One of the best ways to sit back and relax during the warmer months is with an outdoor glider. Which is essentially an outdoor bench that gently rocks back and forth, staying low to the ground, and allowing you to kick back and get comfortable as you sway into the breeze.
They are so versatile and inviting that you can place them next to a pool, garden, or front porch, and watch guests flock with envy. With that being said, there are some vital considerations that you will want to make before you hop online, all of which we will go into further detail on below.
Table of Contents
- 0.1 How Do Glider Chairs Work?
- 0.2 What to Consider Before Buying an Outdoor Glider Chair?
- 1 10 Best Outdoor Glider Chairs
- 1.1 1. Giantex Swing Glider Chair
- 1.2 2. Outsunny Swinging Glider Lounging Chair
- 1.3 3. Darlee Santa Monica Cast Aluminum Patio Glider Club Chair With Ottoman
- 1.4 4.JACK-POST Country Garden Double Glider
- 1.5 5. American Furniture Classics Fan Back Swivel Glider
- 1.6 6. GOLDSUN 2 Person Swing Glider Chair
- 1.7 7. Kozyard Cozy Two Rocking Love Seats Glider
- 1.8 8. Kilmer Creek Natural Cedar Porch Glider
- 1.9 9. Aoxun Outdoor Patio Glider Chair with Cushions
- 1.10 10. Outsunny 2-Person Outdoor Glider Bench
- 2 Patio Glider FAQs
- 3 Final Thoughts
How Do Glider Chairs Work?
First and foremost, you are probably wondering exactly what a glider chair is, and how it works. Well, essentially a glider chair is a type of rocking chair in which the entire seat rocks back and forth. With these designs, the entire frame is composed of a seat which is firmly attached to a base that has a double-rocker, four-bar linkage, as well as non-parallel suspension arms.
This causes the glider chair to move in a smooth rocking motion as it sways back and forth. They became popular particularly among mothers with newborns in the mid 1980s, and have since evolved to become an extremely popular piece of outdoor furniture.
What to Consider Before Buying an Outdoor Glider Chair?
Having Cushions vs No Cushions
The first point which you will want to consider is whether or not you want your outdoor glider chair to come with cushions. Obviously, outdoor furniture with cushions are likely to be far more comfortable and stylish, but they are also prone to getting wet, and fading over time. This is why if you do choose to go with a chair that has cushions, you should ensure that it is weather resistant, and the material is UV protected. If you leave the cushions outside for too long, and in direct sunlight, then there is a good chance of them getting ruined over time. Which is why you should get into the habit of bringing the cushions inside when you’re not using them, regardless of their weatherproofing qualities. Even though cushions will need to be taken care of if you want to use them outdoors, they are a great way to add comfort, while also mixing up the overall look of your glider. As you can mix and match different styles, aesthetics, and fabrics to find the look you want. So, the choice is entirely up to you, but there are definitely certain pros and cons that come with both cushioned and cushion less outdoor furniture.
As with any piece of outdoor furniture, you will have to take into account the materials used, and their weatherproofing properties. The good news is that the majority of glider chairs come with structural components that are weather-resistant, such as wood, plastic, and metal (or a combination of the three). Of the three materials mentioned, metal is easily the most durable, with wrought iron and steel being the two most popular for varying reasons. Wrought iron is sturdy, heavy, and won’t rust easily, while steel is less expensive, but not nearly as durable or long-lasting.
Alternatively, a lot of outdoor glider chairs are made of wood, which not only looks good, but is also softer and more comfortable than metal. Although, it is also incapable of enduring year-round weather changes. Of the most popular wood materials, teak is likely to be the best for outdoor furniture because it has natural oils which help to prevent rotting. Other good wood materials include cedar, and pressure-treated wood (though these are also more expensive).
Finally, plastic is another popular choice of material for outdoor glider chairs, as it is typically able to withstand the elements, and is generally less expensive than both metal and wood. Plus, recycled plastic in particular is eco-friendly, long-lasting, and extremely lightweight. However, because they are not as heavy, plastic can become problematic in environments that experience high winds, or extreme weather conditions. Other, less common, materials include mesh, wicker, vinyl, rattan, resin, cloth, and even stone.
The final point that you will want to consider is the overall quality of the chair. For this, you will want to take into account things such as weight capacity, which ties directly into the quantity of seating, as well as the weather-resistant qualities of the frame and fabrics.
