How do I care for my wooden furniture? How do I care for my wooden furniture?

How do I care for my wooden furniture?

Premium wooden furniture can last a lifetime, but even the highest quality wood is susceptible to scratches and abrasions if it is not properly cared for. Specific cleaning and care instructions are despatched with each item direct from the supplier; however, please see the below for additional guidance.

Wooden items should be regularly dusted as airborne particles can build a filmy layer on the wood that scratches the surface. Frequent dusting can prevent this build-up and a dry, lint-free microfibre cloth should be used to avoid damage. In instances where dusting isn't sufficient, it may be necessary to clean soiled or sticky areas on a piece of furniture. Never use commercial multi-purpose cleaners, abrasives, solvents or glass cleaners as these can cause damage to the finish on the wood. A damp cloth that has been soaked in a mild soapy detergent can be used on these more complex areas; the area should then be dried immediately with a clean cloth. Always wipe the surface in the same direction as the grain. 

It should be noted that sunlight, heat and various other environmental factors can damage the surface of wooden furniture. Do not place furniture directly in front of uncovered windows, vents or fireplaces, as the light and heat can damage, fade and even warp or crack the wood. To avoid rings and heat damage, we would always recommend the use of coasters or trivets when setting vases, glasses, mugs, crockery or pans onto wooden furniture. For additional protection, we recommend using felt pads on coasters or trivets which encounter the furniture. To avoid indentations caused by writing instruments, always use a writing pad. To avoid marking and scratching, you should also avoid pulling or dragging any objects across the surface. All items should be lifted and then repositioned accordingly. 

For a quick-fix touch-up, there are furniture pens and crayons which are available to use. Be sure to match the colour as closely as possible. You should always follow the product's instructions closely and we advise testing a small inconspicuous area first to ensure a satisfactory result is achievable.

Depending on the specification of the finish, the furniture may have a wax protective coating. As these pieces age and the coating wears away, it may be required to re-apply the wax to the surface for continued protection. Preparation should begin by rubbing the surface with fine wire wool following the wood grain, wiping clean with a soft dry cloth to remove any residue. Then a thin coat of wax should be applied and spread with a clean cloth or pad. You should only use light pressure and always follow the direction of the grain. Do not allow the wax to set for more than 20 minutes and be sure to remove any excess wax with a clean cloth or pad and buff until the surface feels smooth to the touch.

Your piece of furniture could have an oil coating applied which can become dry and may require re-oiling. Preparation can begin by cleaning the surface with a sugar soap solution or equivalent and then be rubbed down with wire wool, always working with the grain. Liberally apply your furniture oil and let it soak into the wood for about 15 minutes before buffing with a clean pad or cloth. If you are going to apply a further protective coating, allow your furniture set for at least 24 hours before proceeding.

Teak wood is one of the most durable and stable hardwoods available. Due to its high density and natural oil content, teak is exceptionally tough and resistant to decay even when exposed to the elements. However, when left outdoors, teak furniture will naturally weather to a silver/grey colour as the pigments in the surface layer will begin to fade away. The amount of exposure will control the speed and level of change in colour and appearance. It will take approximately 12 months for the teak to weather completely, but it will remain in excellent structural condition despite the colour shift.

General cleaning of the furniture will help maintain its appearance and prevent the build-up of dirt and grime. The timber should be cleaned with warm soapy water and a soft-bristle brush or a mild abrasive. Some areas may take on their original colour when spot cleaned, but these will return to the silver-grey after some time. More stubborn stains and scratches can be removed with light-medium grade sandpaper. Following this, the wood may need re-oiling where necessary. For the longevity of the wood, we would recommend that coasters be used to protect from visible rings and watermarks left from glasses and mugs. 

If you have questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.