How to care for wooden garden furniture

The ultimate guide to caring for, and maintaining, your wooden garden furniture.

We have curated a handy guide on the distinction between different hardwoods, the natural characteristics of wood, as well as how to care, maintain, and clean your wooden garden furniture. Failure to comply with the outlined care instructions for the wood will result in the warranty being invalidated, as natural products must be looked after so please read the below.

When comparing eucalyptus, acacia, and teak for outdoor use, it's important to consider various factors such as durability, maintenance, and appearance. Understanding these differences is crucial in deciding which hardwood furniture is right for you. Here's a breakdown of the characteristics of each wood type:

Acacia Eucalyptus Teak
Durability Durable and naturally resistant to deterioration and moisture. It's suitable for outdoor use and can withstand various weather conditions. However, it should be covered when not in use and not be left to the elements.
Similar to Acacia. Durable and resistant to deterioration and moisture. However, it should be covered when not in use and not be left to the elements.
Known for its exceptional hardness and density, which contributes to its renowned durability. Teak wood is often considered one of the strongest and most stable hardwoods and the premium choice for garden furniture.
Hardness & Density Hard and dense, contributing to its durability for outdoor furniture.
Eucalyptus is generally less dense than teak, but still offers a reasonable level of hardness. Known for its exceptional hardness and density, providing strength and stability.
Natural Resistance
Natural oils that provide resistance to decay, insects, and moisture. Contains natural oils that contribute to its resistance to deterioration. Natural oils and silica content make it highly resistant to water, decay, and insects.
Colour & Appearance Has a variety of colours, with attractive grain patterns. Harbour’s range of wood uses lighter wood colours. Eucalyptus has a honey brown colour with a slight red undertone of warmth running through it. Rich, golden honey brown colour that weathers to a silvery grey over time if left untreated.
Cost
Typically more affordable than teak, providing a good balance between cost and durability. Generally more budget-friendly compared to teak and may offer a good compromise between cost and quality.
Teak has a slightly higher price point compared to acacia and eucalyptus due to its premium qualities and materials; therefore it requires less maintenance than other woods.
Maintenance
Acacia wood requires a little more maintenance and care, including more regular cleaning and we'd recommend using our Shield for extra protection. Required regular maintenance and care, including sealing or oiling, to preserve its appearance and protect it from the elements. Low-maintenance and can be left untreated, developing a weathered grey patina over time. Some may choose to apply a Protector or Shield to preserve the original colour of the wood (more details below).

Natural Characteristics of Wooden Furniture

As a natural product, there are certain characteristics of wooden furniture that are good to be aware of, for example, the natural 'grey-ing' of teak (if left untreated).

How to maintain your wooden furniture

As with any purchase, there are a few helpful hints and tips to keep your furniture looking as good as the day you bought it. Always use placemats and coasters to protect any surfaces from dinnerware and glassware (remove mats and coasters when the furniture is not in use). Immediately wipe any spills to prevent permanent staining.

How to clean your wooden furniture

Keep your wood looking pristine with our handy wood cleaning tips below. Always wipe any spills immediately to prevent any permanent staining. Acacia and Eucalyptus do need a little more regular cleaning, however you should also ensure teak furniture remains largely free from dirt and debris.

Guide to help show the natural greying process of wood once left outside in the elements.
Guide to help show the natural greying process of wood once left outside in the elements.

How to restore or maintain the colour of wooden furniture

Please note that not all the guidance below is applicable to the Quay wooden range. We would only recommend using the Shield product, and not the Cleaner or Protector on the Quay range. Use our graphic to help determine which product you need and when you should use it. Before using any product on brand new furniture, please allow the wood to breath for 2 weeks.