Wooden and rattan furniture deserves to be looked after properly so that it lasts for years. Here’s how.

Make wooden furniture last
Wooden and rattan/wicker patio furniture is classy and timeless, which is why taking the time to look after it properly is so worth it. We love the classic natural beauty of wooden furniture, but to look it’s best and for it to last, it does need regular maintenance.

Two elements that can damage wooden furniture are UV rays from the sun, and water, while wear and tear from usage can also lead to damage.

Wooden furniture is not suited to being kept outdoors in the elements, but even outdoor furniture that is sheltered from direct sunlight and rainfall will need a treatment of sorts. Luckily, there are many different wood treatments to choose from.

Make wooden furniture last
A piece of furniture that has been treated with Fired Earth Velvet Wood Wax or another furniture oil will start to show when it needs a reapplication – the wood will start to dry out and become lighter in colour. When reapplying a furniture oil, first give the furniture a light sanding to remove grime, and the reapply the same product. Fired Earth Velvet Wood Wax is a deep-penetrating UV resistant liquid wax that will protect furniture against moisture as well, and the high wax content enhances the natural colour and grain of the wood.
Fired Earth Velvet Wood Varnish
Another option is Fired Earth Velvet Wood Varnish. Varnish is a highly protective finish that protects wood from damage by UV rays and water. It is also very durable and doesn’t need regular reapplication, but when it does need to be reapplied, the job is quite time consuming and labour intensive. A good sanding is needed before a new coat of varnish can be applied, and more than one coat is recommended. Varnish is often used on wooden window frames but can be used on any wooden furniture as well.

To keep wooden furniture in good condition, it’s a good idea to cover it with a sheet of clear plastic for day-to-day use. This will protect the wood from spills and dirt, and will also slow down how quickly the oil in the wood dries out. The plastic can easily be removed when you’re expecting friends.

Make wooden furniture last
Another classic natural type of furniture is wicker or rattan, which has been around for many years. Wicker is not suitable for varnishing – over time it will start to flake and look tired, and it is very difficult to reapply. Sanding each woven piece of cane is virtually impossible, and reapplication is almost as difficult. For this reason, wicker is not suitable for outdoor furniture where it is exposed to rain and sun – it will quickly deteriorate.

Keep wicker furniture clean by dusting it regularly with a feather duster or a blower. If the furniture gets dirty, simply wipe it down with a damp rag. A mix of mild detergent and water can be used if the furniture gets grimy.

Make wooden furniture last
Whether your furniture is wooden or wicker, we recommend covering it with a purpose-made set of covers if it’s not used daily. This will keep it clean and protect it from the sun and rain, reducing the need for care and maintenance.

Everything you need to look after your wooden furniture, as well as covers and even soft furnishings, is available from Builders, both in-store and online at Builders.co.za.

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