Nothing screams summer memories like a circle of Adirondack chairs around a fire pit. It’s one of the more social pieces of outdoor furniture you’ll own and has a way of bringing friends and family together. The best part? It can also be enjoyed solo with a good book and a lakeside view. While we only tested the traditional chairs for this guide, there are many different types of Adirondack chairs. Even with basic models, there is still a lot to consider when making your purchase.
We spent weeks testing the best sellers on the market to find the perfect blend of comfort, design, and durability. If you’re looking for a chair that will last you for years to come, we recommend our Best Overall, the Lifetime Adirondack Chair(available at Amazon for $199.98), as it’s sturdy, attractive, and offers good lumbar support.
At a more affordable price point, our Best Value, the Adams RealComfort Adirondack Chair (available at Lowes), is another great option for a cheaper price if you are just looking for a basic and comfortable chair that’ll get the job done. No matter your specific preference, we’re confident that our choices will have you covered.
Here are the best Adirondack chairs we tested, ranked in order:
L.L. Bean All-Weather Waterfall
Grandin Road Teak
Perfect Choice Furniture Stanton Folding Chair
Outsunny Classic Wooden
Lifetime Adirondack Chair
The Lifetime hit 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 edge 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.
Crafted from durable polystyrene faux wood, the Lifetime has the classic look of wood Adirondack chairs at a reasonable cost. It’s also UV-protected and more weather resistant than the real wood chairs we tested. 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.
The chair has a weight limit of 300 pounds and is 31.1 inches wide and 36.9 inches tall. It weighs 37.4 pounds and was heavy to move during our tests. While 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.
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 lumbar (lower back), head, and neck support with a good give. Since the chair is made of lightweight plastic and more flexible, you can lean back in it easily.
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. And, at an assembled width of 30 inches and weighing only 7.25 pounds, it’s compact and easy to store. 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. The Adams RealComfort doesn’t require assembly as it is a one-part chair, so simply pop it out of the box and you’re ready to go. 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.
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. So, what better way to add to my social experiences in my outdoor space than finding the top Adirondack chairs for homeowners?
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.
What You Should Know About Adirondack Chairs
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 on your deck and compliment your patio furniture. Cup holders are always a desirable feature and smaller versions are available for kids. Some popular options include an Adirondack rocking chair, an Adirondack chair with an ottoman, and a double Adirondack chair. We did not test these types of Adirondack chairs for this guide, focusing on traditionally designed models instead.
Plastic Vs. Wood 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 much more attractive than plastic chairs and often far more sturdy, but they are prone to weather damage and require more upkeep. They also tend to be more expensive than their plastic counterparts.
Plastic Adirondack chairs are more weather-resistant than wooden chairs, but some versions are flimsy and not as sturdily built. We also found plastic chairs heat up less than natural wood chairs when left out in the sun. 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.
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.
Other Adirondack Chairs We Tested
L.L. Bean All-Weather Waterfall Adirondack 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.
At a height of 35 inches and a width of 25.5 inches, it’s an average-sized chair that shouldn’t need to be disassembled to store it. Its weight limit is 325 pounds and you should be able to move it relatively easily as it has an average weight of 34 pounds. Made of high-density polyethylene, this chair is built to withstand extreme weather and the company claims that it will never need to be repainted on the product page.
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.
If you’re hunting for a beautiful chair that will add a classy feel to your backyard, the All Teak Natural Chair is the right choice. Made of gorgeous teak wood, the All Teak is by far the most attractive Adirondack chair we tested. It’s weather-resistant and doesn’t require storage during a summer downpour. It won’t rot or splinter after exposure to the elements. Aside from aesthetics, this chair is very durable and did not budge during the pressure washer test.
The All Teak is able to accommodate heights of 5-feet 3-inches to 6-feet without difficulties and is easy to get in and out of. Although it doesn’t have wide armrests, it’s still easy to balance a plate of food because of its sturdy construction. Both testers said they’d use the chair again. At 38 inches high and a width of 28.5 inches, the chair is relatively easy to store. It’s lightweight enough to easily move at 22.5 pounds. The only reason why the All Teak didn’t score higher is that it’s very expensive and not as comfortable as other chairs we tested, with little lower back support.
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, with a weight limit of 350 pounds.
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 three major flaws prevented this. It’s not very tip-resistant, harder to store at 38 inches high and 31.9 inches wide, 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 at 38.25 inches wide and 36.5 inches high to make up for it. The simple design isn’t attractive but the chair is not weather-resistant despite being made of real fir wood.
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.
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