Nothing screams cozy like a circle of Adirondack chairs around a fire pit. It’s a social piece of furniture and the best adirondack chairs have a way of bringing friends and family together. Adirondack chairs can also be enjoyed solo with a good book and a lakeside view. While we only tested traditional chairs for this guide, there are many different types of Adirondack chairs.
After weeks of testing, we found that the Polywood Modern Curveback Adirondack Chair(available at Amazon), is the best Adirondack chair because it’s sturdy, attractive, and supportive. For something less expensive, the Adams RealComfort Adirondack Chair (available at Lowe's) offers a comfortable design and plenty of value. However, there are plenty of great Adirondack chairs on our list to choose from.
The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.
Polywood Modern Curveback Adirondack Chair
Dimensions: 33.5 x 39.13 inches
Weight limit: 400 lbs
UV protected: Yes
Assembly required: Yes
The Polywood Modern Curveback Adirondack Chair has a classic design, sturdy ergonomic build, and comes in a large variety of color options. Its good looks make it easy to blend quality seating into almost any design style.
The Curveback Adirondack Chair is large and roomy. It sports extra-wide armrests that can double as a drink or plate holder. The rounded front edge of its seat provides leg and knee support, while its slightly reclined seat and curved back encourage you to sink into relaxation.
Crafted from landfill and ocean-bound plastic and marine-grade hardware, the manufacturing of each Polywood chair actually helps to clean up our planet, creating a sustainable product.
Designed to withstand extreme weather, including sun, snow, ocean spray, and whatever else Mother Nature can throw at it, the Curveback Adirondack Chair is backed by a generous 20-year warranty, promising that it will never “splinter, crack, chip, peel, or rot, or suffer structural damage from insect infestation.”
Our Best Value, The Adams RealComfort, is very popular and it’s easy to see why. It has a comfortable design at an extremely low cost. The Adams has great lower back, head, and neck support with a good give.
The chair accommodates heights from 5-feet 3-inches to 5-feet 7-inches and is a breeze to get out of. Both testers said they’d use the chair again, although its narrow arms make it harder to balance a plate of food. The chair also features a curved edge that is comfortable on your leg pits and doesn’t get too hot in the sun.
The plastic is coated with a resin that makes it weather-resistant.. One flaw is that it’s not very sturdy, as it flipped over immediately when we shot it with the pressure washer.
It also only has a warranty of a year and a weight limit of 250 pounds, so this may not be a chair that will last you for years to come. Despite these drawbacks, the Adams is proof that you don’t have to spend big money to get a great Adirondack chair.
The Lifetime Adirondack Chair is our previous best overall winner, but it still hits high marks in all our major categories. It’s comfortable, aesthetically pleasing, tip-resistant, sturdy, and comes in a wide variety of colors. The Lifetime comfortably fits a variety of different heights, too. A 5-foot 3-inch tester and a 5-foot 10-inch tester both said they would use it again.
The curved seat is comfortable for your leg pits and its roomy build accommodates many different shapes and sizes. It also has wide armrests, so it’s easy to balance a plate of food. The sturdy construction makes it easy to get in and out of.
While it did get a few light splotches after being left out in several rainstorms, it’s still fade-resistant. Wiping it down with water and a cloth should easily remove these.
Though it may not be the easiest to store, it should fit into an average-sized basement or storage shed. The downside? This chair has a lot of parts and is difficult to assemble.
That said, the Lifetime store on Amazon includes expert assembly for the chair if you’re not adept at assembling outdoor furniture. As you likely won’t be reassembling your chair every season, we consider this a minor inconvenience to an otherwise great chair.
The L.L. Bean All-Weather Waterfall Chair is a classic model by an iconic brand. It’s attractive, easy to assemble, and relatively tip-resistant. As with nearly all L.L. Bean products, it has a robust build and is made to withstand the elements.
The simple design would match most settings, although it seems to be created to be functional more than stylish. The “waterfall” refers to the curved lip at the edge of the seat, which is comfortable for your leg pits. It’s easy to balance a plate of food on, although the arms aren’t as wide as other chairs we tested.
Made of high-density polyethylene, this chair is built to withstand extreme weather and the company claims it will never need to be repainted.
What makes this chair so great is its durability, but the hardness of the wood is one of its downsides. We found that sitting in the chair for long periods of time caused some mid-back pain, but if you’ve already decided that the All-Weather is for you, this could be rectified by attaching a small cushion to the back of the chair.
The Keter was by far the widest chair we tested, so wide that the first tester at the summer barbecue was able to fold her legs into it despite being tall. This chair definitely seems like it is best suited for taller people.
The original tester was able to easily rest her back against it at 5-feet 8-inches while the shorter tester felt swallowed by the chair at 5-feet 3-inches. While its large armrests made it easy to balance a plate for food, Keter is nothing special looks-wise. But it gets the job done if you’re looking for something utilitarian and comfortable.
Made of weather-resistant polypropylene, the Keter is very sturdy and easily passed the pressure washer test. It is easy to assemble and only requires a few steps.
This chair would’ve scored higher but two major flaws prevented this. It isn’t very tip-resistant and overheats in the sun to the point where it is uncomfortable. That said, it comes in a wide array of lighter colors, which may stay cooler in direct sunlight.
