How to Protect and Maintain Outdoor Wooden Furniture

For South Africans, December really is the most wonderful time of year – when we get to spend more time outdoors braaiing and enjoying the warmer weather. If you’ve invested in beautiful outdoor wooden furniture, make sure you’re extending the lifespan of your pieces by protecting and maintaining them as best you can from the harsh outdoor elements.

When you purchase outdoor furniture from Homewood, you can rest assured that you are receiving a superior quality wood product, and that the durability of the wood has been tried, tested, and adequately treated to withstand the harsh South African climate.

Maintain with Oil

We recommend maintaining your outdoor wood furniture by coating it with Danish oil. The use and application of regular oil to wood furniture will preserve and protect it. All our Homewood products come with a maintenance booklet with a detailed guide on how to do this, as well as a sample bottle of the correct oil to use.

Depending on how you want your outdoor furniture to age, you can apply as much or as little oil as you would like to. If you want the wood to gain character as it ages, you wouldn’t oil it as regularly. If you want to keep the wood in pristine condition, then you should oil it more often. Ian Perry, Homewood owner and founder, recommends following his general rule of thumb for an immaculately kept outdoor furniture piece, “- if it looks dry, put oil on and nourish it.”

This is an example of a table and chair, made from Japanese Cedar, that has been trialed by the Homewood team. This furniture has been left outside and exposed to the elements for over 6 months, and you can see a clear difference between the wood that has been oiled and maintained, and the wood that has not.

Picture: Ian Perry, Homewood.

The sun acts as a harsh bleach, stripping the wood of its rich colour. The characteristic ‘silver’ appearance is indicative of a wood that has been poorly maintained.

Furniture Covers

Although furniture covers may seem ideal, they can often accelerate the deterioration of outdoor wood furniture. The hot sun can increase humidity and temperatures underneath furniture covers can skyrocket to 60 – 70 degrees Celsius. This in turn accelerates rot. We recommend rather leaving covers off and simply maintaining with a good oil. Furthermore, keep your furniture under some sort of roof when you’re not using it to prolong the lifespan of your product.

Contact the expert team at Homewood for advice on how to further maintain your outdoor wood furniture. If you’ve purchased your furniture from us, you can trade your old furniture in and receive credit against the cost of new Homewood furniture pieces that you would like to buy. Find out more about our buy back and trade in policy here. We will come and collect your old furniture free of charge, refurbish it and then value it.

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