Teak Furniture Care

Teak is unique because it produces its own natural oils that make it very low on maintenance in comparison to other types of outdoor wood furniture. Furthermore, teak oil prevents water and moisture from sinking into the wood that can cause dry rot.If you don’t mind the grayish patina teak will develop overtime, teak requires virtually no maintenance and can be left on the patio without much more than an occasional dusting to keep it in pristine condition.  Below I will show you how to clean and care for your teak furniture as well as how to remove the silvery patina.

Teak is easy to clean. You can clean it using a brush and mild-dish soap.  Always scrub with the grain for best results. You can do this prior to the outdoor summer season. After this, you can usually just dust off your furniture with a soft cloth.To remove heavy stains, you can lightly sand away these areas with fine-grit sandpaper. Refer to the section below to learn how to sand teak furniture. Grease stains are another beast, but you can still get them out. You will need a commercial grade teak cleaner that can be purchased online or at a local hardware store.

Lightly sanding teak wood will reveal a fresh and glowing finish below the surface level. This will restore the original honey brown glow. Sanding can be a bit more difficult on furniture that has hard to reach areas, so you have to work around these spots by hand. Once you’re finished sanding and removing dust, you can move on to seal the wood to preserve the hues of the wood.

Teak sealant will typically last you a full year. You can find protective sealant to lessen the effects of the sun’s rays on your furniture. To apply teak sealant, leave your furniture out in the sun for 2 weeks to open up the grain. This will help the sealer adhere correctly. Then, spray the area with sealer using a steady hand. Next, rub the sealer into the wood using a lint-free cloth. Apply an additional coat of sealant for an optimum finish.

It’s important to keep in mind that once you apply a teak sealer, your furniture will hold the color that it has at the time of sealing. This means that if you seal your teak when it still has the original golden color, it will not age to the silver-gray look.

Teak requires maintenance. Whether you let it grey and simply keep it clean by hosing it off every week or if you decide to seal it with a marine grade sealer, it must be kept up or the teak will just age, weather and turn a dirty grey/ black color.  The key is to not let the teak get to that dirty condition. If you choose to not seal the teak, all you have to do is every week or every other week, simply remove the cushions from the teak furniture and hose it down with a garden hose. This will keep the teak clean and free of dirt and debris and allow it to age and patina nicely. If you want to keep the golden color of teak, then the teak, when new or freshly sanded needs to be sealed with either a marine grade sealer or a teak oi. Many folks will tell you that teak oil is not good for teak but that is false. Teak oil if used properly and not left to harden on the surface can look very nice will protect the teak against aging and premature greying.

Teak sealers are also a good option and many teak sealers can leave the teak looking more natural since they do not have oils in them.

Teak requires some annual maintenance to keep it looking great. If your teak is looking dirty and grey, then you will need to restore the teak to bring back it’s natural looking color. The best way to restore your teak is to clean it using a stiff bristle brush or 3M pad. You can use a mixture of Simple Green and water to scrub each piece clean, hosing it off as you clean it and repeating the process to get the teak clean. Once the teak is clean and free of dirt and debris, you can sand it using a 100 – 120 grit sandpaper and then use a teak sealer or oil to protect it and maintain the color. Teak does require some annual maintenance to keep it looking great but with proper maintenance, it can last a lifetime.