Furniture is a big part of what makes your house feel like a home. Depending on your aesthetic and vibe, you might be drawn to wooden furniture as a way to add warmth and texture to your living quarters. But like anything you own, wooden furniture is prone to wear and tear – and it needs to be taken care of so it can last a lifetime.
To help you get the most out of your wooden pieces, here are five tips you can use to keep your furniture protected and looking fab for years to come.
Why cleaning wood furniture is important
Wood is a timeless natural material and a popular addition to any mid-century modern, farmhouse or vintage look. Wooden furniture can be frustrating to clean and accumulate dust, dirt and other damage over time.
Regular dusting and cleaning, plus the occasional waxing and polishing, can help protect the wood and keep it safe and looking as fresh as the day you brought it home.
How to remove stains from wood furniture
If you happen to spill something or leave a mug ring on wooden furniture, here’s a simple trick you can use. Grab an old toothbrush and apply a small amount of a non-gel toothpaste to the wood and start gently scrubbing in a circular motion, then wipe it clean with a damp cloth.
You can also use a homemade mixture of equal parts water and baking soda, too, with the same effect. But before you start cleaning any wooden furniture, make sure you dust it first!
1. Dust regularly
This might sound super simplistic, but dusting your wooden furniture helps. Airborne particles can land on your wooden furniture and build up a layer which can, over time, damage and scratch the wood’s surface.
Use a soft cloth to wipe surfaces clean and avoid rough materials when dusting – it might dull the wood’s natural sheen (and cause more damage than the dust!).
2. If the wood looks dry, re-oil or re-wax it
When wood is dry, it can crack and warp in shape. If you notice your wooden furniture looking a little lacklustre, invest in a bottle of furniture oil or wax (depending on the type of wood and condition it’s in) and follow the instructions to breathe life back into tired looking furniture.
3. Avoid the elements
Excess sunlight and water can have dramatic effects on your wooden furniture. Sunlight can fade the wood and water might bring mold. Try to put your wooden furniture in places away from direct sunlight, heat or where it will be at the mercy of the weather!
How to clean grime off wood furniture
If there grime buildup on your wooden furniture? There are a few different methods you can use to get rid of it.
A simple way to remove grime is to:
- First dust the surface, then use a toothbrush to scrub any grime out of the corners and edges and vacuum up the debris as you go;
- Next, create a mixture of dishwashing detergent and water and dip a soft cloth in it (one thing to remember is that water isn’t a friend to wood, so only use a damp cloth, otherwise your furniture might become waterlogged)
- Continue to alternate between the toothbrush and damp cloth until all the grime is gone.
Industrial wood cleaners can also be used to remove grime, but make sure you check out the care instructions for your furniture before you start, as harsh chemicals might strip the wood of varnishes and polish.
4. Get to know your materials
Regardless of what type of furniture it is, getting to know the wood it’s made from will help you take care of it better. At Koala Living, we have a range of different woods across each and every range, so let’s take a look at a few common types of wood and how you can better look after them.
One of the most sustainable woods on the market, mango wood is popular for its beautiful grain. If you have a piece of furniture with mango wood, like this Rafiki Dining Cabinet, avoid using water to clean it and use a soft damp cloth regularly to keep the dust at bay.
As a fast-growing evergreen tree, Acacia wood is typically used for tableware or fine furniture, like our Dynasty Dining Table. To keep this wood looking good, wipe surfaces clean using a damp cloth and apply furniture wax right after you clean. This will help restore the shine of the wood each time.
This is a particularly hardy wood, found in our Forest Sideboard for instance, can last years without any treatments. Depending on the desired aesthetic effect, you might like to condition this wood with decking oil a few times a year – but make sure you check the care instructions before you start.
5. Don’t mistreat your wooden furniture
We’ve left this one til last as a gentle reminder: treat your furniture kindly and it will have a better chance of lasting the distance. This means using coasters for glasses, wiping up any spills right away and using a tablecloth or other fabric as a barrier to potential stains.
Shop our collection of wooden furniture
At Koala Living, we have a wide selection of indoor and outdoor wooden furniture designed to compliment any taste. Shop online or in-store, plus enjoy exploring new arrivals of homewares and other cosy items to deck out your favourites spaces at home.