Even the best barbecue can be improved with the right lawn chair. Unfortunately, many lawn chairs look great in the store, but once you get them home they just don't deliver when it comes to comfort.

With many of the cheap chairs found in local home improvement stores or discount markets, the reason is simple. They aren't made for comfort and they aren't made to last, either. While it may be tempting to load up on lawn chairs made from plastic, they just won't perform for you over time.

That's because they don't weather well. Eventually the sun takes its toll, and these already wobbly, uncomfortable seats will crack and finally fail. As the old saying goes, "You get what you pay for."

If you really want comfortable lawn chairs that are perfect for your barbecues, you'll want to invest in traditional wood, metal or wicker ones that will last for years with minimal care.

In choosing the right lawn chair, you want to consider your own lifestyle, décor and use. Entertaining at a backyard barbecue with family and friends is one of the true joys in life, but you want to make sure that the chairs match your own needs as well as those of your guests.

Wood is a classic choice and you really can't go wrong with a teak lawn chair that will age beautifully over time. Adirondack chairs are an American classic, which makes them a great choice as well for barbecues. These come in a wide range of styles, from benches and love seats to rockers and recliners.

If your tastes gravitate toward padded furnishings, you can go with a wicker lawn chair, which offers sublime comfort in the form of overstuffed cushions on the seat and back. While white wicker is the familiar style, you can get wicker in virtually any color imaginable. They really complement a deck or backyard that has a tropical feel or evokes images of long summers in Nantucket.

If you live in a location where winters can be fierce, you may want to forego the cushions. But that doesn't mean you have to live without comfort. Today's lawn chairs are built with comfort in mind, and many feature seating areas that are ergonomic in design, wrapping you in comfort and style.

If you entertain in different places in the yard, you may want to invest in comfortable lawn chairs that are easy to move. Thanks to some creative engineering you can purchase lawn chairs that fold up nicely when not in use yet are a far cry from the old folding chairs that we all learned to despise over the years. These chairs are stylish, portable and comfortable.

When it comes to comfort, it's hard to beat an old-fashioned rocker for an American barbecue. Comfort is the watchword of these chairs, which have gone from the porch of yesteryear to the backyards of homes everywhere. These aren't the rockers of your grandparents, that's for sure. You can purchase rockers in a wide range of styles, from traditional Adirondacks with rocker arms added to deep-seated wicker models that are elegant and extremely comfortable.

One of the keys to finding comfortable lawn chairs that are perfect for your barbecues is to find models that offer wider seating. Many of us have bottoms that are a little wider than they used to be and a little extra width can really add to the comfort of a chair. That's one of the problems with the cheap plastic ones you see; they don't seem to be designed with American bottoms in mind. No one wants to feel cramped at a barbecue. That's why investing in fine outdoor furnishings is a smart idea - since they are designed with today's guests in mind.

Another good tip is to purchase lawn chairs with arms. This may seem like a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised how many shoppers overlook this detail when buying comfortable lawn chairs. Arms not only give your guests a place to relax their weary arms, but it makes it easier to balance a plate brimming with delicious barbecue. Some models have arms wide enough to even hold a drink, freeing up both of your guest's hands to enjoy a your famous BBQ ribs.

If you want to occasionally entertain at an outdoor table, you may want to purchase lawn chairs that can do double duty, offering a comfortable place to sit in the yard or on the deck while doubling as an outdoor dining chair. In this case, you may want to shop for side chairs that don't have extra wide arms or legs that jut out. This allows you to squeeze in a few more at the dinner table.

Most of the truly comfortable lawn chairs on the market today are made to weather nicely over the years, even if you leave them outdoors. Lawn chairs with cushions can easily endure an occasional shower without damage, but you may want to bring them inside during the harsher winter months. The wood itself usually needs minimal care. If your lawn chair isn't painted you may just need to treat it with a light sealer. Woods such as teak can weather without being treated, turning from a warm honey color to a light gray as they age outdoors.

If you want to add character to your outdoor entertainment, you really can't go wrong with comfortable lawn chairs that will age nicely or require minimal maintenance from year to year.