen tongs when attempting to remove the hot vinyl from the boiling water.
Step 4: Attaching the Replacement Vinyl
Continue by taking a hot vinyl strap and inserting either a screw or plastic rivet through each pilot hole. If you are using screws, take your screw driver and screw one end of the strap into an attachment slot. If you are using plastic rivets, take your rubber mallet and hammer one end of strap into the attachment slot. At this point you may want to enlist the help of a friend who is willing to stretch and hold the vinyl strap taut for you while you attach the remaining end of the strap to the opposite side of the lawn chair. The vinyl strap must remain taut while you hammer or screw the strap into place. Once you have completed replacing the vinyl straps the lawn chair will be ready for use.
My husband and I are homeowners and have a history of buying and renovating properties. We tend to do all of the renovations and repairs ourselves.
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