top of page

How to Restore Outdoor Teak Furniture: A Complete Guide


teak furniture outdoors looking really nice

Introduction

Teak is a beautiful wood, known for providing us with durable and supremely water resistant furniture. You’re probably here because you own some teak furniture yourself, and lately, it's not looking as beautiful as it once did. Not to worry! This post will be your complete guide to restoring your teak to its former glory. Everything you need to know is laid out below.

teak base that looks great outside

Quick Summary



What You’ll Need

  • Teak cleaner or soap and warm water

  • Garden hose

  • Sandpaper (medium to coarse-grit & fine grit)

  • Soft bristle brush / sponge / clean rag

  • Rubber gloves

  • Small bowl

  • Teak Finish/Oil

  • Power sander (optional) + dust mask + eye protection


Get Started!

1. Clean Your Teak

Removing the build up of dirt and grime on your teak furniture is essential to achieving a smooth finish in the final stages. Start by hosing off your furniture to remove any loose dirt.

Grab your soft brush, sponge, or rag and begin scrubbing with a teak cleaner or a simple soapy water solution. (Note that tools like a metal brush or steel wool are not recommended here, as they are too harsh.) For best results, work in small sections until you've cleaned the entire surface area.


Grab your hose and rinse your furniture once more. This step is important—leftover soap can interfere with the refinishing process and wear down your wood.


It can be tempting to want to speed this process up by using a pressure washer. This can minimize the time you will spend cleaning and sanding, but it is not recommended. A pressure washer will likely shred your teak and strip it of its natural oils. However, if you do decide to take this risk, apply your cleaning solution and spray your furniture on the lowest setting.


2. Repair & Replace

For minor damage, use teak wood filler. Simply apply the filler to cracks or holes and allow it to dry. You’ll sand the roughness away later.


More significant damage may call for a replacement of certain furniture pieces. Most hardware stores actually sell replacement slats or legs. Just be sure to buy the right size, type, and color of wood to make for a seamless blend.


3. Sand

Time to sand! This process will remove the outer layer of gray wood and any other leftover impurities. It is recommended that you use a medium to coarse-grit sandpaper. Use a finer grit if any rough patches persist. It is also recommended to avoid using a power sander, as they can be too aggressive with your wood. But realistically, a power sander is not a bad option if you have a lot of surface area to cover. Just be sure to wear a dust mask and eye protection if you go this route.


nice looking table made from crosscuts and slab


4. One More Wash

After sanding, use a handheld vacuum or brush to remove loose dust from the surface. In order to ensure that all the dust and debris are cleaned from your furniture, you’ll want to give it one more quick wash. Whip up a simple water and vinegar solution, and gently rub it on with your sponge or rag. Rinse off with your hose. Let your furniture air dry completely before moving on to the next stage.


5. Apply Finish

Now that your teak has dried, you’re going to apply a finisher to keep it protected. Many owners opt to skip this step and let the natural teak.


If you are wondering if you should or what to use as a finish, please check out our guide.


Pour your oil into a bowl. Dip a rag into the solution and rub it directly onto your furniture. We recommend you wear rubber gloves for this process. You can also choose to use a paint brush for application, but be wary of creating runny patches.


It’s a good idea to apply a second coat after this. Just give the first one a few hours to dry, and you should be good to repeat the process once more.


Conclusion

Now your beautiful teak furniture should be looking as good as new! In order to keep it this way, you’ll want to deep clean your furniture every two years and stain it once a year.


If this process is too much for you, or you simply don't have the time, it is definitely an option to have professionals restore your wood for you. Prices for this depend on the size and condition of your furniture, but you can expect to pay around 25% of the cost of a new piece of teak furniture.


Whether you do it yourself or hire some assistance, your teak furniture will thank you. And you’ll love its brand new look.


teak crosscuts one the ground


If you’re in the business for some new teak, or have any questions about the wood, keep Diamond Tropical Hardwoods in mind! All of our teak is sustainably sourced from Costa Rica and 100% FSC and FEQ certified. Read more here.


107 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All