Being that these will be used primarily outdoors, the frame should be very durable, ideally made of metal (preferably wrought iron or steel). This way it will not only support a higher weight limit, but also be resistant to more extreme weather conditions. It’s also essential to consider what sort of powder coating is provided with the chair, to help further prevent rusting and corrosion over time.
Also, when it comes down to the fabrics, you will want cushions that are not only thick and comfortable, but also durable and long-lasting. In particular, keep an eye out for cushions that are fade-resistant, and waterproof. Even if you won’t be placing it near any water, you never know what can go wrong by leaving a piece of furniture outdoors. So it’s best to always be prepared for the worst.
10 Best Outdoor Glider Chairs
The Giantex Swing Glider Chair is, without question, the best outdoor glider chair on the market. Not only is it crafted with superior fabric that is capable of holding up to 330-pounds, but the two armrests are properly positioned to provide maximum comfort. Furthermore, the slightly sloping back of the chair ergonomically molds to your spine, and the bottom of the chair boasts 4 pads to help prevent slipping, while also protecting the ground.
Beyond this, the frame is made of heavy-duty steel, and covered in a powder-coating finish that ensures the model can endure extended use, and in varying weather conditions. Plus, it carries one of the smoothest swinging motions on the market, and is built with an incredibly breathable fabric for increased comfort.
Another exceptional glider chair is the Outsunny Swinging Glider Lounging Chair. First and foremost, this glider is made with a ventilating sling fabric surface that offers a one-of-a-kind lounging experience, and is water-resistant, UV-resistant and quick-drying.
Plus, it also features incredible lightweight construction which allows for stress-free transporting, while also maintaining a surprisingly sturdy weight-limit of 360-pounds. Thanks to the extra-thickened steel frame exterior. Moreover, the smooth rocker arms attached to the seat frame are heat-resistant, wear-resistant, and provide increased rocking comfort when lounging and relaxing.
3. Darlee Santa Monica Cast Aluminum Patio Glider Club Chair With Ottoman
Alternatively, you can opt to go with the Darlee Santa Monica Cast Aluminum Patio Glider Club Chair With Ottoman. This stunning set is constructed with an antique bronze powder coating that is tougher than conventional paint finishes, as well as sesame polyester cushions that are moist-resistant. Not only that, but the gliding base allows for maximum comfort, and even comes with the matching ottoman to take relaxation to a whole new level.
Beyond this, the cast aluminum frame construction is lighter in weight than wrought iron, while also being resistant to rust. As if this wasn’t enough already, the frame itself is backed with a 5-year warranty, while the powder coated finish carries a 3-year warranty, and the polyester fabric is covered for the first year.
Another remarkably well-reviewed and comfortable outdoor glider chair is the JACK-POST Country Garden Double Glider. This gorgeous design is made from quality hardwood that is handcrafted in Indonesia, and naturally resistant to warping and rotting. Furthermore, the frame is made from a durable steel material that is powder-coated to provide corrosion resistance.
Plus, all paint and materials used are free from toxins, and is battle-tested to provide accurate weight restrictions. In particular, this chair can hold up to 500-pounds and seat 2 people! Not to mention the attached side table which has been provided on each side of the gliding chair for you to reliably place down any electronics or books while you sit back and relax.
The American Furniture Classics Fan Back Swivel Glider is another astounding alternative for anybody in the market for a quality outdoor glider chair. This aesthetically-pleasing set is proudly made by Amish craftsmen in the United States, and built to maintain its beauty for years to come.
Furthermore, the base of the frame is constructed with heavy-duty and incredibly sturdy metal material, which helps to ensure that it stays in place even during the most severe of storms. While the chair itself is made from an easy to clean, and virtually impenetrable, high-density poly resin. Which is a wood lumber substitute made from recycled materials that is guaranteed not to chip, crack, rot, or develop mold.
Another tremendous alternative is the GOLDSUN 2 Person Swing Glider Chair. This beautiful glider features a heavy-duty round steel frame that offers increased sturdiness and support, boasting a miraculous 480-pound weight capacity. Plus, the bench has carefully selected the Textilene mesh fabric for its seat and back, which is incredibly breathable and durable. While the powder-coated finished steel frame helps to ensure that the bench is able to withstand the elements year-long.
Not only that, but the curved back offers additional comfort, and ergonomically molds to the back of your spine at the optimal angle. As if this all wasn’t enough to convince you already, the chair even comes with a conveniently-located cup holder which is suitable for almost all drink sizes, and phones.
