HOW DO YOU WEATHERPROOF OUTDOOR WOOD FURNITURE

Whether eating lunch outdoors or lazing around the swimming pool enjoying the wonderful outdoor weather during the summer months, choosing outdoor furniture can be rather daunting. 

There are so many varieties to choose from and so many aspects to consider when choosing your outdoor furniture.

Aluminium outdoor furniture is easy to clean and light to carry around, but should you live in an area where the southeaster wind blows, this may not be the ideal furniture for you. Woven outdoor furniture is heavier and unlikely to blow around as much as solely aluminium furniture would.  There is also the option of discretely weighing it down. This type of outdoor furniture is easily cleaned by hosing it down.

While wooden outdoor furniture is more luxurious and comfortable, the maintenance of outdoor wood furniture can be overwhelming.  However, it need not be so with a few simple tips.

outdoor wood furniture
Outdoor wood furniture – image by mikebirdy

Outdoor furniture is exposed to the harsh weather conditions of Southern African living.  The unforgiving sun; the incessant rain and the cold frosty winters all play a part in the conditioning of outdoor furniture. Untreated wood could result in either swelling and/or rotting from excess moisture or warping and splitting due to excessive heat.  

Whichever the case may be, the question remains…

How do you weatherproof your outdoor wood furniture?

There are many options available to choose from, but in this instance, we are highlighting the three most popular options. Before selecting your choice of weatherproofing, consider the type of wood your outdoor wood furniture is made of.

Oil

  • Best used on light coloured or new wood as it tends to enhance the colour keeping it as natural as possible.
  • Protects as the wood absorbs the oil
  • Seasonal Maintenance
  • Easily obtainable
  • Linseed and Tung oils are the most common of the oils having been used for centuries
  • Simply apply with a clean cloth by rubbing it onto the wood
  • Natural oils, so not toxic

Varnish

  • Best for older woods that have previously been coated with varnish
  • Slightly more labour intensive as the item will require sanding before adding a new coat
  • Regardless of the brand of varnish used sanding and reapplication of a ‘fresh’ coat would be necessary every year to ensure the longevity of your wooden outdoor furniture.
  • Peeling as a result of harsh sun and extreme cold
  • Annual Maintenance
  • Can contain chemical solvents

Creosote

  • Perfect for sleeper-wood furniture as well as most dark woods
  • Offers the best protection from fungi, termites and a variety of beetles.
  • Good for waterproofing and offers protection from heat as well
  • Highly toxic
  • Penetrates the wood and only requires reapplication after a few years.
Creosote treatment to weatherproof outdoor wood furniture
Creosote treatment – image by Pexels Matej

The decision is yours entirely, whether you love the smell of freshly oiled wood, the look of immaculately varnished wood or the durability of creosote coated wood.

We hope and trust that our overview gives you some insight into which option will best suit your needs to weatherproof outdoor wood furniture.