How to remove green scum from a patio umbrella

Written by andrew smith
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How to remove green scum from a patio umbrella
Use white vinegar to eliminate green scum from patio umbrellas. (George Marks/Retrofile/Getty Images)

Green scum on your patio umbrella could be caused by mildew, mould, algae or a combination of all three. This scum can discolour the umbrella as well as cause a nasty, unwanted odour. Household cleaners may temporarily remove the problem, but the green film is likely to return to the umbrella. A homemade cleaner that includes a common household liquid eliminates the scum and prevents its return to the patio umbrella.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Non-bleach dish soap
  • Soft-bristled brush

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  1. 1

    Mix 2 cups of undiluted white vinegar, 4 cups of hot water and 2 tbsp of non-bleach dish soap inside of the bucket or sink.

  2. 2

    Open the patio umbrella fully.

  3. 3

    Saturate the bristles of the brush thoroughly in the cleaning solution.

  4. 4

    Scrub areas of the patio umbrella covered in the green scum. According to Reader's Digest, scrubbing other areas of the umbrella will prevent such growths. Use a clean brush (one not used to remove green scum) to scrub the rest of the umbrella.

  5. 5

    Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you've finished cleaning the umbrella. Leave the umbrella opened in a sunny portion of your yard or patio until it has fully dried.

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