The Kozyard Cozy Two Rocking Love Seats Glider is a truly gorgeous chair that comes loaded with all the necessary features to ensure maximum enjoyment for years to come. Firstly, the frame is constructed from an exceptionally durable wrought iron material that helps to increase the overall longevity of the chair. While the 6” thick cushions are made of a sponge material with a polyester filling, which is not only tremendously soft, but comfortable as well.
Not only that, but the smooth gliding motion is reinforced with strong metal bearings, and the chair can be purchased in one of 3 stunning color configurations (beige, burgundy, and blue). Altogether forming one of the best outdoor glider chairs on the market.
The Kilmer Creek Natural Cedar Porch Glider is another fantastic glider chair that is incredibly sturdy, and weather-resistant. More specifically, it is constructed with western Red Cedar which is naturally resistant to rot, decay, and insect damage. Not only that, but it is also renowned for its lightweight properties, natural life span, and low warping characteristics.
Furthermore, this natural cedar glider features contoured seating with all clear span slats that are planed and edges that are routed for rounded smoothness. Plus, it’s constructed strictly with only screws and bolts (no nails), and is one of the easiest to assemble models on the market. And it’s quality-made in the United States by Amish craftsmen, and carries a stunning weight capacity of 400-pounds!
9. Aoxun Outdoor Patio Glider Chair with Cushions
Another exceptionally popular glider chair is the Aoxun Outdoor Patio Glider Chair with Cushions. This tremendously comfortable design features a curved back which offers unbeatable comfort and support, while also ergonomically fitting to your natural body shape. With the seat sliding smoothly back and forth, leaving the base firmly placed.
Moreover, the soft cushions are made with an Oliven cloth fabric that is incredibly breathable, fade-resistant, and easy to clean. While the frame is made of a durable iron material that features a stable powder coating, which helps to ensure this item will remain sturdy for years to come. Plus, it can support up to 300-pounds, and is perfect for any garden, porch, balcony or front yard thanks to the incredibly versatile and stylish exterior.
Finally, we have the Outsunny 2-Person Outdoor Glider Bench. This extraordinary model features a double-seated design with strong gliding arms that help to ensure smooth and secure gliding functions. Also included is a conveniently located coffee table placed in the middle of the two chairs to keep your drinks, snacks, and favourite devices within arms reach.
Plus, the tempered glass tabletop is secured and easy to clean. Not only that but the powder-coated metal frame and textilene fabric material is weather-resistant, and built to withstand nearly any weather condition. Moreover, the gliding arms feature protective end covers, as well as the feet which come with protective foot pads, and the entire piece altogether can hold up to 360-pounds per seat! Meaning that you can safely use it anywhere you please, and not have to worry about potentially damaging the surface or the ground around you.
Patio Glider FAQs
How Much Space Do I Need for My Glider Chair?
Much like any piece of furniture, you will definitely want to take into account how much space your glider chair will take up. These chairs are a bit bigger than the average patio chair, but since they swivel they are certainly convenient. Most outdoor gliders are between 2.5 and 4 feet. While the height of a glider chair can vary from 30 inches to 48 inches, if you want a model that extends for more back support and above your shoulders, then you will want to go with a high-back seat style option.
Should I Use a Deck Protector Under My Glider Chair?
Even though most of the aforementioned glider chairs come with protected arms and feet, this isn’t fully guaranteed to leave your surfaces intact long term. While when you first buy any piece of outdoor furniture it comes fully polished, after a few years of wear and tear, certain pieces may need to be replaced. Taking this into account, it might be wise to invest in a quality deck protector so that the lifespan of both your deck, and your freshly-purchased chair, is increased, and remains in-tact for years to come.
Can You Use a Glider Chair on Grass?
One of the best parts about a glider chair is that it is relatively easy to maneuver. However, if you choose to go with the classic bench style, it is likely to be much heavier, which can become problematic with soft surfaces such as grass. Even though you are technically able to place a glider chair on top of grass, you will have to make sure that your yard is firm, even leveled, and dry. Additionally, you should try to choose chairs that have wide legs, this way they won’t sink into the ground. But if you are able to check off these boxes, then yes, you can use a glider chair on grass.
And there you have it! Those are the 10 best outdoor glider chairs currently on the market. Regardless of your individual style or preference, you should be able to find exactly what you are looking for somewhere in this guide. So long as you keep this handy guide by your side throughout the process, you should be able to find the perfect addition to your home in no time!
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.