A porch swing adds a certain level of magic to any front porch or patio.
In fact, some of my fondest memories involve swinging back and forth on a cool summer evening, hand in hand with my wife. But nothing interrupts a serene moment like that than the creaking of an old porch swing!
Since you’re here, you also know the pain of a porch swing making noise and interrupting you when you’re trying to put the moves on your partner/loved one. Stick around, because Captain Patio is going to give you a list of things to help stop a porch swing from squeaking.
I won’t bury the lede.
There are 5 main things you can do to stop your porch swing from making noise:
- Clean the porch swing hardware
- Use some old rubber
- Apply a lubricant
- Brace the wood
- Replace your hardware
That doesn’t seem so bad, does it? Let’s dive in and explore these techniques.
Clean The Hooks and Mounting Hardware
Specifically, you’re looking to clean any debris from the metal-to-metal connection. This means anything from in and around the mounting hardware to the swing hook.
To do this, you’ll have to first remove the swing. Then scrub both attachments with warm water and dish detergent (I recommend Dawn). Re-attach the swing to the mounting hardware and you’re done!
Sit down in the swing and give it a try. Is the creaking still present? If so, don’t worry. We have a few other approaches to solve the issue.
You can actually use old bicycle tires or other pieces of scrap rubber to reduce the creaking of your porch swing.
All you need to do is place the scrap rubber between the metal on metal contact you cleaned above. This will likely reduce/eliminate any noise the swing is making. This is assuming that the noise occurring between the porch swing chain and the swing mount hardware.
Rubber is an extremely durable material that can stand up to the persistent friction and tension that a patio swing will inflict. The tension of the swing will simply stretch the rubber, the friction will simply heat it up.
It’s a perfect material for this particular problem.
Apply A Lubricant
If you don’t have any scrap rubber available, you can also apply an outdoor lubricant to stop your porch swing noises in their tracks. Since a porch swing is an exterior fixture, grease is a great option for metal-on-metal setups.
However, I would avoid grease if the hardware was mounted on visible wood. If you were to get the grease on the wood, you’d have a major mess on your hands. Also, cleaning grease off of wood is almost impossible!
So, can you use grease to get a porch swing to stop squeaking? Yes, but be prepared to clean up a mess if you have a wooden porch swing.
Instead of grease, you can try a silicone spray like this, although I doubt it will stop the noises for longer than a few weeks.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many lubricants that will stop a creaking porch swing without also soaking into the wood!
Brace The Wood
At this point, cleaning, using rubber as a friction dampener, and applying a lubricant hasn’t worked. It’s very possible that the problem lies with the wood itself. If the swing is causing the wooden studs to shift, the creaking may be coming from the nails from within.
If this is the case, the only thing you can do is try to brace the wood the swing is hanging from.
Screw a piece of reinforcement wood in the corner between the stud the swing is hanging from and the joist the stud is attached to. The screws should be attaching this piece of wood to both.
If this still hasn’t solved your problem, there’s one thing left you can try.
Replace Swing Mounting Hardware
If all else fails, you can replace the hardware to hang your porch swing.
This is the most labor-intensive of all the options, but it can worthwhile if everything else fails.
First, take a look at your existing hardware. Take a picture of the hardware before heading out to a home improvement store. Ideally, you’ll be able to find a replacement swing hanger with identical bolt holes.
If you can, this task just got a lot easier. If you can’t, you’ll need to drill new holes into the wood.
(Bonus) Learn to Love It
Alright, this is cheating. But if you’ve tried everything above, you’ve put a lot of effort into stopping your porch swing from squeaking. It might be worth it to learn to love the sound it makes. After all, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.
We wrote about this and more in our series on porch swings. Click on that link to find out more than you ever thought you’d want to know about porch swings.