The Perfect Choice comes in a huge variety of colors and expert assembly is offered. It is also foldable for easy storage and the recycled plastic is weather-resistant. Other than that, there isn’t much to like about this chair.
It scored the lowest in comfort as it is stiff and has a major lack of lumbar and lower back support. It is also very narrow and was equally uncomfortable for the 5-feet 6-inch tester and the 5-feet 3-inch tester. It’s too expensive when you consider how little our testers enjoyed sitting in it.
In fact, the first tester wanted to switch to our Best Overall pick halfway through the barbecue because he was so uncomfortable. It isn’t ugly, per se, but the design is nothing to write home about.
It’s also heavy and hard to move despite passing the pressure washer test with flying colors. While you can easily balance a plate of food on the arm, the original tester wanting to switch chairs tells us everything we need to know.
The Outsunny has exactly two features we liked. The cup holder is perfect for a summer barbecue and the chair stays cool in the sun. It’s complicated to assemble and not easy to store. The simple design also isn’t attractive.
The white paint began to peel after just a few days in the rain. There’s also a major lack of back support. The Outsunny just feels cheaply made, despite scoring decently in the pressure washer and plate test. It just isn’t built to last.
While it’s a good budget-friendly option, we’d recommend the Adams or the Keter if you’re looking to save money. In this case, you get what you pay for.
I’m Cailey Lindberg and I’m the Updates Staff Writer at Reviewed. My partner and I bought a house with a huge backyard a year ago and have already thrown three barbecues and a private music festival this summer. In other words, I was the perfect candidate for testing a social piece of furniture.
Testing in this guide was also completed by Eden Strong, one of Reviewed's valued freelance writers.
Since Adirondack chairs are largely centered around social activities, our first test consisted of a barbecue where we had testers of various heights sample each chair. They balanced plates of food on the arms, sat in the chair for two hours, and got in and out of them frequently. At the end of the barbecue, we had each tester fill out a short survey that centered on comfort, balancing plates of food, ease of use, and aesthetics.
We also left the chairs outdoors during the rainiest July on record here in New England to see how weather-resistant each one was. The chairs were rated on ease of assembly and storage, as most buyers won’t take apart the chairs each season. Our more technical tests included spraying each chair with a pressure washer to rate its build quality and using a luggage scale to see how tip-resistant each one is.
How to Choose the Best Adirondack Chair for You
The Adirondack chair has a long history, named “The Westport Chair” and originally designed by Thomas Lee, as a wooden chair for the outdoors. Another designer named Irving Wolpin also created a “lawn chair” that was better molded to the human shape and has come to define the modern Adirondack chair.
While there are different designs and materials used today, all Adirondack chairs can be traced back to the original “Westport Chair.” Adirondack chairs now come in many different shapes and sizes and can be used as a lawn chair or to compliment your front porch or back deck.
What Is the Best Material for Adirondack Chairs?
While Adirondack chairs come in a variety of materials, the most popular options are wood and plastic. There are pros and cons to both. Wood chairs are more attractive than plastic ones, but they are also more expensive. The material you choose is largely dependent on how long you want your chair to last and how much you want to spend on it.
Are Adirondack Chairs Durable?
Plastic chairs are more weather-resistant than wooden ones, but some versions are flimsy. We also found plastic chairs heat up less than natural wood chairs when left out in the sun. Wood chairs are often far more sturdy, but they are prone to weather damage and require more upkeep.
What Size of Adirondack Chairs Is Best?
That really depends on you. Our original testers were 5-foot 8-inches tall and 5 foot 3. Taller people will likely need larger chairs to be comfortable, while shorter individuals might need something smaller. Another factor to consider is your available outdoor space—if you have a limited amount of sitting space, you may want smaller patio chairs. Storage space should also be considered. Some of the chairs we reviewed were more difficult to store than others.
How to Clean an Adirondack Chair
When it comes to plastic Adirondack chairs, they’re relatively easy to clean, as they only require gentle dish soap and water. Air drying won’t damage the chairs and you can even try running a pressure washer on a sturdier plastic model if it is really dirty, just put it on a lower setting so that you don't accidentally damage the structure.
Beware that a lightweight plastic chair such as our Best Value might tip over if you run a pressure washer on it, so a garden hose might be better. While more weather-resistant than wooden chairs, we’d recommend storing them inside a shed as a way to protect them from the elements.
Wooden Adirondack chairs require more work to keep them looking their best because they are more prone to damage from outside weather. Excess water left on a wooden chair can cause it to rot, so it’s always best practice to cover or store them when they’re not in use. You will need to refinish some woods periodically to keep them from fading in the sun.
Like plastic chairs, gently scrubbing your wooden chair with soap and water is an effective way to clean it, although you may want to use an oil-based soap for natural woods. While you can use a pressure washer, it's better to rinse your wooden chair with a garden hose instead if you don't want to risk stripping the finish. We’d recommend you allow it to air dry before storing it to reduce your chances of mold or rotting.
Eden Strong is a freelance writer who lives in Chicago with her husband and three mostly well-behaved children. Her work can be seen on Yahoo, Huffington Post, Disney, Bustle, and more. She is also the founder and executive director of Rise From The Ashes, a nonprofit that provides legal representation to domestic violence victims.
Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.