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How to Protect Your Leather Furniture Despite Winter Weather

Posted by Watson's on Feb 9, 2023 3:42:47 PM

Whether it’s a recliner, an ottoman, or a full sectional sofa, leather furniture makes your living space feel dignified and comfortable. An elegant leather sofa can last for decades with proper care, all while resisting stains and repelling allergens.

But as durable as leather furniture can be, winter weather can threaten to damage it. That’s why you should know how to protect your leather furniture when the thermometer drops down below freezing.


What Happens to Leather When It Gets Cold

Leather is a highly durable material that can stand up to all sorts of harsh conditions. It resists spills, doesn’t harbor pet hair or dander, and resists scrapes and tears. But as amazing as leather is, cold weather can put the material in peril. 

As temperatures drop, we naturally turn up the thermostat to keep ourselves warm. The heat from our furnace helps us stay comfortable in the winter months, but it also dries out indoor air, causing humidity levels to drop. 

And with a loss of moisture in the surrounding air, leather furniture becomes more susceptible to damage. 

There are a few things that can happen to leather furniture if exposed to excessive dry heat in the winter months:

  • Material shape changes
  • Leather starts to feel dry
  • Color appears faded
  • Creases and cracks develop

The good news is that there are a few simple steps you can take to make sure that your leather furniture looks and feels its best when cold temperatures set in.


Keep It Clean

First and foremost, be sure to keep your leather furniture as clean as possible. Routine cleanings will reduce the likelihood of cracks and other unsightly damage year round, but especially during the winter.

Cleaning your leather furniture isn’t just for good looks. A thorough cleaning helps to maintain the integrity of the leather and minimize any lasting damage caused by the everyday spills and stains that come with home furniture. 

Not to mention, regular cleaning helps to control the spread of bodily oils which can damage leather over time. Just be sure to use a non-abrasive cleaning solution when wiping down your leather furniture. Avoid using household cleaners that aren’t specifically designed for use with leather materials. 


Use Conditioner

Besides regular cleaning, it’s important to treat your leather furniture with a specialized leather furniture conditioner product once or twice a year to keep the furniture at its best. A leather conditioning treatment helps to keep leather feeling soft and pliable while protecting the material from accidental spills and tears.

Treating your leather furniture is one of the most effective ways to prevent cracks and dryness in the winter months. It helps to keep the material hydrated so it’s less likely to succumb to extreme temperatures and poor humidity. And as an added bonus, semi-annual conditioning treatments can also help to conceal any existing stains or imperfections in your leather furniture.


Prevent Damage

Once you’ve made sure that your leather furniture is cleaned and conditioned, you’ll need to make sure that the furniture is arranged in the safest place to prevent damage from winter weather. Really, this just means keeping your leather furniture away from any direct heat sources that can dry out the material.

Cold temperatures cause leather to seize up and stiffen, making creases and cracks appear more quickly. But it isn’t necessarily the cold that’s responsible for damaging leather furniture in the winter months - it’s intense indoor heating and a lack of humidity.

To prevent damage to your leather furniture during the winter, try to keep all furniture away from radiators and vents along your living room walls. Instead, arrange your furniture arranged in the center of the room where dry heat can’t directly influence it. This also goes for fireplaces.

Although the aesthetics of a refined leather loveseat by a roaring fireplace in the middle of a chilly winter night are spectacular, leather furniture isn’t always a good match for a fireplace. Overexposure to a wood burning or gas fireplace can accelerate aging and cause damage to your leather furniture.


Try Storage

If you’re especially concerned with protecting your leather furniture over the winter, you can always try putting your furniture in storage for the winter. A climate-controlled storage facility with humidity between 40-45% offers the best protection for leather furniture. Just be sure not to stack pieces of furniture on top of one another in order to protect the wooden frame.

If you’d rather store your leather furniture on your own property, just be sure to choose a space that maintains a relatively steady temperature that doesn’t fluctuate unpredictably over the winter, like an attic or a basement. 



Whether you’re looking for a complete set of leather furniture for your living room or just want to upgrade your favorite recliner, Watson’s has everything for your home furnishing needs.

When you shop with us, you’ll find an amazing selection and personalized service, along with the guaranteed lowest prices in the USA. We offer all the quality furniture you need to outfit your living room, dining room, or any other space in your home. So, if you’re interested in adding new leather furniture to your home, shop online or stop by your nearest Watson’s location today.


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