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How to Take Better Care of Your Timber Furniture

Furniture Care

April 26, 2019

Adding timber furniture will enhance any decor choices that you make for your home, but it’s important to understand that timber is a natural product and it does need proper care. Natural timber is more vulnerable to minor scratches, scuffs, and chips when compared to metal, composite or plastic materials. Every piece of timber furniture needs to be regularly cleaned, dusted, polished and refinished to keep it in great shape. Here are some essential cleaning and care tips for your timber furniture.

Understanding Your Finish

Before you can clean and take care of your timber furniture, you will need to know what kind of finish it has. Certain cleaning products contain chemicals that will react badly with your timber surfaces and cause damage. Some wooden furniture is unfinished, but it’s more likely that a protective coat of finish has been applied to keep out moisture. This protective finish could be a stain, wax, lacquer, shellac or chemical sealant material. If you’re in any doubt stick to using warm water with a neutral soap and this will be more than adequate for most timber furniture cleaning.

How to Clean Finished Timber Furniture

The majority of finishes will respond well to the aforementioned cleaning with simple dishwashing detergent mixed with warm water. The only real exception is wax, in this case, use soap flakes rather than dishwashing detergent or use a commercial wax cleaning product instead. Always use a clean and soft cleaning cloth when you clean your timber furniture to minimise the chance of scratching the surfaces. When the cleaning is finished always dry the furniture thoroughly with a soft, clean towel.

Polishing or Waxing?

Many people use a scented spray polish on their timber furniture, and this is a bad idea. Certain spray polishing products don’t react well with a natural timber finish, and they can even leave behind a sticky residue that’s hard to remove. When you polish wood all you’re really doing is applying a chemical that makes the surfaces shiny. The polish offers no additional protection to the finish, it can make the surface slippery, and this can lead to accidents that damage the surface. A typical polish will contain a high volume of oil that will smear the surface and make fingerprints very obvious.

When you wax your furniture, it’s a very different process, adding wax will give your furniture an additional layer of protection. A coat of wax can last a long time if it’s applied correctly and it can only be removed with an appropriate solvent. Waxing a piece of furniture takes longer than polishing, but it will last longer, and it will help to protect the wood. Dust the surface thoroughly, then apply the wax and rub it in using small circles until every surface is covered. Then get a clean cloth and buff the wax in circles in the opposite direction to how the wax was applied. Once the wax has dried, you can then keep the dust off with a simple feather duster.

If you’re looking for high quality Australian made timber furniture visit us at Jarrimber today.

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