Maintaining Solid Oak Furniture

There are many reasons for choosing solid oak over other types of wood, but one of the most important is that oak is able to last, even prosper, for a greater length of time than the rest. Although soft and pliant when young, oak wood soon hardens and becomes tougher and tougher with age, which explains why it has long been the favored choice of carpenters and builders.

But this doesn’t mean that solid oak furniture doesn’t also benefit from some care and attention from time to time. The good news for anyone thinking about investing in piece of quality oak furniture is that it will be easy to maintain in order to keep it looking at its best. Here are some useful tips for keeping your oak furniture in perfect condition.

Where to place solid oak furniture

The position you select for your piece of solid oak furniture can have an important effect on its long term health; a well-positioned piece of oak furniture will be better able to stand the test of time. Make sure that wherever you place it, there is at least a one inch gap between the back of the item and the wall. This will help the air to flow around the whole piece, thus stabling its temperature, which will help to keep it in good condition for the long haul.

Be careful not to put the item too close to a radiator, as excessive exposure to heat will badly damage the wood. Also, remember that the colour of the wood will be altered slightly by sunlight after a certain period of time. It’s a good idea to change the position of the item from time to time to avoid patches of discolouration appearing. If you are placing your oak furniture on a wooden floor, use felt or a similar material on the feet as a buffer so that neither surface is damaged.

Maintaining solid oak furniture

Oak furniture will always require your care and attention at certain times, but as it improves with age, you will need to do so less and less to keep it looking beautiful as the years go by. The precise way it will be necessary to maintain your piece of solid oak furniture will depend on its type of finish.

If you have a lacquer finished item, you should use a damp cloth, with no detergent, at regular intervals. Wax finished furniture will require a wax polish, at least twice a year at first. With oil finished oak furniture, it’s a good idea to apply linseed oil every few months to maintain its water resistance.

Whichever type of finish you apply, always test the finish on a small unseen area first to check for compatibility. Let the finish dry completely before you put anything else on the surface. Your new piece of solid oak furniture will come with instructions on how to keep it looking as good as possible. Follow these instructions carefully, and you will be able to enjoy your piece of quality furniture for many years to come.