Care and Maintenance Tips for Your Outdoor Teak Furniture

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Care and Maintenance Tips for Your Outdoor Teak Furniture

Renowned for its beautiful golden-brown tones, teak is an exceptionally durable hardwood native to South and Southeast Asia. Teak wood’s high natural oil content enhances its strength, resilience, and rot resistance, making it an ideal material for garden and patio furniture.

While teak wood is relatively impermeable and needs very little maintenance to retain its curb appeal, you should not indefinitely ignore your outdoor teak furniture. Prolonged neglect can leave your prized teak pieces dirty and discolored, effectively ruining their aesthetic charm.

Fortunately, a little care can go a long way in preserving outdoor teak furniture. Here are a few teak furniture care tips you can follow to keep your pieces in premium condition for decades.

1. Clean Your Teak Furniture Regularly

How often clean teak furniture

Imagine arranging a summer backyard barbecue, only to realize that your garden furniture is filthy. Frustrating, isn’t it?

Outdoor furniture is a magnet for dirt, bird droppings, and mold. And, while you cannot get rid of these natural contaminants, you can set up a dedicated cleaning routine for your exterior pieces.

Regular cleaning can work wonders for your outdoor teak furniture. Generally, it’s best if you scrub the pieces with a stiff bristle brush at least four times a month. Doing this will remove dirt, leaves, cobwebs, and other debris from the wood’s surface. Always remember to follow the wood’s natural grain to avoid scratching its smooth finish.

Once in a while, wash your teak furniture with a heavily diluted solution of dishwashing soap and warm water. Apply the solution to the furniture and let it sit for five minutes. Next, you can either wipe the wood surface with a soft cloth or hose it down. Be sure to dry your teak furniture completely after each cleaning session.

2. Remove Spills As Soon as Possible

Remove spills as soon as possible

Accidental spills are inevitable. And, if not removed instantly, they can leave a nasty stain on your precious patio furniture.

To prevent this, clean up any oil, chemical, or food spills from your teak furniture as quickly as possible. When you spot a stain, use a stiff bristle brush or plastic to remove it gently. Again, always scrub in the direction of the wood grain.

In case scrubbing the stain doesn’t help, try washing it with a dilute mixture of water and wood cleaner. For stubborn stains, you can sand the area with a fine-grit sandpaper. Avoid using steel wools, scrubbing pads, and metal brushes, as they may damage the wood’s finish.

3. Move Teak Furniture Carefully

Sure, teak is tough. But you’ll still want to handle your furniture carefully. For example, dragging or pulling your furniture across the floor will generate a lot of friction and, in turn, erode the wood.

Instead, follow these best practices to move your pieces.

  • First, determine how your furniture is put together. Does it have any detachable parts? Where are its strongest points located?
  • Examine the space where you want to move the furniture. Identify pain points. Ceramic plant pots, for example, are fragile and prone to breaking. Try and clear the way by removing these potential obstacles.
  • Make sure you know exactly where to place the furniture. Have somebody guide you so that you don’t crash into walls or other items around the patio.
  • Don’t rush. You’re more likely to scratch your gorgeous teak chaise lounge if you move it in a hurry.
  • Lift your furniture to move them across a space. In case you cannot do it alone, get someone to lend you a hand.
  • Always ensure you have a firm grip on the item. A single slip can lead to devastating consequences.

4. Apply Teak Sealers

Teak sealant better alternative

As mentioned, natural teak has an unmistakable honey brown tone. However, as the wood ages and loses more of its oils, the golden-brown hue gradually fades to a silver-gray patina. This process is known as weathering.

While some homeowners enjoy the look of weathered teak, others want to retain the wood’s initial brown shade. The most effective way to do this is by adding a teak sealer or protector to your teak furniture care routine.

Teak sealants keep the wood’s natural oils from depleting, thus delaying the weathering process. Additionally, sealers also protect the wood from UV radiation, molding, and water damage.

There are plenty of teak sealers available in the market, so you must conduct enough research before investing in a worthy product.

In this regard, we suggest you steer clear of teak oils. Oiling your outdoor teak furniture can lead to a slew of problems and maintenance-related issues. Quality teak has all the oils it needs to thrive outdoors, which is why you should stick to sealants and protectors.

5. Place the Furniture in Moderate Temperature

Place furniture in moderate temperature

Even though teak sealers can handle anything nature throws at them, overexposure to hot temperatures can cause the teak wood to dry and shrink. Eventually, this can lead to cracking.

We suggest that you avoid placing outdoor teak furniture in direct sunlight, especially if you live in a hotter climate. Also, in case you plan to store your furniture inside during the winter, be sure to keep it away from heaters.

6. Safeguard Your Teak Furniture Against Mildew

For people living in humid areas, fighting mildew is part and parcel of owning outdoor furniture. Thankfully, teak’s natural oils prevent the wood from succumbing to a mold attack. But mold and mildew can still pose a threat to your furniture, and more importantly, your health.

We usually warn people against using high-pressure washers to spray the mold off of their furniture. This is because the intense pressure stream can damage your furniture for good. Instead, you can use various homemade solutions to remove the mold growing on your teak pieces.

And, if you don’t have enough time for a full-fledged teak furniture care routine, you can always turn to a professional teak cleaning company for help.

The Bottom Line

There are many perks to owning teak outdoor furniture. As opposed to other types of wood, teak requires little to no upkeep to stay in good shape. By following these easy and effective teak furniture care tips, you’ll be able to preserve your precious pieces for longer.

Need some help with teak furniture care in San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles County? Look no further than Teak & Deck Professionals! We offer an extensive range of refinishing and sealing services to revitalize your outdoor teak furniture. Having been in the business for years, we know exactly what to do to brighten your patio pieces. To know more or request a quote, feel free to reach out to us today!

Published on: Nov 18, 2020

Updated on: Dec 1, 2021

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Drew Isaacman

Drew Isaacman is the owner and founder of Teak & Deck Professionals, a leading restoration company specializing in teak, exotic wood, concrete, and stone. With a passion for preserving outdoor assets, Drew has built a team of skilled professionals dedicated to providing exceptional service to clients in San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles. His expertise in wood restoration and refinishing, combined with his commitment to customer satisfaction, has earned Teak & Deck Professionals a reputation for excellence in the industry. Drew's dedication to protecting and revitalizing outdoor spaces ensures that clients can enjoy their valuable assets for years to come.