Outdoor Rugs

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While your backyard may not be the first area you think of when it comes to carpet shopping, there is, indeed, a stylish (and completely functional) way to incorporate outdoor rugs into your home’s exterior decor. The key element here comes down to utility: an outdoor rug should above all else be crafted to withstand all types of weather, though it also offers the benefit of protecting surfaces, and keeping people from slipping in wet weather.


But we don’t want to overlook how an outdoor rug can help pull together your space— just like an indoor rug, it can add color, pattern, and style. Outdoor rugs can also help define different spaces if you have a large outdoor area. For example, use a runner to define a walkway, and square or rectangular rugs for outdoor seating and dining areas.


(Have more questions? Explore related guides and FAQs.)


Outdoor Rug Materials


If you’re planning to keep your rug outside year-round, the materials it’s comprised of will be your most important consideration. Here are the most common options.


Most outdoor rugs are made up of synthetic fibers, and with good reason:



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F.A.Q.

Can outdoor rugs get wet and withstand the elements?

Yes, but the material and weave make a big difference.


Outdoor rugs are designed for outside use — whether it's accenting your front porch or decorating a patio dining area. They’re water resistant because of durable, long-lasting materials like polypropylene, nylon, and polyester, but they’re not waterproof. High-quality rugs also have a close-weave construction to help water run off the surface before it can be absorbed. However, even high-quality rugs can become damp if left in low-traffic areas without air circulation. This dampness can lead to mold and mildew forming — which can discolor and dull your beautiful rug.


To keep your rug looking better for longer:


Put it in higher-traffic areas.


Keep it clean and aired out.


Bring it indoors during the colder, wetter months.

Do you need a rug pad for an outdoor rug?

Yes. Rug pads are useful for any rug but are especially important for outdoor rugs. Many outdoor surfaces get slippery from rain mixed with dirt and debris, making it harder for your rug to grip the surface. You’ll want to put a rug pad beneath your rug to keep it in place.


Another benefit of a rug pad is it acts as a buffer between the rug and flooring. Better air circulation can help your rug dry quicker and reduce the chances of mold and mildew settling in. However, they can’t prevent mold, so you should air out your rug sometimes — especially if it's very rainy or wet outside.

Can you place an outdoor rug over a wooden deck?

Yes, outdoor rugs are designed for many outdoor settings, including on a wooden deck. But there are some tips to keep in mind.


Since wood is a natural material, it can be more susceptible to moisture rot. That’s why it’s important to use waterproofing sealant on your wooden deck. Composite decks are more water resistant, and newer generations have a PVC veneer that helps protect them.


If you put an outdoor rug on your deck, you’ll want to maintain it like you would with any other surface. Keep it clean, air it out, and check that the rug is dry on both sides after rain. Also, make sure your deck is dry before laying down your rug.