Teak is well-known as one of the strongest, most durable hardwoods. It is excellent for decks, porches, and outdoor furniture items. Teak is sturdy and able to withstand the elements. Shipbuilders have used it in the construction of ships for hundreds of years.
Today, teak has become one of the top choices for outdoor patio and garden furniture, and this stunning golden honey-brown wood is one of the latest trends. Not only does it look gorgeous, but you can rely on it to last for ages – you won't need to think about replacing it every year, as might be the case with cheaper wooden furniture types.
You're making an excellent investment when you choose teak furniture for your outdoor space. Teak garden furniture items are neutrally coloured and versatile, so no matter how often you like to change your garden's look, it will stand the test of time when you know how to look after teak garden furniture correctly. In fact, with the proper care and maintenance, your teak garden furniture can quickly become a treasured family heirloom that you can pass down through the generations.
How to Look After Teak Garden Furniture
The good news is that thanks to its natural oil content and high durability, teak furniture can be kept in excellent condition and last for a long time with minimal care and maintenance.
Cleaning the surface from time to time is sufficient for many pieces. You can also treat the teak to prevent signs of ageing from showing and preserve the stunning golden honey colour for as long as possible.
We recommend storing your teak furniture in a light, dry place wherever possible. You can use a furniture cover during wet weather, but as with any material stored outdoors, it’s important to ensure that the wood is kept well-ventilated to avoid damp and mould.
How to Clean Teak Garden Furniture Correctly
Here’s how to clean teak garden furniture in a few simple steps:
- Start by rinsing the teak product using a hosepipe on a medium or low setting. Avoid using high pressure as this will cause damage to the wood.
- Gently scrub the furniture using a bucket of water and a sponge or smooth brush.
- Scrub with the grain rather than against it; gently scrub in corners and between cracks. If using a brush, use gentle pressure to avoid damaging the wood.
- Rinse the teak product with the hosepipe on low to medium pressure again.
- Use a dry cloth to wipe the teak product.
- Allow the teak to dry naturally in the sunlight wherever possible.
Teak's Natural Ageing Process
When a piece of teak furniture is new, it will be a honey-brown colour, which is the natural state of the teak. However, when the table, chairs, or other furniture items are put outside and exposed to the elements over time, you will see them slowly change from a honey-brown shade to a stunning silvery grey.
The change is a natural, normal process and will not affect your teak's longevity or durability. Some people like the weathered look, but if it's not for you, the correct maintenance will help you maintain the warm, honey-brown shade.
How to Maintain Teak's Honey Brown Colour
If you want to keep your teak furniture a gorgeous shade of warm honey brown for as long as possible, then it's essential to know how to treat teak garden furniture correctly.
Using a teak cleaner is the most effective way to prevent your teak furniture from turning grey over time. Follow these steps:
- Use water, a cloth, or a soft brush to remove any stains from the teak.
- Scrub with the grain rather than against it, and get into corners, nooks, and crannies.
- Purchase your teak cleaner here. Apply the teak cleaner, rub it with a soft cloth, and allow it to dry.
Once you've cleaned your teak furniture, you can apply a teak sealer. Sealing is the best way to prevent the colour from greying further and preserve the stunning honey-brown colour. You can also use it on teak that has started going grey over time to restore the warm honey shade.
Apply the teak sealer with a brush, rag, or spray bottle. The teak cleaner should be applied around once or twice a year to ensure the best results and provide continuous protection to the teak.
What to Look for in a Teak Sealer
A good teak sealer will protect your furniture while it's outside and exposed to the elements. It will protect your furniture from UV rays and prevent mildew growth. Use an environmentally friendly treatment designed for teak, such as our teak shield treatment.
- Wash the teak furniture with a teak cleaner.
- Rub with a soft cloth.
- Allow the teak to dry naturally in the sun for around two weeks. Drying will open the grain.
- Spray with teak sealer, then use a clean cloth to rub it into the wood gently.
How to Remove Stains from Teak Furniture
We've all been there – after enjoying a cup of coffee in the garden in the morning throughout the summer, you might have noticed stains appearing on your teak furniture.
If you accidentally spill something that might stain your teak furniture, like tea or coffee, wipe it up quickly with soapy water and a soft brush or sponge to prevent it from spoiling.
If you want to remove stains already set into the teak, then a more thorough cleaning with teak cleaner should do the trick.
You can also lightly sand the top layer of the teak to remove surface stains. Use a rougher grade sandpaper at first, then a fine grade sandpaper to finish.
Using Oil on Teak Furniture
Teak is a wood that produces natural oil. The better the quality of the teak, the more oil it will make. Due to this, it is generally optional to use oil products on teak furniture as a part of your maintenance routine.
You can apply teak oils, but it is best to do this sparingly. Over time, using oils such as linseed oil, even though the furniture might look great immediately afterwards, can start to draw out the natural oils from the teak. The wood will become more reliant on external oils. The risk of mould and mildew is also higher.
Can You Varnish or Paint Teak?
Unlike other woods, teak should not be varnished or painted. The natural oils that teak produces prevent varnishes or paints from adhering well to the wood. Both products will chip quickly, and the teak might even look worse after painting or varnishing.
Dos and Don'ts
To summarise, the dos and don'ts for caring for your teak furniture are:
- Keep your teak furniture clean by regularly using clean water and gently washing it with a soft cloth, sponge, or soft-bristled brush.
- Use a teak sealing product around once or twice per year to maintain the golden honey-brown colour of the teak.
- Scrub in line with the grain when cleaning your teak furniture.
- Go against the grain when scrubbing teak furniture clean.
- Oil your teak; it produces enough natural oil of its own!
- Use stiff brushes or a hosepipe with high water pressure when cleaning or rinsing, as this can damage the teak.
- Use harsh chemicals when cleaning. Water alone is fine, or if your teak needs a deeper cleaning, use a specialist teak cleaner.
We hope you’ve found our guide to cleaning and maintaining your teak furniture useful. With the right care and upkeep, teak is a super-durable, resistant material that will last for many years.