Monday, 8 July 2013

Should I Oil My Teak Furniture?

Teak furniture is prized for its stunningly attractive appearance combined with a superior level of durability. From shower benches and chairs to outdoor patio tables and chaise lounges, it's the perfect material for this job. However, one of the most common questions owners have regarding their teak furniture is whether or not they should oil it.

Unlike other hardwoods, teak contains a unique composition of all-natural oils that work as preservatives. While other hardwood furniture may warp and rot under the constant strain of moisture, teak is able to maintain its appearance thanks to these natural preservatives. This is why authentic teak is a highly popular material used in the construction of outdoor and shower/bath furniture. Its natural preservatives offer a barrier of protection against the otherwise detrimental effects of moisture.

The Truth About Teak Oil

Some people assume that oiling teak furniture works as a preservative, but this isn't the case. Oiling your teak furniture may actually have the opposite effect by encouraging mildew and mold growth. The oily chemicals lock in surface moisture, creating ideal breeding grounds for mildew and mold colonies. Frequently drying your furniture with a towel will reduce the chance of this happening.

There are some advantages to oiling teak furniture, one of which is the natural protection against fading. Applying oil to your outdoor teak furniture 1-2 per year will help maintain its color. On the other hand, not oiling your outdoor teak furniture will likely result in a faded color over the course of several months. It's not a fast process, but constant exposure from the sun will gradually fade your teak furniture.

Of course, the faded look of outdoor teak furniture isn't necessarily a bad thing. In fact, many owners prefer the subtle vintage look of faded teak furniture. It's an off-white color that works well in most exterior home decor.

To Oil or Not To Oil?

The decision to oil teak furniture is something that only you can decide. With that said, indoor shower and bath teak furniture is generally best left unoiled. Since there's obviously no sun in the shower, your furniture won't fade. You can leave unoiled teak furniture in your shower for years and it will still possess the same coloring.

For outdoor teak furniture, though, some people may want to use an oil to preserve its color. A high-quality oil will prevent your outdoor furniture from fading. Just remember to apply it at least once or twice a year for maximum effectiveness.


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