What is Teak Checking?
Teak wood is a popular choice for outdoor furniture due to its durability, water-resistant properties, and natural beauty. However, many buyers may not be aware of a common phenomenon called teak checking that can affect the appearance and quality of teak wood products.
In this article, we'll delve into the concept of teak checking and explore how weather conditions and other factors can impact the quality of teak furniture.
What is Teak Checking?
Teak checking refers to the small cracks or fissures that appear on the surface of teak wood over time. These cracks can occur naturally as the wood ages and dries out, or as a result of changes in temperature, humidity, or exposure to sunlight. While teak checking is a natural and expected occurrence in teak wood, its impact on the quality and appearance of teak wood products can vary depending on several factors.
Factors Affecting Teak Checking
- Types of Teak: There are two main types of teak wood available in the market - plantation teak and old-growth teak. Plantation teak is grown on plantations and harvested after only a few decades, while old-growth teak is sourced from natural forests and can be hundreds of years old. Old-growth teak is generally considered to be of higher quality due to its density, natural oils, and resistance to teak checking.
- Weather Conditions: Teak checking is more likely to occur in areas with fluctuating temperatures and humidity levels. Exposure to direct sunlight and dry conditions can cause the wood to dry out and crack, while exposure to rain and moisture can cause the wood to expand and contract, leading to cracking and checking.
- Water Resistance: The water-resistant properties of teak wood make it an ideal choice for outdoor furniture. However, exposure to water and moisture can also cause teak checking over.
- Maintenance and Care: Proper maintenance and care can help prevent teak checking and maintain the quality of teak wood products. This includes regular cleaning, use of teak oil or sealant, and protection from direct sunlight and harsh weather conditions.
How to fix Cracks/ Checking in Teak Outdoor Furniture
You will need: Epoxy Glue OR exterior wood glue. We recommend Selleys Exterior Wood Glue Aquadhere OR Gorilla Glue) Sawdust and sand paper 80grit and 120grit
Step 1. Clean surface
Step 2. Mix glue and saw dust into paste.
Step 3: Rub paste into crack against the grain of the crack (sideways not up and down)
Step 4: Leave to dry for 24hrs then sand
Step 5: Repeat step 3 & 4 if needed then sand with 120grit sand paper.
In conclusion, teak checking is a natural process that occurs in teak wood due to changes in weather conditions and moisture levels. While small cracks and splits may appear on the surface of teak furniture, they do not affect the structural integrity or quality of the wood. In fact, they can add character and uniqueness to the furniture. However, to ensure the longevity and appearance of teak furniture, it is important to choose high-quality, genuine teak wood and properly maintain it by regularly cleaning and applying teak oil or sealant.
By understanding the concept of teak checking and following proper maintenance techniques, consumers can make informed decisions when purchasing and caring for their outdoor teak furniture.
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